Tag: reading

Monday Musings

February 6, 2012 Monday Musings 2

After some debate, I decided to make Monday Musings a separate post from my book review, so please let me know if you love the decision or if it drives you crazy ūüôā ¬†Today’s question is:¬†Did you do any reading in lieu of watching the football game, yesterday, or were you foregoing reading to watch the game?¬†If you read a book (or books) what did you choose?

I’m sure if the boy had still been here, we would have watched the game together. ¬†Unfortunately, he was on a plane home and I was reading instead of watching the game. ¬†Also unfortunately, watching the game instead wouldn’t have been “giving up” reading, as I was reading some papers for class. ¬†I wasn’t lying when I said things have gotten hectic here, as lab work is much more time-consuming than the computational work I’ve been doing and I started two new classes this week! ¬†As I adjust to the new schedule, I’m hoping to work reading back in ūüôā ¬†What were you doing on superbowl sunday? ¬†Feel free to leave your answer in the comments or at our lovely host Should Be Reading’s original blog post.


A Preview

January 30, 2012 Monday Musings 1

This morning, I finished the last book from the Percy Jackson series, and I must say, I loved the ending! ¬†Although I expected a twist, I wasn’t able to anticipate what actually happened, which was nice. ¬† As Jen at The Introverted Reader pointed out, character development was a strong point of these books and it was a lot of fun to see where everyone ended up. ¬†So, having finished the series, I would still highly recommend them ūüôā

Looking forward, I’ve gotten my next few books for reading through the Dewey Decimal system from the library and I’m pretty excited about them! ¬†I’ve also decided to participate in my first meme, Musing Mondays, where book bloggers ponder thoughtful questions from¬†Should Be Reading, the meme’s host. ¬†Today’s question is: How far along are you in your current read before you start thinking about what you‚Äôll read next? ¬†As you can see from this post, I usually know what I’m reading pretty far in advance, just because I can’t help picking up large stacks of books every time I go to the library. ¬†Fortunately, I don’t usually bring a tote bag, so I’m limited by the number I can carry! ¬†But I typically still pick out my next fiction series and a chunk of non-fiction on the same or similar topics to read next. ¬†So, without further ado, the next few books in my Dewey Decimal Challenge:

638¬†– A Spring Without Bees¬†– According to wikipedia, a section on “insect culture”, which at my library meant a section on bees. ¬†Since I don’t think I’m up to the challenge of raising my own bees, I chose this environmental novel¬†over a how-to book. ¬†It seems a little over-dramatic but also gives an interesting view of the ways our food industry depends on bees.

639¬† – This section was something of a hodge-podge, with books on owning a variety of non-mammalian pets to books on conservation and home gardening. ¬†I was tempted to get one of the books on pets, since I’ve always liked animals, but I’m pretty sure if I did I’d be tempted to get a fish, turtle, or bearded dragon – for science. ¬†So to avoid the temptation, I instead picked up two books about environmental activists:¬†Nature’s Second Chance: Restoring the Ecology of Stone Prairie Farm¬†and The Eye of the Elephant: An Epic Adventure in the African Wilderness. ¬†The subtitles summarize them pretty well ūüôā ¬†And finally, I picked up a book called Welcoming Wildlife To the Garden: Creating Backyard and Balcony Habitats for Wildlife. ¬†Although I don’t have a backyard, the section on tips for attracting wildlife to a balcony sold me on this one. ¬†I’m sure my cat and I would both love to watch birds and butterflies if I can make a suitable habitat on my balcony.

So here’s to a week of good reading! ¬†Feel free to post your own thoughts on the Monday Musings question in the comments or on your own blog.


Bookends: Percy Jackson and More Percy Jackson

January 28, 2012 Fiction 11

In what is definitely the sign of a good series, I have spent the week diving into one Percy Jackson book after another. ¬†I’m currently in the middle of the fourth book in the series,¬†The Battle of the Labyrinth, and am already looking for another YA series to fill the void in my life that will be left when I finish the fifth and last book! ¬†Suggestions are welcome ūüôā ¬†Wonderfully, I haven’t noted a decline in quality of the books as the series has progressed and I’ve found the feel of the books to be mostly the same as the first one, so I won’t be doing complete reviews for each but would happily give the whole series 4 stars and highly recommend them!


