Whenever you finish a book, post it here

Jones

Woodpecker
Linspired: The Remarkable Rise of Jeremy Lin by Mike Yorkey

It’s a really unique twist on the rags to riches, underdog, "no one believed in him” story:
A Christian Chinese/Taiwanese, American born Point Guard goes to Harvard (not even Stanford across the street from his house wanted him) and is then undrafted in a draft that had fewer PG’s selected than any other position.

He gets put on waiver’s after an uneventful rookie year in Golden State (his home team), then cut by the Rockets. His opportunity comes with the Knicks after injuries and losses pile up then Carmelo Anthony suggests that the coach play him.

What happened next is the stuff of movies - 7 straight wins, 20+, 30+ points, last minute game winning shots, all while sleeping on his teammate’s couch.

The book’s story makes up the first six chapters, before talking about Tim Tebow and Jeremy’s stardom in Asia (China/Taiwan).

Most interesting thing I learned was the NBA chapel has services the hour before games at the arena. Players from both teams attend a short 20 minute service.

There’s a “wait and see what happens” vibe to the whole book - it largely being written weeks after Jermey Lin's career took off in February 2012. This was peak Jeremy Lin, as he’s currently a benchwarmer for the Toronto Raptors and had been coming off the bench since the '14-'15 season.

It’s fine. If you are interested in Christian athletes, there’s some faith talk here, but I wouldn’t go out of your way unless you’re a huge Jeremy Lin fan.
 

Bizet

Woodpecker
I read two new books recently, and I liked one a lot more than the other...

The Haunting of Hill House - Shirley Jackson

I really enjoyed this one. It was very dark and atmospheric; I felt like I was actually in the house with these characters at some points. I thought the novel was perfectly paced: the author could've easily dragged this one out another 100 pages or so, but I'm glad she resisted the urge to do so. The ending left me with a lot of questions, but I definitely still recommend this book.

The Richest Man in Babylon - George S. Clason

Ughh... Don't get me wrong, I took away some practical financial advice from reading this (I'm going to start saving 10% of my income). But I felt like this could've been a 20-page pamphlet that the author stretched it out to nearly 200-page, slog-of-a book. It was very repetitive and it felt like a chore to get through. Towards the end of this book, I felt my eyes drifting over the words, not really absorbing what was being said. I guess I'm just not a fan of self-improvement books are the way they're formatted.
 
Brock Lesnar's DeathClutch. I usually am not a fan of wrestling books, but Brock is a very down to earth straight forward person and his book is short, which I fully expected from him. He goes into just enough detail to explain the physical exhaustion and downsides of professional wrestling. He definitely showed me how cruel the business world is where contracts can keep you from working after you're done at WWE. That no compete clause is absolute BS and I still dont know why the US court still allows it. Essentially, if a wrestler leaves, they cannot work for anyone else for the next six months. Lesnar spent a lot of money fighting this clause and he ended up winning. WWE essentially just used the tactic of making him waste time and money to fight, so technically it's hard to get past. Scummy business.
 

Thomas More

Hummingbird
Manbeline said:
Brock Lesnar's DeathClutch. I usually am not a fan of wrestling books, but Brock is a very down to earth straight forward person and his book is short, which I fully expected from him. He goes into just enough detail to explain the physical exhaustion and downsides of professional wrestling. He definitely showed me how cruel the business world is where contracts can keep you from working after you're done at WWE. That no compete clause is absolute BS and I still dont know why the US court still allows it. Essentially, if a wrestler leaves, they cannot work for anyone else for the next six months. Lesnar spent a lot of money fighting this clause and he ended up winning. WWE essentially just used the tactic of making him waste time and money to fight, so technically it's hard to get past. Scummy business.
There was a thread on RVF about one of the old school wrestlers who was a true player, and I was trying to find it. I couldn't remember the name of the wrestler in question, and when I was trying to search for it, I found this link:

https://wrestlerdeaths.com/

When I think of wrestlers whose names I remember from my younger days, it's easier to find ones that are dead than ones that are still alive. As you go through the list, it's shocking how many die in their 40's, 30's, and even 20's. Even Miss Elizabeth died at 42.

https://wrestlerdeaths.com/miss-elizabeth-death/

It seems to be a combination of substance abuse and wear and tear from wrestling. They all beat the shit out of their bodies and take pain killers and steroids to power through, and then it gets them in the end.
 
