Category: Uncategorized

Essay Collection Review: (Don’t) Call Me Crazy

August 13, 2020 Uncategorized 1 ★★★★

Essay Collection Review: (Don’t) Call Me CrazyTitle: [Don't] Call Me Crazy
Author: Kelly Jensen, Victoria Schwab, Adam Silvera, Libba Bray, Esmé Weijun Wang, Yumi Sakugawa, Mike Jung, Meredith Russo, Stephanie Kuehn, S.E. Smith, Emery Lord, Sarah Hannah Gómez, Nancy Kerrigan, MILCK, Reid Ewing, S. Zainab Williams, Lisa Jakub, Hannah Bae, Monique Bedard (Aura), Gemma Correll, Heidi Heilig, Christine Heppermann, Shaun David Hutchinson, Ashley Holstrom, Mary Isabel, S. Jae-Jones, Susan Juby, Emily Mayberry, Amy Reed, Jessica Tremaine, Clint Van Winkle, Dior Vargas, Kristen Bell
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

Summary: A solid collection, with several exceptionally funny and moving pieces; many informative ones; and very few duds.

This collection of essays on mental health impressed me in a lot of ways. Most or all of the essays are #ownvoices, with authors writing about topics that they have personal experience with. They come at this topic in a fascinating variety of ways. Themes include mental health in pop culture and the ways we both define mental health and sometimes let it define us. I learned a lot from this collection as a whole, although very few of the individual pieces felt didactic. They simply presented such a wide range of experiences and perspectives that it was impossible not to learn something new. Read more »

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Doing Discussions: Books That Have Changed Your Life

August 11, 2020 Uncategorized 4

Like a lot of my discussion posts, this one is as much as question for you as a topic I think I have some expertise on. (Unlike most of my discussion posts, I’ve pulled my topic from a helpful list of suggestions from Briana at Pages Unbound – thank you!). As a lifelong reader and lover of books, I always feel I should have an answer when people ask about books that have changed my life. I can think of a few, but the list is short. What’s more true for me is that books, collectively, have changed my life. I’d love to hear in the comments if you feel like your life has been significantly changed by either specific books or reading in general. First, here a few ways reading has changed my life. Read more »

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Nonfiction About Birds in Review

August 5, 2020 Uncategorized 0 ★★★★

Nonfiction About Birds in ReviewTitle: The Genius of Birds
Author: Jennifer Ackerman
|Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

Since getting into bird photography, I’ve also discovered a new interest in reading about birds. They’re the most easily observable animals in my daily life and their behavior is always fascinating. The Genius of Birds was full of delightful anecdotes about how clever birds are. I was constantly stopping to share fun tidbits with my husband or to look up videos of surprising bird behavior online. I probably highlighted half the book as interesting enough to share. Read more »

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July Wrap-Up

August 3, 2020 Uncategorized 10

As you can probably tell by my somewhat sporadic posting, I’m still struggling a little with motivation to blog and read! As I’m sure a lot of you understand, that mostly bothers me because it makes me feel not entirely myself. I’m currently sitting down and planning out the coming month. Hopefully that will help me get back into the swing of things.
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Memoir Review: Wandering In Strange Lands

July 22, 2020 Uncategorized 6 ★★★★

Memoir Review: Wandering In Strange LandsTitle: Wandering in Strange Lands: A Daughter of the Great Migration Reclaims Her Roots
Author: Morgan Jerkins
Source: from publisher for review
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

Summary: This was a nuanced, complex book that made me revise much of what I thought I knew about American history.

This book was enough of a genre mash-up that I hesitated to label it a memoir in my post title. Author Morgan Jerkins does include elements of memoir, reminiscing about learning her family history as a child and sharing her recent quest to trace her family history in more detail. Her journey takes her to many sites of significance both to her family history and to the history of Black Americans moving within the US. This portion of the book has elements of both travelogue and general history. She blends all of these elements with interviews with historians and expert locals to tell a nuanced story about her own history and the history of the US.

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#FuturisticFriday: Find Your New Reads {July-September 2020 Edition}

July 17, 2020 Uncategorized 0

Somehow I’m always surprised by how many good books there are to choose from in the next three months, but Tamara of Travelling with T and and I have done our best to narrow down the list to share with you. Hop over to her blog today to check out the new releases  we’re most looking forward to between now and the end of September!

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Nonfiction Review: Ghost Road

July 16, 2020 Uncategorized 0 ★★★★

Nonfiction Review: Ghost RoadTitle: Ghost Road: Beyond the Driverless Car
Author: Anthony M. Townsend
Source: from publisher for review
|Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

Summary: A fascinating, balanced look at the possible futures of autonomous vehicles.

Although I thought Anthony Townsend’s first book, Smart Cities, relied a bit too heavily on anecdote, it presented enough interesting ideas that I was quite excited for his new book. The author is the founder of a ‘strategic foresight and urban planning studio’ and those specialties both show in the strengths of this book. He really narrows in on this one specific technology – autonomous vehicles (AVs). He is incredibly creative in the ways he imagines AVs might changes our lives. These changes will probably be largely in urban locations, especially at first, and the author paints a particularly vivid picture of the future of cities as AVs become more ubiquitous. I also appreciate his ability to recognize both the positive and negative changes AVs might make to our lives. Read more »

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WWII Fiction/Nonfiction Trio

July 9, 2020 Uncategorized 8 ★★★★

WWII Fiction/Nonfiction TrioTitle: The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family, and Defiance During the Blitz
Author: Erik Larson
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

As Larson himself notes in the intro to The Splendid and the Vile, a lot has been written on Churchill already. Do we really need more? Maybe not, but if Eric Larson is the one doing the writing, I definitely want more. This look at a year in the life of Churchill and his family was exactly what I expect from Larson. The writing was engaging and included lots of dialogue, all from well cited, primary sources. The text itself is almost completely without citations, including for claims about motivations that I considered quite important. The story seamlessly weaves together intimate personal stories and global, historical events. I thought the personal elements were the strongest yet in any of his books though. Spending just over 500 pages on a single year meant we could really get to know people. As a result, this just edges out Devil in the White City as my favorite of Larson’s books. Read more »

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Contemporary Fiction Review: This Is How It Always Is

July 6, 2020 Uncategorized 4 ★★★★

Contemporary Fiction Review: This Is How It Always IsTitle: This Is How It Always Is
Author: Laurie Frankel
Source: from publisher for review
Links: Bookshop (affiliate link) |Goodreads
Rating:four-stars

Summary: I loved almost all of this book, but one section was iffy both in terms of representation and plot progression.

“This is how a family keeps a secret…and how that secret ends up keeping them. This is how a family lives happily ever after…until happily ever after becomes complicated. This is how children change…and then change the world. This is Claude. He’s five years old, the youngest of five brothers, and loves peanut butter sandwiches. He also loves wearing a dress, and dreams of being a princess. When he grows up, Claude says, he wants to be a girl. [Parents] Rosie and Penn want Claude to be whoever Claude wants to be. They’re just not sure they’re ready to share that with the world. Soon the entire family is keeping Claude’s secret. Until one day it explodes.” (source) Read more »

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Nonfiction Friday

June 26, 2020 Uncategorized 0

NonfictionFriday

Nonfiction Friday is a link-up where you can find all of the awesome nonfiction happenings of the week. Read more »

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