Book Reports

A book I reviewed.

This page is all about books. Since I’ve been reading a lot more (especially novels, which I used to completely avoid, due to having read too many of my mother’s romance novels as a bored teen/young adult) in the past few years, I decided to write little reviews, or more like, my impressions of books I read. I add links to Amazon to buy them, but if you are not a fan, they sell most of them elsewhere.

Recently, I started giving them star ratings, with 5 start being the best. I wish the stars showed up on this page in all browsers, but, you take what you can get with free widgets.

You’ll notice that I tend to not read books I don’t have a chance of liking

Suggestions for new books are welcome!

Book Report: Piglet

My new blogging strategy does include continuing with book reports. They are among the least-read posts, but the people who do read them seem to enjoy them, and I like having a record of what I read over the past few years. So, let’s go! My friend Johanna recommended the book Piglet: The Unexpected Story … Continue reading “Book Report: Piglet”

Book Report: Phosphorescence

My husband, Lee, heard some people talking about this book on one of his podcasts, so he ordered it for me as a Christmas present. He said it just sounded like something I’d enjoy, and he was right! I’m so glad to have come across Phosphorescence: A Memoir of Finding Joy When Your World Goes … Continue reading “Book Report: Phosphorescence”

Book Report: Oh, William!

Another Elizabeth Strout book is now under my belt. I started it a while ago, then a few other things pushed their way into the queue. I was also savoring it. I do love to read the words of the fictional Lucy Barton, and that’s what all of Oh, William! is. Elizabeth Strout could make … Continue reading “Book Report: Oh, William!”

Book Report: Atlas of the Heart

Here’s the review of Atlas of the Heart: Mapping Meaningful Connection and the Language of Human Experience, by Brené Brown (2021) that I promised recently. I think I am growing tired of self-help books or something, because this one didn’t impress me as much as some others I’ve read. There were good parts to this … Continue reading “Book Report: Atlas of the Heart”

Book Report: Fuzz

After the last book I read, I needed something a little more light-hearted to entertain me. I’d been hearing good things about Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law, by Mary Roach, so I chose it from the “Books to Read” stack in my office. At least I knew I’d enjoy holding it, because the fake … Continue reading “Book Report: Fuzz”

Book Report: Coffeeland

I managed to get through this very dense book by taking breaks for light-hearted magazine reading every couple of days. Coffeeland: One Man’s Dark Empire and the Making of Our Favorite Drug, by Augustine Sedgewick (1920-21). It’s the second of the books I decided to read after they were referred to in This Is Your … Continue reading “Book Report: Coffeeland”

Book Report: Olive Again

I didn’t think I’d love the writing in a book as much as I loved Olive Kitteridge, but here I am, prepared to gush over Olive Again, by Elizabeth Strout, the woman of the bestest words ever. I keep reading paragraphs over and over, just marveling at how Strout manages to capture the inner lives … Continue reading “Book Report: Olive Again”

Book Report: Olive Kitteridge

A friend recommended I read the books by Elizabeth Strout on Olive Kitteridge, because I said I was interested in good character development. I ordered them, and just finished Olive Kitteridge. It’s a quiet masterpiece. The book is a series of short stories, sort of, though the same people in a small Maine town appear … Continue reading “Book Report: Olive Kitteridge”

Book Report: The Four Winds

Finally, I was able to read a neighborhood book club book again. The Four Winds, by Kristin Hannah (2021) is set in the 1930s, during the Great Depression and the horrible Dust Bowl times in Texas, Oklahoma, and surrounding states. It’s definitely not a feel-good beach read, though there is plenty of goodness in it. … Continue reading “Book Report: The Four Winds”

Book Report: Brood

It’s rained nearly all day again today. The younger folks saw it was going to rain yesterday and took off for the beach, leaving us hermits to fend for ourselves. Lee was handed a bunch of paperwork before Kathleen left, so he had a project. All my original plans for the weekend were outdoor ones, … Continue reading “Book Report: Brood”

