Author Topic: What are we reading?  (Read 647405 times)

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Offline Jarhead0331

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5370 on: March 05, 2021, 06:16:27 PM »
I've been on a bit of a reading tear lately, although as usual I'm slow to actually finish a book.  Kinda like my gaming....   ::)

Most recently, though, I finished a book called Outrage by Vincent Bugliosi.  The book is about the OJ Simpson trial and Bugliosi absolutely eviscerates the prosecution.  I read this book a long time ago, maybe as much as 20 years ago? and for some reason decided to give it a second read a few weeks ago.  I remember truly enjoying the book the first time I read it (which is why I've been lugging it around for the last 20 years I suppose) but I didn't enjoy it nearly as much this time around.  In a way, Bugliosi reminds me of our own Groghead, Jarhead.  He pulls no punches, doesn't sugarcoat things, and tells it like it is.  However, in Bugliosi's case in Outrage, I felt he came across quite arrogant.  Not so much an after-the-fact quarterback, he still has the strong benefit of hindsight, and his "example" arguments to the jury are, to my mind, annoying.  If a lawyer spoke to me like he speaks in his scripts, I'd be very annoyed very quickly.

Still, Bugliosi makes a very, very strong case on how OJ could have been convicted on his statement to the police alone.  The fact that there was just so much overwhelming evidence of his guilt, and yet he was still found not-guilty, remains mind-boggling.  I find my curiosity of this trial piqued all over again, and I just checked out The Run of His Life by Toobin to read some more about this trial.

Outrage is a good book, but you have to go into it knowing what you're getting yourself into.  It's very much an opinion book, and Bugliosi is a bit full of himself.

Did you happen to catch the OJ Simpson interview with Judith Regan? It aired in 2006, but had been filmed in 1994, I think, to promote his book, "If I did it". It wasn't aired at the time because of public outcry from the Goldman family and from prosecutor Christopher Darden. The interview is jaw-dropping. He essentially confesses to the murders. It is so bizarre. Totally a must see.

If you're interested in trial stuff, there is a lot of it out there. Trial advocacy is much more art than science. I've had the pleasure of attending some Continuing Legal Education courses with some of the best trial attorneys in the country. Some of them just blow me away. There is no activity that can match the drama, suspense, unpredictability, stress and anxiety of a trial. My friend, Tim Parlatore, who was the lead trial attorney for Chief Eddie Gallagher will tell you just how unpredictable a trial can be when a witness admitted on the stand that he was the one who killed the wounded enemy combatant for whom Chief Gallagher was on trial for murder. Admissions like that on the stand are so rare and may come perhaps once...maybe twice in a career. 

While I certainly think trial advocacy can be taught and learned, to truly excel at it, you just have to have a gift.   
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Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5371 on: March 07, 2021, 12:12:01 PM »
Now reading The Castles of Wales by Lindsay Evans.
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Offline z1812

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5372 on: March 07, 2021, 04:30:15 PM »
Now reading The Castles of Wales by Lindsay Evans.

That sounds interesting. How are you enjoying it?

Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5373 on: March 07, 2021, 07:29:38 PM »
It is very academic and detailed so far, with a lot of place names intertwined that I have never heard of...but still somehow enjoying it. It is also more wide ranging than I thought it would be...it covers about 1000 years of history from just before the Norman conquest up until the Victorian era. It's not meant to be read straight through (the intro even states that explicitly) but more as a reference. There are some very good plates, sketches and paintings included too. So, for a book I bought for 3.50 at a rural used book store I would say I got my money's worth.
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Offline Toonces

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5374 on: March 08, 2021, 05:27:36 PM »
My wife dug out a copy of a Stephen King book that contains three novels: Carrie, Salem's Lot, and The Shining.  I've read Salem's Lot and The Shining lots of times, but for some reason I never read Carrie.  I understand that it was King's first big hit.  Anyway, I started reading it yesterday and finished it today and quite enjoyed it.  It's definitely not quite as polished as his later novels, but you can definitely see the distinctive King style in it.

I think I'm going to go ahead and read the other two novels now that I have the book out.
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Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5375 on: March 08, 2021, 06:06:40 PM »
Salem’s Lot is great. The Shining is a modern classic. And I love both movies too. Never read Carrie but the movie always freaked me out. The original...never saw the remake.
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Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5376 on: March 13, 2021, 01:59:37 PM »
Now reading The Oxford Illustrated History of the Vikings edited by Peter Sawyer.
"I'm not even dead and I'm rolling over in my grave."

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Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5377 on: March 20, 2021, 10:10:52 AM »
Now reading Historical Atlas of the Celtic World by Angus Konstam.
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Offline Toonces

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5378 on: March 20, 2021, 10:26:13 AM »
^ Man, you really crank through 'em, Gus.

