June 15, 2005

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Books meme

I'm not a fan of chain emails - they are the modern equivalent of junk mail. Well, were. Now the blogging world has caught up with memes. If not for Fabian being amongst my favourite bloggers, I would have ignored the latest one. But he has tagged me, so...

How many books I've owned

You don't own books, as the ad goes, you merely look after them for the next generation. Usually they're pupled and turned into cardboard. As Shakespeare said in another context, in the end we are all but food for worms. Books are the same. Yet that doesn't explain why Mrs M and I have a compulsion to keep almost every book we've ever read. Given we're both bookaholics, it is a substantial number.

A perfect afternoon is one spent browsing a bookstore. I like to dream one day I'll own a small bookshop but I fear with Borders et al, the small bookstore will be going the way of books.

The last book I bought

Mr China by Tim Clissold.

The last book I read

If "The Turtle Cannot Fly" book I read to JC last night doesn't count, it would be My Life as a Quant by Emanuel Derman. Prior to that was Freakonomics, which I highly recommend.

Five books that meant a lot to me

Perfume by Patrick Suskind. This was the first I read that had a memorable impact. Brilliantly written (and translated).

American Psycho">American Pschyco and Bonfire of the Vanities. Two books that tackle essentially the same subject (the dysfunction of yuppie-ism) in very, very different ways.

Liar's Poker. The legendary book of Wall Street legends. A bible of the "old days" of finance.

I could go on but in reality almost every book I read has some kind of influence on me. I have a rule: if I don't enjoy the book after 50 pages, I give up. As my Da so wisely told me (albeit in relation to wine): there are so many good books in the world, and our time on this planet is limited, so why waste your precious time with a bad one? Mrs M, on the other hand, insists on readnig through a book even if she hates it.

I'm not passing this meme to anyone in particular. If you're interested, post about it or leave a comment here.

Did Amazon start this meme?

posted by Simon on 06.15.05 at 01:15 PM in the


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Cheers for indulging me!

posted by: Fabian on 06.15.05 at 02:06 PM [permalink]

I loved Liar's Poker. That was a great read.

I have Freakenomics on my bed side table in the pile of books to be read.

posted by: RP on 06.15.05 at 10:26 PM [permalink]

The last book I bought

Colossus: The Rise and Fall of the American Empire, by Niall Ferguson

The last book I read (other than that)

The Sling and the Stone, by T. X. Hammes

Five books that meant a lot to me
Atlas Shrugged, by Ayn Rand
Defense of ambition property, and non-violence.
"Who is John Galt?"

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, by Robert Pirsig
Quality, teaching, and right thinking.
"What the hell is Quality?"

The Good Earth, Sons, A House Divided, by Pearl Buck
Understanding extended families
"Secretly he was pleased that his son had invited guests, but he felt it would not do to give out anything but complaints before his new daughter-in-law lest she be set from the first in ways of extravagance."

posted by: Dan on 06.16.05 at 08:58 AM [permalink]

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