What are you reading right now?

'Kisses From Nimbus' authored by P.J. 'Red' Riley was posted to me by a civilian friend, believing I would find it engaging. I've not seen this pop up on this thread, though it was released in 2017. An engaging tome indeed featuring, beneath it's title, the 'hook' - " From SAS to MI6 : An Autobiography".

Riley, by then a WO1 pilot with the ACC has an altercation with his Lt. Col. CO over a forthcoming posting to Germany. At the time, he was on the support flight to SF ops. called back to Middle Wallop for the interview. Returning to Hereford he undertakes SAS selection at the mature age of 36 yrs. old and his anecdotes and photographs commence from there.

@beefer
 
'Kisses From Nimbus' authored by P.J. 'Red' Riley was posted to me by a civilian friend, believing I would find it engaging. I've not seen this pop up on this thread, though it was released in 2017. An engaging tome indeed featuring, beneath it's title, the 'hook' - " From SAS to MI6 : An Autobiography".

Riley, by then a WO1 pilot with the ACC has an altercation with his Lt. Col. CO over a forthcoming posting to Germany. At the time, he was on the support flight to SF ops. called back to Middle Wallop for the interview. Returning to Hereford he undertakes SAS selection at the mature age of 36 yrs. old and his anecdotes and photographs commence from there.

@beefer
Yep a good yarn. Everyone my age would know - or at leas think they know - the identity of the individual.

Typical of the AAC to decide that a highly skilled SF ops pilot who is well regarded by the SF community and very happy in his environment should be posted to somewhere he won’t be happy and won’t fit in. Seen as “career progression”!



My arrse...
 
These don't seem to have had a mention. A trilogy by Tim Rob Smith:
A detective story set in Stalinist Russia circa 1953. Echoes of the Arkady Renko series (although they were set decades later). Well worth a read and also well worth watching the film Death Of Stalin at the same time for a bit of visual context.

I re-read/read the 9 (nonology?) Renko novels and Google led me to Smith. Russia doesn't come out very well in either series.

. . .​

It has been mentioned above but I will do it again. The ten-parter Slough House series (decology?) by Mick Herron. The latest book, Slough House, got a good review in the Sunday Times. I had never heard of him so I downloaded all the books. Only two in at the moment but very impressed so far.

I can see that a few people enjoyed the books. There is a film TV series of the first book, Slow Horses, currently in production, with Gary Oldman as Jackson Lamb. My mental image of Lamb is of a scruffier version of Hunter from the Callan TV series. Kristin Scott Thomas is Taverner whereas I see her as Patricia Hodge. Might have to give the film a miss.
 
Last edited:
These don't seem to have had a mention. A trilogy by Tim Rob Smith:
A detective story set in Stalinist Russia circa 1953. Echoes of the Arkady Renko series (although they were set decades later). Well worth a read and also well worth watching the film Death Of Stalin at the same time for a bit of visual context.

I re-read/read the 9 (nonology?) Renko novels and Google led me to Smith. Russia doesn't come out very well in either series.

. . .​

It has been mentioned above but I will do it again. The ten-parter Slough House series (decology?) by Mick Herron. The latest book, Slough House, got a good review in the Sunday Times. I had never heard of him so I downloaded all the books. Only two in at the moment but very impressed so far.

I can see that a few people enjoyed the books. There is a film TV series of the first book, Slow Horses, currently in production, with Gary Oldman as Jackson Lamb. My mental image of Lamb is of a scruffier version of Hunter from the Callan TV series. Kristin Scott Thomas is Taverner whereas I see her as Patricia Hodge. Might have to give the film a miss.
The film Child '44 with Tom Hardy is in my view very good indeed.
 
I've finished The Contract, the fifth novel by Gerald Seymour. I was a bit ho-hum in the early stages, but it finishes very well.

I have just started the penultimate Bernie Gunther book:

greeks-bearing-gifts-1.jpg


Synopsis:
1957, Munich. Bernie Gunther's latest move in a string of varied careers sees him working for an insurance company. It makes a kind of sense: both cops and insurance companies have a vested interest in figuring out when people are lying to them, and Bernie has a lifetime of experience to call on.

