January 1, 2014

B(ooks) A(lready) R(read) IV

part 1, part 2, part 3

Continuing the occasional series of what I've read for 2013, here is part 4, complete with my brief opinion as well as buy links. Please note, that the majority of the books that you'll be reading about I do not own, but found at my local public library.

19} The Encyclopedia of Reggae: The Golden Age of Roots Reggae by Mike Alleyne. I've always been interested in reggae music and I thought that this would be a great way to read up on it. Sadly, while this encyclopedia is chock full of interesting tidbits/bios of almost every important musician/singer/producer of reggae music, to me it was drier than dirt. I just found it very hard to stay interested. Highly recommend it as a reference/research book, but unless you dig reading encyclopedias as a hobby (I did once. Once), this is one to avoid at all costs.

20} This Will End In Tears: The Miserabilist Guide to Music by Adam Houghtaling. Yes, I have very bizarre/eclectic tastes in books, and this one is no exception. If you've wondered why sad music and its different sub genres and the artists who performed them are so popular, this book is for you. I actually found this to be a very interesting read. Highly recommended if you enjoy traveling the road less traveled when it comes to music.

21} American Sniper by Chris Kyle. Say what you want about the war in Iraq or the military, this (at the time) auto-bio gives a picture of the war/military that is seldom shown on both sides of the political spectrum. I first heard of Chris Kyle when he had made an appearance promoting the book on the O'Reilly Factor, and yes, I found him to be a very likable individual. Found it to be an excellent read and I highly recommend it.

22} Kentucky Traveler: My Life in Music by Ricky Skaggs. I came to enjoy bluegrass music extremely late in life and even though I owned a couple of bluegrass c.d.'s (including a live c.d. by Ricky Skaggs), I really didn't know much about the genre. This auto-bio gives a fantastic look at one of country music's most enduring stars (got his start playing with Ralph Stanley). Great read and remarkably candid.

23} Yes, Chef: A Memoir by Marcus Samuelsson. Okay, I'll admit it: I like watching The Cooking Channel and The Food Network. Having said that, what got me to pick this book up (besides being another auto-bio) was the jacket blurb about a young Ethiopian raised in Sweden who became a world class chef. Great read and highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys cooking and/or authentic celebrity chefs.

24} Diary of A DA: The True Story of The Prosecutor Who Took On the Mob, Fought Corruption and Won by Herbert Stern. One of my favorite genres to read is True Crime. Whether it's about serial killers, the Mob, gruesome murders, forensics, crime scene cleaning, you name it, if it has to do with true crime, I'll read it. And this book was no exception. A great snapshot about crime in New York during the 1960's and 70's, as well as corruption in New Jersey, this book is a must for anyone who likes to read political history.

(c) 2013 by G.B. Miller. All Rights Reserved.


  1. Did you know that Chris Kyle was shot and killed in 2013 during a shooting rampage by a fellow veteran in Texas?

  2. G.A.: Yes I did, and if I remember correctly, the only national media that covered his death & funeral & memorial in any great detail was Fox. Everyone else either ignored it or commented negatively on his death.

  3. Trying this again - I just got an error from blogger when I tried to comment.

    That is quite the range of books! I had no idea about the cooking channel, or that you were into cooking. (Or are you just into watching people cook?)

    There was quite a bit of press here about Kyle when he died - I think he was from Oregon.

    Funny story - when I visited my family in MN last August, the server at our restaurant, who knew my family, mentioned that he had been a sniper in the military. I blurted out, "Remind me not to piss you off!" Luckily we all laughed.

  4. M: If you were force fed IE 11 or have the latest for your choice of browser, then you might get some sporadic error messages until Blogger catches up.

    Fortunately (or unfortunately some would say) I am not into cooking. To a medium size degree, I am into watching people cook, but I find myself drawn to reality themed cooking shows as well.

    He was born and raised in Texas (just checked with Wikipedia) and is buried there.

  5. I was really into the music of Ricky Skaggs back in the 80's. Haven't listened to him in a couple decades now. Maybe I should pull out an old cassette and refresh my memory.

    Tossing It Out

  6. Arlee: Thanks for stopping by to comment.

    I got into bluegrass way late in life (late 90's) so for past couple of decades I've been getting my fill via a local college radio program.

    His book has definitely made me appreciate his music and once I get things settled, I believe I'll start doing a search and destroy for more of it.

  7. I always read encyclopedias- Usually the animal sections. I know so much about zoology! But I hate Reggae!
    Sad music- I've written quite a bit of it, Should find that one. Bummer about Chris Kyle!
    I've always followed Progressive Bluegrass. Used to do the live festivals in the '70's -'80's. My faves never recorded, but I did on cassette (Raw Honey- locals).
    Nope, not a cook show fan!
    I actually have a mob story from the past to work on. Did a screenplay with it in college- got an A. May track down that one-
    Thanks for the reviews!

  8. Snaggle: I thank you for the lovely synopsis of my post, it was very informative.

    And you're very welcome for the reviews. :D


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