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« February, 2015 »

The Road From Coorain   book icon  
by Jill Ker-Conway (1990)

read: 27 February 2015
rating: [+]
category: non-fiction

A fascinating story about growing up in the bush which is made more interesting by the fact that you know how the story ends (Ker-Conway winds up in the US and becomes a very successful and respected educator) without knowing how she gets there. She writes very evocatively about her driven father, her neurotic mother and the choices she made and did not make that led to her eventually going to the US. I enjoyed this book more than I thought I would.

Company   book icon  
by Max Barry (2007)

read: 19 February 2015
rating: [+]
category: non-fiction

Barry writes fun romps. This is a weird dystopian office environment where things aren’t always as they seem. Barry’s newer stuff is better, it’s cool seeing him improve as a writer, but I liked the interplay between all the odd characters, many of whom were only humanized by their interactions with other people.

The Prince of Risk   book icon  
by Christopher Reich (2014)

read: 16 February 2015
rating: [+]
category: fiction

Another headcold novel. This one was a pretty good mystery/thriller about an international espionage/terrorist plot mystery thing. Reich has a lot of high powered characters who get out of more scrapes than you could imagine they could get into. This one zips along, has a satisfying conclusion and I enjoyed it.

Rodrick Rules   book icon  
by Jeff Kinney (2008)

read: 13 February 2015
rating: [+]
category: ya

I’d been working my way through a terrible headcold and decided I’d like some lighter reading. I really like these books both for their excellent illustrations and the bildungsroman approach to their main character, the Wimpy Kid. I guess they turned it into a movie?

2312   book icon  
by Kim Stanley Robinson (2013)

read: 5 February 2015
rating: [+]
category: fiction

Hadn’t really read anything by Robinson before but when I read the collection he edited I vowed to track something down by him. And then forgot about that until I saw this on the “new” shelf at the local library. It’s big. And thick. And sort of a world-building book so you have to be sort of into that aspect of it to plow through the actual plot which is sort of spare (but interesting) and is much less central to this book than the explanation of the world in 2312 and how we got there. I liked it but I was reading it at a time when I was flattened by a cold and could focus a lot on it and it didn’t have to move me along. I’ll try reading another book by Robinson but maybe one that is a little shorter next time.

Kaput and Zosky   book icon  
by Lewis Trondheim (2008)

read: 4 February 2015
rating: [+]
categories: graphic novel, ya

Fun space comix! I guess part of them are illustrated by Trondheim and part of them are illustrated by Eric Cartier. I have to admit not noticing the difference between the images. This was mostly taken from a television show (I guess?) that I did not know either. It’s mostly amusing spacemen who try to go to different worlds and take them over with amusing results.

The Elephant Who Liked to Smash Cars   book icon  
by Jean Merrill (2015)

read: 3 February 2015
rating: [+]
categories: fiction, ya

Hey my landlady illustrated this book, and my other (deceased) landlady wrote it. NY Review reissued a few of their books including this and the Pushcart War and sent me a copy, I am not sure why. It was a five minute read, but a very enjoyable short tale of resistance and compromise. Lovely reprint.

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