RoastBeefCurtains4Me said:
Manbeline said:
Brock Lesnar's DeathClutch. I usually am not a fan of wrestling books, but Brock is a very down to earth straight forward person and his book is short, which I fully expected from him. He goes into just enough detail to explain the physical exhaustion and downsides of professional wrestling. He definitely showed me how cruel the business world is where contracts can keep you from working after you're done at WWE. That no compete clause is absolute BS and I still dont know why the US court still allows it. Essentially, if a wrestler leaves, they cannot work for anyone else for the next six months. Lesnar spent a lot of money fighting this clause and he ended up winning. WWE essentially just used the tactic of making him waste time and money to fight, so technically it's hard to get past. Scummy business.
There was a thread on RVF about one of the old school wrestlers who was a true player, and I was trying to find it. I couldn't remember the name of the wrestler in question, and when I was trying to search for it, I found this link:

https://wrestlerdeaths.com/

When I think of wrestlers whose names I remember from my younger days, it's easier to find ones that are dead than ones that are still alive. As you go through the list, it's shocking how many die in their 40's, 30's, and even 20's. Even Miss Elizabeth died at 42.

https://wrestlerdeaths.com/miss-elizabeth-death/

It seems to be a combination of substance abuse and wear and tear from wrestling. They all beat the shit out of their bodies and take pain killers and steroids to power through, and then it gets them in the end.
What surprised me was how many pain killers and vodka Brock was on throughout his wrestling career. He said he got to a point where it was just the same ole day and he couldnt remember anything cause he was doped up on alcohol and painkillers all the time. That's sad as hell, and I can see now why wrestling has become a lot more safe. However, in exchange, all the joy and hardcore parts of wrestling has went away and gotten replaced with a more pussified version with smaller men and a lot more acrobatics that use to be on the lower card.

We gained healthier people, but we lost essentially the grit of the sport.
 
I just finished this boom my friend told me about
The Dice Man, by Luke Rhinehart

From wiki, The book tells the story of a New York psychiatrist named Luke Rhinehart who, feeling bored and unfulfilled in life, starts making decisions based on the roll of a dice. Along the way, there is sex, rape, murder, "dice parties", breakouts by psychiatric patients, and various corporate and governmental machines being put into a spin. There is also a description of the cult that starts to develop around the man, and the psychological research he initiates, such as the "Fuck without Fear for Fun and Profit" program.


I think is an entertaining book to have some laughs ocasionally as long as you dont expect much about it. I liked more the first half of the book than the latter where it gets a bit dense towards the end.
 

debeguiled

Peacock
Gold Member
Just finished "School of Darkness" by Bella Dodd.

Best book I've read in a while.

Bella Dodd was a communist in the early 20th century who saw the error of her ways, became Catholic, and ended up testifying to the government about Communism in the U.S..

She speaks about it here:



This book is kind of like a reverse Christian testimony. Born in Italy, coming to the U.S. as a young girl, Dodd, with the benefit of hindsight, gives a very clear and specific description of how she changed her religion from Christianity to Communism.

How leaving Italy watered down her faith, how friends and teachers seduced her away to materialism and atheism, and how she was manipulated and used by the communist party in government, trade unions, etc..

She is unsentimental and very specific and clear how she was manipulated by using idealism, flattery, and fear to become and stay a communist until she had lost her family, her friends, her husband, and her faith, and was left alone, a proto post wall cat lady, holding on only to her abstract ideals.

This is a rich book describing the schooling and the social and political milieu of the early 20th century, and the maddening thing is, there really were idealistic people who wanted to help the disadvantaged. That was how they hooked them in. Only instead of having community, all they had was their political marching orders and an abstract love of the teeming masses of the poor. Not individuals. The poor.

