01 October 2011

My Week in Books (25 Sep to 01 Oct 2011)

Since I don't really get that many books in the mail these days, but I have started going to the library again, I thought I'd turn "Monday Mailbox" into "My Week in Books" and put it at the end of the week instead of the beginning. I'll post the books that came into my house, via purchase, library, or friends, and I'll write a few lines about whatever I've recently read.

Note: My Amazon Associates doohickey doesn't seem to be functional right now, so I'll add links and pictures later on, assuming it ever starts working again.

Arriving Via Mail
I did get one book in the mail this week, from a fellow BookMoocher in Ontario. Of course, I have now used up all but 0.8 of my points, and my budget's still a little tight for mailing books out (if you're not in Canada, you would be shocked and appalled at the cost for mailing books within the country), so I'll have to wait a while before I can mooch any more.

  • Little (Grrl) Lost by Charles deLint (fiction)
    There was a time when I would run out and buy every new CdL book as soon as it came out in hardcover (of for the days of nothing but books to spend my money on), but over the years I've been a little less excited at each new release. I do still enjoy his books a great deal, just not as rabidly as I once did. Anyway, this one I hadn't picked up yet, and I got a very nice hardcover for my mooch point.

From the Library
I hadn't been to the library in some time, as I had a fine. My fine turned out to be a whopping fifty cents. Heh. So I paid it, and now I'm going to the library again. This trip, I ventured more deeply into the newly re-arranged kids' section. I was disappointed by the selection of graphic novels, but the YA book section turned out to be pretty good. So all the fiction this time is from the YA section. But I did bring home a few non-fiction, too. Also, I was disappointed to see the shelf of for-sale discards was gone. Maybe they'll do a once-a-year sale instead?

  • The Fossil Cliffs of Joggins by Laing Ferguson (non-fiction)
  • Common Wild Flowers & Plants of Nova Scotia by Diane Larue (non-fiction)
  • The Man Who Found the Missing Link: Eugene Dubois and His Lifelong Quest to Prove Darwin Right by Pat Shipman (non-fiction)
  • The Time Travelers by Linda Buckley-Archer (fiction)
  • Plain Kate by Erin Bow (fiction)
  • Zombies vs Unicorns edited by Holly Black (fiction)
  • The Search for the Red Dragon by James A. Owen (fiction)
  • The Alchemyst by Michael Scott (fiction)

Currently Reading
I actually have quite a list of in-progress books, many of which are non-fiction of the dense and scholarly type that I tend to set aside for long periods at time, or else read in frequent, short chunks. Every now and then, though, I find one so well written I speed through it like it was a novel. I love those ones.

  • Common Wild Flowers & Plants of Nova Scotia by Diane Larue (non-fiction)
  • Meanwhile, In Another Part of the Forest edited by Alberto Manguel (fiction)
  • Song of Innocence and of Experience by William Blake (facsimile edition; poetry)
  • The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin (non-fiction)
  • Into the Mummy's Tomb edited by John Richard Stephens (fiction and non-fiction)
  • Servants of Nature by Lewis Pyenson and Susan Sheets-Pyenson (non-fiction)
  • Artists on Comic Art by Mark Salisbury (non-fiction)
  • Illustrators of the Eighteen-Sixties by Forrest Reid (non-fiction)
  • Written in Bones edited by Paul Bahn (non-fiction)
  • Mechanics of Wonder: The Creation of the Idea of Science Fiction by Gary Westfahl (non-fiction)
  • Dinosaurs of the Air: The Evolution and Loss of Flight in Dinosaurs and Birds by Gregory S. Paul (non-fiction)
  • Only Connect: Readings on Children's Literature (3rd Edition) edited by Sheila A. Egoff (non-fiction)
  • Black Water 2: More Tales of the Fantastic edited by Alberto Manguel (fiction)
Yes, that is a lot of books. But this is the time of year I look with dismay on all the books I started and set aside for one reason or another, and start making an effort to finish them before the year is over. I don't usually manage to get them all back onto their proper shelves by the new year, but I generally get through quite a few of them.

Recently Finished Reading
  • The Alchemyst by Michael Scott (fiction)
    If you saw my Twitter/Facebook rant yesterday, you might be expecting me to say some not very nice things about this book. But aside from having the characters' archaeologist parents discover some decidedly palaeontological fossils (if you don't know why this is annoying, I shall just point out that archaeologists study past humans. It's palaeontologists who study other--often much more ancient--fossil life), and a few other details that jarred me out of the story (really, I don't think anyone still used Altavista even in 2007 when the book was first published), it was actually quite good. Good enough, anyway, that I'll see if the library has the next one in the series. Also, though this is the first fiction I've read my Mr Scott, I have read some of his work on Celtic myth.
  • The Fossil Cliffs of Joggins by Laing Ferguson (non-fiction)
    We were supposed to go to Joggins and Parrsboro for my birthday, but between car trouble and a very lean summer, it never quite happened. As soon as the weather gets better in the spring, though, I am determined to go fossil-hunting. In the meantime, this little booklet about the cliffs was a good bite-sized introduction to the geology of the area. I'll see if there's a new version out when I finally get the the Fundy Geological Museum.
  • The Secret Supper by Javier Sierra (fiction)
    This was a pretty good book, though definitely not a quick read. It reminded me a lot of The Name of the Rose, though not quite as dense. Monks, art, secret heretical religions, codes. Leonardo da Vinci.

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