READING

 

I’ve always been an avid reader… especially when I began going on long expeditions and needed to keep preoccupied during storm days, rest days, loss of sanity days. One of my favorite things to do, still, is going to the library and check out a book. It’s like Christmas morning, especially if I’m fortunate to be the first to read a brand-new book they’ve just acquired.

 

The reason I’ve decided to start posting books I read is a selfish one.  If this gets one person to put down their smartphone, turn off their laptop or TV, and sit for an undisturbed period of time to enjoy a good book, then it’s worth it. The benefits are abundant.

 

Most books I read have been suggested to me by other readers, admirers, or in magazine reviews. Not every book I read I like… though a majority of those won’t be posted because I just can’t finish them… too boring and won't hold my attention.

 

Get outside, sit under a tree or pop in a tent, and read.

Skål,
Sean

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Playing Back The 80s, Jim Beviglia

Nostaglia continues. Completed this in one sitting. Quick read. If all you Gen Xers want to go back in time to your childhood like I did, if only for a brief moment, this book exceeds those expectations. Good summaries of some songs that definitely flood the memory gates. I found myself scouring youtube to listen to a few of them I’d long forgotten. Hell, listening to one of the songs right now! Thanks Jim for bringing back the reminiscences. Only wish some of those hair bands would have contacted you back. Perhaps Volume 2.

Looking for Alaska, John Green

I haven’t read a YF book in a long time, so thought I’d be a nice change of pace… make me feel young again. I chose this one because: #1 It won a lot of awards and #2 John Green seems to have the pulse on teens searching for life’s meaning. Interesting perspective – the days/months countdown before the death of a girl, and the days/months after her death. The main character ‘Pudge’ obsession with ‘famous last words’ was a good tag. Is this guy Holden Caulfield? I should think not. But is a teen who contemplates the very existence of why we are here, the basic totalities of what every day occurrences mean, and how that can have a profound affect on our lives, worth reading? Yes.

The Book of Books, PBS

If you’re wondering what books to read, this does a pretty good job on providing summaries of some of the classics, as well information on their authors. A portion of their picks I do not agree with, but overall a good start for anyone wanting to expand their literary intellect and where to begin.

The Rainman’s Third Cure, Peter Coyote

Stories on his life, relationship with his father, taking tulmultous amounts of drugs (peyote, LSD, mushrooms) etc. Peter’s reaction when his father dies was the most revealing as well as the Zen aspects of his life. He makes an interesting point discussing all the various drugs he’s taken – “That life is always compounded by one’s habits, indulgences, fears, and delusions and I have never found that life after a drug trip was easier or more illuminated that it was before. Neither did I ever consider drug highs as the possibilities of consciousness… so I resolved to discover enlightenment was in a drug-free manner.” Good last section on Buddhism. His friendship with Buddhist Gary Snyder was

Finding My Virginity, Richard Branson

You want to know how a billionaire with an itch for adventure lives his life? This is the book. It’s a laundry list of accomplishments and self-pats on the back. I was hoping it would have more substance, but he kept everything on the surface. A man who participates in crazy stunts to promote his business. I applaud the gumption. He does prove anything is possible. I am sure he transcribed the book to an assistant or Virgin Books team member because the writing feels very impersonal. Still, the man is an inspiration for anyone with the guts to go out and capture his dreams.

©2020 by Sean Burch