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Books #49 & #50
kitty, reading
sarahmichigan wrote in 50_in_2011
Woo-hoo - made it to 50! I'm guessing my total books read in 2011 will be 52-54 by Dec. 31...

Book #49 was "Gormenghast," the second of three books in a series by Mervyn Peake. Our main character, Titus, comes of age in this book and really becomes the 77th Earl of Groan in his own right - only to relinquish the role at the very end. I love the Peake's descriptions of places and people and nature, even though they do slow the pacing a bit. It's also interesting to me how he can make you feel some compassion or sense of identification with the villain, Steerpike. I don't know explicitly what themes Peake believed he was exploring, but it seems to me that the contrast between Titus and Steerpike is about the right and the wrong ways to go about challenging tradition and breaking out of the bonds life tries to impose upon you.

Book #50 was "Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3.5-Billion-Year History of the Human Body" by Neil Shubin. This was a book recommended by a friend, and I really liked it! When it comes to science topics popularized for the general public, I sometimes am frustrated that they aren't telling me much I don't already know, since I do a fair amount of science reading for pleasure. This is especially true in the area of evolution, as I've done a fair bit of reading on the topic, from "The Blind Watchmaker" to "On the Origin of Species." There are a few places in the book where Shubin is rehashing things I already know, but he gets there in a different and entertaining way. And, I learned a ton about the evolution of the human body, and found the section on the evolution of our ears especially fascinating - do you know why getting overly-drunk can give you the spins? I know now, after reading this book! I highly recommend this book for anyone curious to learn more about the evolution of the human body while simultaneously being entertained.
1. The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven [fiction/short stories]- Sherman Alexie
2. The Lightning Thief [fiction]- Rick Riordan (unabridged book on CD)
3. Dreamers of the Day [fiction]- Mary Doria Russell.
4. The Golden Compass (Book #1 of His Dark Materials Trilogy) [fiction]- Phillip Pullman (unabridged book on CD)
5. Lives of Girls Who Became Famous [non-fiction]- Sarah Knowles Bolton
6. I am a Strange Loop Douglas [non-fiction]- Douglas Hofstadter
7. Bury Me Standing: The Gypsies and Their Journey [non-fiction]- Isabel Fonseca
8. The Subtle Knife (Book #2 of His Dark Materials Trilogy) [fiction]- Phillip Pullman (unabridged book on CD)
9. 2001: A Space Oddyssey [fiction]- Arthur C. Clarke
10. The Crystal Ship [fiction/novelas]- Vonda McIntyre, Marta Randall and Joan Vinge
11. The Watchmen [fiction/graphic novel]- Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons
12. Possessing the Secret of Joy [fiction]- Alice Walker
13. The Amber Spyglass (Book #3 of His Dark Materials Trilogy) [fiction]- Phillip Pullman (unabridged book on CD)
14. The Young Romantics: The Tangled Lives of English Poetry's Greatest Generation [non-fiction]- Daisy Hay
15. Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic [non-fiction/memoir]- Alison Bechdel
16. Who Fears Death [fiction]- Nnedi Okorafor
17. The Mysteries of Pittsburgh [fiction]- Michael Chabon
18. Deja Dead [fiction]- Kathy Reichs (unabridged book on CD)
19. A Home at the End of the World [fiction]- Michael Cunningham
20. The Bradbury Report [fiction]- Stephen Polansky (unabridged book on CD)
21. Over Sea, Under Stone [fiction]- Susan Cooper (unabridged book on CD)
22. Alan Turing: The Enigma [non-fiction/biography] - Andrew Hodges.
23. The Dark is Rising [fiction]- Susan Cooper (unabridged book on CD)
24. The Calculus Diaries [non-fiction]- Jennifer Ouellette
25. Typhon's Children [fiction]- Toni Anzetti
26. TripMaster Monkey His Fake Book [fiction]- Maxine Hong Kingston
27. Autobiography of a Face [non-fiction/memoir]- Lucy Grealy
28. The Martian Chronicles [fiction]- Ray Bradbury (unabridged book on CD)
29. Daughters of Rome [fiction]- Kate Quinn
30. The Undertaking [non-fiction/essays]- Thomas Lynch
31. Greenwitch [fiction- Susan Cooper(unabridged book on CD)
32. A Mathematician Reads the Paper [non-fiction]- John Allen Paulos
33. The Fountains of Paradise [fiction]- Arthur C. Clarke
34. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows [fiction]- J.K. Rowling (unabridged book on CD)
35, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time [fiction]- Mark Haddon
36. Stealing Buddha's Dinner [non-fiction/memoir]- Bich Minh Nguyen
37. Teacher Man [non-fiction/memoir]- Frank McCourt
38. The Grey King [fiction]- Susan Cooper (unabridged book on CD)
39. Titus Groan [fiction]- Mervyn Peake
40. Arc of Justice: A saga of race, civil rights and murder in the Jazz Age [non-fiction]- Kevin Boyle
41. Silver on the Tree [fiction]- Susan Cooper (unabridged book on CD)
42. The Sea of Monsters [fiction]- Rick Riordan (unabridged book on CD)
43. A Night in the Lonesome October [fiction]- Roger Zelazny (unabridged book on CD)
44. Riders of Leviathan [fiction]- Toni Anzetti
45. Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America [non-fiction]- Erik Larson
46. How to Make Friends and Influence People [non-fiction]- Dale Carnegie
47. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius [non-fiction/memoir]- David Eggers
48. A Scanner Darkly [fiction]- Phillip K. Dick (unabridged book on CD)

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