Guus Bosman

software engineering manager


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Books & literature

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Makkelijk leven

Entertaining read by the author of Het Diner. Both books share similarities, though this is just a short novelle. Interesting turn at the end.

Joost and Ankie gave us this book.

Herman Koch
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Understanding Trumpism

Books that help understand Trump's surprising win.

  • Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance
  • Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People? by Thomas Frank
  • White Trash: The 400-Year Untold History of Class in America by Nancy Isenberg
  • Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right by Arlie Russell Hochschild

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Hillbilly Elegy

I read in the New York Times about "6 books for the Trump era", and I thought it would be good to get a larger perspective on Trump's election win.

The first of these, Hillbilly Elegy, is a gripping memoir of a man who grew up in Kentucky and Ohio, in a dysfunctional family. He describes his live and that of the people around him, and how there is a feeling of despair, of "our choices don't matter" that holds people back from succeeding.

English
J.D. Vance
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The Embarrassment of Riches

Simon Schama

I've had Simon Schama's masterpiece about the Dutch Golden Age on the bookshelf for a while now, it was a birthday gift.

Very interesting to read about everyday live in the 17th century, about children, households etc.

The last few chapters were the most interesting.

0-394-51075-5
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Tonio

This is a book written by a father after he lost his 21-year old son.

Dutch
A. F. Th. van der Heijden
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Pastorale 1943

I've never been disappointed by Vestdijk, and this was another great book. It's one of his best-known works; I had never read it. Loved the descriptions of rural Holland, as well as the trips to the city.

Dutch
Simon Vestdijk
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books

Reading Pol

Nora started reading books all by herself. She likes the series "Pol" -- books I used to read when I was little.

Nora doesn't actually read the text yet but enjoys watching the pictures.

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Voorleesboeken

We zijn begonnen na de Kerstvakantie, rond 1 januari 2016.

- Een trui voor de giraffe -- verhalen van Burny Bos etc. Favorieten van Nora: heksje Foeksia, Opa & Oma van marianne busser en ron schroder, Familie Gisteren
- Pim & Mien, derde deel. Nora vond het leuk. Aardige, huiselijke verhaaltjes.

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Wat ik nog weet

A sweet little book. Memoirs by a highly acclaimed Dutch children's book author, describing her life until the 1950's and in particular her childhood in Zeeland.

She was born in 1911 and World War I even plays a small role. One of the events is a visit to Den Haag by the family where they see electricity-powered lights and appliances for the first time. While she is growing up, she's looking forward to wear the traditional costume but once she turned 16 it had completely gone out of fashion.

She is a very gifted author and this is a lovely book. My grandmother grew up in Zeeland -- she was born in 1926 -- and it was nice to read about that area.

This was one of the books I bought in October 2014 from the Netherlands.

Dutch
Annie M.G. Schmidt
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Classics

A few weeks ago I installed book shelves in our living room. Finally a place to put our books, and finally an opportunity to get a copy of some of my favorite Dutch books in print.

It's relatively easy to buy electronic Dutch books -- but for some of the great books it is great to have a physical copy.

The package with books included Hersenschimmen, De ontdekking van de hemel, Kruistocht in spijkerbroek -- a childhood favorite -- and De kellner en de levenden.

Also, the Dutch version of the Lord of the Rings. I have a "rule" for myself that I will read books only in their original language, but for Tolkien I make an exception. When I was little my father read The Hobbit and the Ring to me, in Dutch obviously, so Dutch it is.

The package also included several books I haven't read, so that will be fun for the next months and years.

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