Tuesday, June 24, 2008

What I'm Reading Now

Mostly I'm reading No Two Alike: Human Nature and Human Individuality which is both fabulous and annoying. The fabulous part is that Rich Harris* has a wonderful mind and she demonstrates the use of it so well. Her review of the literature on personality development is clever, and engaging, and her book is set up like the mysteries she apparently enjoys. There are frequent references to both specifics, like The Daughter of Time and to the general, such as the use of red herrings.

But, understandably, the fierce reaction to her previous book, The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do (which I also really enjoyed and thought was well reasoned) has made her defensive as hell. When she's describing the limits her health places on her activities, I really like the personal stuff, but it's hard to read so much about the attacks generated by her previous book.

Additionally, I'm reading The Shadow Thieves aloud to the Possum, and we're both loving it. And I'm reading all kinds of stuff to the PandaBat, including, last night, My Wobbly Tooth Must Not Ever Never Fall Out , in honor of her first tooth falling out. And I'm reading a manuscript aloud to them both that has lots of birds in it, by the old friend who wrote the wonderful book The Verb To Bird, which, by an uncanny coincidence also has a lot of birds in it. Finally I'm carrying Clarice Bean Spells Trouble, back and forth to work each day, although I am mostly not reading it but would like to, because the Possum really enjoyed it, and the PandaBat is very fond of the Clarice Bean pictures books, and we're all just generally crazy about Lauren Child.

* It seems to me that when a woman uses her maiden name and her husband's last name both, that one should not refer to her exclusively by his name, but one should use both, even if they aren't joined with a hyphen. The same way one would use both last names of an author in the Spanish tradition. So, "Garcia Marquez", and "Rich Harris", and "Baratz-Logsted". But I'm open to discussion, and even to finding out that I've leapt** to hasty assumptions and Rich is not her maiden name, but her middle name.

** Getting meta on my meta, I just love irregular verbs, and I hate to lose them. So I persist with my "leapt" and "slept" and what have you. Even to the point of rewriting kids books as I read them aloud. Yes, I am the sort of person who also modifies the text to make it scan better or what have you. No doubt my loathing of Goodnight Moon is in part based on the faulty rhythm of the thing.

Update 6/25/08: edited to add the wordle version, via Gaiman and Scalzi

1 comment:

Kristjan Wager said...

Does a book called "The Verb To Bird" have a lot of birds in it? Who would have thought...