Sent to Athens to investigate a claim from a fellow German for a sunken ship, Bernie takes an instant dislike to the claimant. When he discovers the ship in question once belonged to a Greek Jew deported to Auschwitz, he is convinced the sinking was no accident but an act of vengeance.

And so Bernie is once again drawn inexorably back to the dark history of the Second World War, and the deportation of the Jews of Salonika - now Thessaloniki. As Europe prepares to move on to a more united future with Germany as a partner rather than an enemy, at least one person in Greece is ready neither to forgive nor forget. And, deep down, Bernie thinks they may have a point.
 
I've finished The Contract, the fifth novel by Gerald Seymour. I was a bit ho-hum in the early stages, but it finishes very well.

I have just started the penultimate Bernie Gunther book:

View attachment 549446

Synopsis:
1957, Munich. Bernie Gunther's latest move in a string of varied careers sees him working for an insurance company. It makes a kind of sense: both cops and insurance companies have a vested interest in figuring out when people are lying to them, and Bernie has a lifetime of experience to call on.

Sent to Athens to investigate a claim from a fellow German for a sunken ship, Bernie takes an instant dislike to the claimant. When he discovers the ship in question once belonged to a Greek Jew deported to Auschwitz, he is convinced the sinking was no accident but an act of vengeance.

And so Bernie is once again drawn inexorably back to the dark history of the Second World War, and the deportation of the Jews of Salonika - now Thessaloniki. As Europe prepares to move on to a more united future with Germany as a partner rather than an enemy, at least one person in Greece is ready neither to forgive nor forget. And, deep down, Bernie thinks they may have a point.
I had to cast it aside, seemed a bit pish . Hope you enjoy it
 
Last edited:
The Grand Design by Hawking and Mlodinow. I'm actually progressing with this one far more than 'A Brief History of Time' (which I still haven't got all the way through with any degree of understanding). I have to re-read a few passages but I'm getting it slowly.
 
ThePoetmm-Australia-2020.jpg

'The apparent suicide of his policeman brother sets Denver crime reporter Jack McEvoy on edge. Surprise at the circumstances of his brother's death prompts Jack to look into a whole series of police suicides and puts him on the trail of a cop-killer whose victims are selected all too carefully. Not only that, but they all leave suicide notes drawn from the poems of writer Edgar Allan Poe in their wake.
More frightening still the killer appears to know that Jack is getting nearer and nearer. An investigation that looks like being the story of a lifetime, might also be Jack's ticket to a lonely end'

It's the first of his books I've read and it won't be the last, very good.
 
9781848844483_33.jpg

It's a good read and very unusual in that the author was homosexual and had an affair with his Indian orderly.
 
View attachment 550068
'The apparent suicide of his policeman brother sets Denver crime reporter Jack McEvoy on edge. Surprise at the circumstances of his brother's death prompts Jack to look into a whole series of police suicides and puts him on the trail of a cop-killer whose victims are selected all too carefully. Not only that, but they all leave suicide notes drawn from the poems of writer Edgar Allan Poe in their wake.
More frightening still the killer appears to know that Jack is getting nearer and nearer. An investigation that looks like being the story of a lifetime, might also be Jack's ticket to a lonely end'

It's the first of his books I've read and it won't be the last, very good.
Yeh he does the Harry Bosch books. Good yarns.
 
Unassigned Territory, by Kem Nunn.

During the Vietnam War, a young white American man joins a predominantly black church as a minster to achieve a '4D' deferment from conscription. Thinking it will just be an easy dodge, he is shocked to find himself driving around the Mojave Desert preaching and canvassing for new recruits, whilst trying to conceal his whoring and drinking from his new colleagues. It's good so far....
 

Sana

Old-Salt
The Anarchy: The relentless rise of the East India Company, by William Dalrymple
Amazon product
The book is not a comprehensive account of the East Indian Company, it only tells us how it rose to power during the anarchic 18th century. The disintegration of the Mughal empire led to regional powers being at constant war with each other, which the British took full advantage of. It was not, however, a one-sided affair. The British treated people with more respect, which is why they were supported by individuals like Mir Jaffar, captives were not humiliated, and 90% of the EIC soldiers were Indian.

