Perspectives on Better Sides of the World and Humankind

As we know, 2020 has been the living worst. A helpful balm for the seemingly endless parade of horrors this year has thrown at us is reading some facts about how the state of the world and humanity in general aren't as horrible as they might seem or feel. Let's investigate. First is Factfulness: Ten... Continue Reading →

Nonfiction November Wrap-Up

To end Nonfiction November this year, Julie, Katie and I recorded an episode of Leann's Shelf Aware podcast. We talked Nonfiction November history, reading preferences, and a bunch of other stuff. It was so much fun to get to chat about books with my fellow hosts and I hope it's fun to listen to! I... Continue Reading →

The Mysterious Haunting of West Germany

Review: A Demon-Haunted Land, by Monica Black (Bookshop.org) To understand something about how one type of society began the process of becoming a very different one, this book looks at two distinctive but related forms of postwar haunting. One plagued individuals, beleaguered souls who sought spiritual respite -- who wanted to be healed, transformed, or... Continue Reading →

Two Books of Reportage Around ISIS

All Lara's Wars, by Wojciech Jagielski, translated from Polish by Antonia Lloyd-Jones (Bookshop.org) I sent them to Omar myself... But my thinking was that it might finally put them off war -- they'd see what it can do to a man, how badly it can destroy him. Then they wouldn't imagine it was just heroism,... Continue Reading →

Spooky Scary Nonfiction for Halloween and Frighteningly Good Reads: The Frighteners and Damnation Island

It's Halloween month! What spooky scary nonfiction might you be reading? I mean yes -- real life is scary enough, especially this year, but perhaps you're distracting from the everyday horror and existential angst with some nonfiction about less-present scariness? Just me? The wonderful Molly at Silver Button Books is again hosting Frighteningly Good Reads,... Continue Reading →

What Pianos Mean to Siberia, And More

Book review: The Lost Pianos of Siberia, by Sophy Roberts (Amazon) There is no dramatic curtain-raiser to the edge of Siberia, no meaningful brink to a specific place, just thick weather hanging over an abstract idea. It is a modern economic miracle, with natural oil and gas reserves driving powerful shifts in the geopolitics of... Continue Reading →

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