In theory, I should have a lot to say for SBD about books and leisure reading, namely genre romance, after having a long weekend to read brain candy. Especially since the weekend included hours spent in hurry up and wait fashion at the airport and on jam-packed-full airplanes.
I had good intentions. I downloaded a bunch of samples to try on Tuesday. Skimmed and discarded them on Wednesday. Bought a copy of Joanna Bourne’s The Black Hawk on Sunday in anticipation of the return flight. The Black Hawk, which I bought because Adrian was the most intriguing character in Bourne’s The Spymaster’s Lady, didn’t really grip me in the first 10 pages so I’ve set it aside momentarily. (Of course, “momentarily” could mean “in perpetuity”, given my reading ennui and extremely short attention span.)
What did I read instead? Nonfiction and magazines.
Last week, Rosario reviewed Through the Language Glass: How Words Color Your World, which sounded fascinating. And I toddled off (metaphorically speaking) to Amazon to download a copy. I’m about half way through, with lots of notes and highlighted passages. Absolutely worth $9.99 if you’re interested in language or linguistics at all.
First magazine up, the November/December issue of Foreign Affairs. There’s a fascinating article on Russia’s demographic decline since 1991, as well as one on the euro zone. The lead article, “Is America Over?” should be mandatory reading for every elected official in Washington and all members of the military-industrial complex. The reviews of recent publications have me itching for more nonfiction, except some of the prices are INSANE. $170 for a book on the evolution of the European Convention on Human Rights? I’ll borrow it from a library or go without, thanks. Of course, one book that sounds interesting, Oil of Russia: Past, Present, Future, is available for free online.
Second magazine: Holiday Entertaining from Cook’s Illustrated. Years ago, one of my roommates corrected me when I said that I couldn’t cook — she’d eaten many meals cooked by me, and thought it was more accurate to say that I was not interested in cooking but that I was capable of doing it well when necessary. Which is true, I suppose — there are some recipes that I rock, but for the most part steamed vegetables, pasta, roasted/baked/seared meat, etc., are the default when I have to cook (and microwave meals are not acceptable). (There’s a reason behind that disinterest but it isn’t worth unpacking, thx.) Anyway, if I’m so disinterested, why this magazine? Because the table of contents included two articles/recipes that I love and will attempt to cook at home: cassoulet and a Spanish tortilla. Yum. Roasted pear salad, sweet potato casserole, and butternut squash soup are not beyond me either. We’ll have to see.
And there’s more nonfiction on the horizon: TheBiochemist gave me a copy of History of the World in 100 Objects! It is beautiful. And huge.
Let’s see, what other book related things went on? Well, the book club selection was made — A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. H’s analysis: Twilight for grownups, which cracked me up since I know exactly what she thought of Twilight (I gave her my copy and she used it as a doorstop after DNF’ing it after 1 chapter) and that whole mess. Of course, most of the people in her book group loved Twilight, so…I’d love to sit in on that book discussion.