Oh, that and I blog.
Pathetic excuses, but I did manage a few books. Looking back - some I still need to finish the last 50-or-so pages (a bad habit I share with Mrs. Salamander who reads about 4x as much as I do), the there is a mixed story in the collection.
There are the comfort food of books I have re-read for the umpteenth time; USNIPress's superb The Emden-Ayesha Adventure: German Raiders in the South Seas and Beyond, 1914 is a perfect example of this. If you have never read this, you have not lived a full and informed life.
The classic The Long March: Xenophon and the Ten Thousand was another return. It is all there. Over 2,000 years old and most all you need to know about leadership in adversity and the characteristics of good and bad leaders is there.
As I could not have made the civilian transition the way I did if I were not a little lucky and a little smart with money over the years, I re-read Monster Stocks: How They Set Up, Run Up, Top and Make You Money. It paid off again after the September follow-through day. This week I locked in some very nice gains on a quad of stocks. Not luck - informed decisions and hard work. It is there for you to if you take the time to read.
If you have never read a book on how to understand the stock market - read that book. 'Nuff said.
On a more personal note, it was neat to read about something about my corner of the war - something I was involved with on the side in "parallel play" during the first months of the Long War, Horse Soldiers: The Extraordinary Story of a Band of US Soldiers Who Rode to Victory in Afghanistan. What a great story that will make a great movie one day.
There were also books I read by acquaintances & friends I have met over the years as my alter-ego "Sal," and have had as guests on Midrats; James S. Robbins's This Time We Win: Revisiting the Tet Offensive and Bruce Fleming's Bridging the Military-Civilian Divide: What Each Side Must Know About the Other - And About Itself fit that niche.
Finally, there was a book that was simply horrible; James Bradley's The Imperial Cruise: A Secret History of Empire and War. It read like some graduate history student trying to get laid with his far-left faculty advisor. What a horrible misuse of an important story. Post-modernism flavored with white guilt and national self-loathing. Pathetic.
So, that was the year in books.
On a side-note, the end of the year has me feeling a bit off to be candid. This is my first full year as a civilian since the early/mid-80s. I miss it in some ways - but am enjoying being a father while I can. Children don't wait for you. It is good to have a place to grow roots, have a nice boat, a home, extended family a short drive, some acreage, and all that I take for granted so many gave so much so I could have just a bit.
I am very happy in what I do now, but ... still. I miss the sea. I know I am not a warrior monk, but still. The military is a calling, not a job - at least it was to me. You can't have it all, but I tried as long as I could and then something had to give.
No, wouldn't change a thing. Not one. 2010 was a different year.
So much to do, so little time.