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What books are you reading?

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rjbull:


Little more than 10 years after the first powered flight, aircraft were pressed into service in World War I. Nearly forgotten in the war's massive overall death toll, some 50,000 aircrew would die in the combatant nations' fledgling air forces. The romance of aviation had a remarkable grip on the public imagination, propaganda focusing on gallant air 'aces' who became national heroes. The reality was horribly different. "Marked For Death" debunks popular myth to explore the brutal truths of wartime aviation: of flimsy aircraft and unprotected pilots who had no parachutes; of burning 19-year-olds falling screaming to their deaths; of pilots freezing and disorientated as they flew across enemy lines at 15,000 feet. James Hamilton-Paterson also reveals how four years of war produced profound changes both in the aircraft themselves and in military attitudes and strategy. By 1918 it was widely accepted that domination of the air above the battle-field was crucial to military success, a realization that would change the nature of warfare for ever.

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rjbull:


Unexpected detail: the book was first published in 1897.  The first few chapters purport to be the journal of a newly-qualified solicitor temporarily practicing as an estate agent.  Even then, he carried a "Kodak" camera (a model introduced in 1888) for photographing property.  Estate agents' windows full of photos of houses must be a much older phenomenon than I expected.

rjbull:
what is convenient to get out of the public library is drying up.
-MilesAhead (February 18, 2016, 07:37 AM)
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Advanced Book Exchange (ABE) :)

I am trying another scifi author-MilesAhead (February 18, 2016, 07:37 AM)
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In case you don't already know them:

Jack McDevitt
Jack McDevitt on fantasticfiction

Adam Roberts
Adam Roberts on fantasticfiction
Especially his first three novels, Salt, On, and Stone.  In particular don't miss On; it's truly extraordinary.

Paul McAuley
Paul McAuley's blog: Earth and other unlikely worlds
Paul McAuley on fantasticfiction


wraith808:
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Little more than 10 years after the first powered flight, aircraft were pressed into service in World War I. Nearly forgotten in the war's massive overall death toll, some 50,000 aircrew would die in the combatant nations' fledgling air forces. The romance of aviation had a remarkable grip on the public imagination, propaganda focusing on gallant air 'aces' who became national heroes. The reality was horribly different. "Marked For Death" debunks popular myth to explore the brutal truths of wartime aviation: of flimsy aircraft and unprotected pilots who had no parachutes; of burning 19-year-olds falling screaming to their deaths; of pilots freezing and disorientated as they flew across enemy lines at 15,000 feet. James Hamilton-Paterson also reveals how four years of war produced profound changes both in the aircraft themselves and in military attitudes and strategy. By 1918 it was widely accepted that domination of the air above the battle-field was crucial to military success, a realization that would change the nature of warfare for ever.

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-rjbull (February 29, 2016, 03:59 PM)
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I've been looking at this for a while - how is the book?  I couldn't decide if I wanted to read it or not.

MilesAhead:
I found a more recent Joe Haldeman novel.



It uses the "novel within a novel" approach.  The protagonist is an author writing a novel etc..  I won't give anymore details to avoid spoilers.  This one was published in 2014.  I am about 4/5 of the way through it.  Entertaining reading if you don't mind graphic descriptions when characters are killed.  But if you ever read any of his novels you are already aware of that "pitfall" if that term is appropriate.  :)


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