Weekend Reading

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OK, so im getting a bit tired of the 'quiet thread', i think it may have outlasted it's worth judging by the activity on those things the last few weeks so maybe we'll just have some weekend foo? Let's get an idea of what everyone is reading this weekend, tell us what you're into, and more importantly, why we should care.

Before we get into it though, i'll point you to a little treat im about halfway through: Wired's profile of Tim O'Reilly is pretty much essential reading i reckon..

OK, so what are you reading?

I do not own a single Godin book, and have the following currently sitting in my amazon basket awaiting your approval:

  • Permission Marketing
  • Unleashing the Ideavirus
  • All marketers are Liars

Also, several people have recommended something called the E-Myth series - but some of those titles are dreadfully old, so i wanted to know if they're still relevant, and if so, which one should i buy?

Help me a bit if you can, but also tell us what you're reading....


MIT OpenCourseWare

Whenever I'm bored I go over to MIT OpenCourseWare

New titles this fall include:
Marketing Management
Managing Innovation: Emerging Trends

"That Girl From Marketing"

Freakonomics, I'm only into

Freakonomics, I'm only into chapter 2 but it's off to a really good start.

I read Permission Marketing a few years ago, and enjoyed it quite a bit back then, but don't know if there's much in there you don't already know by now.


That's a city, right?

I'm reading Threadwatch (of course), WebmasterWorld, and SearchEngineWatch. And a whole lot of emails to one of my sites. Not spammy ones.

As for books, I'm not done with Porno yet - hey, that's the title of the book, dammit ;-) Irvine Welsh is the author and it's written in British jargon, so it's pretty hard for me to read it, as English is my second language. It's been around two years (!) since I started reading that one, and I've finished a few others in the meantime but that one is the only unfinished one I have right now.

As for business/marketing books, if you want to read that kind of stuff, get something from Peter F. Drucker. Pick any volume, that man speaks pure gold, and he's usually a bit provocative as well. Yes some of it is ages old, but still valid, and even ahead of time. And even though he speaks of "Management" it's pure marketing.


Have read (most of) The E-Myth Revisited. Some interesting concepts in there, but I think my entrepreneurial spirit was running a little low at the time and I didn't get round to finishing the book.

Now reading Bill Bryson's Short History and Robbie Fowler's autobiography. Read (Irvine Welsh's) Prono whilst on holiday last month...great book once you get used to the different characters' dialects.

Iron Coffins by Herbert

Iron Coffins by Herbert Werner. Excellent autobiography of a U-Boat officer and commander during WWII, especially the juxtaposition of their early success in comparison to the crushing destruction of the U-boat fleet, as the war destroyed the world he knew.

It's really interesting to see WWII from a German perspective, and how terrifying the allied air and sea superiority became for them, along with the growing insanity of the U-Boat Admiral Command orders.

It's what I'm reading for relaxation in my 10 minutes free-time each day. :)

The Search

I'm reading "The Search" by John Battelle as well as the user guide for the php object persistance layer Propel


I'm just about 3/4 through it. Excellent read. Cheating in Sumo? Why do crack dealers live with their mothers? Unconvential questions to determine the economy of incentivisation. Highly recommend it.

>>permision marketing You're

>>permision marketing

You're probably right GW, i read a lot about that online as it is. So what Seth book do you think i might get more out of?


Doesn't appear to have been particularly liked at Amazon UK...

Too many

Linux Server Hacks and Linux Desktop Hacks. Linux Format magazine (I like UK/European Linux magazines over the US). Anansi Boys and Thud were good. If you haven't read Neil Gaiman before, I might start with Neverwhere or Stardust.

Nick, I think you'd enjoy Spam Kings (email spam, not the other kind), and maybe The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists. V for Vendetta. Strange: Beginnings and Endings, or Constantine. Eragon and Eldest were okay. If you liked Freakonomics, you might enjoy Blink.

I'm in between books right now. Based on the above, what would people recommend? :)

If you haven't read Neil

If you haven't read Neil Gaiman before, I might start with Neverwhere or Stardust

You wouldn't happen to have followed Gaiman's excellent Sandman series? If not, it's definitely recommended. :)

PHP and MYSQL Web Development


Because I'm taking a course and it's mandatory to read that stuff. Not on a Sat night though, but hey that's all I can really exite myself into doing this evening ;)

I really liked Blink.

The book I'm reading right now is very non-geekish: The SAS Survival Handbook. It's more of a "dip into it here and there" book rather than a straight-through read.

Well, i can't say i liked

Well, i can't say i liked Neil Gaiman very much, i only read him 'cos of his collaborations with Pratchett but he's not really my thing so no help there im afraid.

I would recommend, on the sci-fi front reading "fairy tale" by raymond feist. feist went to pot imo in recent years, but i recently re-read that for about the 7th time and it's still an absolute classic...

A bedroom floor piled full

A bedroom floor piled full of half-read books.

Work: Learning XSLT and a dry history for a future regional project.
Play: Waiting for The Search to arrive through the door and rereading A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving) in the meantime.

