The night-time reading habit that I restarted seems to be working, so it’s more of the same.

After polishing off Ugly Americans , I’m now onto The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes.

Ugly Americans, a ‘true’ story of American stock-market traders operating in Japan and Singapore in the 90s, is about a three-star read, good enough to lull one into relaxation for the night ahead.

‘Tis a strange thing, but bedtime reading, as opposed to button-pressing on the phone, fosters a forgotten , foreign sense of … contentment.

Mezrich’s book – picked up at the seocnd-hand store for ~= NZD 3.30 – uses some of the techniques showcased way back by Tom Wolfe, and others, in The New Journalism ( 1973 I think ). That is the use of fictional devices in reporting, and, especially in the case of one Hunter Thompson, the author inserting himself into the story.

But in Ugly Americans it’s unclear for dunces such as myself when we have fiction and otherwise. The descriptions of opulence get a little tedious, but the characters are interesting enough.

Spoiler Alert

The ending does come as a pleasant surprise, and satisfies in a strange way.

For my next outing, I went back to the new bookstore, which is well-stocked, and offers cheap new English-language titles.

There are a gamut of self-help books, even some that are relatively fashionable, but otherwise the menu is lots of Classic Victorian literature. Which for me is a PITA for it’s hand-wringing Christianity and moralism. And they’re forever banging on about class.

I chose Conan Doyle because he’s less about all that, and more on the science and problem-solving end. Plus, Carl loved him, and to my shame I don’t think I’ve read any of it, so time to plug that gap.

And, hopefully, continue improving habits as I go.