In that way, these communists slowly lost touch with their family and friends. This idealism was capitalized on by adding flattery to it, acting as if these young activists were the only people who cared, the only people who could do the job.

Finally, the sudden disappearance or denouncements of other communists added fear to the equation. You care. You are doing great work. And you don't want to end up like that other guy.

The greatest takeaway for me from this book is seeing so many terms and concepts that we see today to manipulate young people. They were already forming 'antifascist' groups, and they used all the propaganda terms to get their way, racism, sexism, rigid thinking of the old.

The divide and conquer tactics of today were firmly in place in the 1920's. There is much much more. The ascetic party members from Europe coming to direct the Americans. The seemingly irrational changes in tactics and alliances which only make sense when you realize that the whole point is to tear down and weaken American culture, to create chaos. The cognitive dissonance of the boots on the ground communists when the find out that many of their fellow travelers are members of the upper class, living in luxury. The open planning to send communists to seminaries, unions, party machines, using the principle of the "fraction," that is, all you need is a small well organized activist fraction of any organization and you can subvert it, if not take it over entirely.

Ultimately this book has a happy ending, as she sees the errors in her ways, converts to Catholicism, and tries to make amends.

I guess I never realized how sophisticated and organized communist subversion was, and how it destroyed the lives of many idealistic people.

A great book.
 
The Rational Male by Rollo Tomasi

The Story of Civilization:Caesar and Christ by Will Durant - Rise and Fall of Roman Empire with parallels with todays world

The Ascension Mysteries by David Wilcock - very surreal book for conspiracy theorist types

Behave by Robert Sapolsky - genetics and the brain
 

AManLikePutin

Kingfisher
Have finished these 3 books in the last couple of months:



Bought this at a bookstore in Belgrade a couple of months ago. Wish I had read this before I went to Serbia. Really explains many things you notice there. Written in a very fun and easy-going way and by the end of it you truly get an idea of what Serbs and Serbia are all about..covers lots of various topics. A good read if you want to learn more about Serbia and Serbian culture.






Can't recommend this enough. Went through it very fast, that's how interesting and engaging it was. and has practical action steps too which I've applied some of and already seeing results. Will re-read this book in a few months for sure.





Got this at the Wroclaw airport a couple of months ago. Read this as I'm strongly considering moving back to Poland for good .... great insight into cultural differences, be it behaviors, norms, work/office relationships, just the little lesser talked about facts and practices in Poland. Written by an American woman who's married a Polish guy and lives in Warsaw. Is quite a fun and easy read for the most part. Recommended if you're planning a longer-term stay in Poland
 

Thomas More

Hummingbird
I just read "The Hidden Truth", and its sequels, "A Rambling Wreck", and "The Brave and the Bold", by Hans G. Schantz.

This is a science fiction series based on the multi-universe theory, set in a timeline very similar to ours. These books are really red pill. Now this claim is often made about movies and books and such, however, this is on a completely different level.

One of the main characters is an Indian American who reads PUA blogs and practices game. The main character starts as a game denialist, but his friend gradually gets him to learn game himself after dragging him out enough times to wing for him. I learned about the books from a blurb on Instapundit, who is also mentioned in the books.

The various scenes in the book appear to be ripped from the RVF threads. At least one scene is proven to be taken from RVF. Since this is an alternate timeline, the author has an afterward where he points out a lot of hard to believe events in the book are taken from real events and sources in our own timeline. He also credits ideas taken from Vox Day's "SJWs Always Lie", and Anonymous Conservative's book on Evolutionary Psychology. Finally, he credits a scene where they talk about monogamy and the Prisoner's Dilemma to a post on RVF by user Delta!

I did a search and found the post here.

https://www.rooshvforum.com/thread-51980-post-1787755.html#pid1787755


I highly recommend these books. Very high energy. It's total science fiction with seemingly impossible technology, and yet the story is so realistic that you could imagine it being true in our own timeline.

