His Bloody Project: Documents Relating to the Case of Roderick Macrae

Graeme Macrae Burnet (2015)

A work of fiction so convincing that the first question the author is asked is, “Is it real?” It tells the (imaginary) story of a murder in a history of (allegedly) found objects, manuscripts, evidence statements and trial reports. The fact that it’s set in a real place (Culduie in Wester Ross, looking out towards Skye and Raasay) adds a further layer of realism. It’s a classic anti-hero styling, with the protagonist becoming more sympathetic the more is revealed about his less than complete honesty and the enormity of his crimes, that go way beyond what he himself admits. A gripping read.

5/5. Finished Saturday 24 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

Poverty Safari

Darren McGarvey (2017)

3/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

Debt: The First 5000 Years

David Graeber (2011)

2/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

Mars Rover Curiosity: An Inside Account from Curiosity’s Chief Engineer

Rob Manning (2014)

A boy’s-own adventure in space travel. Howe do you design, build, fly, and debug a rover the size of a bus that’ll have to endure a landing more fraught than any other vehicle ever constructed – and then operate completely remotely, without repair, for years? That this happened at all is a tribute to NASA’s planning and management skills; that Curiosity has lasted years longer than ever anticipated is nothing short of spectacular. The book gives as much technical low-down as any space-obsessive could want, with pointers to more.

5/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)

Seven Brief Lessons on Physics

Carlo Rovelli (2014)

Brief” they are indeed: this is not Feynman’s Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics By Its Most Brilliant Teacher in any respect, rather it’s a popular-science description of some of the currents in modern physics. And it’s amazingly well-done, making the concepts understandable as only someone immersed in them and gifted both in the science and in literature can possibly make them.

4/5. Finished Saturday 17 November, 2018.

(Originally published on Goodreads.)