Tuesday, December 10, 2019
Why Aren't My Xmas Decorations Up?
I finally broke the logjam and began reading again; I only hope it's in time to complete my Cybils pile.
I've been keeping up with my audio reading by driving all over -- lunch with Sheila in Bellevue, book club (the triple!) in northern Seattle, meetings for Foolscap in Queen Anne and then in Everett, and a game party in a different party in Bellevue.
The game party was my favorite, because Trish is an amazing host and she had lots of friend come, some that I've played with before and others new to me. I also hadn't realized how much I'd missed rolling dice until I had the chance to munch some brains in a Zombie Dice session. Thanks, Santa, for those final brains that pushed me over to victory!
My currently reading shelf continues to hover around 22, but really I'm only actively reading about five books.
The Book Date does a weekly roundup of what people are reading, want to read, or have read each week called It's Monday! What Are You Reading so I'll sign up there. Ditto for the children's lit version at either Teach Mentor Texts or Unleashing Readers.
The Poison Eaters, Gail Jarrow. Cybils Nonfiction longlist.
Bringing Down a President, Andrea Balis. Cybils Nonfiction longlist.
ConCom: Conflict Communication, Rory Miller. For my Torches and Pitchforks bookclub.
The Great Nijinsky, Lynn Curlee. Cybils nonfiction longlist.
The (Other) F Word, Angie Manfredi. Cybils nonfiction longlist.
The First Dinosaur, Ian Lendler. Cybils nonfiction. A book about both dinosaurs and science, because it's about how people went from looking at fossils to understanding geologic time and extinction and evolution, which are all needed to develop the idea of animals that no longer exist. Lendler does a good job with both the personalities involved and the slow development of the scientific method and the move away from a biblical explanation of animal taxonomy. The illustrations are colorful and interesting and the page layouts enticing.
The Poison Eaters, Gail Jarrow. Cybils Nonfiction longlist. Jarrow is always a good read. In this book she looks at the history of America's Food and Drug Administration, mainly through a biography of Harvey Wiley, who ferociously investigated food additives and drugs and campaigned for his department to have legal authority to protect consumers from dangerous ones. Jarrow goes into gruesome but mostly lighthearted detail about the dangerous tricks companies played with their food and showed how many deaths resulted before Congress slowly moved into regulation, and ends with the current state and what loopholes still exist.
Bringing Down a President, Andrea Balis. Cybils Nonfiction longlist. An engaging history of Watergate and its aftershocks, told through the voices of the people involved with many (well sourced) quotes and a "Fly On the Wall" giving context and transitions. It actually works very well and gives the page an inviting look. The layout and illustrations are also engaging. The author acknowledges a few times that the book is timely while it is being written but the attention is on Nixon and his men and their times, not ours.
The Great Nijinsky, Lynn Curlee. Cybils nonfiction longlist. I love when a book looks at a topic I know very little about and brings it to my understanding in an interesting way. I knew vaguely about modern ballet and the riots around some show or something, but Curlee gives me the history of the dancer and choreographer, how ballet was taught and the influences worked, and makes me care. It's primarily a biography of Nijinsky, but seeing his life also shows how ballet worked in society and how things were changing in those pre-war days right before movie cameras and societal cracks. It also looks at his mental state (he went mad very young) and how the sudden ending of his career affected his reputation.
Bookmarks Moved In:
Son of the Black Sword, Larry Correia. 70-73/? Baen's podcast serial. The main character has killed a huge pile of people, but even more are still swinging swords and other pointy objects at him.
Tender Morsels, Margo Lanagan. 3/10 discs. The two stories have finally met!
Book Lust, Nancy Pearl. Still reading in tiny bursts.
One Good Dragon Deserves Another, Rachel Aaron. Justin is in trouble.
The Poppy War, R.F. Kuang. Last month's Sword and Laser pick. Waiting to recover it.
Brave Face, Shaun Hutchinson. Cybils nonfiction longlist. Unhappy teens are not my favorite subject.
Tropic of Serpents, Marie Brennan. I am liking the audio better but its not going quickly.
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, Susanna Clarke. I'm now about fifty chapters behind where I should be.
Dead But Not Forgotten, Ed. by Charlaine Harris. I read a story as a reward for finishing a Cybils book.
Picture Books / Short Stories:
These books I'm barely reading; I use them as palate cleansers between books I'm actually reading. And since I wasn't home, I didn't read them this week.
A Traitor to Memory, Elizabeth George.
The Educated Child, William Bennett.
Cookie, Jacqueline Wilson.
Give All to Love, Patricia Veryan.
Tell the Wolves I'm Home, Carol Rifka Brunt.
Reading and Learning to Read, Jo Anne Vaca.