The sci-fi/fantasy people amongst you may like the Chung Kuo series by David Wingrove (eight novels combining the future, change vs stasis, science vs art, technology vs humanity)? I think they are out of print in the US but you could pick them up in the UK.

Cosa Nostra

Cosa Nostra: A History of the Sicilian Mafia, about half way through it at the moment. Takes you way back to the early 1800's and brings you up to the present day.

Really enjoying it, a great book :)

Ohh... Just for fun reading...

Nick, if ya wanna laugh, pick up: Ethan Coen & Joel Coen "Collected Screenplays 1" which includes - Blood Simple, Raising Arizona, Miller's Crossing, Barton Fink.

AND while I could watch Logan's Run, Enemy Mine and The Twillight Zone 24 hrs a day... I still get sucked into the books in the pink aisle - aka: Chick Lit. I just finished "Girl's Poker Night" for the second time. It will make you laugh out loud... seriously.

That Girl From Marketing

Andre Norton

I'm reading vintage SF: Plague Ship by Andre Norton: http://manybooks.net/titles/nortonaother05plague_ship.html

I find I really enjoy reading old 1950's and 60's science fiction. It's a nice break from the modern stuff. Andre Norton was/is a favorite from when I was a kid. Plus free is cool.

Digital Fotress

In between books too but I recently finished Digital Fortress by Dan Brown. I really enjoyed that book a lot. I don't know why it reminds me so much of our industry ...

Matt, you've been there, right? - How close to reality is it? (that is, if you read the book) :)

I read that aswell, didn't

I read that aswell, didn't like it as much as the one about the vatican (can't remember the title) but it was good..

In fact, Dan Brown was recommended to me the last time we talked about books, and it remains the only set of non fantasy fiction i've enjoyed in more years than i could remember..


Andrew Goodmans Adwords book mainly with a little steinbeck's of mice and men.

>Cosa Nostra: A History of the Sicilian Mafia


The Russia House

by John le Carre, Mansions of Limbo by Dominick Dunne, the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling, and assorted back issues of People and EW that I found in my husband's office at the paper mill.

this is light reading right?

not for work? For work I've got:
134 Bloglines subscriptions to catch up on - Good God.
4 submitted articles to edit.
and about 23 books to be reviewed.

Think I'll go back to Harry Potter.

Seth, Steinbeck and the Rza

Big Steinbeck fan here..been through most of them - In Dubious Battle, Moon is Down, East of Eden were probably my favorites.

>Permission Marketing
Still a pretty timeless read imho. One of few books I've read twice and generally loan to anyone who hasn't read it.

Just got done reading the Wu-tang Manual by Rza. Surprisingly insightful and a very good read that I would recommend.

Currently reading The Big Moo by Seth G.

"Seinfield" and Philosophy

"Seinfield" and Philosophy - It is a great one !

This entertaining but thought provoking collection uses "Seinfeld" episodes to introduce readers to important concepts in philosophy. Some essays are devoted to single characters, asking questions such as "Did Jerry, like Socrates, lead an examined life?" Others explore philosophical issues raised by the show, debating whether it was rational for George to "do the opposite". The authors also examine the ethical problems of everyday life, drawing upon the many examples found in the show. The volume includes a guide to "Seinfeld" episodes and a chronological guide to important philosophers.



I can't say I recognize a lot of the titles or authors here. I'm not sure if that's good or bad *lol*

After reading this thread I found out that I actually had quite a few books here that I've bought but never really have gotten time to read.

One is a nice little paperback called "Mathemathical Circus" by Martin Gardner. That one will be next on my list, and I'll probably finish it before I finish the one with an excessive amount of swear words and general dialect mentioned above. It seems like a lot of fun, if anyone is into logic, fun math, and such?

Oh, and then I've got the DaVinci Code as well. That's by Dan Brown. At least Mikkel mentioned him, so I do recall some names after all.. Oh, of course I know Tim O'Reilly as well (not personally though) *lol*

I think that one might have been bought on error. I really thought it was about the artist/scientist/inventor, but it seems it's just another thriller/murder mystery. Anyway, people seem to like it, so I'll probably get through it as well sometime :-)

Sandman rules :)

Brian, Sandman is what got me started on Gaiman (and Constantine). That first Books of Magic was fun, too. claus, if you like Martin Gardner, are you a Sudoku fan?

Hard to go wrong with Steinbeck. My favorite part of Mice and Men is that quote: "he subsided, grumbling to himself, threatening the future cats which might dare to disturb future rabbits."

Mikkel, Digital Fortress was fun, but don't believe everything you read (Dan Brown is great though). Enemy of the State was nearly as out there. If you want non-fiction, go with James Bamford. His first one (Puzzle Palace) is dry, but unless you read that one, the second one (Body of Secrets) will seem a little too larger than life. BoS is definitely easier to read though.

Beauty - Sheri Tepper

I re-read it at least once a year just to keep a handle on the world.