I'm reading The Run of His Life by Toobin about the OJ Simpson trial on Kindle.

I'm also reading Twilight of the Gods, third in the Pacific War series by Ian Toll, and re-reading The Third World War by Hackett, which I never have finished.  I'm enjoy Hackett much more this time around and feel pretty sure I'll finish it this time.
"If you had a chance, right now, to go back in time and stop Hitler, wouldn't you do it?  I mean, I personally wouldn't stop him because I think he's awesome." - Eric Cartman

"Does a watch list mean you are being watched or is it a come on to Toonces?" - Biggs

Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5379 on: March 20, 2021, 11:33:17 AM »
Love to read, bruh.

I have Pacific Crucible on my to-read shelf. Will eventually get to Twilight of the Gods. Also have Neptune's Inferno waiting.
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Offline Toonces

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5380 on: March 20, 2021, 11:54:38 AM »
I would recommend Neptune's Inferno first.  That's a great book; we used several chapters of it in our NWC syllabus.

The first two books of the Pacific trilogy were really good.  There are a lot of new perspectives presented.  But Twilight really drags for the first 100 pages; a lot of discussion of the press and the DC conference of 1944.  I finally, finally got through that part but it caused me to shelve the book for several weeks and move on to other, more interesting books.

Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors is also very good.
"If you had a chance, right now, to go back in time and stop Hitler, wouldn't you do it?  I mean, I personally wouldn't stop him because I think he's awesome." - Eric Cartman

"Does a watch list mean you are being watched or is it a come on to Toonces?" - Biggs

Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5381 on: March 20, 2021, 02:58:09 PM »
Yeah? That is sad to hear about Twilight of the Gods.

Got it on Neptune's Inferno - may read that this summer.

I've just entered a fall of Rome/Dark Ages kick, have a huge stack, and don't know much about that era, roughly 400AD-1000AD.

Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors has been popping up in my Amazon recommendations forever!
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Offline Tripoli

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5382 on: March 20, 2021, 05:44:02 PM »
Yeah? That is sad to hear about Twilight of the Gods.

Got it on Neptune's Inferno - may read that this summer.

I've just entered a fall of Rome/Dark Ages kick, have a huge stack, and don't know much about that era, roughly 400AD-1000AD.

Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors has been popping up in my Amazon recommendations forever!

"Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors" is great.  Not a hard read, and definitely worth your time.  It describes an incredible battle.  Just to whet your appitite: Read the following starting about half way down the following page, in the section titled "In Harm’s Way: The Battle off Samar" https://www.history.navy.mil/browse-by-topic/wars-conflicts-and-operations/world-war-ii/1944/battle-of-leyte-gulf/calmness-courage-and-efficiency.html#E
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Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5383 on: March 20, 2021, 09:42:27 PM »
Thanks Tripoli!
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Offline ArizonaTank

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5384 on: March 20, 2021, 10:57:19 PM »
Just finishing "Aces Falling" by Peter Hart

https://www.amazon.com/Aces-Falling-Above-Trenches-2007-08-09/dp/B01MSLPXI7/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=aces+falling&qid=1616299973&sr=8-1

This book covers the last year of the war in the air during WWI. The late air war was completely different from 1916 or 1917. Large formations of 60 and 70 aircraft often dominated the sky. Ground support and interdiction became very important roles for fighters. For example, a common mission was tank support. This is where fighters flew ahead of the tanks looking to expose and take out anti-tank guns. Many British squadrons started to specialize and exclusively fly only certain types of missions during this period; night fighting, or ground strafing as examples.

The title refers to the fact that the importance of individual aces was diminished in 1918, and in fact, many of them were killed or put out of action in the last year. The book makes the point, that a pilot who caused havoc by strafing a road choked with horse teams moving guns up to the front, probably had greater affect on the war than a lone wolf ace on a dawn patrol.

The author tells the story mainly through first hand accounts, but backing up the main points with statistical information. Many times he tells a story by letting several witnesses tell their side of the same story, or by backing it up with official reports. Another nice touch is that many times the author mentions the names of those shot down.

Overall, the author does a good job of melding the strategic ground situation with the types of missions that the air units were flying. A nice bonus is that he spends time letting us hear the first hand accounts of the parts of the air war not often covered; photo reconnaissance, observation balloons, anti-air gunnery, tactical and strategic bombing. I particularly enjoyed the first hand accounts of strategic bombing into Germany since it made WWI almost look like the early years of WWII.   

While I enjoyed the book I felt it was often too focused on British forces. French air forces are barely mentioned. US air forces get a bit of discussion, with Frank Luke and Eddie Rickenbacker taking center stage for a bit. While there are German voices, the Richthofen brothers seem to be the most prominent. 

Still, overall, I think it is a great read, covers its subject well, and makes for very interesting reading.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2021, 03:36:47 PM by ArizonaTank »
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