Saturday, January 28, 2012

Saturday Link Roundup

I accumulate links and keep them just because I love them. So instead I am going to share them here.

This one is for SCB. It's adorable. Although most Julie Andrews-related things on the internet are adorable.

This one is for people with kids. Or people who know kids. Or people who are and/or were kids.

This is awesome even though I am not a Bon Jovi fan at all and I don't get terribly excited about Bon Iver either. This makes them both better:

This is a nerdy yet amazing photoshoot. Rachel Sussman traveled around the world to take pictures of the oldest living things, most of which are either trees or fungi. It makes me think of my favorite coffee table books, both of which I regularly want to cut up so I can hang the pictures on my wall. But I just can not be one of those people. So clearly, I need to travel to see some spectacular trees soon.

I just finished this fascinating book. The author was in his early twenties when he got a job working for the British government in one of their code departments, yes, One Of, there is a ton of infighting and he finally makes the point that when he is trying to help his field agents by getting their codes printed on easily hidden, easily destroyed-after-using silk, that for these agents being infiltrated into enemy territory, that for them it could literally be get them these good codes, or they will be taking their cyanide tablets to avoid being tortured for what they know. There is an ongoing alarming theme when he is convinced that the agents in Holland are all under German control because they are only sending perfectly coded messages (he has a whole crew of ladies devoted to breaking indecipherable messages because they have been sent under less-than-ideal conditions and the agents in Holland are the only ones that never send a miscoded message) and it turns out that every single agent they are dropping in is being captured on arrival and he has to keep sending messages to them just to keep the Germans from killing them all. And the whole book is like that. It starts slow but I ended up not being able to put it down because I wanted to know which of all of his coding inventions end up get used and if they help his agents and if they survive. So it is a long read and I may have glossed over some of the more detailed coding explanations but overall I highly recommend Between Silk And Cyanide by Leo Marks.

And apropos of that, I'm not positive Nancy Wake was in that book but she would have fit right in with some of the characters that Marks works with, like the astonishing Noor Inayat Khan.

And now I will stop with the links (for now). They were just piling up so I had to share with people who I think would be appreciative...

3 comments:

The Farmers Daughter said...

I love stickman! When the boy is done building his catapult (really, a wooden huge catapult) he wants to use stickman too- thanks for the link!

Kerry said...

That book is now on my list to put on reserve. It sounds fascinating!

Anne At Large said...

TFD, glad you liked the stickman! It's so cute!

Kerry, I highly recommend it! The author achieved some minor later fame as the screenwriter of the controversial and apparently very creepy horror movie Peeping Tom. I will not be seeing it but I thought that was interesting too. And some of the poetry that he wrote for agents to use as poem-codes is still around:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Life_That_I_Have