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Search tags: general-non-fiction-books
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review 2018-04-26 14:37
The Music of the Deep: A Novel by Elizabeth Hall
The Music of the Deep: A Novel - Elizabeth Hall

This is not my usual reading fare, but I wanted something that was entertaining but didn't require too much input from my side.  This book is entertaining and has interesting characters.  Something light to read in the evenings.  I was expecting more ghost activity, but that is apparently not this book.  The orcas were a nice touch.

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review 2018-03-29 08:01
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory by Caitlin Doughty
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory - Caitlin Doughty

TITLE:  Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory 


AUTHOR:  Caitlin Doughty




FORMAT:  e-book


ISBN-13:  978-0-393-24595-0



This is something of an autobiography.  Caitlin Doughty muses about her experience working in a crematorium, the funeral/morturary business and her opinions about death, dying and, what happens to the corpse afterwards, and how different cultures deal with their dead.  The author is witty without being vulgar, the book interesting and well written.  I do however think the book was a bit too superficial.  She could have written so much more.



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review 2018-03-09 10:33
Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine - Gail Honeyman

Eleanor Oliphant thinks she is completely fine, only she is not.  This book explores why Eleanor is this way and how she grows as a person.  This is a nicely written book with a decent plot and character development.  The book reminds me of Michelle Magorian's Good Night Mr. Tom.

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review 2018-01-15 06:19
Rethinking School by Susan Wise Bauer
Rethinking School: How to Take Charge of Your Child's Education - Susan Wise Bauer

From the blurb"


"Our K–12 school system is an artificial product of market forces. It isn’t a good fit for all—or even most—students. It prioritizes a single way of understanding the world over all others, pushes children into a rigid set of grades with little regard for individual maturity, and slaps “disability” labels over differences in learning style.

Caught in this system, far too many young learners end up discouraged, disconnected, and unhappy. And when they struggle, school pressures parents, with overwhelming force, into “fixing” their children rather than questioning the system.

With boldness, experience, and humor, Susan Wise Bauer turns conventional wisdom on its head: When a serious problem arises at school, the fault is more likely to lie with the school, or the educational system itself, than with the child.

In five illuminating sections, Bauer teaches parents how to flex the K–12 system, rather than the child. She closely analyzes the traditional school structure, gives trenchant criticisms of its weaknesses, and offers a wealth of advice for parents of children whose difficulties may stem from struggling with learning differences, maturity differences, toxic classroom environments, and even from giftedness (not as much of a “gift” as you might think!).

As the author of the classic book on home-schooling, The Well-Trained Mind, Bauer knows how children learn and how schools work. Her advice here is comprehensive and anecdotal, including material drawn from experience with her own four children and more than twenty years of educational consulting and university teaching.

Rethinking School is a guide to one aspect of sane, humane parenting: negotiating the twelve-grade school system in a way that nurtures and protects your child’s mind, emotions, and spirit.


This book provides a well-written, interesting and informative assessment of the American school system, how children do not necessarily fit into this system, how parents can help their children better deal with the school system, or by "flexing" the existing system to better accommodate their children.  This book offers a great deal of practical advice in a situation where homeschooling is not an option and where the child does not fit into the school system.  I recommend this book to every parent that has a child still stuck in the current education system.


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review 2017-08-19 16:13
The Earth Moved by Amy Stewart
The Earth Moved: On the Remarkable Achievements of Earthworms - Amy Stewart

The Earth Moved is an overly chatty book that takes a superficial look at the uses of earthworms.  I felt the author spent too much page space regurgitating what Darwin had to say about earthworms and going on about her worm bin and her garden.  There wasn't nearly as much information about earthworms as I had hoped, just generally the stuff one learns in junior high-school biology class and the odd factoid, and no diagrams.  I did however find the chapters on land reclamation and sewage treatment informative.




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