Pendraken Miniatures Forum
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
14 November 2018, 03:17:01 AM

Login with username, password and session length
Search:     Advanced search
Our 10mm Zoo has been expanded!
264274 Posts in 15851 Topics by 2163 Members
Latest Member: leTiYo
* Home Help Search Calendar Login Register
+  Pendraken Miniatures Forum
|-+  Wider Wargaming
| |-+  Books (Moderator: goat major)
| | |-+  What are you currently reading ?
« previous next »
Pages: 1 ... 182 183 [184] 185 186 ... 188 Go Down Print
Author Topic: What are you currently reading ?  (Read 307699 times)
vonlacy
Second Lieutenant
*
Posts: 126


« Reply #2745 on: 20 August 2018, 01:35:54 PM »

Just read The Unreturning Army by Huntley Gordon.
Picked up it up at a secondhand book sale.
It is the war memoir of a second lieutenant in the RFA June 1917-April 1918.
Read it in a day. An interesting view from the gun pits.
Logged
Leman
General
*
Posts: 9737



« Reply #2746 on: 20 August 2018, 03:56:19 PM »

Baaah! General Melchet again.
Logged

The artist formerly known as Dour Puritan!
Raider4
Captain
*
Posts: 442



« Reply #2747 on: 21 August 2018, 07:19:20 PM »

Every now and then I drag myself into WH Smiths to peruse, and probably purchase Ancient Warfare magazine or Medieval Warfare magazine.

Ahhh, W.H.Smiths - the lunchtime reading-library for the middle-aged male.

A horrible place. On the rare occasion I do actually buy something from there, I make a point of very slowly sorting through the 17 bits of paper they give you at the till, handing them all back except the actual receipt.

Cheers, M.
--
Logged
Steve J
Lieutenant General
*
Posts: 6610


« Reply #2748 on: 21 August 2018, 09:50:23 PM »

Just finished 'The War Game' by Grant, which was a very enjoyable read Smiley. Now onto 'To Hell & Back' by Kershaw, part of the Penguin history series, covering Europe from 1914-1949. So far an excellent read.
Logged

http://wwiiwargaming.blogspot.co.uk/

2017 Paint-Off - 2 x Winner!
Leman
General
*
Posts: 9737



« Reply #2749 on: 22 August 2018, 08:33:38 AM »

I always have enjoyed my forays into WH Smith, from being an 11 year old back in 64, to the present. The staff in Liverpool and Southport are always very pleasant and stock at least three wargames mags (not including White Dwarf, but proper mags). When 11 it was the Llandudno store, providing a good lunchtime and post-school wanderi
Logged

The artist formerly known as Dour Puritan!
kipt
Captain
*
Posts: 425


« Reply #2750 on: 26 August 2018, 07:57:08 PM »

Finished "Civil Was Generalship: The Art of Command" by W.J. Wood, who was a retired LTC (WWII and Korea).

This is very good, discussing 3 battles, Cedar Mountain (Stonewall Jackson vs Nathaniel Banks), Chickamauga (Bragg vs Rosecrans) and Nashville (Hood vs Thomas).

The author defines command and then contrasts and compares each of the commanders, based on what they would have known at the time.  He goes into personalities, physicality, training and how war is often an art. Training and the study of history is a guide, but each tactical problem is different in its application.

Good read and not too long.
Logged
Westmarcher
Brigadier
*
Posts: 2394


Ruff! Ruff!


« Reply #2751 on: 27 August 2018, 12:16:51 PM »

Have now finished reading “Captured at Arnhem: From Railwayman to Paratrooper.” I like reading books about the personal experiences of people who actually served in war - possibly goes back to my childhood when I loved to hear the stories of adult relatives and their friends when they were young people in WW2. So, for me, this did not disappoint - even the railway stuff which proved more interesting than I thought.

