Monday, April 27, 2015

Books I've Read (March-April)

As a quick recap
I am not literary expert. 
I'm more like a literary idiot. 
I am a shallow, impatient reader. 
 I have exactly ZERO qualifications to provide books reviews. 
But being completely unqualified has never stopped me before!

by Dan Brown

Dan Brown books are about as long as I'll tackle. 
(I warned you, literary idiot right here!)
I like them because they read like a mystery, 
but not so much that I end up skipping ahead to see how it ends 
(which I am prone to do) 
Inferno is classic Dan Brown regarding European art history, 
with the twist that Tom Hanks (I mean... Professor Langdon) has amnesia. 
If I were to rank the Dan Brown books I've read, 
this would fall as such: 
1. Deception Point (so different than his normal but so cool)
2. Angels & Demons (ending is 1000x better than movie) 
3. Inferno
4. Da Vinci Code
5. Lost Symbol (hated the end)

Confessions of a Failed Southern Lady 
by Florence King 

This book was really funny and light-hearted. 
I love books through the eyes of the child, 
and the quirky family was so amusing. 
This was a fantastic pick-up-and-put-down book 
versus a hardcore power reading session (like Dan Brown). 
My only complaint is that the last quarter of the book felt a little slow, 
but that's because it was into the more "serious" parts of life (love, sex, etc), 
rather than the quirky happenings of everyday life as a child. 

Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls 
by David Sedaris 

It's not fair to say I "read" this book, 
because I didn't even get halfway through. 
What I expected was a quirky fun book without various hilarious stories, 
but instead got a series of whiney/venting essays 
spewing opinions on everything from healthcare to parenting. 
It was quite off-putting. 
I promptly returned it to the library and moved onto the next...

Little Known Facts 
by Christine Sneed

This book is unlike any other I've read. 
It revolves around an actor of "Harrison-Ford-like-stature" (to quote Amazon), 
and each chapter is written from the perspective of those around him. 
I spent the book imaging it really was Harrison Ford, 
which made it ever so much more fun to read 
I won't lie that some chapters are significantly more depressing than others. 
I wouldn't necessarily call this an "uplifting" book, 
but its an interesting read for some fictional insight into the world of Hollywood. 
In my literary idiocy, I'd call it a medium-easy read. 
Much of it read like a conversation, 
but every now and then the narrators would delve into some philosophical thought 
or reflect back on some terribly boring tangent that droned on and on. 
But other than that, I really enjoyed it. 

Michelle Obama: a Life 
by Peter Slevin 

Let me preface all this with the disclaimer that I despise politics.
I couldn't name you a single one of Obama's policies or advisers or campaigns, 
but I do know that I like how Michelle Obama presents herself as First Lady 
(or rather, how the media has presented her - take your cynical pick)
I like how she focuses on things like child nutrition and activity. 
Of course, in all fairness,
Laura Bush could have had the identical agenda for all I know, 
but I didn't notice/care because all my efforts were focused on great causes like maximizing my drinking while maintaining my 3.94 GPA. 

That lengthy disclaimer aside, 
this book is heavy
I would not call it a "light summer read." 
It's absolutely packed with detail and insight.
For someone like me, 
who grew up in white middle-class suburban America, 
it's incredibly insightful, particularly about being black at Princeton.

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