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Michael C. Smith
Marshall, Texas
Interests: Reading, history, architecture, and music.
Recent Activity
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This time it's a 1944 and 1969 USS Hornet (CV/CVS-12). The former is pretty much an out of the box Dragon Essex (CV-9), which approximates Hornet's wartime appearance better than their Hornet does, actually. The latter is a heavily kitbashed... Continue reading
Posted May 26, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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One of my favorite Teaching Company videos is Dr. Bart Ehrman’s on the New Testament, where he goes into what I now understand is the historical–critical analysis of the books of the New Testament. The lectures provide a fascinating insight... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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What is there left to say about this book? Not only did it fill an important gap in the popular biography of an important Founding Father – it inspired a groundbreaking Broadway musical that will inspire generations to come with... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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The idea of a novel built around the hidden secrets contained in maps was catnip to me when I first read about this book. It’s a variation on the Dan Brown – style archaeological porn that I used to love... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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I am pretty sure this book has been on my Kindle for over ten years. It is an exhaustive biography of Jefferson, but focused on his career as a political leader. That is not to me the most interesting aspect... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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This novel beggars description. Throughout, it is multiple stories ranging from medieval Eastern Europe and Constantinople to the Korean War, the 1970s, the near future, and the farther future. At the end, the author ties them together into a coherent... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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This is my first Dan Jones book, and I really enjoyed it. It is a very readable account of the thousand years of history between the fall of the Western Roman Empire and the discovery of the New World. He... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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Unlike the 10th installment of the Laundry Files, it only took me a couple of weeks to finish this one. While it used much of the same cast as its Peter Pan–inspired predecessor, and added a Mary Poppins-inspired character, the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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I really enjoyed this book. It was a complete history of the city from its origins to the modern day. It says a lot about the different empires that used it as a base, as well as the states that... Continue reading
Posted Feb 20, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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This is the latest installment in the "Laundry" series, but has nothing to do with that agency. Instead, it is exploring a spinoff set of characters, using Stross' latest conceit – adding an overlay from another literary work. In this... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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https://imodeler.com/2022/01/2021-modeling-review-four-essexes-nine-aircraft-and-a-88mm/ Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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https://imodeler.com/2022/01/1-700-uss-randolph-cv-15-august-1945/ Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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https://imodeler.com/2022/01/leppla-liska-sail-12-sbd-dauntless-battle-of-the-coral-sea/ Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2022 at Puttering in the Study
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I have recently noticed a tendency to reread books that I think I might enjoy - and more often, to start listening to them as audiobooks. Most recently, I decided to reread Frank Herbert's Dune in advance of the new... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This book describes the private lives of the sultans in and around Istanbul during the Ottoman Empire's occupation of the former Constantinople (1453-1922). I was fascinated by our visit to Topkapi Palace several years ago, and this book puts a... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This is a digital reissue of a 1953 book issued by the Naval War College Press that tells the story of the floating logistics train that made the Navy's drive across the Pacific in World War II possible. I can't... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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Yeaaahhhh, not quite. This science fiction novel takes an interesting point of view, presenting a New York City where individuals become avatars of their borough and fight an existential threat from a parallel universe. it has some really interesting character... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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It's rare someone takes issue with Winston Churchill's statement about the Battle of Britain that "[n]ever in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few." But this book does. Incidentally, according to Pug... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This book took me years to finish, but in the end it was worth it. It was universally recommended as a good history of the development of the atomic bomb and of the Manhattan Project, but it is slow, slow... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This was a great little read that I picked up after listening to Gladwell on a panel about the bomber war at the World War II conference in New Orleans last month. It was a quick read, but a very... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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I ran across this book while searching for additional sources for one of the papers I was updating for my capstone project. I needed more information on Britain's plans for British Malaya after the war, and how those plans may... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This was one of my least favorite books about the Pacific war. It wasn't because of the subject, which was always interesting, or the writing, which was always good, or the data contained, which was exhaustive. It was because I... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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Hoyt's "Blue Skies and Blood" was the earliest book I had on the Battle of the Coral Sea, and I later discovered he had written a number of others on different stages of the Pacific War, which I started to... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This book is another example of one I can't say anything detailed about because even though I finished it a few weeks ago, I don't remember much about it. I listened to it on Audible, primarily during long car trips,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study
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This book is a perfect example of why I need to curate my reading a bit more. It was recommended to me earlier this week, and by coincidence I noticed that I had downloaded the Kindle version last summer. Assuming... Continue reading
Posted Dec 22, 2021 at Puttering in the Study