Book Challenge Updates

After having to declare that in two weeks I hadn’t checked off a single new box on my 2015 Book Challenges, I’ve now finished three in the past three days.

First, in furtherance of my Literary Birthday challenge, I read Up from Slavery by Booker T. Washington. I had known his story since I was a little girl, but can’t swear that I’d ever read it in his own words. What an impressive man; a worthy role model for any age. Despite his experience, he “resolved that I would permit no man, no matter what his colour might be, to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.” He was so forward-thinking and I was inspired by soaking up his words for a few days.

Next, I needed to choose a micro-history on some topic for the Read Harder challenge, and I’d recently seen a blurb for one that was named a Best Science Book of 2014: Proof: The Science of Booze. Impressive in its reporting and interesting in its wordcraft, this traces the history of intoxicating drinks and gives many details about how various firewaters came to be, their effect on cultures around the world and the science of their physiological effects (more confusing than you might expect.) An interesting read.

And then, thanks to another night of insomnia, I finally read (and enjoyed) Albert Camus’ classic The Stranger . A thoughtful novella.

I have other books going (including one that’s printed on actual paper — gasp!) but these three apply to some directed reading goals so I decided to post them as a group.


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