6.30.2011

Reading life review: June

Books read this month: 7
Books read in 2011: 51

The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth (Alexandra Robbins)
Non-fiction, education. Robbins argues that all of those weird, quirky, yes, geeky traits that make it difficult to find a table in the high school cafeteria will translate into measures of success in the "real" adult world (although the anecdotes for Regan, a twenty-four-year-old teacher, seem to argue against this premise). As one Amazon reviewer quipped, the book seems to explain "why the 'preps' are sometimes sitting by themselves at class reunions." Heh, heh, heh. As a parent-teacher, I am naturally interested in young people who stray from stereotype, so I did enjoy this book. NPR discusses it here.

Confessions of a Prairie Bitch (Alison Arngrim)
Memoir. What a thoroughly entertaining book! With an assured, distinctive, and thoroughly likeable voice, Arngrim describes her harrowing childhood, her life on the set, her castmates, and her journey into adulthood. Some readers may be shocked by her somewhat salty talk, but I was completely engaged. Recommended.

Pitch Uncertain (Maisie Houghton)
Memoir; review copy. Related entry here.

The Silent Land (Graham Joyce)
Fiction. A happily married if somewhat immature couple on winter holiday discovers the nature of love amid a series of unsettling events. This quickly-consumed novel reminded me of "LOST" and "The Twilight Zone," and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

A Midsummer Night's Dream (William Shakespeare)
Play, classic. Related entries here and here.

The Hound of the Baskervilles (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)
Fiction. With the Misses. Family film night this weekend will feature Jeremy Brett's take on this classic. By the way, I read this and A Midsummer Night's Dream on the Kindle.

Robopocalypse (Daniel H. Wilson)
Science fiction. Weary of vampires and zombies? It's humans versus -- you guessed it! -- robots in this entertaining tale that is told in a manner similar to Max Brooks' World War Z (a book my son recommended to me several times).


Bookmarked
Although the following are not included in the June count, I am nearly done with them / plan to finish them over the coming week (or two) of (mostly) digital fasting. *

A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change (Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown)
Education. This title appeared on a list of summer reading suggestions. Wish I could remember who sent me the list....

Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie: A Tale of Love and Fallout (Lauren Redniss)
Biography, graphic book. What an artful combination of science and romance.

This Girl Is Different (J.J. Johnson)
Fiction. A mostly predictable YA treatment of the "homeschooled kid decides to attend public high school -- and change the world!" story.

The Hypnotist (Lars Kepler)
Fiction. Poolside reading courtesy of the wave of Nordic lit enjoying such popularity here in the States.


* It's nothing cryptic. It's not even inspired by recent reading. We're just a little busier than is our wont, and I know how to recover a couple of hours, right quick.

3 comments:

Sheila Beaumont said...

Now that you've recommended it, I might give "Robopocalypse" a try. I've heard quite a lot about it. Others that I might enjoy are "This Girl Is Different" and "The Hypnotist" (I'll be interested to hear what you have to say about them after you've finished). I recently read the Swedish mystery "The Ice Princess" by Camilla Läckberg and thought it was excellent. I have the sequel, "The Preacher," which I'm going to read very soon.

Korinna said...

I have put the Robbins book on my Kindle wish list. I read the NPR piece and particularly appreciated her argument that quirky kids are not socially inept, they're social in a different way from popular kids. Growing up I was always told my quirks would be appreciated someday, but I was also made to believe that my social awkwardness was a personal failing, almost a moral deficiency. I have found the superficial social skills I worked desperately to acquire at that age totally irrelevant in adult life.

jewellspring said...

I would never have picked up Allison A's book unless you recommended it. Melissa Gilbert's was written so poorly. Thanks for the tip. PS Always like your fiction recommendations, too, as I am mostly disappointed there as well. But never would have read Other Boleyn Girl without your recommendation, either!