TBR List Declutter, Issue 18

Odd. I usually have a few things to say before I jump into the list, but I’m drawing a blank today. (Actually, I have lots of things on my mind, but I don’t want to share any of them with the Internet. It’s nothing personal; they’re just not ready to be shared yet.)

So, let’s just get to the books.

Wondering what this is all about? Check out the introductory post.

Titles 171-180:

Title: Nickommoh!: A Thanksgiving Celebration
Author: Koller, Jackie French
Date Added: 11/26/11

Verdict: Keep. I really like that this picture book is about the harvest festival celebrated by the Narragansetts before the arrival of the Puritan colonists from England. The way I was taught about the founding of Plimoth Colony, it seemed like no traditions existed in the New World until the Pilgrims arrived. I appreciate learning about the cultures that predated Plimoth by many centuries, and I appreciate the opportunity to share with my children a different view of the origins of the United States than the one I grew up with.

Project List: none.

Title: The First Thanksgiving
Author: George, Jean Craighead
Date Added: 11/26/11

Verdict: Go. My kids and I have already read Nathaniel Philbrick’s Mayflower together, and they seemed to digest that version of the story of the first Thanksgiving fairly well. This one doesn’t seem likely to offer anything more.

Project List: n/a

Title: Chop Wood, Carry Water
Author: Fields, Rick
Date Added: 11/28/11

Verdict: Go. Been there, done that. Based on the synopsis and reviews, this seems to be similar to many other books/blogs/mindfulness classes/memes I’ve encountered.

Project List: n/a

Title: Real Conversations with Imaginary Friends
Author: King, E.E. *
Date Added: 12/09/11

Verdict: Keep. This collection of short stories sounds interesting. And Ray Bradbury blurbed the book. I can’t decide if that matters to me or not, but it seemed worthy of a mention.

Project List: none.

Title: Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World
Author: Dalai Lama XIV
Date Added: 12/09/11

Verdict: Go. The idea that religion isn’t necessary for ethical behavior is one about which I’ve thought for quite a while now. Based on the reviews, this sounds like it’s more of an introduction to the idea. I’d be more interested in a book about how to connect with people on the level of shared ethics regardless of faith. It’s easy to talk with people who agree with us, but “easy” isn’t usually the path towards growth, connection, and positive change.

Project List: n/a

Title: Utopia
Author: More, Thomas
Date Added: 12/16/11

Verdict: Keep. This is a no-brainer for my Cavalcade of Classics. One reviewer described it as a sequel to Plato’s Republic and inspiration to Gulliver’s Travels. I’d always imagined Utopia as a sort of Pilgrim’s Progress but through happy places, so this description was a little surprising to me. If I were really cool I’d read it in Latin. I, however, am not really cool.

Project List: Cavalcade of Classics

Title: Round Trip
Author: Jonas, Ann
Date Added: 12/27/11

Verdict: Keep. It’s a cute idea, and my kids might enjoy it, too.

Project List: none.

Title: A Writer’s Book of Days: A Spirited Companion and Lively Muse for the Writing Life
Author: Reeves, Judy
Date Added: 12/28/11

Verdict: Keep. There are two reasons I’ve not picked this one up before now. 1: I’m always more excited about planning to write every day than actually writing every day, and I already have a solid collection of writing books on my bookshelves, and 2: I always think the cover looks like a nightgown blowing in a breeze, maybe hung on a clothesline as a thunderstorm approaches, and that weirds me out. Now that I realize the cover is a flying book, I feel better about giving it a try.

Project List: none.

Title: The Poisoner’s Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York
Author: Blum, Deborah
Date Added: 01/02/12

Verdict: Keep. Looks like a fun premise for a mystery novel, and it might be enjoyable for my science-loving daughter, too.

Project List: none.

Title: The Digital Divide: Arguments for and Against Facebook, Google, Texting, and the Age of Social Networking
Author: Bauerlein, Mark
Date Added: 01/10/12

Verdict: Go. This seems less interesting than when I heard about it five years ago.

Project List: n/a

Four more off the list for a total of 57 out of 180 (7.6% of the original 750).

Any thoughts about what made the cut and what didn’t?

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