Two big thumbs up for Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes, translated by Edith Grossman. Literature.
I won’t lie: I probably would not have assayed a 940-page book at this point in my life had it not been a Christmas present from my boyfriend. He has excellent taste in books so my reaction was more an intrigued “hmm!” rather than a horrified “aaaagh!” – but it’s still a daunting prospect.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for The Space Merchants by Frederik Pohl and C. M. Kornbluth. Science fiction.
This one was in the top fifteen of a “Best Classic Science Fiction Novels” list I am working through (I need a project in my reading, or else I’ll be too scattered: as you may have noticed). I was sucked in from the first page and read happily all the way through, feeling undistracted by the other fine things in my “current reading” pile, which is a high compliment.… >> Read more
In keeping with the theme of tasty low-budget meals, this is something that I made last night that I think is worth sharing. It’s an adaptation of a sandwich recipe I found in Gourmet some years ago, but like all Gourmet recipes it had too many ingredients and was incredibly fussy. (Mix the tuna salad and the bean salad separately, when they have near-identical ingredients?… >> Read more
A somewhat tentative thumbs up for The How and Why Wonder Book of North American Indians by Felix Sutton. Children’s nonfiction.
Well, I didn’t know as much as I wanted to about the history of Native Americans, so a children’s book seemed the best way to dip into the subject. It’s an old book, but I can’t imagine there are really that many more modern interpretations of “…and then they were all dead.” Oy vey.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Napoleon’s Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History by Penny Le Couteur and Jay Burreson. Science/nature.
It showed up as five stars on the Goodreads feed of someone I know, and I had just happened, the day before, to see a copy lounging around at the bookstore where I work. I was in the mood for nonfiction, so it was a happy confluence of events.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner. Science/nature.
Okay, okay, pop statistics books are a weakness of mine. I admit it. But Freakonomics was just so dang much fun. And so was this one. Though it should all be taken with a grain of salt – it is statistics, right?… >> Read more
Thumbs up for After You With the Pistol by Kyril Bonfiglioli. Suspense.
As usual, I had no intention of starting a new book, since I was in the middle of several others; but I was out and about and finished browsing the bookstore my boyfriend and I were in before he did, so I picked a random, interesting-looking book off the display to examine while I waited.… >> Read more
Thumbs up for Double Negative by David Carkeet. Mystery.
I’d had this on my “to-find” list for a while because it was a mystery taking place among a group of linguists, and I love linguistics. It was not the best mystery I’ve ever read, but it was readable, well-characterized, moved along nicely, and had occasional flashes of great wit that made up for it being merely “readable.” Also, I couldn’t figure out who did it, and that’s always nice.… >> Read more