It’s important that you read.
It helps you learn, grow, and become a better citizen. You know about the world, its history, and the problems it faces.
So go to the library and get some books, or just head over to Amazon.
We know that 28% of Americans read at least one eBook in the past year. By 2020 the eBook market is expected to be worth $13 billion.
We also know that reading will make you live longer.
I was very happy that 125 people viewed my last “good books” post.
Book posts are some of the most popular on this site, with my mountain man book posts getting several thousand views a month.
So please read – the world needs you to.
One book that I really enjoyed over the past week or so is called The History of the Medieval World: From the Conversion of Constantine to the First Crusade.
It was written by Susan Wise Bauer, comes in at 668 pages (not counting notes), and was released in 2010.
This is a great book for those that are interested in world history but don’t want to be bored and don’t want to read tons of pages on just a few decades.
This book’s chapters are typically 7 pages or so and in each chapter you cover about 50 years.
I like the stuff on the Romans and the disintegration of their empire the best, but others might appreciate the details of the Persians, the rise of Islam, as well as what was going on in India, China, and Korea.
Bauer does a great job condensing lots of information down into easy-to-read sentences. Other historians might do a paragraph where Bauer does a sentence, and I appreciate this – I can keep reading without getting bogged-down.
What I think is so beneficial about this book is what it tells us of the administrative errors that led to the fall of Rome. Most of this came about due to corruption and incompetence, though cultural changes were also going on that factored in.
We also see how nationalism destroyed the empire of Rome, and we can take comfort knowing that nationalism in our own time will help bring down the American empire of globalists that care nothing for our families or our daily concerns.
I’ve read Edward Gibbons’ 18th-century history of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, but that gets boring and gets too detailed at times.
This book is much better at glossing over things while still imparting the larger meaning, and critical lessons. Give it a look – we need more people that can identify past mistakes so they’re not repeated.
A book that I really liked – though I’m not quite finished with it, yet – is Royal Panoply: Brief Lives of the English Monarchs.
The book was written by Carolly Erickson, it’s 368 pages, and it came out in 2006.
It’s pretty much a coffee-table-style book with lots of images and columns of text.
I like it because you get a 4-5 page rundown on each monarch going back to William the Conqueror in 1066 all the way up to Elizabeth II.
You get bits on their childhood, the strange personality traits they had, what their eating and dressing habits were, and also their sexual proclivities.
Besides that you’ll learn how they marshaled power – either from the father or mother that went before them, or via the nobles or common citizens they rallied – as well as how they kept that power through able administration or the cold, hard power of the iron fist.
It’s a fun book and it’s not boring, like so many royal biographies often are. I got it sent down from the Flathead County Library and I encourage you to do the same.
Our next book is called The House of Wisdom: How the Arabs Transformed Western Civilization.
The book was written in 2009 by Jonathan Lyons, a 20-year editor for Reuters. It comes in at 201 pages, not counting notes.
You get some really good stuff on how backwards Europe was when it came to time.
They had no useful clocks and couldn’t even determine the proper date of Easter accurately.
Monks had problems knowing when to get up at midnight to pray, though some monasteries had water clocks and many knew that certain candles burned for 4 hours exactly.
The book starts off around the First Crusade in 1095 and does a good job detailing Peter the Hermit and his wandering band of thousands of poor and destitute. Most were later slaughtered.
After that we move along and hear about mathematics and the Europeans continual backwardness in this because they didn’t use ‘zero,’ something that wouldn’t really be corrected until Fibonacci came about in the 1200s.
This book isn’t too long and it has lots of interesting tidbits. Give it a look one of these nights instead of the TV.
Another book that discusses mathematics a bit is Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk.
This was written by Peter L. Bernstein, comes in at 335 pages (not counting notes), and was released in 1998.
Yeah…an older book.
It delves into the idea of risk and uses probability and the mathematicians that came up with new ideas to highlight it.
I found the book to be a little dry and I didn’t read the whole thing, just about 50 pages before taking it back to the library.
Why am I mentioning it?
Well, what the hell – maybe you’ll take a look at it and find it interesting.
Thanks for reading.