 
The Anarchy: The relentless rise of the East India Company, by William Dalrymple
Amazon product
The book is not a comprehensive account of the East Indian Company, it only tells us how it rose to power during the anarchic 18th century. The disintegration of the Mughal empire led to regional powers being at constant war with each other, which the British took full advantage of. It was not, however, a one-sided affair. The British treated people with more respect, which is why they were supported by individuals like Mir Jaffar, captives were not humiliated, and 90% of the EIC soldiers were Indian.

Dalrymple doesn't shy away from the downside and the incredible extent of thievery tolerated and even promoted under the EIC, not to mention the devastating effect on the Bengal economy.

Anarchy is possibly too kind a term as it implies a lack of direction - the asset stripping carried out by Company officers was wholly intentional.
 
Turned up today, had it on pre-order


Absolute tome of a book, just going through the index alone made me chuckle - mainly at the terribly names for exploits. I still think SWAMP DONKEY cannot be topped.

High hopes for this read.
After starting to cover cybersecurity a decade ago, Perlroth almost immediately began hearing stories about the government paid hackers to turn over vulnerabilities in software and hardware it could exploit for espionage, she writes. Despite a chorus of sources warning her she wouldn't get very far, Perlroth was determined to learn everything she could about the black market for cyberweapons.

 
Continuing my trawl through the books of David Kilcullen I have just finished reading, Blood Year: The Unraveling of Western Counterterrorism.

By shear chance, this one follows on from the last book of his I read, "The Accidental Guerrilla" which primarily dealt with the growth of al-Qaeda, this one deals with the growth of ISIS. Like the last, this book is thick with facts, footnotes, cross-references and overly long Arabic names for various terrorist groups and doesn't make for easy reading.

It is not easy reading because it details how the west basically fecked it up after nearly getting it right. It also details the grisly activities of ISIS, how it differs from al-Qaeda in its approach and aims and why it is far more dangerous. I should point out that the book was written in 2015 when ISIS was at its peak.

There is so much to take in when reading any of Kilcullen's books but if there is one thing he emphasises again and again it is that counterinsurgency is not primarily military matter. If anything, the political side is more dominant.

1613691061792.png
 
Continuing my trawl through the books of David Kilcullen I have just finished reading, Blood Year: The Unraveling of Western Counterterrorism.
Just ordered off ebay, thank you for the post.

My current (sofa) book is The End Game by Susan Loughhead.

Focuses on the UK relationship with AFG since circa 1940's up to the 'handover' of the old Embassy building in 2012.

The author served in the Embassy in Kabul herself up to 2013 and so did her Grandfather in the late 1940's which she draws parallels on.

I thought it might be rather turgid and hard work but very, very much the opposite. Gives a very concise history of UK/AFG history up to the WW2, all the detail then is from 1950 onwards with a resume of the last few years. Will finish this before next week.

h%jzCj90RtaPcQGnOmb%VQ.jpg
 
Last edited:
F0AD5670-C9B6-48E1-8BBE-75B67614A0A6.jpeg

i enjoyed the first instalment so much I’ve carried on reading it which I don’t usually do with an omnibus
 
I've finished Greeks Bearing Gifts by Philip Kerr and last night started this:

a-death-in-vienna-6.jpg


This has been turned into a TV series which I enjoyed.

Synopsis:
In Vienna at the turn of the twentieth century, Max Liebermann, a contemporary of Sigmund Freud’s, is at the forefront of psychoanalysis, practicing the controversial new science with all the skill of a master detective. Every dream, inflection, or slip of tongue in his “hysterical” patients has meaning and reveals some hidden truth. When beautiful medium Charlotte Löwenstein dies under extraordinary circumstances, Max’s good friend, Detective Oskar Rheinhardt, calls for his expert assistance. Her body has been found in a room that can only be locked from the inside. She’s been shot through the heart, but there’s no gun and absolutely no trace of a bullet. All signs point to a supernatural killer, but Liebermann the scientist is not so easily convinced. Especially when one of Charlotte’s clients is also found in a locked room—this time bludgeoned to death.
 

Latest Threads

Top