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[Ben]:Book Pimping Discuss This [4 comments so far] View Comments
First of all, I don't stand to gain anything from either of the books I'm about to pimp.

The Internet and American Business edited by William Aspray and Paul Ceruzzi
# ISBN-10: 0262012405
# ISBN-13: 978-0262012409

During my last year of college, I took a course in outsourcing and offshoring from Dr. William Aspray. The course was a bit strange. Dr. Aspray didn't actually live in Indiana when he was teaching the course. Actually, he lived in Colorado and would fly in for a single day once a week just to teach for a couple of hours. I'm not sure what the whole story behind that scenario was, but I think it comes of his senior position and probably the necessity that he keep up teaching for tenure purposes. That's mostly speculation, though, so don't take it for Holy Writ (unlike most of what I write).

In the course of the class, he told us about a scholarly work he was in the process of writing and compiling that considers some of the beginnings of the commercial internet post-1995. That book came out this year (I missed it) and I'm thinking about picking up a used copy to go through. Dr. Aspray's class was very interesting, and if this book is as good as the class, you'll learn plenty.

Anathem by Neal Stephenson
# ISBN-10: 0061474096
# ISBN-13: 978-0061474095

There are scant few authors alive today that would inspire me to buy a book without even an idea of what the plot was. Neal Stephenson is absolutely one of those few and the first one that comes to mind at the moment. He comes to mind because I just learned (at least 4 months after it was announced) that he has a new book coming out in September of this year. There's not really a question ... I will be buying this book as soon as it comes out and probably pay the premium for hardcover simply because Stephenson's work is uniformly fantastic.

HarperCollins says this about the book:

Since childhood, Raz has lived behind the walls of a 3,400–year—old monastery, a sanctuary for scientists, philosophers, and mathematicians. There, he and his cohorts are sealed off from the illiterate, irrational, and unpredictable "saecular" world, an endless landscape of casinos and megastores that is plagued by recurring cycles of booms and busts, dark ages and renaissances, world wars and climate change. Until the day that a higher power, driven by fear, decides it is only these cloistered scholars who have the abilities to avert an impending catastrophe. And, one by one, Raz and his friends, mentors, and teachers are sent forth without warning into the unknown.

Even without that description, I'd be on the pre-order list.

Night of Thunder by Stephen Hunter
# ISBN-10: 1416566155
# ISBN-13: 978-1416566151

About once a year I'll get in a mood to submerge myself in Stephen Hunter's fictional universe of gunfights and dark heroes. I'll burn through the six or seven Hunter books that I have as methodically as Bob the Nailer might select and eliminate targets through his scope. After the marathon, I'll usually leave the books alone for a while.

Michael and his dad introduced me to Bob Lee Swagger through both Point of Impact (the movie that was butchered into Shooter) and a particular .308 load. I've long been a fan of Hunter's style and expertise. He's one of a small group of authors who write about guns and actually has enough experience with them to make it believable. It's nice to not have to read about safeties being disengaged from revolvers and hammers being cocked on Glocks.

This is another book I've got very little information about, but I will probably pick it up anyway because I like the author.
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