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Member: SigmundFraud

CollectionsOwn and read (2,763), Owned but not read (78), Your library (3,669), Wishlist (26), To read (429), Read but unowned (183), Favorites (2), All collections (6,386)

Reviews255 reviews

Tagsjda (373), tbr (273), gave away (28), at nypl (11), looks interesting (9), english lit (8), american lit (8), 20th century (7), loved it (6), bio (6) — see all tags

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GroupsBBC Radio 3 Listeners, Early Reviewers, Fans of Joyce Carol Oates, Literary Ventures Fund, LOOSE GIRL BY Kerry cohen, TYRANTS STORIES by Marshall Klimasewiski

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URLs /profile/SigmundFraud (profile)
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Member sinceAug 27, 2006

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Herr Fraud: I also tried: "Edison:Inventing the Century" by Neil Baldwin - equally bad. I guess I just do not dig Edison. I liked the book I read about Tesla. Here are three books that you may enjoy: "The Culture Code" by Clotaire Rapaille (insight into American culture, and others); "The Lessons of History" by Will Durant (a 110 page summary of the essence of what he learned after writing a multi-volume history of mankind thousands of pages long over 20 or 30 years); and "Flashman in the Great Game" just because it is light and fun and captures in an amusing way the 19th Century British attitude/empire per Kipling and director George Stevens ("Gunga Din") as portrayed by actors like Errol Flynn and Victor McLaglen and Cary Grant and others of their ilkage. If you like fiction: Butterfield 8 by John O'Hara or Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury or Tales of the South Pacific by James Michener. Good reading.
How did you happen to dub yourself "SigmundFraud" for this site? I'm sure there's a story behind it.
"SigmundFraud". Love it. Freud was (and is) one of the most pernicious influences on Western thought, IMHO.
I don't know your age or locale, but do you happen to recall a MAD magazine cartoon in which a character is reading a book marked ""Freud is a Fraud' by Fried"?
Seems you enjoyed the Faderman bio... it's been sitting on my night table for some time. Looking forward to reading it soon!
Sadly, the photo of the library on my page is not mine. I only wish! I just did a Google Image search for a nice shot of an old fashioned personal library and there it was. If I took a picture of my own bookshelves you'd probably call 911 for fear I was in imminent danger of being buried beneath a pile of books and splintered shelving.
Believe me, I know. Fiction is a difficult business. Luckily, there are lots of indie presses looking for less traditional, less accessible writing.
Great. It's in pdf format and it will work perfectly on Kindle. Send me your e-mail address (mine is, and I'll send you the e-book.




Was wondering if you'd be interested in reviewing my new novel and posting your comments here as well as a few other book-related sites. Saw you liked Paris Trout, and thought you might like my novel since it's also southern and a bit dark (in the same vein as Paris Trout). I could e-mail you the novel in an e-book format if you'd like. Let me know if you're interested. Here's a link to a summary in case you're interested:


Thanks for the invite. Sorry mine had expired. I list some of the mystery authors I read on my profile page. I'm all over the map, but Pelecanos, Child, Mosley are always good by me. Hard Case Crime is a solid bet, too. I'd like to read more lady authors. My private eye series features Frank Johnson. His latest caper is PELHAM FELL HERE. The Lansing State Journal compares him to Lee Child's Jack Reacher. If even 10% of that is true, I'm happy.

Best in your reading,

Ed Lynskey
Hi David -

You just introduced me to a whole new aspect of LibraryThing about which I knew nothing at all. Wow!

Originally I thought about entering my whole library, but what a daunting task: do I enter the books I buy, regardless of whether I read them? What about the books I start but don't finish? The ones I give as gifts (is it a used book and therefore unacceptable gift if I've glanced at it? Do I count it as read?)? The ones I check out on the kid's library card and forget to return? How about books I remember reading but can't for sure say that I own? There were so many variables I started feeling a little Clintonesque -- it depends on how one defines the words "my" and "whole" ...

