What’s New (Maybe)

Every once in a while I look at the list of books that I have read and am surprised at the number from Amazon, or that have come from the library after coming to my attention from Amazon. Many are very interesting and some are not. The uninteresting I don’t have to keep. The library books are free and I can return those that turn out to be not what I am interested in.

For example, The Man Who Broke Napoleon’s Codes, is a relatively recent examination of how the British Duke of Wellington in his early 19th C campaign against the French in Portugal and Spain supported his intelligence officer in cracking the new message code. His officer had already deciphered the previous code, an act that let Wellington know what the French were supposed to do, sometimes before they knew. The book is full of action and suspense: just my type. Then, there is Thief of Time by Tony Hillerman. These fictional stories take place on the Navajo reservation and the principal character is a young Navajo policeman. The stories have told me much about life on the Navajo reservation.

On the other hand, there is The Red Knight of Germany:The Story of Baron von Richthofen. He was THE fighter plane ace of WWI, shooting down more planes than any pilot on either side. The book was published in 1930, giving it’s author time to explore every air battle and every victim of Richthofen. Not quite half way through it came to me that describing most air battles, places of crash for all of his victims, and their names was all the book was about. I’m not sure even a German could stick through all of that.

And, now, there is The Sea & Civilization, foisted on me by a very good friend. It is 600 pages of densely packed information on the development of the world from the time when we can first identify people moving from one place to another by sea. It is well written, very interesting and long. After about two months I have read 124 pages.

Thank goodness for the library and Amazon. They should keep me interested and involved until my departure.

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