The Republic of Pirates: Being the True and Surprising Story of the Caribbean Pirates and the Man Who Brought Them Down by Colin Woodward (383 pgs/read 150) 2007
What I love about this book, is that it doesn’t veer into hyperbole or romantic notions about pirates. Life among the sailors of the day was nothing like the glamorous or romantic ideals we have, it was bleak and brutal and often short. Woodward sticks to the facts, drawing from historical documents and using direct quotes only rather than made-up dialogue. Truly informative, well laid out, and constantly interesting. The included documents (maps, ship silhouettes and relative sizes, values of everything from a galley to a barrel of ships biscuits to an adult slave) are informative and intriguing.
Why I stopped: came up due before I had a chance to finish. Ordered it a second time but I’d lost the urgency.
Magic for Beginners by Kelly Link (272 pgs/read 100ish) 2005
Quirky, captivating short stories. In one story, a family find their new home becoming haunted piece by piece. First a clock, then a pair of pants, then a bathroom. In another story, two young men man an all-night convience store near a chasm full of zombies. Link can make the most bizarre occurrances seem natural.
Stopped?: Fun, but I kept never getting back to it.
Inventing Beauty: A History of the Innovations That Have Made Us Beautiful by Teresa Riordan (307 pgs/read 150ish) 2004
A lot more interesting than you’d think & fun to skim. The illustrations (everything from the first patent of a mascara applicator to bustles through the ages) are fascinating.
Stopped?: waaaay overdue, every time I pick it up to return I get hooked again. Dangerous! I’ve got to get rid of it.
Mirabilis by Susann Cokal (389 pgs/read 30) 2001
Bizarre story of the village outcast who begins performing miracles.
Stopped?: somewhat interesting, but not enough to make me invest in it.
The Rough Guide to Blogging by Jonathan Yang (200pg/read 100ish) 2006
Fairly helpful. Walks you through blogs from step one. Well laid out; I’d recommend it to anyone interested in blogs.
Stopped?: read everything applicable.