Recent reads

August 12, 2000

I've been doing a decent amount of reading recently. Here are some of the books that I'd recommend. First, Thomas Friedman, From Beirut to Jerusalem. This deals with the Middle East in the 1980s, but the dynamics at work then are still at work today, and this book really does eplain them easily. I also like his second book, The Lexus and the Olive Tree as well as his Foreign Affairs column in The New York Times.

David Remnick's Resurrection : The Struggle for a New Russia. This is the sequel to his Pulitzer prize winning Lenin's Tomb and it discusses post Soviet Russia under Yeltsin until 1997. He does a great job of describing the opportunities and missed opportunities. I'm sorry I waited so long to read this.

Where Remnick leaves off chronologically, Mark Ames and Matt Taibbi pick up in The eXile : Sex, Drugs, and Libel in the New Russia (no, I'm not comparing the eXile with David Remnick!) While this is not a great book, it is an interesting story, especially if you've ever read the eXile newspaper.

Kurt Vonnegut's The Sirens of Titan. This was Vonnegut's first novel to get significant recognition and it's one of my favorites of his. At the same time, I read some of his short stories from the compilation Welcome to the Monkey House. I started God Bless You, Mr.Rosewater, too, but I find I can only read so much Vonnegut at once.

Right not, I'm reading Everyday Stalinism by Sheila Fitzpatrick, about urban life in Soviet Russia during the 1930s.

Posted by Andrew Raff at August 12, 2000 09:42 PM