Non-Fiction Readers : What Non-Fiction Are You Reading in April, 2018?

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Non-Fiction Readers : What Non-Fiction Are You Reading in April, 2018?

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Abr 1, 2018, 6:29 am

I raced through The King in the North by Max Adams, a study of 7th-century Northumbria drawn from historical documents, archaeology, place-names and landscape archaeology, but seasoned with a little speculation and inference. It explores how the contemporary ideas of “kingship” were informed by a tribal warrior society where the king’s duties were to garner plunder and tribute, and grant land to his entourage. There was no real idea of state institutions or legislative bodies, but a system where the land was worked by slaves and peasants for the benefit of local lords and the king. It was also an era where various sects of Christianity were vying with each other and with Paganism for power, and magic and miracles were their stock-in-trade, resulting in a brisk flip-flopping of kings and nobles among the various systems depending on which one they thought could give them luck in battle. Altogether a most interesting time.

Abr 1, 2018, 6:56 am

I'm reading Document and Eyewitness which is a wonderful history of Rough Trade Records, using oral history and documents. I am a transcriber and work for writers, esp music ones, a lot, and I WISH I had worked on this one. It's excellent.

Editado: Abr 6, 2018, 1:25 pm

I finished up The Longest Day, Cornelius Ryan's classic history of the Normandy Invasion. Lots of research, lots of interviews and very good writing. All in all quite fascinating.

Abr 6, 2018, 7:08 pm

Reading The Lost City of the Monkey God, which I haven't read before and am enjoying despite its tendency to wander and digress a bit. Started that one late in March, technically. Also rereading The Smartest Guys in the Room, because it's just such a weird and gripping story.

Abr 9, 2018, 12:01 pm

I finished Trumpocracy. The first part is mostly just a litany of news stories, but the back end is some good commentary and analysis.

Now reading Junk Raft, which is only part travelogue, mixed in with lots of general information about plastics, their history, environmental concerns, the politics, etc. etc.

Abr 10, 2018, 2:55 am

Yesterday I finished 401: The Extraordinary Story of the Man who Ran 401 Marathons in 401 Days and Changed His Life Forever because I ran with this guy and my running club is mentioned. It's a good read as well, though, about overcoming adversity and choosing to do what you love.

Abr 10, 2018, 5:19 am

Started Civilisations: How Do We Look / The Eye of Faith by Mary Beard. I hoped it would be an expansion of the TV programme but so far it seems exactly the same. Still worth a read, though.

Editado: Abr 10, 2018, 9:04 pm

I just finished Curve of time by Wylie. Blanchet, memoir of a women who explored the coastal waters of the Pacific Northwest with her several kids in a small boat.

Abr 11, 2018, 3:58 pm

I'm reading Automating Inequality which is quite fitting with a backdrop of Mark Zuckerberg's testimony before congress today. The book discusses the online tools being used to apply for and to manage public benefits, and how they are even more efficient at making life difficult for the poor.

Abr 14, 2018, 12:47 pm

I'm now reading, and very much enjoying, Speak to Me, Dance with Me, a memoir by famed dancer/choreographer Agnes de Mille.

Abr 18, 2018, 10:08 am

I finished The Sixth Extinction which was a very readable account of the history of man's understanding of paleontology and previous extinctions followed by the various threats precipitating the present glut of extinctions.

Abr 18, 2018, 12:13 pm

The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Adversity
Nadine Burke Harris
4/5 stars
Harris discusses the long term effects that physical and mental adversity have on all children, the ways to treat it and her advocacy in promoting it and encouraging all physicians to screen for it in all of their young patients by using the ACE test (My Adverse Childhood Experience). I was surprised to read that childhood adversity actually changes a person’s DNA possibly leading to “disease and early death”. Harris does a great job explaining the process without too much technical jargon.

Editado: Abr 24, 2018, 4:21 pm

The Birth of the Pill: How Four Crusaders Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution
by Jonathon Eig
5/5 stars
A reading group had picked this book for discussion and though I did not know very much about the history of the pill, it looked interesting and I love a good non-fiction book. Well, I was blown away at how well written and interesting this book was. The story revolves around the four main players in the development of the birth control pill. First, we have Margaret Sanger, well known women’s activist who opened the first birth control clinic and who brought in Katharine McCormick whose husband was the son of the founder of International Harvester and had deep pockets to fund the research. Gregory Pincus was the third player and was approached by the two women because as a scientist, he had experience in in vitro fertilization. Then there was the charismatic John Rock, physician and Catholic who was recruited to investigate the use of progesterone in developing a pill that could prevent ovulation. Between the four of them, the birth control pill eventually became a reality. Highly recommended!

Abr 28, 2018, 12:01 pm

With a TBR pile in the low thousands, I rarely re-read a book. Am finishing How Doctors Think a second time. Excellent.

Maio 1, 2018, 3:21 pm

>15 JulieLill: The author of The Birth of the Pill is on CSpan talking about his book. Highly recommended.

Maio 2, 2018, 3:10 am

Reading Testament of a Generation: the journalism of Vera Brittain and Winifred Holtby. I've enjoyed Holtby's fiction and Brittain's other "Testament" works so hoping for good things from this.

Maio 2, 2018, 3:21 pm

I'm reading Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, which is part memoir and part science.

Maio 2, 2018, 7:33 pm

Reading A River in Darkness: One Man's Escape From North Korea. I've read a handful of nonfiction accounts of life in and escapes from North Korea. This one is slow-going for me.

Maio 4, 2018, 3:01 pm

I finished the LTER, Dinner in Camelot. It was an intriguing, well researched, and thorough description of a dinner given by Kennedy for Nobel prize winners and other intelligencia. Attitudes expressed often seemed naive although that did represent the times and in summarizing the dinner's impact, the author did put things into better perspective. My primary complaint was too much repetition. I also found the descriptions of room decor uninteresting.

Maio 16, 2018, 8:34 pm

Started the delightful That's Not English: Britishisms, Americanisms and What Our English Says About Us by Erin Moore. As someone who was an English major, loves all things British and whose fave vacation spot is London, this is an informative, funny and enjoyable read into the differences in the language our two cultures share with interesting anecdotes and historical elements incorporated throughout.

Maio 17, 2018, 11:40 pm

UTDSC was one of my fav reads in HS and was certainly an influence in my career (Didn't realize until a few years ago that the author Bel Kaufman was the grand daughter of Sholem Aleichem)

I remember loving JL Seagull when it first came out (about the same time I was listening to Rod McKuen and reading Gilbran), then read a send off in college, something called 'Ludwig von vulture' which totally broke the spell.

Never read SAtanic Verses, should some day.