Thursday, November 03, 2016

The triumph of seeds and others

The triumph of seeds: How grains, nuts, kernels, pulses, and pips conquered the plant kingdom and shaped human history by Thor Hanson.  I must've started this 18 months ago, shortly after I got back from PNBA.  I wanted to like it: the author was personable and a good speaker. I did like it, or at least, I have the impression that it is a good book and I should like it. But I am unable to finish it.  I can't really specify what is missing.  I passed it on to a coworker who enjoys plant-centric nonfiction. It is a great match for a smaller group of readers. 

The good liar by Nicholas Searle.  I was ready for this to be a bit more, genre-mixing-wise, than it turned out to be.  I was probably seeing what I wanted to see in a few early sentence choices, so I was a little disappointed when they didn't turn out to be any time travel or paranormal business.

This was overall a mostly enjoyable story. The storytelling format kept me interested and did a good job of releasing just enough information at a time.  I was a little disappointed with the end, the last chapter or two, but definitely a book I can recommend to most readers. 

The gene: An intimate history by Siddhartha Mukherjee.  I unfortunately didn't get very far in this, but I can say the first two chapters are great. I am interested in picking it up again when I have time for a 400-page tome that requires a bit more mental involvement than most of my choices.  

The invoice by Jonas Karlsson.  I vaguely remember a review or two, and I had a semi-formed, and, as it turns out, incorrect impression about what this book was about. Although different from what I was expecting, this is a wonderful book.  It is different than what I usually read in the way it focuses on the character; it is somehow different from the other character-driven novels I claim are my preference. I'd like to try more of this type. 

The last policeman by Ben H. Winters.  Crikey.  Another 5-star book.  I was sort of aware of this book, and would have recognized the title and author if prompted. I think I may have written it down a few times, although I don't think I ever checked it out. I was in the stacks the other day and a patron suggested it to me after asking if I knew (off the top of my head, of course) what the most recent book in the series is titled. She went on for a bit about how much she enjoyed it, enough to tip me over the edge and check it out.

I started this Sunday afternoon and the only reason I didn't finish it late, late Sunday night or early Monday morning  was my need to be able to think and form sentences at work today. It's done and I have the second in hand. I need to sleep but I'll get a few chapters in, more likely. 

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