Today marks the halfway point of my goal to read 52 books in a year! I started this goal about 5 months ago, so I am ahead of schedule (Thank god for lengthy commutes and audiobooks!). I’ve been digging into non-fiction subjects that interest me recently, instead of my go-to mystery or fiction novel:
23. Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil DeGrasse Tyson: 3 Stars
Three stars only because I still don’t understand Astrophysics… I bought this audiobook because I find Neil DeGrasse Tyson so charming and, for someone science-illiterate like me, I thought this might be a good way to understand the basics of astrophysics. Nope, still don’t understand. I’ll try it again sometime. Maybe.
24. Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity by Katherine Boo: 4 Stars
I was assigned this for class, and I’m so glad. I’ve read a few books in the narrative non-fiction style and they are almost always great. Boo paints a realistic and un-patronizing portrait of the reality of a Mumbai slum on the outskirts of Mumbai. Highly recommend.
25. Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight by M. E. Thomas: 3 Stars
I’m not quite sure how to feel about this book. It was touted by the Economist as more of a self-help book, which makes me reeeeeally nervous about the staff at the Economist. Thomas writes from a pseudonym, which is understandable, but also takes away some of the credibility. She talks about her own experiences and feelings as a highly functioning sociopath, which got a little tedious at times. Also, a symptom of being a sociopath is self-aggrandizing, which as a non-sociopath or empath, could be a turn off. I think Sherlock may do more good for the public image of sociopaths than this book.
26. Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates: 5 Stars
Coates’ commentary on being black in America today, structured as a letter to his son. First, the way he weaves imagery is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. His writing style is like cool silk. (See how I tried to use imagery there?!) This book is beautiful and violent and lofty and bleak all at the same time. In the 3.5 hours I spent reading this book, I feel like I smiled, learned, teared up, and reached for a notepad to quickly jot down a phrase more than I have in a long time.