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1491: New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
4.01
it was amazing
This book is a fascinating window into the cultures of the Americas before the arrival of Columbus. Author Charles Mann, an award-winning writer for S ...more
not set
Sep 18, 2008
 
The Wikipedia Revolution: How a Bunch of Nobodies Created the World's Greatest Encyclopedia
3.75
liked it
Andrew Lih writes for the non-techie, giving a clear overview of how Wikipedia works and how it got started. If you want to focus on the mechanics of ...more
Jun 09, 2009
May 12, 2009
 
A Perfect Red
3.87
it was amazing
SHORT REVIEW:
In medieval Europe, red textiles were available only to royalty because there was no reliable source of red dye. All of this changed whe
...more
not set
Oct 17, 2008
 
Cure Unknown: Inside the Lyme Epidemic
4.25
really liked it
Fascinating and disturbing true story of a controversial medical epidemic. The author is a science reporter (now editor of "Discover" magazine) whose ...more
not set
Dec 26, 2012
 
Touching My Father's Soul: A Sherpa's Journey to the Top of Everest
3.93
it was amazing
Norgay was a lead climber in the successful IMAX expedition that rescued several inexperienced climbers from Mt. Everest during the fateful 1996 climb ...more
not set
Sep 18, 2008
 
West of the Revolution: An Uncommon History of 1776
3.63
it was amazing
My favorite kind of history - showing the history you thought you knew (America in 1776) from a fresh angle, and told as an interesting story. Covers ...more
not set
Oct 25, 2014
 
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World
4.01
it was amazing

I’m embarrassed to say that before reading this book I had only a fuzzy image of Genghis Khan as a ruthless warrior from somewhere in the east who rul
...more
not set
Oct 17, 2008
 
Stones Into Schools: Promoting Peace With Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan
3.86
really liked it
Read it! Inspirational true account of Mortenson's work building schools for girls in remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan. This is a follow up bo ...more
Feb 2010
Feb 04, 2010
 
Astoria: John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson's Lost Pacific Empire: A Story of Wealth, Ambition, and Survival
3.97
really liked it
Taking place several years after the more famous Lewis and Clark Expedition, the Astor Expedition was every bit as grueling and ambitious. Although As ...more
not set
Sep 21, 2014
 
The Lost World of the Old Ones: Discoveries in the Ancient Southwest
4.16
it was ok
The topic (ancient cultures in the American southwest)of this book definitely piqued my interest. And I generally like accounts of outdoor adventure. ...more
not set
Sep 22, 2015
 
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life
4.03
liked it
A good way to motivate yourself to try to eat locally. I like Kingsolver's writing. However, although I agree with her basic outlook, sometimes the to ...more
not set
Jun 21, 2009
 
The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dust Bowl
4.04
really liked it
Interesting and very readable narrative history of the Dust Bowl and how it was largely a man-made disaster. Many profiles, based on primary sources, ...more
not set
Mar 29, 2009
 
Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption
4.58
it was amazing
I highly recommend this book. It's part memoir and part accounts of different legal cases, all of prisoners on death row who were wrongly convicted. T ...more
not set
Feb 26, 2017
 
Eat, Pray, Love
3.50
it was ok
This book is easy to make fun of (very self-absorbed, and while the author is going through a break-up, it's hard to see it as tragic - there are no k ...more
not set
Jun 21, 2009
 
Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace ... One School at a Time
3.64
liked it
OK, I'll admit I picked up this book because "everyone's reading it."
It was featured in The Seattle Public Library's "September Project" and the autho
...more
not set
Sep 18, 2008
 
The Black Death: A Personal History
3.43
it was ok
I was intrigued by the concept of this book - combining fiction and nonfiction to create a "personal" portrait of a small 14th century English village ...more
Dec 20, 2008
Dec 20, 2008
 
In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex
4.16
it was amazing
Nathaniel Philbrick is my favorite nonfiction history writer. He is "academic" but in a very accessible, not dry, way. He manages to look at history t ...more
not set
Sep 29, 2008
 
Ivory Vikings: The Mystery of the Most Famous Chessmen in the World and the Woman Who Made Them
3.63
really liked it
So interesting, and well-written!! All about the flow of peoples and cultures via the "sea roads" that connected present-day Scandinavia and Great Bri ...more
not set
Feb 11, 2016
 
A Voyage Long and Strange: Rediscovering the New World
3.93
it was amazing
Many accounts of U.S. history start with the landing of English colonists in Jamestown in the early 1600s. Horwitz unearths the stories of America’s v ...more
Sep 23, 2009
Jun 21, 2009
 
Cahokia: Ancient America's Great City on the Mississippi (Penguin's Library of American Indian History)
3.53
it was ok
The topic is very interesting, but unfortunately the writing style is quite dry - not much sense of narrative. I ended up skimming it after the first ...more
not set
Jun 28, 2015
 
The Inventor and the Tycoon: A Gilded Age Murder and the Birth of Moving Pictures
3.19
it was amazing
If you like Simon Winchester (The Professor and the Madman) or Erik Larson (The Devil in the White City). Really interesting history set in California ...more
Mar 24, 2016
Feb 16, 2014
 
Can't We Talk about Something More Pleasant?
4.09
really liked it
Laugh-out-loud funny (and heartbreaking)account of the author's aging Jewish parents in NYC.
not set
May 14, 2015
 
Betrayal: The Crisis in the Catholic Church
4.04
really liked it
I normally wouldn't have picked up this book to read, but my friend Michael is a reporter at the Boston Globe and contributed to this book. It's an in ...more
Jul 20, 2009
Jun 21, 2009
 
The Lost Empire of Atlantis: History's Greatest Mystery Revealed
3.59
it was ok
Interesting but completely speculative.
not set
Jun 06, 2012
 
1776
4.06
liked it
Character-driven. Stories.
not set
Jul 25, 2012
 
Galileo's Daughter: A Historical Memoir of Science, Faith and Love
3.74
it was amazing
Galileo’s daughter Virginia – who took the name Maria Celeste – spent her teen and adult years at the Convent of San Matteo. She was close to her fath ...more
not set
Sep 18, 2008
 
Miracle in the Andes
4.21
really liked it
Parrado was a young man in 1972 when the plane carrying his rugby team crashed high in the Andes Mountains. Pears Paul Read chronicled the ordeal in h ...more
not set
Sep 18, 2008
 
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America
3.98
really liked it
A fascinating exploration of the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. The author tells the parallel stories of 2 very different men whose lives were connected t ...more
not set
Sep 18, 2008
 
The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America
4.05
really liked it
Another book from Egan (author of "The Worst Hard Time" about the Dust Bowl) that "brings history alive". The part in the title about the fire "that s ...more
Jan 2010
Dec 16, 2009
 
Mayflower: A Story of Courage, Community, and War
3.86
it was amazing
Nathaniel Philbrick is my favorite nonfiction history writer. He is "academic" but in a very accessible, not dry, way. He manages to look at history t ...more
not set
Sep 29, 2008
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