Thanks for the good books, Hans!
 
I got Roosh's book Game pretty recently and just finished it. A bit longer than I expected but in a good way. Also a huge positive that he talked about making and keeping relationships long-term. I'm also very happy that he expanded the book to talk about things that I would classify more as inner game. Great read. A fitting conclusion to his game books, very insightful, with many years of perspective.
 

Belgrano

Ostrich
Gold Member
RoastBeefCurtains4Me said:
The various scenes in the book appear to be ripped from the RVF threads.
I guess the hero got into a massive fight against 30+ local white knights before chasing them down and telling them to "go home"?
:laugh:
 
RoastBeefCurtains4Me said:
I just read "The Hidden Truth", and its sequels, "A Rambling Wreck", and "The Brave and the Bold", by Hans G. Schantz.

This is a science fiction series based on the multi-universe theory, set in a timeline very similar to ours. These books are really red pill. Now this claim is often made about movies and books and such, however, this is on a completely different level.

One of the main characters is an Indian American who reads PUA blogs and practices game. The main character starts as a game denialist, but his friend gradually gets him to learn game himself after dragging him out enough times to wing for him. I learned about the books from a blurb on Instapundit, who is also mentioned in the books.

The various scenes in the book appear to be ripped from the RVF threads. At least one scene is proven to be taken from RVF. Since this is an alternate timeline, the author has an afterward where he points out a lot of hard to believe events in the book are taken from real events and sources in our own timeline. He also credits ideas taken from Vox Day's "SJWs Always Lie", and Anonymous Conservative's book on Evolutionary Psychology. Finally, he credits a scene where they talk about monogamy and the Prisoner's Dilemma to a post on RVF by user Delta!

I did a search and found the post here.

https://www.rooshvforum.com/thread-51980-post-1787755.html#pid1787755


I highly recommend these books. Very high energy. It's total science fiction with seemingly impossible technology, and yet the story is so realistic that you could imagine it being true in our own timeline.

Thanks for the good books, Hans!
Someone is writing books based off RVF threads? You learn something new every day.
 

Paracelsus

Crow
Gold Member
Carrion Comfort, Dan Simmons



If you get triggered by triple brackets or are a persistent contributor to the Holocaust revisionist/denialist thread on this forum, I'd stay away from this book.

If you don't, though, this is one hell of a supernatural thriller. Dan Simmons' second novel written in about 1980 (his first, Song of Kali, is a punch to the guts and should keep you out of India for life), Simmons got screwed over during the course of about a decade or so by his publishers before someone finally got up the courage to publish an 800-page book in '89 or so. Much tighter story than the similar-length The Stand by Stephen King and a lot less hokey to my mind.

The feel of it is just right. Carrion Comfort is from Gerard Manley Hopkins' poem of the same name and refers to despair. And there is a real sense of despair that runs through the whole book, extraordinarily so; although on its surface the book seems to be about power and about how people exercise it over us, I think it really sings more with the encompassing strength of despair and how it can overcome us.

That said, it never got a proper editor to it -- Simmons edited most of it himself, he explains in the 20th anniversary edition that I got -- and does show, but neither does he hold back. He hadn't hit his best -- after this novel, he wrote the superlative Hyperion -- but this book was pretty damn good and it did leave me staring into the darkness for a few minutes after I turned the last page. This was a pretty damn good horror/thriller novel.

One point I remember from the book - an interesting theory from one of the characters on why we got a rash of films like The Omen, The Exorcist, Children of the Corn, Rosemary's Baby, The Brood and the like in the late 1970s or so: they appealed to the Baby Boomers. The Boomers were hitting around 20 to 30 or so, and were refusing to grow up and assume the responsibility of adults, which their parents had taken on around their same age, i.e. 20s onward. Children, therefore, were turned into monsters in their parents' mind, so the irresponsible Baby Boomers could make their children deserve the abuse and neglect they foisted on them. Damien Thorne and Regan McNeill were Gen X kids. (And the pattern is repeating itself: movies like Orphan, Village of the Damned's remake are all late 2000s films. Once again, the Gen Xers were becoming parents themselves, and they've been inculcated to hate their children too).
 