Book Report: Greenlights

Did you think I wasn’t reading anymore? Not the case; I’m reading a long-ass book about working equitation and a book in my color series, on green. But, this green-themed book showed up yesterday, so I diverted to read it on a very rare rainy July day. I didn’t jump to read Greenlights, by Matthew … Continue reading “Book Report: Greenlights”

Book Report: Inclusion

I just finished Inclusion: Diversity, the New Workplace and the Will to Change, a 2016 book by Jennifer Brown of JBC (Jennifer Brown Consulting). I had a kind of odd experience reading it. I’d be all interested in a part, then it would feel repetitious and I’d zone out. That’s unusual for me. There is … Continue reading “Book Report: Inclusion”

The Unpopular Kid at School

That’s who I feel like this morning. We invited a lot of people to join a book club on unconscious bias at work. There are two meetings, one early and one at mid day, so people in different time zones can attend. There were at least ten people who accepted, were tentative, or hoped to … Continue reading “The Unpopular Kid at School”

Book Report: Everyday Bias

Did you think I was finished with unconscious bias books? You’d be almost right. I just have this one more book to talk about before I move on to books about diversity and inclusion. Totally different, yep. This one’s really good, though, even though it talks about many of the same topics as the previous … Continue reading “Book Report: Everyday Bias”

Book Report: Blind Spot

Hooray, it’s time for another in my series of reviews of books on unconscious bias. I had to give this one five stars, because I learned so dang much from Blind Spot: Hidden Biases of Good People, by the thoughtful, introspective, and extra-scientific duo Mahzarin R. Banaji and Anthony G. Greenwald (Tony) (2013). I’m not … Continue reading “Book Report: Blind Spot”

Book Report: Biased

It’s time for another in my series of book reports on unconscious bias. This one’s a little different from the previous ones, because it covers mostly just one racial bias, the one against Black people, particularly in the USA. Biased: Uncovering the Hidden Prejudice That Shapes What We See, Think, and Do, was written by … Continue reading “Book Report: Biased”

Book Report: Women Talking

Wow. There are so many things to say about this book that I’ll never get them all said! After I read All My Puny Sorrows, I wanted to read more from Miriam Toews, and selected this one, Women Talking, after reading the intriguing reviews. I said All My Puny Sorrows was a jewel of a … Continue reading “Book Report: Women Talking”

Book Report: Augie and Me

I usually don’t do two of these per day, but I’ll be really busy at work next week, so let’s take advantage of the weekend! I spent most of yesterday reading this charming book. Augie & Me: Three Wonder Stories, by R.J. Palacio, is a companion to the beautiful young adult novel, Wonder, that I … Continue reading “Book Report: Augie and Me”

Book Report: Sway

When you’ve got to stay in side and try to keep warm, you can read! Yesterday, I finished Sway: Unravelling Unconscious Bias, by Pragya Agarwal. It’s another big ole book with an academic focus, but I learned a lot about all kinds of bias and how it’s formed. The author shared some helpful personal stories … Continue reading “Book Report: Sway”

Late to the BuJo Party

Let’s see if I can get anything written today. I’ve been having technology issues, annoying bill-paying issues, and trouble doing what I set out to do today. Cows are mooing their asses off outside, too. So, I’m hoping a pleasant blogging break will help get me back on track to do some proofreading. Meanwhile, as … Continue reading “Late to the BuJo Party”

Book Report: A Promised Land

If you finish a 700-page book and are still happy with it, you know it was a darned good book. And yes, A Promised Land, by Pres. Barack Obama, was a really fascinating book. That’s saying a lot, because I have mostly been bored to tears by books about presidential politics, international relations, and recent … Continue reading “Book Report: A Promised Land”

Book Report: Fantastic Fungi

Yes, another book report. That’s what happens when you take time off from your usual busy-ness-hood. Today’s book is another really special one that I bought after the Master Naturalist meeting. Fantastic Fungi is a companion to a film I need to see. The book is edited by Paul Stamets, an expert on mushrooms, who … Continue reading “Book Report: Fantastic Fungi”

I’m Becoming Irritating

Maybe it’s irritating; maybe it’s righteously indignant; maybe it’s newly awakened evangelism. Whatever it is, I can’t stop talking to all my friends about the Caste book I just read. I keep retelling the parts about the lynching postcards, Hitler’s use of the US as a model in how to de-humanize Jews, and the clear … Continue reading “I’m Becoming Irritating”