Had to stop the madness. I only enter books when I've finished them, and only the books I've read since the date I joined.

The photograph of you and Lynne at Judi's party makes me smile. I'm glad you're back from France.

Why the interest in the Mohawk Valley? We share a history of the valley. i was raised in the Mohawk Valley.

Pretty much the same here - I'm from Schenectady, and still live in the Capital District; my mother was born and raised in Amsterdam, I still have relatives in Utica, I've bicycled as far as Lock 10. The more I look into it, the deeper my connection to the Valley runs.

I've blogged about it

- Bob
Thanks! I remember thinking it looked interesting when I was entering it into Early Reviewers. I'll get a copy and give it a go!
Sorry about that! I sent out that comment two days before I actually closed them for requests.

Stay tuned for November though, we'll have more.

Sorry to be so long in replying - I too have been abroad over the summer. Judging from the books in your library that I have seen, Joseph Roth for instance, and Sandor Marai, I think you would enjoy the Banffy trilogy. I admire his humane, sensitive and sensible view, of his country and people in general; and I learned a great deal about Hungary and Austria-Hungary in that critical period before the 'Great War'. Banffy was involved in the politics of the time - i have another book of his concerned with this - and had a much wider and longer perspective on it all. If you read it, I would be interested to hear your opinion.
We share a number of books, and an interesting selection of them - what interests me most is that you have the third volume of Miklos Banffy's trilogy - not the others? Or just not catalogued, i suspect: how did you come to it and what did you think of it? I know very few who have read this... a favourite of mine.
I agree that Waugh is fun, but I like Brideshead Revisited best although definitely not funny.
I am rereading Alexander Herzen's My Life and Thought, because of Tom Stopppard's newish play about him. Although autobiography, it reads like a novel. He was a terrific writer, even though I can only read him in translation. I feel a lot of kinship with Russian exiles, because I was raised by Russian immigrant grandparents.
I am still busy cataloquing my library, and building shelves, and trying to get it organized. This is only our second summer in this house, and I am just getting the books sorted out.

I've also been reading the Life of Courage by Grimmelshausen which was the basis for Brecht's Mother Courage about the Thirty Years War and Tearaway which was a sort of sequel to Simplicimmus, also by Grimmelshausen, which is the only one I knew about until I found these two others. I love picaresque novels-Quevedo, Cervantes, Le Sage, etc. Of course there were serious and tragic undercurrents in the Grimmelshausen/Brecht stuff, but they was also very rowdy and funny.
Hey David,

Thanks for the post- glad Plummer saved the play for ya: I was just reading about it in the Times. Once again, I lament the poor state of theater in SF. Ah well.

I've been a bit bogged down with the Llosa "A Fish in Water" as work has been top priority for a while and its difficult to read anything that requires concentration in fifteen eye-drooping minutes before you fall asleep each night. I tend to end up reading the same passage over-and-over again! I've also been getting through some back-up theatre reading on Ibsen's Ghosts & John Gabriel Borkman; Brecht's Caucasian Chalk Circle and a play called Europe by David Grieg as well as Richard III; all of which I am fortunate enough to be going to see over the next couple of months. I like to know something about plays that I am going to see before the performance. I think it helps to make it a richer experience.
What are you reading at the moment?
Awesome- glad it was such a powerful performance! You're inspiring me to get out to the opera here in SF. I'll also pass along the recommendation to my friend in Brooklyn to get out and see it.

Thanks for the Auster comment and I think it is a fair point. Auster can be rather pretentious but I suppose it is a matter of taste as to whether you find that annoying or not. I like the austerity (sic!) of his style and the self-referential element tends to make me want to come back for a re-read when I already know the plot. He seems to me quite a blokey author and I find him good to come back to if I have been reading a run of womeny(???,I certainly don't mean girly!) authors. Having a quick zizz through our common shared books I'd be interested in how you got on with "Beyond Black" or "Famous Last Words" if you've got around to reading them.
Cheers, Kevin (dylanwolf)
Hello ... just popped in to say that I think we are the only two people here who have "The Boy who was raised as a dog" by Bruce D. Perry and Maia Szalavitz. Happy Reading... cheers.

