Wednesday, October 22, 2008

What I've been reading

1. Unknown Terrorist by Richard Flanagan. This was an interesting commentary on the state of society when confronted with an external threat - in this case domestic terrorism. The notion that masses will behave like a paranoid herd, or in some cases will band together in the face of an external threat is not new. What is interesting is that this post 9/11 book is one look at society's reaction to this threat and it is not an entirely pleasant look. Few stop to question the authorities (the story is set in Sydney) and are ready to convict based on media coverage. The plot line was a little thin but Flanagan is a good enough writer that I was willing to overlook it.

2. Body of Lies by David Ignatius. Prompted by the trailers of the movie version. Unfortunately, I wanted to like David Ignatius but found the prose a little too monotonous. This might well be the only Ignatius book I'll read. The plot was predictable for me and the movie version looks to be slightly better.

3. Market Forces by Richard Morgan. Mad Max in a suit driving expensive European made cars battle it out on the roads for market dominance in the mercenary business. The first couple of chapters I almost laughed out loud but was eventually drawn into the book which is a good read and moves at a good pace. There's something about the mindless violence in Richard Morgan's books that makes me wonder about him. If this book were made into a move, I'd say Colin Farrell should play Chris Faulkner.

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