Alchemical Thoughts

Items about books I want to read, #21

Posted on: June 10, 2011

I keep finding more and more books that I want to read. So many books, so little time as the saying goes. Anyhow, I will keep making these lists to keep track of them. I have some faith I will get to some of these books eventually.

Items about books:

  • Guys Lit Wire look at Brian Azzarello’s Loveless: A Kin of Homecoming. The review seems a bit mixed, and sadly, it seems the series was canceled, but there is enough to warrant a look. They compare it to Deadwood. I thought it might sound a bit like The Outlaw Josey Wales.
  • Over at Blogging for a Good Book, something different and that not many people think about until it is too late. The book is Death for Beginners: Your No-nonsense, Money-saving guide to Planning for the Inevitable by Karen Jones. From the blog, “the purpose of this book is to get people to make these decisions, make plans, and communicate them to loved ones before they die. It mitigates the stress and indecision of survivors and ensures that your wishes are carried out.”
  • John Scalzi, on his blog Whatever, featured Ellen Kushner and the anthology she edited in his The Big Idea segment, Welcome to Bordertown: New Stories and Poems of the Borderlands.
  • Katherine Dacey, The Manga Critic, highlights Kaoru Mori’s The Bride’s Story, vol. 1. The art on this one looks really good.
  • Ms. Dacey also looks at Nao Yazawa’s  Moon and Blood, vol. 1. which she describes as ” a cheerful mish-mash of slapstick humor, romance, and light horror.”
  • Joshua Kim, at Inside Higher Ed, discusses Hardy Green’s book The Company Town: The Industrial Edens and Satanic Mills That Shaped the American Economy. I recently had a student ask me for some business titles to read over the summer. I managed to create a fairly good list, but I would have loved to add this one to that list of suggestions. In addition, I recently finished reading Greg Grandin’s Fordlandia: the Rise and Fall of Henry Ford’s Forgotten Jungle City. I am thinking that Green’s book may be of interest to readers who liked Grandin’s book. If you visit my GoodReads profile (linked on the right column of this blog), you can find my review of Grandin’s book.
  • Seattle Tammy, writing at Jesus’ General, discusses the book  A History of the End of the World: How the Most Controversial Book in the Bible Changed the Course of Western Civilization by Jonathan Kirsch. The book is a history and evaluation of the Book of Revelations. Given the recent flop that was the May 21st prediction of the Rapture, this book seems very relevant.
  • Library Juice Press has a new book out for library professionals. The book is Out Behind the Desk: Workplace Issues for LGBTQ Librarians. The book “is an anthology of personal accounts by librarians and library workers relating experiences of being gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, or queer at work.” I have been reading a few books on LGBTQ issues lately. It may be because I am trying to learn to be a better ally. Or maybe it is just the librarian in me seeking to learn more for myself and for others I may help down the road. Either way, more reading and learning can only be a good thing. And in the case of books in this category, well, I am finding some pretty good writing too.
  • The blog My Favourite Books highlighted a Warhammer 40,000 novel. I don’t get to see WH40K books reviewed very often, so this caught my attention. WH40K has become one of my recent leisure reading favorites, a great source for escapist fun, and very often, they do feature some pretty good writing. I am really enjoying my journeys to the 41st millennium. The book in question is Steven Lyons’ Dead Men Walking, which is part of the Imperial Guard series of novels. It caught my eye because the novel features the Death Korps of Kreig, an Imperial Guard regiment that was featured in one of the novels in The Ultramarines Omnibus that I am reading now. So, Lyons’ book gives me a chance to read more about the Death Korps.
  • Peter Bromberg mentions the book Workplace Learning and Leadership: a Handbook for Library and Nonprofit Trainers. On the one hand, I tend to be skeptical of yet another leadership book. I’ve read a few– some good, others not so much. However, I may need to read this mostly for keeping up with the profession purposes. Plus it does feature some of Librarian Blogsville big shots, so another reason to look it over.
  • Now this sounds a lot more along the lines of what I am interested in as a librarian. Via the Information Literacy Weblog, a recommendation for Reflective Teaching, Effective Learning: Instructional Literacy for Library Educators.
  • Bob Sutton highlights a little book entitled Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries. This is what Sutton says about the book: “About 11,000 business books a year are published. Most of them aren’t worth reading, either because you’ve heard it all before, they are badly written, not especially useful, and — perhaps the most common flaw — they are just no fun to read.  But, even though they are business books, there are always a few gems that you owe it to yourself to read.  Peter Sims Little Bets is one of those rarities.” Sutton pretty much reflects how I feel about business books overall.
  • In a way, I guess if I do not have anything better to do, I could read this book. Who knew there is a history of boredom? Well, Scott McLemee at Inside Higher Education reviews the book Boredom: A Lively History.
  • Jon Stewart, of The Daily Show, recently interviewed Bill Moyers, who was promoting his new book. Crooks and Liars has the links and some commentary on the interview, which I thought was excellent. Moyers and Stewart discussed the state of journalism today, if you can call the sap of infotainment pretending to be news journalism. We need people like Moyers to come back. The book in question is Bill Moyers Journal: The Conversation Continues.
  • The Manga Critic looks at Tenjo Tenge: Full Contact Edition, vol. 1, which she describes as not “much more complicated than ‘girls in skirts waving katanas.’” That sounds like some fun reading to me, if you like porn (or at least very scantily clad females) and ninjas, which I do.
  • Guys Lit Wire look at the book Fat Vampire by Adam Rex. The premise of the book sounds a bit ridiculous, and yet it also sounds like something that, hey, it could happen. After all, not all vampires have to be gorgeous, handsome, and suave, do they? As they describe it, this is the story of “the title character, doomed to remain a chubby fifteen-year-old for all time. He was trying to lose weight before he was attacked at his family’s cabin, but the curse of a vampire means that he will never change. Eternally hefty, eternally hungry for blood.”

Lists and bibliographies:

  • The complete list of winners for the 23rd Lambda Literary Awards (via Lambda Literary).
  • Finalists’ list for the first Science Fiction and Fantasy Translation Awards.  These awards “are for works of speculative fiction translated into English from other languages.”
  • Latter Day Bohemian posted the round up for months 6 and 7 of the 12 Books, 12 Months Book Challenge that I am participating in. Not as many things on this list I personally want to read, but some folks out there may find new things to read here. At this point, I am almost halfway through the challenge. Hoping to catch up since the challenge ends in September 2011.
  • Katherine Dacey with part 2 of a Classic Mangas links list. Looks like some stuff to seek out.
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