Really somewhat of an update to Kitchen Confidential, the book is at turns memoir, apologetics, and confession. Bourdain takes stock of his life from...moreReally somewhat of an update to Kitchen Confidential, the book is at turns memoir, apologetics, and confession. Bourdain takes stock of his life from when he wrote Kitchen Confidential to present and seems slightly chastened (as much as Bourdain can be) about certain things said or done, but also attempts to explain both his nature and the forces at work in his life at those times. Ultimately, the most entertaining thing about the book is his biting delivery and the many portions of naked food porn, which happens to be the only time he moves from angry wit to reverence... Bourdain clearly loves food; people are another matter altogether.(less)
This is a really interesting and accessible read about behavioral economics. Ariely pokes holes in the economic supposition that all people act in the...moreThis is a really interesting and accessible read about behavioral economics. Ariely pokes holes in the economic supposition that all people act in their rational best interest by showing ways in which people consistently make irrational decisions. The book is set up in an easy to understand manner; each chapter poses a simple question about human decision-making, demonstrates that most or all people are irrational in this type of decision with an experiment or two, and then muses about implications for public policy or how we might personally avoid this sort of irrational decision. The book is quick, enjoyable, and easy to read for the layperson, and provides tons of food for thought.(less)
This book is an absolute riot. In addition to mercilessly and frankly recalling outrageous moments throughout this memoir, Bourdain makes the material...moreThis book is an absolute riot. In addition to mercilessly and frankly recalling outrageous moments throughout this memoir, Bourdain makes the material sing with his swaggering candor and dry sardonic writing style. This is requisite reading for anyone who ever goes to a nice restaurant on occasion, but is really an entertaining read for most anyone that enjoys listening to anecdotes of wild hijinks told by a raconteur.(less)
Kingsolver recounts an experiment of her family moving to a small farmstead and relying only upon locally grown produce for a full year. Interesting f...moreKingsolver recounts an experiment of her family moving to a small farmstead and relying only upon locally grown produce for a full year. Interesting facts and observations running the gamut from diet and nutrition in America, industrial agriculture, farming and animal husbandry, impacts on the environment of all of the above, etc. are couched within a warming narrative charmingly studded with broad metaphors and pleasant prose. Each chapter is supplemented by a short expository written by Kinsolver's husband going into further detail about some sociopolitical or scientific topic she brings up, and also with some musings from her daughter and recipes for some of the food they eat during that time of year (as the chapters are chronological). Overall, less pedantic than Michael Pollan while covering similar territory, this book provides a lot of food for thought on how one might personally go about changing their nutrition and consumer habits (in a more accessible, easily digestible way than Pollan for many, I'd think).(less)
Overall, a pretty interesting romp through the Court's recent history and examination of some of the possible antecedents to how certain things turned...moreOverall, a pretty interesting romp through the Court's recent history and examination of some of the possible antecedents to how certain things turned out the way they did. Almost a "Connect-the-Dots" of the conservative movement to change the bench and the related "Who's Who" at the intersection of upper echelon law and politics. Unfortunately, it feels like Toobin had more ins with certain Justices and their former clerks than others, and that their perceptional biases may have painted the portrayal of others being chronicled and dissected a bit in order to get the bigger players rounded out a bit. Still, likely a worthwhile read for most people that have at least some interest in how the Court works, any of the recent Justices, or how much politics plays into Constitutional law.(less)
I read the first edition in high school and it was a complete paradigm shift for me -- it completely opened my eyes to looking at the world through a...moreI read the first edition in high school and it was a complete paradigm shift for me -- it completely opened my eyes to looking at the world through a more critical lens in regards to socialization, power structures as they relate to historical context, and the harsh reality of women (as well as the privileges I had enjoyed up to that point in my life being male, gay or not). During high school, this book's impact was nothing less than a foundational block of my worldview.
This expanded and updated second edition primarily has an addendum: an afterword where Muscio addresses how her thinking on the subject has expanded, especially as she received questions from admirers of her book about the position (or lack therof) of transwomen in her womanifesto. Having her delve into the issue of transpeople and gender nonconformity, especially after I've befriended many transpeople after high school, was very refreshing. In fact, even though this time around for me I was more dubious of several parts of the original text, I enjoyed the book more entirely because of the issues she addresses in the afterword. Her inclusivity of more people on the margins (or on the margins of the margins) as well as many added comments on the need for alternative news sources and an examination of the widespread nature of abuse in American society mirrors my own evolution of thought and experience.
The original text is still a good read, and even though some of it is not always logical or sometimes ventures into impractical ideals veering astray into lost woods, it still contains many important nuggets for everyone to consider about themselves and their relation to our society. I almost wish she could revise the original work and introduce the new thoughts in the afterword into the appropriate places, but it's still a good addition.(less)
It was well-written with a clear sense of voice and purpose. It is at the same time easy to read but somewhat difficult to digest emotionally; nearer...moreIt was well-written with a clear sense of voice and purpose. It is at the same time easy to read but somewhat difficult to digest emotionally; nearer the end of the book it becomes all to true-to-life in that little is clear cut and many people and events evoke ambivalence. A good read that forces one to take time to reflect on what is truly important in life, what are absolutes in morality and philosophy, and in what ways can religion and politics really matter on a individual and social level.(less)