What I’ve been reading

1. King Kong Theory, by Virginie Despentes.  An excellent short book on feminism, rape, and prostitution.  Given how much ink has been spilt on these issues, it's more vital than you would expect; "full of energy," as they say.

2. Solar, by Ian McEwan.  Maybe this is still better than most people's stuff, but I didn't finish it.  He's lost his intellectual edge.

3. Wolf Hall: A Novel , by Hilary Mantel.  Usually I'm willing to blame myself when I don't like "classics," but on this one I'll push back.  I started thinking "magisterial" (itself a mixed blessing) and then found myself slipping to "dutiful."  It's good — not great — and it doesn't beat reading non-fiction about British history.  The second Amazon review hits the mark.

4. The Cost of Living in America: A Political History of Economic Statistics, 1880-2000, by Thomas A. Stapleford.  No, I'm not actually reading this one, but I should be.

5. Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche, by Haruki Murakami.  This remains one of the classic studies of collective action, although it is hardly ever recognized as such.


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