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Thread: What Are You Reading Right Now?

  1. #941
    I'm a newcomer here, but I wanted to say that this thread and the Books Sticky Request thread are grand sources of reading ideas. I have combed carefully through both threads and added hundreds of titles to my reading lists. Not that I'll get to them all soon, because I read pretty widely in a number of areas (I'm a professor of humanities, so it's an occupational hazard). But I love having a comprehensive picture of what's out there.

    The last new baseball title I read was Edward Achorn's Fifty-nine in '84, which I enjoyed immensely. Despite the controversies surrounding Matt McCarthy's Odd Man Out, I liked that book as well (partly, no doubt, because McCarthy is a fellow Yalie; I was Class of 1980).

  2. #942
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    One Last Strike by Tony LaRussa with Rick Hummel. I will never forget that amazing 2011 Cardinals team! Some of my favorite baseball memories ever came from that September and October! And I was also one of those Cardinals fans that began to wonder if we would've been better off with another skipper during Tony's last couple years (batting the pitcher 8th? I understood his reasoning, but never got on with it), but I always admired his skill and abilities. So far it is a great read, perfect for this Cardinal fan!

    It was also the final season that my little brother, a fellow Army SGT that survived many deployments, got to see without the horrible battle with cancer that kept him from watching the Cardinals last summer. We would sit around the hospital and watch those amazing moments of Game 6 again and again, it kept giving him strength to see how Berkman and Freese came back when down to their last strike. He wanted to read this book, but the cancer in his eyes ruined his vision. It has been a month since his funeral, and I was bumming around a book store and saw it. Had to pick it up, and it is not disappointing at all!
    "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean

  3. #943
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    I am reading Dennis Lehane's new novel The Given Day. Lehane wrote Mystic River and Shutter Island, and I can't wait to see a movie about this book. The setting is Boston in the late teens, and one of the characters is none other than Babe Ruth of the Red Sox. Tremendous prose and a book you don't want to put down. I can't believe it was laying in the fifty cent bin at K Mart.
    "He's tougher than a railroad sandwich."
    "You'se Got The Eye Of An Eagle."

  4. #944
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyK View Post
    I can't believe it was laying in the fifty cent bin at K Mart.
    With so many people using e-readers and such, I wouldn't be surprised to see many more in these types of bins over time. But I definitely agree, finding a good read at a great price is awesome.
    "Chuckie doesn't take on 2-0. Chuckie's hackin'." - Chuck Carr two days prior to being released by the Milwaukee Brewers

  5. #945
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    Finished reading Treasury of Baseball by Paul Adomites (among others). This was a really great book that covered all the bases - from star players, to baseball's impact on American culture. One of the better baseball books I've read recently.

  6. #946
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    Still reading Sports Illustrated The Baseball Book Expanded Edition and Fantography.

    The first one is nice, very good text to read and its pictures are wonderful, some of them were unknown for me.

    The other is a small jewel very, very recommendable for everyone.
    Last edited by Swiss; 01-18-2013 at 06:57 AM.



  7. #947
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    Recently finished Under Pallor, Under Shadow: The 1920 American League Pennant Race That Rattled and Rebuilt Baseball by Bill Felber. It looks at the major events of 1920--the investigation into the Black Sox scandal; the death of Ray Chapman from a pitched ball; and Babe Ruth shattering the home run record books. I don't think there is any new info here, but I confess I had not clearly understood how these various events related chronologically. The book is (as advertised) only concerned about the AL. The NL is only acknowledged at the end for the World Series. And, really, the book is primarily concerned with the Yankees, White Sox and Indians. And the ending (a quick review of the 1920 World Series) seemed rushed. Still, I consider the book worth the read.

    I am currently reading the most recent issue of Base Ball: A Journal of the Early Game from McFarland (Fall 2012).

  8. #948
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    Reading Lords Of The Realm again...haven't picked it up frim my bookshelf in a while.
    Man, do I *HATE* the Yankees!!!!!!

  9. #949
    I thought the Hank Aaron biography was very good. Well-written and researched, went beyond the headline stuff. Also it offered good insight for the reasons for Aaron's well-publicized caution around the press and outsiders. Overall one of the better baseball books of the past few years.

  10. #950
    In the mailbox this week: Mike Piazza's biography, "Long Shot." Can't wait to dig into it tonight.

  11. #951
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    I'm finishing "Stan Musial:An American Life" by George Vecsey. Unfortunately read most of it in bits and pieces as things have been busy, but it is well written and is teaching me a lot of new things about Stan. Amazing coincidence that I bought it the week before Stan died. One thing that really surprised me is that Stan's kids said they didn't see that much of him even when his baseball schedule wasn't interfering because he spent so much time at his restaurant in the evenings...they felt he was a wonderful dad, but wished he had been around more. Stan said he felt an obligation to let the fans who came to eat have a good chance to meet him, and also that the financial success of the restaurant was very important to being able to care for his family the way he wanted to.
    I skipped ahead to a brief section at the end about when Vecsey was dining in StL with one of Musial's oldest friends and Stan himself happened to come in, pushed in a wheelchair by a grandson. Stan shook hands with the party on his way to his table but clearly didn't recognize his friend of many decades, and Vecsey said the meal was very quiet after that. Struck me as very poignant and reminded me a bit of my own father's sad last years as an old man in a wheelchair growing progressively more confused.

