Reads 2019

January

A column of fireKen Follett

Third and final part of the Kingsbridge series (have read the other two also long ago). Very enjoyable diversion. Good at getting the horrors of the times across. We are busy working ourselves into extinction but for the ones w money, living in ‘decent’ countries our times are definitely way better.

The wall. Growing up behind the iron curtainPeter Sis

Nice quote about censorship.

To tame a tiger. The Singapore story – Joe Yeoh

Graphic novel about how Singapore achieved independence and how the PAP became dominant. I gather the officially scripted version (with respect to e.g. operation Cold Store). With that in the back of one’s mind the perfect medium.

Critical Mass. How one thing leads to anotherPhilip Ball

Second time in just a couple of years that I read this classic. Forgot (but saw my original copy in the bookcase back home) that I had – frightening….

Superb expose. The aggregate behavious cannot be predicted from nor described by the behavious of the individual constutuents. That’s the basic mesaage. Plus context matters and a whole lot of other important principles. Many statistical physics phenomena have their (mathematical) equivalent in social phenomena and can (at an abstract level) be understood in similar ways (when do power laws arise etc.)

Also interesting because he shows that the thinking in these terms has a long (and sometimes surprising) history.

Most of his other books are probably equally worthwhile and OI will look for them.

This about his most recent book:

Het oog van de engelNelleke Noordervliet

Holiday read picked up at Menora garden B&B. Fascinatingly good historical novel French revolution times). many many interesting themes about revoilutions, idealism, etc. etc. Worth pursuing this author.