Ahoy there me mateys! For those of ye who are new to me log, a word: though this log’s focus is on sci-fi, fantasy, and young adult, this Captain does have broader reading tastes. Occasionally I will share some novels that I enjoyed that are off the charts (a non sci-fi, fantasy, or young adult novel), as it were. So today I bring ye a muster of non-fiction reviews. What be a muster?
Well the Oxford English Dictionary defines it as:
- assemble (troops) especially for inspection or for battle;
- collect or assemble (a number or amount); or
- a group of peacocks.
I have been reading a lot of non-fiction books and don’t have enough information to give full reviews because many of the facts fail to muster and fall out of me noggin. Yet they be enjoyable and so methinks it be good to spread the word. Here be three such recent reads.
Side note: the book covers come from Goodreads and ye can click on them to add the books to yer Goodreads’ Ports for Plunder List.
let’s pretend this never happened: a mostly true memoir (Jenny Lawson)
I very much enjoyed this author’s book furiously happy and loved the messages about dealing with mental illness and happiness. This novel was her debut. I have to admit that while I did find the situations to be funny, this book’s writing style was a little harder to read. This book did not flow as nicely and rambled a bit too much for me taste. Plus there was an overall sadness under the laughter. I don’t think it was bad. I just think furiously happy was so much better. That said, I do very much enjoy the author’s zany take on life and her upbringing. Taxidermy, being a goth in Western Texas, digging up a dead pet, and lots of other silliness abound. I will certainly read more of the author’s works.
“I can finally see that all the terrible parts of my life, the embarrassing parts, the incidents I wanted to pretend never happened, and the things that make me “weird” and “different,” were actually the most important parts of my life. They were the parts that made me ME.”
liquid rules: the delightful & dangerous substances that flow through our lives (Mark Miodownik)
This book is about liquids and is frickin’ fascinating. The First Mate and I both read his amazing book stuff matters and so we listened to this follow up book together. We would stop after each chapter and discuss. It was fun. Favourites in this book include learning about ink, liquid soap, oceans, and the effect of glaciers on tectonic plates. Seriously both books are must reads. I want another book asap. Arrrr!
Side note: Michael Page is seriously an awesome narrator.
“Why is it that bodily fluids are so charged with emotion? They are essential to our well being when they’re still inside our bodies–so why are they so loaded with disgust as soon as they leave?”
― Mark Miodownik
By reading this, I have now read all of this author’s work. I loved both smoke gets in your eyes and will my c. I have to admit that personally for me the dead body is just a shell. Funerals and memorial services tend to not be useful to me in terms of the grieving process. I go to support other grieving loved ones but would skip them if I could (and do sometimes). I don’t want a funeral or a memorial or anything like that. I really want to have an open air burial or compost. Being dirt or vulture food sounds wonderful to me. That said, I do find other cultures death practices to be fascinating. I do wish to honor the dead person’s wishes in regards to how their own body is treated. What this book does is take a look at other cultures and how they deal with the dead. A lot of this wasn’t new to me given the articles and other books like stiff that I have read over the years. But it was an excellent book and one I think all people should read. Because death needs to be talked about and planned for. Because seriously it will happen to us all. Arrrr!
“Death avoidance is not an individual failing; it’s a cultural one. Facing death is not for the faint-hearted. It is far too challenging to expect that each citizen will do so on his or her own. Death acceptance is the responsibility of all death professionals—funeral directors, cemetery managers, hospital workers. It is the responsibility of those who have been tasked with creating physical and emotional environments where safe, open interaction with death and dead bodies is possible.”
So there ye have it. Three excellent non-fiction reads that I highly recommend. Arrrr!!