Written by Norman Hicks about his father, Tom Hicks, it starts when he leaves school to work on the LMS railway then, when war breaks out, joins an Army Railway unit before volunteering for the Paras. The story then takes him through training (focusing mainly on the parachute jumping from a few feet up then onto a tower, the balloon and the different types of aircraft) then his experiences as a sapper in Tunisia, Sicily and Arnhem. When captured, the story text transfers to the diary he kept as a POW. This glimpse into POW life appears quite tedious at first (like some modern day Twitter and Facebook posters, e.g., “played dominoes today”) but surprisingly becomes more interesting particularly when he is put to work in a mine and until the war draws to an end. At that point, you would think the story would end but “no” it’s back to the railways again and eventual retirement. At that point, I was for closing the book but, once again, carrying on, it proved more entertaining than I thought. So, overall, not a bad read.
Logged

I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.
paulr
Lieutenant General
*
*
Posts: 7206


« Reply #2752 on: 27 August 2018, 09:41:39 PM »

Sounds a really interesting read Westmarcher

Tedium was one of the challenges faced by prisoners of war
Logged

2018 Painting Competition - Runner-Up!
kipt
Captain
*
Posts: 425


« Reply #2753 on: 09 September 2018, 02:37:30 AM »

Finished "The Devil's Horsemen; The Mongol Invasion of Europe" by James Chambers.

A bit old and the numbers for the various Mongol armies and their enemies seem awfully large.  Needs some better footnoting - I didn't realize both Frederick the Great and Napoleon had studied the Mongol strategy and tactics - and doubt it.

But, a good overall history of who and when and what the Mongols did.  Adequate maps but just showing areas of operation and not tactical (which may not be possible for the Mongol type of fighting).  Not a period I am likely to get into.
Logged
cameronian
Colonel
*
Posts: 1208



« Reply #2754 on: 10 September 2018, 09:17:18 AM »

Solzhenitsyn, August 1914 ... again, maybe for the fifth time in forty years, just keeps getting better.
Logged

Don't buy your daughters a pony, buy them heroin instead, its cheaper and ultimately less addictive.
fsn
General
*
Posts: 8036



« Reply #2755 on: 11 September 2018, 05:21:44 PM »

At the age of about 14 I read War and Peace and the straight after August 1914. I've not been the same since.


At the moment I'm stuck into The Rise and Fall of the French Air Force: French Air Operations and Strategy 1900-1940 by Greg Baughen. £9.90 on the Kindle.

Lots of pictures at the start - so many I thought I'd bought an album, but we're thruming our way through WWI. Frightfully interesting about the debate between having twin engined, cannon armed heavy recce a/c - or fighters.

I fear this may cause me to bother Mr Tumbling Dice again.   
Logged

Lord Oik of Runcorn
(You may refer to me as Milord Oik)

Oik of the Year 2013
Oik of the Year 2014
Prize for originality and 'having a go, bless him', 2015
3 votes in the 2016 Painting Competition!

15mm is dead. It just doesn't know it yet.
KTravlos
Major
*
Posts: 696



WWW
« Reply #2756 on: 13 September 2018, 07:45:08 PM »

Lots of work reading this summer. Jennifer Mitzen's "Power in Concert", recommended to those of you interested in the 1812-1853 period.

Still struggling though Volume II of the collected writings of Elefterios Venizelos as part of the research on the volume i am editing on the Greek-Turkish War of 1919-1922 "Salvation and Catastrophe".