Hi David,

Been sick for days so I STILL haven't started "the Good Soldier." I'll try to give you a thumbs up or down once I actually tackle the thing. Good to hear that you are enjoying "Casterbridge." I read "Tess" a few years ago and found it interesting, but later read "Jude" and was awestruck. I will have to check out "Casterbridge" then.

One of my recent resolutions was to actually go see an opera, which I've never done. I visited with some friends in Brooklyn last year and one of them is an opera fan who keeps urging me to go. She worked briefly at the Met and so she was able to give me a brief tour of the house, although we couldn't go back stage because they were doing some construction work. Hope "I Puritani" is fantastic.

Hi Sigmund,

Thanks for leaving the comment. I do hope "the History Boys" arrives in San Francisco (my home). I haven't been much of a theatergoer in years, but seeing "Travesties" recently here at the Geary Theater reminded me of what I've been missing. I'll have to save the pennies from now on I guess... Just finished reading "The Italian Boy," a true story of resurrection men in early Nineteenth Century London. The author uses the opportunity to delve deeply into the lives of the working poor during the time period which proved more interesting then the crime which is the main focus of the book. It's been a busy month and I'm way behind in my reading- I've been meaning to start "the Good Soldier Svejk" for some time now. Any recommendations you can throw my way? Glad you're enjoying "Rise of Christianity," I really want to get to "the Barbarian Conversions" when I get a chance. I'm sure I'm like everyone here on this site: my ambitions run far beyond my available time.

Nice to hear from you,
Hi Sig, I see that we've got quite a few (highly excellent) tomes in common and I've enjoyed Munro as well, though recommending something with as uncluttered a style as hers does present a bit of a challenge. I find I'm forced to offer Evelyn Waugh's A Handful of Dust, which I see you already own, and a book I consider not just one of the greatest novels of the last century, but a model of economy, and a near-perfect example of a lack of excess in everything except the absurd. What makes A Handful of Dust so grand, I think finally, is what Waugh chooses to leave out of it, his taste and flair for the succinct overriding any over-wordy inclinations, and it's by far his most compelling book, highly recommended if you haven't read it already. And if you'd not noticed, I have my favorites for 2006 posted on my 'Profile" page, so you might check them out and tell me what you think. Good luck!
i am reading now DAUGHTER OF FORTUNE by Isabel Allende and so far i like it a lot. It is even amusing. Some feel there is too much detail but i am actually enjoying the details of 19th century mores.
Your library bookshelf project sounds delightful! Built-in shelves are on our "some day" list of projects we'd like to do. Right now we're just feeling pleased that everything is actually on shelves and not living in boxes. :)
Amy Tan does write about the relationships of women, centering mostly on mother-daughter relationships. So I guess her books would be to a certain point "Women's Fiction". I think they are a bit more then that though. So far, I've only seen the Joy Luck Club movie, read The Kitchen God's Wife, The Bonesetter's Daughter, and The Hundred Secret Senses. AT this particular moment I am struggling to remember the plot line of The Hundred Secret Senses, other than the begginning, which makes me wonder if I finished reading it, I was enjoying it. If you were interested in Amy Tan, I would probably start with The Joy Luck Club, I can easily see how that would be in written form. As for being a male, I think the work stretches boundries of gender, age, and heritage, giving the ability for all to find an interest in the work. While all the character will be female, it's simply their struggles as young women in WWII China, and now their daughter's lives in America clashing.

We're doing a book read of Banana Yoshimoto's Kitchen this month on the group--it's open to everyone. We are going to have open group reads trying to work our way around Asia. I see I sent your invite on Sept. 9th which means you probably have a number of Haruki Murakami's books. We hope to to a group read of him too eventually, however, I think next we'll be doing a book from Israel, India, or Korea next. (those are the ideas floating anyway) Check out bookcrossing for a bookring for an Amy Tan!
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