Also worth a read

Fritz Lieber - The Green Millenium
william Gibson - Neuromancer

Spot on. Well, sort of

... although "Sudoku fan" sounds like Japanese air condition *lol*

I think I could very well become one, although I've managed to avoid it entirely sofar. (Not easy) But well, I like xwords, puzzles, and all that; I find it extremely relaxing and fun as well. AFAIK, Sudoku is just a puzzle-xword with numbers - however, it seems really simple to me? Gotta try one before i can tell, methinks...

I didn't see Steinbecks name before, but IMHO, he's disqualified here: That's not books, that's literature.

Added: Just spent an hour on that game - higly addictive ;-)

Matt, Books of Magic is an

Matt, Books of Magic is an excellent work - John Constantine is a great literary anti-hero, though I haven't really read anything post-Ennis. Hopefully you've also read Grant Morrison, especially in Doom Patrol? If not, quite recommended.

Kali, read Neuromancer recently - had mixed feelings, as it begins with great atmosphere, but the pace and plot seemed to lose something as it progressed. Will probably try more recent Gibson work to see how he's developed since, though.

'tis too books....

Steinbeck might be great literature but he counts as books - if you read it for pleasure and not because you need to that's books :) (except I think I just counted in the back of cerial packets in my case).

I always have about 5 books on the go in various places and I'm too embarresed to name the chick-lit ones (well, you need to keep something in the car) but I've just started DaVinci code which so far is better than I expected and I keep dipping in and out of Holy Blood, Holy Grail. I'm also rereading This Other Eden (Ben Elton) because it might be too *worthy* but he always makes me laugh.

Claus you should try Trainspotting if you're finding Porno hard work - it's a bit easier to get the accents on without reading aloud :)

okay so I'm way out there...

but honest. I am reading Tom Robbins, Another Roadside Attraction (and enjoying it). A nice slice of local color. On the shelf is Shiller's The New Financial Order but I haven't found it "gripping" yet...

One for the RSS

Picked up Presentation Zen a week or two back, worth a look...


I am reading up on LAMP. Done some stuff but now I need to *know* it so been to bookshop and bought an armful.

Definately read any of Godins books. They are entertaining and thought provoking and you can finish them in one sitting.

On E-Myth, looks like he has a new one out but I think E-Myth revisited is probably the one to read. That and theory of constraints have had quite an impact on my thinking.

I have an ever growing library of unread books, doesn't look like will get round to reading them any time soon!


I read Spam Kings a couple of weeks ago - quite a good read for sure.

Purple Cow's quite good from Seth - read that a while ago and quite enjoyed....and I'm half way through "Investing with Anthony Bolton" - it sounds a bit dry, but it's OK if you like that sort of thing - he's a very successful UK fund manager for Fidelity Investments....and have now just bought Freakonomics for my next read :)

sounds good

I'm with you, Gurtie. I think some authors (Victor Hugo, Hemingway, Steinbeck, Bram Stoker) count as books and literature.

Doom Patrol, huh? I might have to check that out. Which one would you recommend as a first intro? BTW, if you're going for later Gibson, I recommend All Tomorrow's Parties. If you haven't done the Neal Stephenson thing, Snow Crash is fun.

All Tomorrows Parties? How

All Tomorrows Parties? How can I refuse an underground title like that? :)

As for Doom Patrol - might be worth checking out some summaries of the earlier Morrison issues, just to get a flavour of the concepts he's writing with.

All tomorrows parties is

All tomorrows parties is fantastic, but pattern recognition is my favorite after neuromancer...

Marketing Warfare

I forgot this one, that I actually read all the time. It's become kind of a "bible" to me and I carry it around in my bag almost all the time. It's probably the best marketing book I've ever read

Porno's just for the language

Trainspotting... I saw that one on film. Not a very positive experience, I'm afraid. I'm reading Porno just for the language, just like, say A Clockwork Orange or some of the stuff Lewis Caroll wrote. The LOTR also has nice made up languages.

As for more popular/ordinary stuff, I've got one Gibson and something from DeLilo as well, but that's about it. Then I'm eager to get time to read Stephen Hawking, and the one about a Danish physicist called Holger Bech Nielsen. Oh, and my Art books, and all the programming books... too little time, too many books.

I've got a really big book with lots of Icelandic so-called "Sagas". Those that like the mafia stuff and/or LOTR stuff might like the Saga's too. Vendettas and family feuds and the lot, only fought with swords as those stories are literally ancient. Oh, and gods and weird monsters and Ragnarok and all that. A certain Tolkien got a lot of good inspiration from these old writings, imho.


That's the one I've got Nick, couldn't remember the name, and coudn't see it from here.

Call to Action

I really liked the latest Eisenberg book, Call to Action, though it's mostly a compilation of their columns. There's tons of great stuff on building a site that converts to sales.

After that, pretty much anything by George Orwell.

ray kurzweil's new book!

any kurzweil fans should definitely check out the singularity is near, his new book. awesome stuff, especially if you're a real technology junkie.

Books Glorious Books

I seem to order them faster that I can read them!

Am almost finished The Search which is a fantastic read. Just started Call to Action (Eisenberg) which is also great.

Have The Big Moo up yet (thanks Aaron) and am awaiting Website Measurement Hacks (by Eric T. Peterson) which really should be here by now.

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