Tuesday, May 06, 2008


34. Random Family by Adrian Nicole LeBlanc
This is a really great book that follows a group of young people over about 10 years as the grow up in the Bronx. The author is a journalist and does an amazing job of leaving herself out of the book, and presenting the people as people. The subjects of the book deal with poverty, drugs, jail and teenage pregnancies, but the book is so close to their point of view that you can understand why they make the choices they do. Very good book.

35. Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene
This is the story of a regular vacuum cleaner salesman in Havana (before the revolution) recruited to be a spy for the British. It was fun, and I liked the 2nd half better than the first. This book was written in the 50's (I think) and I had some trouble with the dated-ness of it, although I did want to drink daquiris. :)

36. Bones: A Forensic Detective's Case Book by Douglas Ubelaker
This book is by the curator of Physical Anthropology at the Smithsonian. It is an older book, from 1991, and I guess was recently re-printed. Anyway, I am a physical anthropologist, but not of dead things and skeletons, so I read this book as part of my plan to improve my knowledge of that part of my field. A lot of the cases in this book are very interesting, and you learn amazing things that can be figured out from bones. However, the writing is a little strange. It is not super-well organized, and almost stream of consciousness as it flits from subject to subject. If you are interested in forensic anthropology you might like this book, otherwise I am not sure it would hold a lot of interest for most people.

37. The Ghost Brigades by John Scalzi
The second book in Scalzi's series. I did not like this as much as "Old Man's War" but it was pretty good escapism still. The first part of the book had too much description of science and space battles for me, and I liked the second part more where it was more about the people. I really like how this series deals with the ethical issues in humanity's genetically engineering people to fight aliens in space (and should we be fighting the aliens at all?) and I look forward to reading the third book in the series.

1 comment:

Topher said...

I loved Random Family...Although I had to read something very light and fluffy afterwards because it really, really got under my skin....