Five Books I Read in August

The Secret Life of Fat: The Science Behind the Body’s Least Understood Organ and What It Means for You” – Authored by Sylvia Tara, PhD

This book on fat is an engrossing read regarding the science of fat and both its benefits and detriments. The science is skillfully interweaved with vignettes about those that suffer from too much or too little of it and the researchers that have uncovered its secrets. By the end, the reader realizes that every person’s fight against weight is unique, difficult, but not without hope. I strongly recommend the book.

Blockade: Authored by Gerald Ziedenberg

This short book does an excellent job chronicling the perilous journeys Jews took to escape to Palestine from pre-to post-World War Two. Before I read the book, I thought I already knew much of what happened. It only took diving in a few pages to realize that I knew little. The suffering and persistence of Jews escaping terror was breathtaking. Britain’s crass enforcement of a morally corrupt foreign policy that barred Palestine to Jews in need did much to ensure the death of many at the hands of the Nazis. And, it emphasizes the need for a vibrant Israel that all Jews can count on as a shelter in the storm.

Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign – Authored by Jonathan Allen & Amie Parnes.
This light read gives what feels an accurate portrayal of the many failures of the Hillary Clinton campaign. As such, it is an important foundation to absorb before reading the multiple books written by insiders and principles that are sure to come. Although the book focuses more on primary effort and the Democratic Convention than the general election, perhaps that is appropriate. For it is during that time that the Clinton campaign developed bad habits (such as overreliance on data analytics) and lost its way. It is also during that time that candidate Clinton failed to develop a simple message as to why people should vote for her as opposed to why they should not vote for the other guy (Sanders and then Trump). In the end, Clinton’s loss seems to have been inevitable, an inevitability only masked by Trump’s seeming impossibility.

The Darkening Web – Authored by Alexander Klimburg

This is a timely read about current issues in cyber security. It reviews the current state of affairs and delves deeply into current capabilities of China, Russia, the United States and others.

First Strike – Authored by Ben Coes

Generally, after reading several non-fiction books of varying degrees of density, I need a little relief. First Strike fills the bill. Its basic premise is that rogue elements of the U.S. government naively created ISIS as a counter-weight to other Islamic militants. Then ISIS morphed into something beyond their control. The prose is light and quick, just what I needed. If you like Clancy or Silva, this book is for you.

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