Monday, July 5, 2010

Updated my books list

So I updated my books list. I noticed that I hadn't updated it in... I don't know, years? LOL. I don't know if this is everything I've read since Different Seasons. I just went down my bookshelf of things I've bought and read in the last year or so. Obviously I haven't been doing a lot of fiction lately.

I'll give a brief overview of everything I added, though. The version of Origin I read was an illustrated anniversary edition to celebrate Darwin's 200th birthday and the 150th anniversary of its original publication. It's based on the original edition. I found it fascinating, though a little dry at times. There were also excepts from his Beagle voyage interspersed through it. I won't go into a long description, but I did enjoy it. And it is clearer than ever to me that many anti-Darwin people have no idea what his book actually said.

Loved Hawking's books. He must be a fantastic teacher. Everything he said made perfect sense, and even though I've never taken a physics class there was very little I didn't follow. Recommended for anyone who is interested in such things, and doesn't get lost watching Star Trek.

As for the Horsemen, Dawkins is brilliant. I've already admitted a nerd crush on Harris. I find Hitchens amusing, and I like most of what he says. I think he's lost it a little on the pro-war thing, but I guess nobody's perfect. At least he moved here and is trying to help, rather than complaining about the US from afar, like a lot of people who could be helping do. Dennett is too dry for me. I can only take so much abstract philosophy. But he's from the Hub, so he gets points for that.

Beak of the Finch is another book I wish the anti-evolution crowd would read. I mean, they're not going to read Dawkins, but they could read that guy. I also wish they would knock it off with the pretending that "macro" and "micro" evolution are totally different things. That's like saying micro erosion is different than macro erosion. Yeah, it takes longer. *dope slap upside the head*

Sagan was really interesting, and I started re-reading it a couple weeks ago. But then The Family came in the mail, so I've been reading that. So far it's made me want to smack every conservative from the last hundred or so years. And every time he starts talking about the current "Family" members and how they live their lives, I swear it's like I'm watching a cartoon about the 50s. Real people act like that? You have got to be kidding. One guy actually said "golly." Which, you know, that may just be their problem. These people mentally live in Pleasantville. They got to take over the country in the 50s. But it's always been the same thing. In the early 20th century, when unions were fighting for working conditions that didn't involve dropping dead, these guys were who they were fighting. Greedy people who climb to the top by crushing others into the dirt. They may not have lived like Scrooge, but they had his generous spirit of "die and decrease the surplus population." Anyway, I'm not done with that one yet.

The Buffys were ok. Glad to have new Buffys that I didn't have to hunt down at a comic book store (too much effort). But they're whacked out and all over the place. Stuff that wouldn't fly on television is a double edged sword.

The Girls Who Went Away was about teenage biological mothers before Roe v. Wade. It made me cry. And being that I am an adopted person born before Roe v. Wade, it obviously made me wonder. Because from what I was told my bio mother was like 15. So yeah.

As for The Gathering Storm, all I can say is that I love Brandon Sanderson a lot. I never thought I was going to get to read the end of Wheel of Time. And I'm so grateful to RJ and his family for telling him how it ends. He's doing a great job, and I'm really looking forward to the last two books. I mean, holy crap, he's tying up loose ends! Things are moving along! Not that I want it to end, but I do want to know *how* it ends.

Is that everything? ... *looks back at list* Oh, wait. Tolkien. I don't really need to review him. I just realized earlier this year that I hadn't read The Hobbit or LotR for years. So I read those. I do need to get around to the Silmarillion again. I meant to read it when I read the others, but I've read that more recently, so I skipped it. But it really brings the whole of Middle Earth together and sheds light on its past. Anyway, Tolkien was a literary genius, and obviously I adore his work, or I would have stopped reading it when I was 12. So, there you go.

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