I have always respected longreads in journalism. Irrespective of their topic, all riveting longreads are a result of significant research and time. These are how I choose to spend most of my leisure time on the internet. They are like short fiction but only more informative, you always have certain takeaways and ideas at the end of each longread.
Recently, I came across an author in ‘The Atlantic’ – Conor Friedersdorf. The article that introduced me to his work ( I might have previously read his work, but this time his list of articles really caught my attention) is this – Slightly more than 100 fantastic pieces of journalism.
This list contains around 100 best longreads that Conor came across in 2015. I was very excited to have come across this and looked if he had done this before. It seems he has as can be seen from these:
So, there went my longest articles to be saved in my Pocket – to read app. Conor also runs a mail list subscription where he shares brilliant longreads that he comes across. I believe it is totally worth it to be subscribed to that.
Meanwhile, I have finally managed to finish book 4 of the malazan book of the fallen series – House of Chains. After having read the 3rd book i.e. Memories of Ice, I thought I’d read the best book of the series yet (and possible among all the 10 books). But I was proven wrong and how! This book was more riveting than book 3 and it was a beginning to what was to come for the surviving bridgeburners after Whiskeyjack’s incidents in book 3. I am currently taking a break from the malazan series wherein I make my way through the ebook of wait but why series on Musk.
This is the link for anyone who is interested.
This book unlike the biography by Ashley Vance, goes into the details of the companies Tesla, SpaceX and why Musk is able to do what he is currently doing. This book is born out of 4 blog posts on the wait but why blog, so the same can be read on the blog too. Tried reading Thomas Bernhard in between (‘Concrete’) but couldn’t continue and hence left in the middle. That’s that.
I have been going through multiple books over the last month and will continue to do so this month too. The list is as follows:
Seveneves – The book continues, wherein the people on earth are now finally completely aware of what is going to happen in the near future and are prepping those in the space station for the same. To be frank, I am not sure I will be able to finish this book in the near future. Dec 21 is the return date for this one and with other books that I have lined up, one of this length doesn’t stand as a favorite. Mr. Stephenson needs to write shorter books. Reamde also remains as one of those very few books I abandoned in the middle (I either don’t pick them up or leave them within 20 pages into the book as I get an idea that they don’t match my taste)
Deadhouse Gates – Interesting read, my favorite among these here. Mr. Erikson knows how to write and more pleasingly, he seems to be able to seamlessly integrate the stories of the old characters while introducing new characters to us. I had read the first book not on my kindle and could actually go back to the maps whenever I was trying to get a feel of the geographical movements of the characters. This one however, I am reading on kindle and am missing that point of view of how characters are moving from place to place (especially Fiddler and Kalam, for those of you who understand what I am talking about) and also given the fact that there is a good enough chance that all characters might be meeting at a common place later in the book. With multiple assignments and exams going on hand in hand along with my attempts to re-design government visualizations, it is going to be a toughie to finish this one this month. But am glad I started this series and am very much looking forward to all the books and am pretty much sure that it would be nearly a year or two before I finish the entire series and finish them I will!
The Shadow of the Wind – I have decided to go through this, just for the beauty of it. I don’t think I have to say anything about it, it is one of the most exquisitely written books ever. The words flow like a majestic stream and the translator did a job of the highest order.
The Sultan’s seal – This is the final book on the list. It is one that I entirely chanced upon during my usual Thursday checkout of the latest arrivals in the library (they are lent to us only for three weeks instead of the default length of entire semester, hence provide some kind of challenge to finish them up or face a fine). I had heard of the author as one with an appreciable sense of humor and that the translator he had gotten was also very respectable of what he was translating and was mindful of the spirit of the original work. This can easily be seen at the beginning of the book where the translator actually outlines his thoughts about this translation work. Regarding the book, it has been a mixed ride so far, the writing is ok-ish but it definitely gives glimpses of the thoughts of a middle-eastern author(s) whose works I have admittedly read very few (Arabian nights is the closest I have gotten and also Italo Calvino’s works which I always thought were more impressive versions of a few Arabian nights stories).
With finals coming up in December and some admittedly busy times ahead, I am not sure how many of these I would do justice to, but these books make up an interesting line-up to lure me back to them on those (possibly) lull weekends.