    I also picked up "The Last Boy" book about Mantle off a bargain table at BAM and am looking forward into digging into it.
    "If I drink whiskey, I'll never get worms!" - Hack Wilson

  12. #952
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dude Paskert View Post
    I'm finishing "Stan Musial:An American Life" by George Vecsey. Unfortunately read most of it in bits and pieces as things have been busy, but it is well written and is teaching me a lot of new things about Stan. Amazing coincidence that I bought it the week before Stan died. One thing that really surprised me is that Stan's kids said they didn't see that much of him even when his baseball schedule wasn't interfering because he spent so much time at his restaurant in the evenings...they felt he was a wonderful dad, but wished he had been around more. Stan said he felt an obligation to let the fans who came to eat have a good chance to meet him, and also that the financial success of the restaurant was very important to being able to care for his family the way he wanted to.
    I skipped ahead to a brief section at the end about when Vecsey was dining in StL with one of Musial's oldest friends and Stan himself happened to come in, pushed in a wheelchair by a grandson. Stan shook hands with the party on his way to his table but clearly didn't recognize his friend of many decades, and Vecsey said the meal was very quiet after that. Struck me as very poignant and reminded me a bit of my own father's sad last years as an old man in a wheelchair growing progressively more confused.

    I also picked up "The Last Boy" book about Mantle off a bargain table at BAM and am looking forward into digging into it.
    Stan Musial's life doesn't really make for a juicy biography, he was a good, decent man whose life was virtually controversy-free.

    The Mantle book, on the other hand, paints him warts and all. I learned more about The Mick than I really wanted to know.
    Last edited by ol' aches and pains; 02-13-2013 at 08:01 PM.
    Shalom, y'all!
    What's the rumpus?

  13. #953
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    Quote Originally Posted by ol' aches and pains View Post
    Stan Musial's life doesn't really make for a juicy biography, he was a good. decent man whose life was virtually controversy-free.

    The Mantle book, on the other hand, paints him warts and all. I learned more about The Mick than I really wanted to know.
    I have been flipping through "The Last Boy" here and there (bad habit, should just wait until I am ready to read it) and I think it's already set a record for F bombs in one book for me.

    You're right that there isn't THAT much to say about Stan for the reasons you give. I"m just about to get into the Michener stuff and think that might be interesting. I had forgotten that Stan was the Cards' GM for a season!
    "If I drink whiskey, I'll never get worms!" - Hack Wilson

  14. #954
    The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/159420411X

    Nate Silver built an innovative system for predicting baseball performance, predicted the 2008 election within a hair’s breadth, and became a national sensation as a blogger—all by the time he was thirty. The New York Times now publishes FiveThirtyEight.com, where Silver is one of the nation’s most influential political forecasters.

    Drawing on his own groundbreaking work, Silver examines the world of prediction, investigating how we can distinguish a true signal from a universe of noisy data. Most predictions fail, often at great cost to society, because most of us have a poor understanding of probability and uncertainty. Both experts and laypeople mistake more confident predictions for more accurate ones. But overconfidence is often the reason for failure. If our appreciation of uncertainty improves, our predictions can get better too. This is the “prediction paradox”: The more humility we have about our ability to make predictions, the more successful we can be in planning for the future.

    In keeping with his own aim to seek truth from data, Silver visits the most successful forecasters in a range of areas, from hurricanes to baseball, from the poker table to the stock market, from Capitol Hill to the NBA. He explains and evaluates how these forecasters think and what bonds they share. What lies behind their success? Are they good—or just lucky? What patterns have they unraveled? And are their forecasts really right? He explores unanticipated commonalities and exposes unexpected juxtapositions. And sometimes, it is not so much how good a prediction is in an absolute sense that matters but how good it is relative to the competition. In other cases, prediction is still a very rudimentary—and dangerous—science.

  15. #955
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    The Mantle book, on the other hand, paints him warts and all. I learned more about The Mick than I really wanted to know.
    Yes it does. After reading it, I warned a couple of friends who are huge Mantle fans that they might want to skip this book because it would certainly alter their opinion of him. I always liked Mickey but wasn't a huge fan and a lot of it sure surprised me - rather unpleasantly, I'm afraid.
    You see, you spend a good deal of your life gripping a baseball and in the end it turns out that it was the other way around all the time. J. Bouton

  16. #956
    I just finished reading Mike Piazza's biography "Long Shot" last night. While it was an interesting read leading up to his major league career, it was a bit of a let-down when it got to his big league days. There is no doubt that Piazza was very talented and in my opinion should be in the Hall of Fame, but his book left me wanting more.

  17. #957
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    I'm currently reading Ball Four by Jim Bouton. I had never read this baseball classic before and I have to say, it's pretty awesome.

  18. #958
    Quote Originally Posted by filihok View Post
    The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver.
    I'm reading that too. It's a fine book, most valuable to me for its attitude towards the uncertain. I didn't know until I read it that Silver invented the Pecota system.
    Indeed the first step toward finding out is to acknowledge you do not satisfactorily know already; so that no blight can so surely arrest all intellectual growth as the blight of cocksureness.--CS Peirce

  19. #959
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cowtipper View Post
    I'm currently reading Ball Four by Jim Bouton. I had never read this baseball classic before and I have to say, it's pretty awesome.
    Finished it. It was stellar.

  20. #960
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cowtipper View Post
    Finished it. It was stellar.
    Next read "The Long Season" by Jim Brosnan. It is the same type of book, more G-rated but written better.

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