But the one that had the biggest impact it this.Daneil Ziblatt’s book “Conservative Parties and the Birth of Democracy”. This is one of the best books in political science I have read in my life. It is not perfect, but it is near it.
At its core is the following argument  (paraphrased by me): One of the most important factors explaining stable transitions to liberal majoritarian parliamentary democracy is the existence of electorally viable moderate conservative parties that provide old elites with a alternative to authoritarianism for dealing with democratization. Were elites can realistically hope to have a voice in democratic institutions they are more likely to accept democracy (even left – liberal majoritarian parliamentary democracy). Such parties act as a mediator of anti-democratic elite interests within a democratic system, funneling those demands in ways that reinforce the institutional elements of democracy.
He also argues that historically such parties cannot be built after the onset of mass suffrage.  Instead they were built in systems of limited suffrage were they had to participate in competitive elections ,and where they could not rely on the state apparatus to compensate for the lack of party organization. In another name were they were not “protected” by the state, they had to become viable electoral competitors that could the survive the onset of mass politics and contain right wing populist and authoritarian threats to democracy.
His hypothesis is thus that the main difference between settled and unsettled democratization (again referring to liberal or left-liberal majoritarian parliamentary democracy) should be the presence or absence of strong moderate conservative parties.
To evaluate his cases he does a deep comparative analysis of conservative parties in the UK and Germay covering the period roughly from 1830 to 1935. His argument is that the UK is a case of success, were a robust Conservative party had formed in the pre-democratic era in competition with the Liberals, which permitted it to be a viable competitor in mass elections, and was thus able to persuade traditional elites to tolerate democratization. Germany was failure, were state “protection” stunted the growth of strong conservative parties in the Kaissereich era, making a viable moderate conservative party not viable either in the Kaissereich or the Weimar period, leading to fragmentation of the right, and the dominance of hard core activists which led elites to prefer anti-democratic solutions (by 1933 either a Schleicher-Hammerstein coup, or Hitler).
He rounds his main case studies, with shallower exhibition cases in Sweden (Success), Spain (failure) and France (ambiguous)
Strong Conservative Parties protect democracy not only by providing elites with an option other than authoritarianism, but also by denying populist agitators of the right the ability to gain power. The greatest example of this is Arvid Lindman who expelled the whole youth branch of his party (40000 strong) in 1933 for becoming fascists. Compare with the total inability of the moderate conservative Reichstag  faction of the DNVP to stop Alfred Hugenberg and Heinrich Class from using the Pan-German League and other grassroots organizations to oust them from the party and take it over in 1928, leading to its electoral destruction (for 15% before the takeover by the activists, to 7% after)
The deep case studies are great, involving the use of both qualitative and quantitative analysis and an impressive plethora of primary sources. It thus is also a great historical book for the history of the conservative parties of the UK in the 1830-1925 period and Germany in the 1870-1935 period. The author recognizes the conservative character of the empirical findings. But it makes sense. Nobody will peacefully accept a system if they do not feel  relatively safe in it. Electorally viable moderate conservative parties do that for the deadliest enemies of democracy (those with money, influence and power to mobilize anti-democratic forces and trigger systemic crises).

As I am not going to express political opinions for now on social media, I will not say more. But I suggest that anybody serious about liberal or left-liberal majoritarian parliamentary democracy , the state of electoral conservatism, and even enemies of liberal democracy (who have a clear tool for destroying it via the destruction of moderate conservative parties) can learn something important from this book. For me it was eye-opening and has had a profound effect on my political thinking.

Read this book.

https://www.cambridge.org/gb/academic/subjects/politics-international-relations/comparative-politics/conservative-parties-and-birth-democracy?format=PB
Logged
paulr
Lieutenant General
*
*
Posts: 7206


« Reply #2757 on: 13 September 2018, 08:52:18 PM »

 Undecided
Logged

2018 Painting Competition - Runner-Up!
kipt
Captain
*
Posts: 425


« Reply #2758 on: 14 September 2018, 03:32:46 AM »

Finished a Tom Clancy type book, "Power and Empire" by Marc Cameron.  Very much in the Clancy style with perhaps a bit more story development in each morsel.

This one has President Ryan studying Chinese power, with shenanigans happening in Chinese leadership.  And as a subplot, human trafficking. A summit in Japan with the Chinese brings it all together.  Fast fun read.
Logged
kipt
Captain
*
Posts: 425


« Reply #2759 on: 15 September 2018, 07:09:00 PM »

Finished "Chickamauga: A Battlefield Guide with a section on Chattanooga" by Steven Woodworth.

A good guide if you visit but also interesting discussion of the battle with vignettes at each of the stops.  the author gives directions to each stop, orientation so you are facing in the right direction, a discussion of what happened, an analysis of the how and why, and further reading.

In the appendix, he gives the OB's for the Feds and Rebs and also a section on organization, weapons and tactics.  A good, quick (only 181 pages including the appendices and the bibliography) read
Logged
Pages: 1 ... 182 183 [184] 185 186 ... 188 Go Up Print 
« previous next »
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!