Book Report: The Overstory

If you know me or have read this blog a few times, you won’t be surprised to learn this, but I’ve always been a tree hugger, and I mean always. My poor mother (happy birthday wherever your spirit is) used to find me as a toddler wandering around the yard talking to the huge oak … Continue reading “Book Report: The Overstory”

Book Review: Liberty

No, this isn’t a book about the second amendment to the US Constitution; it’s a book about Liberty DeVitto. Who’s that? He was Billy Joel’s drummer for the longest time (Billy Joel lyric humor, there). I always really admired the drumming in Billy Joel’s band, because there were always so many creative percussion techniques, but … Continue reading “Book Review: Liberty”

Book Report: Wonder

Even though practically no one reads my book reviews, I have another one already. That’s what you get when you pick up a Young Adult selection; they go fast. Oddly enough, I am not sure where this book came from. Maybe someone loaned it to me? Maybe I bought it that last, wonderful time I … Continue reading “Book Report: Wonder”

Does Anyone Read Magazines?

The answer is yes, Suna loves magazines. The view from either side of “my” chair at the ranch house will tell you so. I’m worried that they will all go away, though. They get thinner and thinner. Then they go quarterly. Then they’re only online (bye Newsweek). Sometimes I feel like I’m keeping the entire … Continue reading “Does Anyone Read Magazines?”

What Are Your Core Values?

You just get to pick TWO! I’ve been reading Dare to Lead, a book by my favorite self-help author, Brené Brown (it’s the book I reviewed the horrible workbook for back in March). It was my suggestion for our work book club at Planview. What’s annoying is that I keep leaving the book in Austin, … Continue reading “What Are Your Core Values?”

Quick Enneagram Update

As I talked about recently, I have been looking into the Enneagram to see what insights it could give me into how I could function better as a person and interact with others. Two of the types came close to describing me, 2 (helper) and 9 (peacemaker). I eventually decided I was a 9 after … Continue reading “Quick Enneagram Update”

Book Report: Bunny Bunny

This book is a follow-up to the memoir of Alan Zweibel that I posted last week. In that book, Zweibel talked about a little book he wrote about his late best friend, Gilda Radner, who died of ovarian cancer at a very young age. He said the whole book was dialog that just came to … Continue reading “Book Report: Bunny Bunny”

Book Report: Laugh Lines

Believe it or not, I don’t spend all my time getting pissy about people’s online behavior. I actually spent much of this weekend laughing aloud, because I read the new memoir, Laugh Lines: My Life Helping Funny People Be Funnier, by the great Alan Zweibel. Who? I didn’t realize I was such a comedy nerd … Continue reading “Book Report: Laugh Lines”

Book Report: A Hundred Suns

I gobbled up this novel, which I found via my usual method of discovering books, an interview on NPR (National Public Radio in the US). I figure anything Scott Simon likes, I’ll like. I encourage you to read or listen to the interview about A Hundred Suns, with the author, Karin Tanabe. Tanabe is known … Continue reading “Book Report: A Hundred Suns”

Book Report: Behave!

It feels like it took me forever to read the 2017 best-selling nonfiction book, Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst, by Robert M. Sapolsky. It’s not that I didn’t find the book absolutely fascinating, because I sure did! It’s just those sneaky book club books and the book about restoring old … Continue reading “Book Report: Behave!”

Book Report: Furious Hours

Oh, hooray! I finally finished a book! I’ve been reading some long ones lately, and it hasn’t helped that I have all those other activities and distractions going on. Speaking of distractions, Cathy J. gave me some fascinating used books and magazines passed along by her daughter. When I sent this photo on to Anita, … Continue reading “Book Report: Furious Hours”

Book Report: Ragtime

Proud of myself, I am, for finishing the latest book in the neighborhood book club series, especially since this is not something I would have picked out for myself. But, the assignment was Ragtime, by E.L. Doctorow, so I read it! As someone interested in history, I did enjoy all the historical references and real … Continue reading “Book Report: Ragtime”

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