Category Archives: Book Reviews

Book Review: The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui

It’s interesting that I came across this graphic memoir, The Best We Could Do by Thi Bui, shortly after reading George Takei’s graphic memoir They Called Us Enemy. The authors of both books are Asian Americans, and both books deal … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster by Rebecca Solnit

People don’t commonly look on disasters as uplifting experiences, but in this book, the author argues that overwhelmingly traumatic shared experiences often bring out the best in the so-called victims. Within minutes or hours of disasters striking, says Solnit, magnanimity … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: The Cruise of the Snark by Jack London

The background of the edition of this book and how I came by it is an interesting story. Two of my sons and I went on a road trip from Seattle to the San Francisco Bay Area in late June … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: They Called Us Enemy by George Takei, Justin Eisinger, Steven Scott, and Harmony Becker

Although we have shelves of them in our home, I don’t normally read graphic novels and memoirs. When I found They Called Us Enemy on the new book shelf at the library, though, I realized that I would make an … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Book Review: Upheaval: Turning Points for Nations in Crisis by Jared Diamond

One of the most important nonfiction books of the late nineteenth century is Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies by Jared Diamond. In it, the author posits that environmental variables rather than inherent differences in ability were … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

On Rereading The Writing Life by Annie Dillard

I’ve read several of Annie Dillard’s books. I like her writing style, and I appreciate her philosophical observations mixed with comments on nature. I’ve read The Writing Life before too, but the last time was several years ago in Greece. … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews, On Writing | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: The Pioneers: The Heroic Story of the Settlers Who Brought the American Ideal West by David McCullough

The Pioneers tells a compelling story. After the Revolutionary War, Great Britain ceded the vast Northwest Territory to the fledgling country of the United States. This included the area that would comprise the future states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: The Best of R.A. Lafferty

R.A. Lafferty is an anomaly not only in the world of speculative fiction, but also in literature in general. Although he has won major awards, he is all but unknown outside the genre world. He has an idiosyncratic style that … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: I, Asimov: A Memoir by Isaac Asimov

Isaac Asimov was an amazingly prolific writer. Although he is probably best known for his science fiction novels and stories – the Foundation series, for instance – he wrote and edited over five hundred books on a wide range of … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Book Review: Fault Lines: A History of the United States Since 1974 by Kevin M. Kruse and Julian E. Zelizer

As soon as I first picked up this volume of modern history, I knew it was going to be important to me. I put my name on the reserve list at the library (still poverty-stricken here, folks) and patiently waited … Continue reading

Posted in Book Reviews | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment