I won this book as part of LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program.
I don't read a lot of adult non-fiction, but that doesn't mean I'm not interested. SI won this book as part of LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program.
I don't read a lot of adult non-fiction, but that doesn't mean I'm not interested. So, I was pleased to win this book and give it a shot. Unfortunately, it wasn't really what I expected. The first part of the book is Dr. Baird's manuscript - the book he wrote through his struggle with manic depression. It's presented mostly without comment in part one and is, at times, a bit difficult to read and comprehend. Part two goes into the detail of how his daughter discovered the manuscript and her struggles with figuring out her father's legacy. I expected the book to focus more on the repercussions of growing up without her father and for the two narratives to be more intertwined. I think it would have been more effective that way. Additionally, a note at the beginning indicates that Baird has altered her father's manuscript as she and her editor have seen fit, without indicating the changes in any way. This seems a bit wonky to me. I expected more from this book....more
This book really annoyed me. You see, the story of the cheese itself is incredibly interesting and, actually, I think, the most unfinished bit of thisThis book really annoyed me. You see, the story of the cheese itself is incredibly interesting and, actually, I think, the most unfinished bit of this book. I still don't feel like I really know the story of the cheese. I found this book annoying because Paterniti spent a lot of time on digressions - and, yes, I completely get that he was mirroring the Castilian ways of storytelling but, quite frankly, I don't care. I found the digressions uninteresting and spent the time reading them wondering when we'd get back to the story of the cheese. Additionally, I didn't care about reading Paterniti's story about his own - and there is a lot of that. In fact, there are whole sections where he discusses how difficult he found writing this book to be, how much he struggled editing it and how long it took him to complete. I found myself thinking during these sections, "This is the edited version?" It still doesn't read like a completed book to me. I really wanted to like this book, but I just didn't.
I received this book as part of LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program. Thanks to the publisher for a finished copy....more
I'm a fan of comedian Jim Gaffigan - we've even seen him live. When I heard he was putting out a book, I looked forward to it. I finally checked it ouI'm a fan of comedian Jim Gaffigan - we've even seen him live. When I heard he was putting out a book, I looked forward to it. I finally checked it out from the library. I guess I didn't realize that it was going to focus almost exclusively on his kids and being a parent. This is not a bad thing, just not what I expected. The book is a series of short "essays" on various topics concerning parenting and raising kids, including the particularities of his family (Gaffigan has 5 children under the age of 9 in a two-bedroom apartment in New York). Some of the essays are amusing but ultimately, I didn't feel like I was getting anything new out of this book. It wasn't quite as funny as I hoped and maybe not having children makes me outside of the ideal audience for it. Still, it's worth a look if you enjoy his comedy....more
I received this book as part of LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program.
This book caught my eye because I was a theater kid in high school. The head ofI received this book as part of LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program.
This book caught my eye because I was a theater kid in high school. The head of our drama department had a very particular idea of what shows were worthwhile and appropriate for high schoolers to perform. Partway through my own high school career, she finally started to open up about which shows to put on. I was fascinated by the idea of a teacher so eager to bring the best of Broadway to his students. I would have loved to be in a program like this in high school. The fact that this one takes place where it does makes it even more interesting. My main complaint about the book is that it all feels a bit incomplete. It's a biography of the teacher, a history and sociological look at the town, and a memoir of the drama department all in one, but I don't feel like we ever get the full picture on any of these things....more
Roger Ebert was and always will be the definitive movie critic. I don't care what anyone else says. I have wanted to read his collections of essays anRoger Ebert was and always will be the definitive movie critic. I don't care what anyone else says. I have wanted to read his collections of essays and reviews for a long time now; instead, I found myself downloading the audio version of his memoir. I don't regret that decision. This is extremely well-written, proving that Ebert was a born scribe and had a gift with words. Ebert's life is quite extraordinary, though I felt some sections should have been fleshed out a bit more. Overall, though, this was a very good memoir, one that made me miss the man tremendously....more
I'd wanted to read this one since it was published and finally made some time at the end of summer, knowing it would be a fairly quick read (as most gI'd wanted to read this one since it was published and finally made some time at the end of summer, knowing it would be a fairly quick read (as most graphic novels are). This book is depressing and unsettling. It's unsettling to think that there are people like Dahmer out there, people that are genuine sociopaths. It's also unsettling to think that these people might come to the notice of others but then may slip quietly back into the background. It's unsettling that no one really thought much of Dahmer's unusual behavior - yes, it's probably safe to say that we all knew someone who exhibited unusual behavior from time to time. But Dahmer's behavior was so far outside the realm of unusual that it is extremely difficult to believe that no one thought to investigate a little deeper. I've read some criticism of the book and I think it's mostly fair, but I also think this is a really compelling story, so I'd say I enjoyed it....more
I've been a fan of Brosh's blog for a long time now, so when I discovered she was publishing a book, you can bet I was excited. I was even more thrillI've been a fan of Brosh's blog for a long time now, so when I discovered she was publishing a book, you can bet I was excited. I was even more thrilled to receive an e-galley of the title and I read it in bits and pieces whenever I could sneak it in. It's funny but also complex and honest. I had no problem re-reading the pieces that had appeared on the blog because Brosh chose some of the best. However, the new bits were a mishmash of good and bad - I didn't love them all. But, do I regret any of it? Nope.
Thanks to the publisher for a digital advance reader's copy (and yes, shame on me for not writing the review sooner)....more
Here's another recent listen that probably would have been a better read, because I think it would have been more effective that way. As a listen, allHere's another recent listen that probably would have been a better read, because I think it would have been more effective that way. As a listen, all the stories seemed to run together. Though they were read by a rotating number of narrators, it was easy for the details of each specific story to get lost in the larger picture of the book as a whole.
Otherwise, the book is about what I expected. A variety of individuals tell their stories of coming out, being bullied, and living a life that transcends these things. I can imagine this to be an inspiring read for young LGBTQ teens and I think it's an important resource to have. A good read....more
Sometimes I wonder what I'm thinking when I download audiobooks. I quite frequently choose adult books, as my print reading focuses so heavily on chilSometimes I wonder what I'm thinking when I download audiobooks. I quite frequently choose adult books, as my print reading focuses so heavily on children's and young adult literature but there are still so many adult titles that capture my interest. However, adult books often require more focus than a book for a younger audience, so I sometimes lose the train while listening to adult titles. Non-fiction presents even more of a challenge, as it's often formatted with sidebars and images incorporated in the text. I miss these elements when I listen instead of read, and yet, I keep downloading and listening to non-fiction. Maybe I just have to accept that I likely would never get around to it otherwise.
While I don't think this book had the aforementioned sidebars and images (though, honestly, I have no idea), it still suffered a bit as an audio version. Sacks is a well-respected scholar and his titles have long intrigued me. This book deals with the various sorts of hallucinations that can affect an individual. Where this book suffers as an audio for me is with the wealth of information. Everything Sacks presents here is truly interesting stuff - but there is a lot of it. This is a book that I likely would have alternated reading chapters with a fiction book if I had been reading the print edition rather than listening. As a straight through listening experience, I'm sure some of the information was lost, as I simply became overwhelmed with the amount of it.
Regardless, it's clear that Sacks know his stuff and is able to present it in a way that is interesting for the average reader....more
This book got a lot of attention when it was first published, so naturally it's been on my radar for some time now. I started reading it a bit when IThis book got a lot of attention when it was first published, so naturally it's been on my radar for some time now. I started reading it a bit when I first moved to Texas but set it down and just never found the time to pick it back up again. In a small attempt to clean up my to-read list a bit, this summer, I picked the book up again and read it straight through.
This is a really quick and interesting read, told in short chapters that highlight different aspects of Chua's parenting style and how that differs from one daughter to the other. Many of the reactions to this book were negative and it's not terribly difficult to see why that is - Chua's parenting style (what she terms "Chinese parenting") will certainly seem harsh to Western readers. I myself am not immune from some of the shock experienced by readers of this book, but I also have a lot of opinions about parenting in general (pretty rich of me, considering I don't have any children of my own) so I may have had a slightly different approach with this book than others. What I think many critics of this book and of Chua herself have overlooked is how obvious it is that she loves her children and wants the best from them (in my opinion). She may even argue against this notion herself in the book, but ultimately, I think that's what it boils down to. She just goes about expressing this love in a different way than we may be used to.
Overall, I found this a quick and thought-provoking read....more