“Rockin’ the Wedge” – The Cheese Book

January 25, 2012 non-fiction 5

As I discovered during my last library visit, number 637 in the Dewey Decimal System is devoted exclusively to cheesemaking! ¬†I was¬†intrigued, so I picked up a very elegant-looking book called The Joy of Cheesemaking: The Ultimate Guide to Understanding, Making, and Eating Fine Cheese. ¬†The first aspect of the book I really enjoyed was the elegant, sophisticated feeling it imparted, with both the cover and its description of “classic” cheeses I’d never even heard of. ¬†The next thing I wanted to know, as I read impatiently through the introduction, was whether or not I could¬†reasonably¬†expect to make my own cheese. ¬†Given enough money to spend on it, with this book I’d say the answer is yes. Read more »


Bookends And Finally Some Fiction!

January 22, 2012 Fiction, non-fiction 10

So far, I’m really enjoying all the non-fiction reading I’m doing. ¬†At the same time, there are so many good YA fiction blogs that I’ve begun to crave some fiction myself! ¬†Which is why I decided to put off my Bookends post until today so yesterday I could finish reading the first Percy Jackson book, ¬†The Lightning Thief. ¬† I also finally got to reading my extra book from the 004’s, so that will be the other book I review today. Read more »


My Kind of Cat

January 18, 2012 Biography, non-fiction 7

As soon as I finished reading Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World, I immediately jumped into the sequel (a good sign, I think!). ¬†And in the introduction I came across the following quote, which really represented the first book to me: “People appreciate Spencer, Iowa. ¬†They like our cornfields and architecture and they also like what we represent: simplicity, old-fashioned hard work, but also creativity, commitment, and love.” Read more »


Of Cats and Cheese

January 16, 2012 Uncategorized 2

I have a confession. ¬†In the two months since adopting my cat Maggie (shown “helping” me put away clothes on the right), I have in many ways become, if not a crazy cat lady, at least a little obsessed with my cat. ¬†This includes things like talking to her when I get home and taking many pictures of her, although I do my best not to be the person who uses facebook solely to share pet or baby pictures ūüôā ¬†And this week, my library books reflect that too! ¬†I was wandering through the rows of non-fiction, feeling slightly overwhelmed by the sudden explosion in choices for my next book. ¬†It’s simply amazing how many books even a small library like mine has in some of the sections, like history and politics. I think at a bigger library trying to pick just one might actually be too overwhelming and less fun!

Fortunately, I spotted a book I’d read about and wanted to read, called¬†Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World¬†in section 636, pets. ¬†Since I’ve decided to read books in clumps, I began exploring the surrounding books and before getting out of the 636’s I’d managed to pick up 5 or 6 books with titles like¬†The Cat Whisperer: The Secret of How to Talk to Your Cat¬†and¬†Totally Fun Things to Do With Your Cat¬†(complete with cartoon illustrations!). ¬† I kid you not. ¬†But they promise answers to questions like why my cat attacks my ankles and whether or not it’s really ok that she ate half my sugar cookie the other day, which is enough to draw me in.

I also explored the section before (gardening) and the section after where I discovered that the entire number 637 was devoted to cheese making. ¬†Again, not kidding – you just can’t make this stuff up! ¬†So, of course, I had to check one of these out and ended up taking home¬†The Joy of Cheesemaking: The Ultimate Guide to Understanding, Making and Eating Fine Cheese. ¬†I’ll let you know if it turns me into a cheese¬†connoisseur¬†and/or causes me to spend¬†exorbitant¬†amounts of money on tasty cheese!


Bookends – Flyte and Malcolm Gladwell

January 14, 2012 non-fiction 1

Non-Project Non-Fiction

My on-the-side non-fiction reading this week included two books by Malcolm Gladwell, Blink¬†and The Tipping Point. ¬†Blink¬†was well-written and accessible. ¬†The author shares many engaging anecdotes to facilitate his discussion of when our split-second decisions serve us well and when they go wrong. ¬†It’s not the most scientific book I’ve read (with less transparent support for the points the author makes than Click, for example) but does cite many scientific studies for those who care to delve more deeply into any specific claim. Read more »


“Unexpected Insights for Business and Life”

January 10, 2012 non-fiction 1

ClickClasses started today and neither of my classes seem too difficult. ¬†Hopefully this means good things for my ability to continue blogging throughout the semester! ¬†This evening I had time finish Click, my 006 book, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. ¬†Like the author, I have to admit that I love data. ¬†And this book describes a data-miner’s dream. ¬†The author has information about the searches made and websites visited by 10 million users (!) and has demographic information for about a quarter of them. Read more »


Bookends for Bloggers

January 7, 2012 non-fiction 2

This week visiting the boy was awesome, with lots of time off together and one of our best dates ever at the revolving Sundial restaurant at the top of the Westin in Atlanta (so awesome!). ¬†Unfortunately, the boy also had a lot of work to do. ¬†Fortunately, this left me lots of time to work on my blog and read some 006 books on blogging, which I’ll be reviewing here ūüôā Read more »