Belgrano

Ostrich
Gold Member
Paracelsus said:
One point I remember from the book - an interesting theory from one of the characters on why we got a rash of films like The Omen, The Exorcist, Children of the Corn, Rosemary's Baby, The Brood and the like in the late 1970s or so: they appealed to the Baby Boomers. The Boomers were hitting around 20 to 30 or so, and were refusing to grow up and assume the responsibility of adults, which their parents had taken on around their same age, i.e. 20s onward. Children, therefore, were turned into monsters in their parents' mind, so the irresponsible Baby Boomers could make their children deserve the abuse and neglect they foisted on them. Damien Thorne and Regan McNeill were Gen X kids. (And the pattern is repeating itself: movies like Orphan, Village of the Damned's remake are all late 2000s films. Once again, the Gen Xers were becoming parents themselves, and they've been inculcated to hate their children too).
E. Michael Jones has written a book discussing similar ideas, it's called "Monsters from the ID: The Rise of Horror in Fiction and Film".
 
I’ve mostly finished a book I got recently filled with Franz Kafka’s short stories. Some are great (The Metamorphosis, The Hunger Artist), some are not (The Judgment, The Country Doctor), and he isn’t very good at knowing how to end them. I’d recommend at least reading the Metamorphosis, it’s funny and weird and really well-done.
 
The Power Broker by Robert Caro

Roosh talked about the Eastern Bloc style Soviet apartments that were erected en masse in NYC in the 1950s

So much of the modern NYC architecture was forcefully implemented by Robert Moses.

You could probably have a separate thread on Moses and the socialistic ideals that he pushed upon NYC for decades.
 

RWIsrael

Woodpecker
#IdentityCrisis by Ben Elton.

It's a basic murder mystery book that dives into identity politics, MeToo, trannies vs feminists vs incels vs gays vs Christians and the normal police detective trying to make sense of it all to catch his killer.
The book gives a good account of virtue signalling, fake news, manufactured outrage and how normal people cope with multiple pronouns and fluid identities, and who benefits from the whole mess.

It is written in a witty and funny way, almost as if the writer is trying to disguise the red pill through comedy and absurd humour.

Without giving any spoilers, I will say the ultimate message is a bit blue pill and sometimes dishonest (a point is made about how it's the right wing nationalists who cause and benefit from the identity wars, which is obviously the opposite of reality but the author is British so has to make the Tories look bad) but overall the absurdity of this decade and its insanity is presented in a very relatable and funny way.

Definitely recommend it.
 

Paracelsus

Crow
Gold Member
Flow, Mikhail Csikszentmihalyi



This is no doubt an important book to read, but that isn't to say it's perfect. Csikszentmihalyi is the creator of the concept of flow, i.e. the idea of optimal experience and what conditions one has to satisfy in order to reach it. Flow is not unlocking superhuman powers or concentration, it comes down to squeezing maximum enjoyment out of what one does and therefore happiness.

A couple of prefaces to bear in mind.

First is that the author is a psychologist, which means you take the ideas with a grain of salt because psychology in general is not a field generally amenable to replication and most of the people practicing it don't understand how statistics works. (On the other hand, and it's encouraging: no sign of the triple brackets in the guy's background, though his bio indicates as a kid he spent time in an Italian prison camp, though I can't seem to figure out why.) In general, you only accept psychology's principles where it's only restating or verifying something in the way the ancients led and practiced their lives; that's where its test of time applies.

Second is that, in common with a lot of stupid academics, Csikszentmihalyi tries pretty hard to make the isolated concept of flow have a lot more significance than it actually does, into a sort of unified field theory that unlocks how to be happy for all people everywhere. He's too greedy to let his ideas be an interesting toolkit for hacking the biological aspects of the brain and wants to suggest that his discovery of flow actually is the key to achieving meaning in existence. He's therefore atheistic in his outlook and when he does encounter a homeless man whose outlook on life is about as Christian as you can get, he smugly describes the discussion as "placidly hallucinogenic". (Still, the transcript of the homeless man's conversation makes it into the book, and it's like a bolt of clear lightning). His definition of happiness seems to be just "distract yourself until you're dead," which is fine because flow is in essence about distracting yourself.

Third, he's a classic liberal; asks us to engage in social justice goals almost as a reflex without explaining why, which is a big problem with his viewpoint and this quasi-philosophy surrounding the theory itself. There's a fair amount of moralising in here.

Flow is not a superpower. It's not going to make you better at your job, your hobby, or whatever it is. It's not unlocking the supposedly-unused 90% of your brain or whatever pseudoscientists like to tell us. At best it's the key to getting maximum enjoyment out of what you're doing.

All of that said:

It's a brilliant piece of work, and the studies conducted on the theory - I am largely assuming this - have been replicated. The book also contains a certain amount of redpill, if only because it calls into question the underlying and dominant mindset of current Western civilisation - that being that sensation, that whatever makes you feel good, is all, and self-denial is to be despised. And it's also a pretty good short summary of how consciousness works (assuming the materialist model, but anyway.)

Flow comes down to this: if you've ever had one of those moments when time seems to stop and you are just right in the moment and happy being there, you're experiencing flow. You're experiencing what seems to be the maximum enjoyment a human organism can have. And when we look across a wide variety of people, a wide variety of professions, the markers that seem to determine flow are these in combination:

1. Intense and focused concentration on the present moment (focusing attention - your psychic energy - on what is happening right now, not on the future or past. This also means removing distractions, also see why serious listeners to music dim the lights and sit in a comfortable chair before listening to a piece of music)
2. Merging of action and awareness (No distinction between body and mind, or at least no time to be conscious of it)
3. A loss of reflective self-consciousness (No time to wonder how silly you look, i.e. all ego is submerged, something yoga is good at eventually but isn't a complete answer)
4. A sense of personal control or agency over the situation or activity (that is, the illusion of control: rock climbers are mostly in control of their situation, but ultimately answer to random rockslides or disintegration of a handhold)
5. A distortion of temporal experience, one's subjective experience of time is altered (comes part from the intense focus on the present moment)
6. Experience of the activity as intrinsically rewarding, also referred to as autotelic experience (generated by the fact the exercise is meaningful to the person, and does not require Big Success On Fifth Avenue - flow can be generated on assembly lines as consistently as it is generated by the inspired artist. What matters is one sets the goal for one's self.)

But there are also two other crucial components to this:

7. Immediate and continuing feedback on the success of one's actions. For the rock climber, it's the fact he made it to the next handhold and didn't die. Writing doesn't necessarily generate this: you don't get immediate feedback on whether that sentence you just wrote is good or not, so it isn't easy to enter flow.
8. A sense that the goal is achievable. This is crucial to flow: you have to feel you can actually achieve the goal. This is why you set smaller goals in pursuit of a larger one - because our egos are not strong; we like to believe we can succeed. You won't get in flow taking on insurmountable odds, you'll only get there if you're already at the level of ability where it's at least possible there will be a success. Compare the all-important idea of the growth mindset, something most self-improvement authors from Josh Waitzkin to Scott Adams have emphasised - that ability in a given enterprise is not set, that it's possible to improve incrementally across the lifespan.

I tend to trust a book when it seems to lock together other disparate concepts I've run across from different authors, and Flow does so. This is not a cheap instruction manual on how to achieve flow, the author is at some pains to point out the observations he's made need thought and application to the person's own life. And it pushes against some of the dominant mindsets in the West: consumerism, narcissism, and in particular against the unachievable "everybody Can Succeed" mindset that is pushed on us from our early teens. This is about finding enjoyment in one's own activities, and it's not easy.

The book is well worth a read. Check it out, you'll pick up some things. I took a bit too long reading this book and I'll have to come back to it, but I will be going back nonetheless.
 
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