Tag Archives: nonfiction

Vaccinated by Paul A. Offit

The Last Word on Nothing did a recent post about Maurice Hilleman. I was so fascinated by the writeup that I put the book they mentioned on my TBR. I thought it was timely reading about the creation of vaccines while in a pandemic, waiting for a vaccine. Bonus, the library had the ebook.

Subtitle: One Man’s Quest to Defeat the World’s Deadliest Diseases

Published: 2007

Genre: nonfiction historical science

Length: 205 pages of text, 254 pages total

Setting: 1919-2005, various locations in the U.S.

Summary: Short version: The history of vaccines, focusing on the work on Maurice Hilleman Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Book review

Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard

This was a book I had on my shelf. I had read it in college and liked it enough to keep the book, but hadn’t reread it since college. I decided now was the time to reread the book since I can’t go to the library during the pandemic.

Published: 1974

Genre: nonfiction memoir

Length: 271 pages

Setting: the author’s house at Tinker Creek, Virginia, over a year

Summary: Short version: Dillard takes us through a year scrutinizing the natural world around her Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Book review

What I Will Be Reading #48 – Nonfiction extravaganza

While the libraries are closed during this pandemic, that certainly hasn’t stopped me from finding new books I want to read. For some reason, nonfiction has been appealing to me lately. Here’s my new collection of books for my TBR list:

First up is Vaccinated: One Man’s Quest to Defeat the World’s Deadliest Diseases by Paul A. Offit. The Last Word on Nothing did a post about Maurice Hilleman recently. He was instrumental in developing 40 different vaccines, 14 of which are still in common use today. I can’t believe I’ve never heard of him and the book is all about him. I also find it fitting in our current pandemic. There’s also a short video about Hilleman on Vimeo if you’d rather watch your science than read it.

Shifting gears from science to the city, I would like to read Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time by Jeff Speck from  I also enjoy urban planning books for some odd reason. Anne Bogel has mentioned this book multiple times and each time I want to read it. I’m finally going to record it. I am oddly drawn to urban planning books (I’ve also read A Pattern Language from her list of urban planning books.)

While I’m outside, I might want to create a nature sketchbook, following in the footsteps of Explorers’ Sketchbooks: The Art of Discovery & Adventure by Huw Lewis-Jones and Kari Herbert. I was looking for Margaret Fountaine’s journals in my library system, and this is as close as I can get. It looks like a visual treat, so probably not something I want to read on my black and white Kindle. I was sent into the library catalog after listening to Deanna Raybourne discuss Margaret Fountaine as the inspiration for Veronica Speedwell in her mysteries. She was doing a Stay at Home book tour discussion for her newest Veronica Speedwell book, A Murderous Relation. (Scroll down on that link to the week two interviews to find Raybourne.)

Since I doubt I’ll be doing much traveling this summer with all the Covid-19 floating around and no way to stop it, I’ll have to travel vicariously instead. Lands of Lost Borders: A Journey on the Silk Road by Kate Harris promises to fulfill that wish. Bonus, it’s about traveling via bicycle, one of my favorite ways to see the world. We’ve done short trips (three days and 180 miles), and I have dreams of longer trips when the kids are out of the house. It was part of a post on Tor listing books considered unputdownable, which gives me high hopes for readability.

Next up is Falter by Bill McKibbon. I want to read this less for pleasure and more for work. I recently read a webcomic that mentioned Bill McKibbon wrote one of the first climate change books for the general public. I’m always on the lookout for a good climate change book for my basic science classes. This is his latest book, and I’m interested to see what he has to say.

Finally, is a book is a book for sheer pleasure that even Mr. Curiosity thought sounded fascinating: Pantone: The Twentieth Century in Color by Leatrice Eiseman and Keith Recker. Gretchen Rubin mentioned it in her What I Read in April post. Again, I’ll wait until the libraries reopen because it definitely needs to be enjoyed in all its colorful splendor.

And those are my latest additions to my TBR list. Anything look good to you? Anything else I should add?

Leave a comment

Filed under Book review

Dear Bob and Sue by Matt and Karen Smith

This book was recommended to me on postcrossing because of my interest in national parks.

Published: 2012

Genre: nonfiction travel memoir

Length: 313 pages

Setting: various locations around the U.S., 2010-2012

Summary: Short version: As the text on the cover says: One couple’s journey through the national parks Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Book review

Nontraditional by Nan Kuhlman

I received a free copy of the book from the publisher, Annorlunda Enterprises, a small publisher that focuses on entertaining stories that make you think. I am providing my unbiased opinion on the book.

Subtitle: Life Lessons from a Community College

Published: 2020 – in fact, it comes out today!

Genre: nonfiction memoir

Length: 214 pages

Setting: mostly a small community college in rural Ohio, but also a bit in California

Summary: Short version: Kuhlman intersperses stories of her students with how she became a teacher Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Book review

The Fate of Food by Amanda Little

Gretchen Rubin interviewed the author. I put it on my TBR because it was about two of my nonfiction interests – food and climate change.

Subtitle: What We’ll Eat in a Bigger, Hotter, Smarter World

Published: 2019

Genre: nonfiction food/climate change

Length: 287 pages of text, 340 pages with notes and index

Summary: Short version: A description of the high- and low-tech solutions to providing a stable global food supply Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Book review

Rights of Man by Thomas Paine

I chose this for Mr. Curiosity to read for his a piece of great literature this year. I figured I should read along to discuss it with him.

Published: 1791 (which means it can be found free at Gutenberg.org)

Genre: nonfiction government essays

Length: 228 pages for parts one and two

Summary: Short version: Two essays describing the interaction between the government and the people, comparing the British and American governments Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Book review