Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A Bit Behind Schedule

I've gone and put a few too many projects on my plate, recently.  Add this to the fact that I've been downed twice by illness in March (food poisoning/possible stomach bug, and then a wicked head cold that took up residence in my sinuses), well, my personal projects, including this blog, are definitely not where I want them to be.

I've finished one flip-top mitten for myself, and am a few rows into the second, and got started on an adorable dragon hat for the munchkin.  Both of these are on hold, however, while I finish a baby blanket for some friends.  Their baby will be here pretty soon, and with the weather the way it has been, I haven't needed mittens recently.  Hopefully, by the time I finish the dragon hat, it will still fit munchkin.

I'm a bit behind on my Goodreads challenge too.  Part of this is that some of my holds have taken a really long time to become available.  The other part is that I have limited reading time - I mostly read on my transit trips home from work.
This year, I challenged myself to read 40 books (my challenge in 2014 was 30 books).  Here are four of my favourites so far:

Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson
I really enjoyed this story of a young Arab hacker in an unnamed Middle Eastern state, who gets caught up in weirdness after getting a copy of "A Thousand and One Days" (the secret book of the jinn).  It is rather fitting that Neil Gaiman was quoted on the cover of the copy I read, as it has similar fantastical elements to his work.

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North
Other reviewers either seemed to love or hate this book.  Not many people fall into the middle ground.  I fall into the love it camp.  It is very hard to describe without giving away the plot.  There is a lot of history, and as the main character gets to live the same life over & over again (in a way that is not like Groundhog Day at all), some repetitive themes.

What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe
The author is better known for his web comic XKCD.  Before doing the web comic full time, he worked for NASA!  If you ever wanted to know actual answers to ridiculous questions like, "is it possible to build a bridge from London, UK to New York, NY, entirely out of LEGO, and have enough Lego bricks been manufactured to do so?", then this is the book for you.

Hand to Mouth: Living in Bootstrap America by Linda Tirado
While this book is written with a wicked sense of humour and sarcasm, it is, in the end, actually quite serious.  If you want a look at what it is like to be part of the working poor in the USA, from someone who actually is living that life (and not, for example, a middle class journalist who is only doing it for a few months, in order to add something to their byline), then read this.  Actually, read this book anyway.  It will give you a new perspective on the world's economic system, and possibly more empathy for those whose luck has not been as good as your own.

Do you have any book recommendations for me?  I need some books to catch up on this year's challenge!

No comments:

Post a Comment