What I’ve been Reading

1. Zhivago's Children: The Last Russian Intelligentsia, by Vladislav Zubok.  This excellent Belknap book focuses on the question of how the Soviets had much of an intelligentsia at all.  More fun and more readable than expected and consistently interesting throughout.  Soon this book will be put through the occasionally idiosyncratic "Natasha test."

2. Economics Does Not Lie: A Defense of the Free Market in a Time of Crisis, by Guy Sorman.  He is a French classical liberal, defending a market-oriented point of view.

3. Bring Me My Machine Gun: The Battle for the Soul of South Africa from Mandela to Zuma, by Alec Russell.  An excellent book which shows how messed up this country is likely to remain.  Zuma in particular is a nasty piece of work.


The East, the West, and Sex: A History of Erotic Encounters, by Richard Bernstein.  When I first saw this book I swore I wouldn't read it or buy it.  Then the excellent reviews started piling up.  Eventually I broke down.  It turns out the writing is superb and it has plenty of informative content.  But you know what, it is still a bad book and it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.  The always-excellent Laura Miller reviews it.

5. The Book of Psalms, translated by Robert Alter (my favorite Biblical translator).  Recommended.


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