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The TOO Book Club

jagermeister

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#41
Good shit, Jesse. Off Balance sounds like a good one.

I've found a new level of enjoyment in books lately, but not by reading... By listening. I downloaded and purchased a subscription through Audible and I love it. Sitting down and reading a book is not for me. No matter how interesting it is, I get bored and my mind drifts off to other things. I find myself going back and rereading over and over again. Not so with audiobooks. For some reason, I can maintain attention and stay more interested than ever before. I drive a lot, and so this, on addition to a few podcasts, has been a God-send.

Recently I've been listening to The Frontiersmen, by Allen Eckert. So far it's the best book I've ever "read" and I get absolutely lost in it. I'm about 2/3 of the way through. It's 30-plus hours long so it's got some serious meat and potatoes. In contrast, I listened to Tribe recently (another great one) and it was only about 2 hours long.

I'm really digging this Audible app. I think it's really going to help me gain some knowledge that was previously outside of my reach.
 

bowhunter1023

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#42
Reading the Frontiersmen was laborious to say the least! I also enjoyed reading Tribe. My drive time has been reduced, so I just fill it will podcasts. I can't get myself to listen to audiobooks as I feel the practice of reading is important, but as I get more pressed for time, I find myself considering it more and more.
 
#43
I really enjoy Eckerts style of writing. It is historical fiction yet it follows very closely to the true events. I also like it contains footnotes and references. Some of the understanding of events have changed with more updated research. There also a number of historical inaccuracies particularly surounding the greathouse family. His books are pretty unbiased on the subject of whites vs Indians and he doesn't hide atrocities committed by either side.

RG Robertson's writing is similar to Eckert's but is more novel like than historical fiction.

I am reading John Fox JR's novels. They are classics the center around Northern Kentucky's Appalachian region.
 
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jagermeister

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#44
I really enjoy Eckerts style of writing. It is historical fiction yet it follows very closely to the true events. I also like it contains footnotes and references. Some of the understanding of events have changed with more updated research. There also a number of historical inaccuracies particularly surounding the greathouse family. His books are pretty unbiased on the subject of whites vs Indians and he doesn't hide atrocities committed by either side.

RG Robertson's writing is similar to Eckert's but is more novel like than historical fiction.

I am reading John Fox JR's novels. They are classics the center around Northern Kentucky's Appalachian region.
I agree. I think Eckert does a great job of "filling in the blanks." Listening to the audiobook, I miss out on all the valuable footnotes that you mention. So once I'm finished listening, I plan on picking up a hard copy and going back through.
 

bowhunter1023

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#45
The footnotes are what make That Dark and Bloody River so hard to read. I cannot, not read them, so I'm am constantly flipping to the back. It's a shitton of information to absorb in a choppy manner of reading, so it defines laborious...
 

jagermeister

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#46
Still loving this Audible app

I'm currently listening to this one, American Nations. I just started it today. So far, it's a little dry, but interesting. I'm sure it will get better.


Boone, by Robert Morgan, was an excellent book that I would definitely recommend. I listened to it immediately after finishing The Frontiersmen. Some of the historical accounts from both books overlap, but The Frontiersmen was kind of light on the Daniel Boone history... So this book, Boone, was a perfect follow-up and really filled in a lot of the blanks.


My most recent completed book, American Buffalo by Steven Rinella, may quite possibly be my favorite book so far. Definitely in the top two. It's two separate (but related) stories in one... A biological and ecological history of the bison, and one hell of a hunting story. Rinella tells the epic tale of his one and only buffalo hunt in a remote part of Alaska. He describes the adventure in such colorful detail that you can picture yourself right there beside him. And for those familiar with his Meateater podcast, his good ol boy humor translates in his writing as well. I found myself either smiling or laughing out loud multiple times during this book, which is pretty rare for me, a guy that has never been a bookworm. I can't recommend this book enough. For anyone who hunts, this is a must-read. Or is this case, listen.
 

Jackalope

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#47
Thanks Jim. I'll have to give that American Buffalo one a listen in the truck during my commute.

I recently started reading "The Art of War For Managers.". It's a pretty good book that focuses more on the art in an effort to avoid war. Understanding why other managers and executives do what they do, how to align yourself strategically in partnerships and situations, how to lead situations to a desired outcome by strategic planning and strategy. Interesting to say the least. This is an area I really need to work on personally, I have a tendency to go from diplomat to nuclear strike pretty quick.

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Jackalope

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#49
Ha! Diplomat to nuclear strike. Same here! Type D personality by the sounds of it. I too could use some work on that. I'll have to add that one to my list.
I'm more a Type A personality with regard to drive and determination. The issue comes in when I'm met with oposition, I will attempt the diplomatic route once but if the obstacle persists I go straight to obvious conflict mode and take them head on. This is great when dealing with problems or tasks, bad for dealing with people. I need to learn to continue the diplomatic route with a better stratgic plan to achieve my desired outcome. 100% of the time in todays business environment the person who is being obviously combative loses, regardless if they are right about the issue.
 

bowhunter1023

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#50
Sun Tzu's version of Art of War was a good read, so I added that one to my Amazon list Joe!

I read Rinella's book on buffalo a couple years back. I also endorse it as a "must read". He's both a great author and orator.
 

jagermeister

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#51
I'm currently listening to this one, American Nations. I just started it today. So far, it's a little dry, but interesting. I'm sure it will get better.
Well, unfortunately, I was wrong. This one in fact did not get any better. While at times it was interesting, the book as a whole was dry, difficult to follow, and poorly written. The author jumps around way too much for me. I found myself losing interest frequently... If I was reading the physical book version, there's no way I would have finished it. If you're somewhat of a political nerd this book might be for you. But that ain't me.
 

jagermeister

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#52
I'm staying on my 'one book per month' pace and so I have a few more to share. The Audible app gold membership gives you one 'credit' per month which is redeemable for any book... This works out well for me considering that's about all I have time for at this point.

Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari.
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I had pretty high expectations for this book. Bryan Callen was on the JRE podcast about a year ago and I remember him referencing it several times. I finally got around to listening to it and, although parts of it were interesting, I was somewhat disappointed. I guess it just wasn't quite what I had hoped it would be. I do consider myself a Christian, but I have a degree in Environmental Biology, so I've studied evolution and been through the typical Liberal Arts education regime... and as a result I've always struggled with my religious beliefs. I believe in God, or at least some kind of higher power, and although I don't attend church as regularly as I'd like, I do have a fair amount of faith. But the biologist in me has a hard time ignoring the science of Evolution. Hard to explain I guess. Suffice it to say, I struggle with my beliefs. How does this pertain to this book? Well I was hoping it would have focused more on the Evolution of our species and our ancient history. It did, to a degree, but it was brief compared to the rest of the book. Instead, the author put more emphasis on the relative modern history of humankind... how we got to where we are in the last 1000 years or so. When the author did discuss our ancestors, the general overtone was that religion is laughable, which is common with most Evolution proponents. This just rubbed me the wrong way and put a bad taste in my mouth, which made enjoying the rest of the book kind of difficult. It gets rave reviews on Audible and Amazon so I'm sure others would love it, but it just wasn't that great for me. 3 stars.


A Sand County Almanac by Aldo Leopold
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There's not much to say about this book that hasn't already been said. From an environmental and conservation standpoint, it's one of the greatest books of all time. This was my second time going through it but it had been 15 years, so it was almost brand new to me again. Anyone who hunts, fishes, or just enjoys the outdoors owes it to themselves to read this. Leopold was ahead of his time and is a huge reason we have the conservation mindset we possess today. Aside from the societal importance of this book, it is very well written and easy to follow. Leopold's writing style often times makes you feel as though you are right there with him. 5 stars on this one.


Undaunted Courage by Stephen E. Ambrose
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This is a fascinating book about the life of Meriwether Lewis, the great Lewis and Clark expedition, and the decade that followed. I'll admit that I was hoping for a bit more content pertaining to the expedition itself, but the author can only work with the information that is available, and the fact is there is a lot about the expedition we don't know. Lost or non-existent journals over long stretches of time didn't help. But what was included was interesting as fuck. And I had no idea how much foresight and planning went into the months leading up to the expedition. Their ability to predict what they may or may not need, over that length of time, in areas they had never been, is nothing short of amazing. Hell, they even thought they might find woolly mammoths out west! Sadly, Lewis was a legitimate trainwreck of a person after he returned from the expedition. The years that followed were dark times for him and it does tarnish my attitude of that adventure just a bit. This is the part you never learn about in 5th grade social studies... Lewis was a depressed, pill popping, drunk in his final years and never published his own journals of the expedition. He died a day or two after shooting himself, twice, in a suicide attempt at a run-down saloon. One of the bravest motherfuckers the American continent has ever seen, and even he couldn't escape his own demons. 5 stars.
 

Stump

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#53
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Since starting this thread, I've read more books than I had read in the previous 32 years. Because I listen to so many podcasts, the pipeline for reads is pretty backed up and I have a new found desire to learn, so that keeps me plowing through a process I never really enjoyed until recently. Funny thing is the Kindle got me reading and I quickly decided I only liked it for reading in the blind and would rather read a real book at home. That said, here are the most recent reads after setting the goal of reading a book a month this year. Ironically enough, the book for January was The Goal. I read this in my Operations class in college and enjoyed it. It's a novel, but a text book. I didn't connect with the subplot of managing life and work when I was 20, I certainly do at 34. Also, I am working with manufacturers now and developing my own processes while I work to define how our program, and our team should be ran. Great read the second time around and I would highly recommend this book to anyone in manufacturing or process driven fields. I consider it an invaluable addition to my library and will certainly read it again.

I am rereading 7 Habits again as well. This was a requirement in college as well and I all but blew this one off back then. I engage frequently with a personal adviser who managed 350 people on 4 continents at one time as an executive level project manger. He also happens to be my dad's oldest and closest friend. Our relationship went south around the time I turned 16 when he began throwing noise my dad's way about my "renegade mannerisms". Took him the next 16 years to figure out I pretty much do my own thing, but that doesn't make me a loser. As we've rebuilt fences in recent years, he has given me some tremendous advice. He's a man who reads dozens of books a year and over 1K in his life, so when he says in order for me to be successful not just in business, but in life, I had better read 7 Habits and learn how to teach it on a graduate level. The plan is to reread this once through, then immediately dive back in with a highlighter and sticky tabs. I'm already seeing how this book drives points home MUCH deeper at 34 than they ever could have at 22. With the opening paragraphs, he dives in to "perception", which was a surreal moment for me given my recent lessons on this. Again folks, if you are looking to make positive changes in your life and learn new process to assist with that, this book is a must read.

The other monstrosity there is 600+ pages of historical readings on the clash between my Shawnee and Irish bloodlines in the place I call home. I'll read this on the side and do my best to only read it when I can full immerse myself in it. I wanted half my book to be on personal/process improvement, but the other half to be non-fiction historical readings. Eckert is one of my preferred authors in this genre and I love reading about events from this time period in the Ohio Valley. I'm born and bred Mid-Ohio Valley and have spent a lot of time on the banks of that historical river. We duck hunt spots I know were touched by the men of this era and that's always a cool connection with the places we inhabit. If you are looking for a good author specializing in great books of this nature, Eckert is one of the best in my novice opinion.

I've read all of those 3 and all the Eckert books...Goldratt will get your wheels turning