29 January 2005

Big Book Score

Well, I'm back from the book sale, have had some food and tea, hauled broken branches out of the garden, looked at stuff on eBay and am now ready to bask in the cool books I brought home. I didn't get to Staples (opting, instead, to buy groceries), but I'll go tomorrow when Sue and Selena go to take back their videos. Which is better, because now I can balance my chequebook and see how much (or rather, how little) I can actually spend on a scanner.

But anyway, the books. Here's what I got for donating to help fund diabetes research. First, the fiction:
  • A Scientific Romance by Ronald Wright. I've no idea if this author is any good, but the cover blurb mentioned H.G. Wells' time machine, Egyptology, Victorian machinery, time travel, and jazz, and made it sound really cool. I'll probably read this one very soon. I might even start it this evening.
  • The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King. A retired Sherlock Holmes meets his match in a modern young woman? Or something. I think I saw a mention of this somewhere recently, and thought it sounded interesting.
  • The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Stories by Robert Louis Stevenson. Here's something for the League of Extraordinary Reading. It's a Reader's Digest book (shudder) but the copyright page says it has the complete text of all the stories. Also, it's actually rather a handsome book, with pictures, and looks nothing like the usual RD edition. It just better have all the words.
  • The Picture of Dorian Grey by Oscar Wilde. I've been meaning to read more Wilde for ages. I've been meaning to read this particular book for ages. Now I can. I think it qualifies for the League of Extraordinary Reading (at least via the horrible LXG movie, if nothing else).
  • The Lady in the Loch by Elizabeth Ann Scarborough. Kinda funny I found this, considering the poetry I got (below). I've never read this author, but she uses Sir Walter Scott as a character, so it should be interesting, at least.
  • He Shall Thunder in the Sky by Elizabeth Peters. This is one of her "Amelia Peabody" mysteries. They're set in Victorian times and have lots of archeaology (Peters, aka Barbara Michaels, is an Egyptologist, or at least has a PhD in the field). I've only read one or two of them, and I really want to start at the beginning and read them in order. Now I have to find the earlier ones (back to the library, I suppose).
  • Gabriel Knight: The Beast Within by Jane Jensen. This is maybe kind of a silly one. It's based on a series of acclaimed adventure games (computer games, that is), created by Jensen. I wasn't going to get it, but I've had adventure games on the brain lately (trying to play all the ones I have before I get my new Mac). I thought it would be silly fun, and might even surprise me by being good. Plus, it has werewolves in. You may have realized by now that shapechangers are one of my minor obsessions. They keep showing up in my fiction.

Next, the poetry:
  • The Lady of the Lake by Sir Walter Scott. I should probably read more poetry. Actually, I should read more contemporary poetry, but old stuff is good, too. Plus, it's got fairies. Or a fairy. Maybe.

And finally, the non-fiction:
  • Eight Modern Essayists edited by William Smart. Short pieces by the likes of George Orwell, E.B. White, Virginia Woolf, and others. It includes Orwell's "Politics and the English Language," which I've been wanting to read again lately.
  • The Periodic Kingdom by P.W. Atkins. It's good to understand the periodic table of the elements, right? Actually, I was thinking of picking up one of those nice laminated tables they make for highschool and college kids, to put on my wall. (I really was, that's not a joke. I'm a geek, remember? A nerd.)
  • Armor by Sean Morrison. If you know me at all, you probably know that another of my minor obsessions is swords (and if you somehow managed to visit my house and not realize this, I seriously question your powers of observation). Swords and armour (or "armor" if you're American) go together.
  • In the Shadow of Man by Jane Goodall. Here's another of those "been meaning to read for ages books," along with Dian Fossey's Gorillas in the Mist and Birute Galdikas' orangutan book(s).
  • Science Under Siege by Michael Fumento. I'm a little dubious about this one--it's one of those "environmentalists are hugely overracting (or else part of a conspiracy)" books (or it sounds like it, anyway), plus the guy's other book is called The Myth of Heterosexual AIDS. But, I'll give it a fair read (carefully balanced by checking reviews and such in the science press). It should be thought-provoking at least (or maybe just provoking).

And, just so you don't wonder that I'm being buried in my wealth of books, but not actually reading them, I'll have a "recent reading" post soon. Just not yet. I need to bask some more.

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