What I read so far in 2023

I set out to read a book a month …

January was 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed by Eric H. Cline. Interesting overview of the centuries before, during and after, but so much of it was “here are a bunch of reasons why this series of events occurred, but we don’t definitively know and, oh by the way, we should keep this in mind because modern society has become too complex.” 2000 was more complex and interrelated than 1950 and 1950 was more complex and interrelated than 1900, and 1900 … you get the idea. Still worth while reading especially for what archeology has been able to figure out.

February was Ducks: Two Years in the Oil Sands by Kate Beaton. A very thick graphic novel, but a very personal story by Beaton of Hark a Vagrant notoriety.

March was 1985 by György Dalos. A sequel of a sort to Orwell’s 1984. Thought it was going to be more surreal, but sadly it wasn’t. The revolution will be banal and the counter revolution more so.

In April, I finished Rückzug: The German Retreat from France, 1944 by Joachim Ludewig. My one critique was that the maps should have listed the paths of units better. When the author is talking about roman numeral corp hq A or three digit division Y, moving from town B to mountain Z, it helps if the maps show how things went. With a large margin of error of course. Otherwise, it was a good book that demonstrated that the allies were caught off guard by their rapid pace (good problem to have) and didn’t recognize the extent of their logistics difficulties until the German lines firmed up in Germany and the Netherlands. Anyone recommend a good book on Operation Bagration?

Since then, I started a few books, but haven’t finished any of them in the months between then and now.

This September, I again picked up Let This Radicalize You: Organizing and the Revolution of Reciprocal Care by Kelly Hayes and Mariame Kaba. I purchased my copy at Porter Square Books, but the publisher, Haymarket Books, has a sale on it. Hopefully, I will finish it in September, but if it goes over to October, so be it.