Tuesday, September 13, 2005

last 4 books I read

Unfortunately I do not have the time I would like to write more detailed reviews, but I wanted to say something quick about the last four books I read before I forget that I have actually read them.

First is Charles Bukowski's Play the Piano Like a Percussion Instrument Until the Fingers Begin to Bleed a Bit. It is an interesting collection of peoms that were enjoyable, I presume for those who, unlike me, get poetry. The whole thing was a bit beyond me.

Second was Martin Gardner's The Numerology of Dr. Matrix. This is a collection of a few of his really old articles from the Mathematical Games column from Scientific American. They are all dated, though amusing. It is mostly a lot of these funny numerological thingies that dumb people find profound and smart people find cute, with real mathematical tidbits thrown in as questions that are pretty hard to figure out. He gives you all the answers in the back.

Third I read Douglas Adams' Last Chance to see. This is the story of Adams and Mark Carawdine's trip to some remote places to see some endangered animals. The story that is told is sentamental, as befitting an emotional tour through various places. Douglas Adams' style still comes out as clearly as in his other works, though less so. It is a quick read, and if you are a die-hard fan, it's a must.

Finally, I just finished Catherine Osborne's book Presocratic Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction. This is part of Oxford's Very Short Introduction series. The series is pretty good, though not always. This book really is good. I was pretty impressed. First I was impressed that Presocratic philosophy can be interesting, and second I was impressed that there is a solid methodological underpinning in this field of research that can be explained to simpletons like myself. And finally that someone actually did it. If you want a good introduction to the prsocratics, you would be well advised to start with this book.

5 comments:

Shosh said...

I'm a real dumbass but is Heraclitus presocratic?? Because he's awesome. Is he in the book?

Karl said...

Yes, he is.

Shosh said...

sweeeeeeet.......

Gareth said...

Check out my blog
Another Chance To See now you're done reading Last Chance To See. It brings the story of the animals up-to-date.

Karl said...

Thanks for that link gareth.