Nightstand (January 2012)

Sigh. Here I go again, almost missing a Nightstand. But I suppose this time it’s justified since state left my facility last night and I got 3 hours of sleep on an office floor the night before. Apparently I needed sleep more than making sure my Nightstand post was ready to go.

What I read as of the 15th (when I last updated this post):

Adult Fiction

  • Dana’s Valley by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan
    It took me a bit to get into this book about a young girl whose sister is battling an unknown disease (well, unknown at the beginning.) Once I got into it, I was hooked and I cried and cried. This book marks the close of my reading of Janette Oke at Eiseley library (except, of course, for books co-written with others and cataloged under their names.)
  • Lady in Waiting by Susan Meissner
    I put this on my TBR list after reading Barbara’s review–but had forgotten what it was about by the time I got it out of the library. I wasn’t disappointed though–this was a lovely tale of two women, Lady Jane Grey and a modern day Jane, dealing with very different life circumstances, but coming to similar conclusions. A great pick for lovers of historical and/or Christian fiction.

Adult Non-fiction

  • The Dangerous Book for Dogs by Rex and Sparky
    A hilarious parody of The Dangerous Book for Boys (which is, by the way, a great book), The Dangerous Book for Dogs includes everything a young dog needs to know to be a REAL dog–including how to break up a dinner party, the meaning of the most common chase dreams, and a record of the experiments Alexei and Sergei (two Russian scientific dogs) performed on Ivan Pavlov. (More extensive review here)
  • Freakonomics by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
    A fascinating look at everyday life through the lens of economics. Except that economics seems a weird way to describe it. (Sort of like using the term “home economics” to refer to cooking class or sewing.) Actually, this is more about analyzing (sometimes disparate) data in unique ways. The authors ask sometimes bizzare, sometimes straightforward questions like “What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common?” (exploring incentives and cheating), “Where have all the criminal gone?” (actually, they’re dead), and “Would a Roshanda by any other name smell as sweet?” (how names make their way through society–and reflect ones’ social stratum).
  • It Looked Different on the Model by Laurie Notaro
    Very funny. Clothes you try on but can’t get off, awkward neighborhood parties, feeling like a child when you go back to your parents’ house. Everywoman’s story, except to the nth degree. (More extensive review here)
  • Stick to Drawing Comics, Monkey Brain! by Scott Adams
    Yeah, I pretty much wish the author had taken the helpful advice he ignored (the title of the book.) I just didn’t think it was that funny. (More extensive review here)

Juvenile Fiction

  • Behind the Curtain by Peter Abrahams
    Second of the Echo Falls Mysteries (I’d already read one and two.) Generally good, not too suspenseful, but enough. A good transition, I think, from the Nancy Drew-type mysteries to adult mysteries or psychological thrillers.
  • Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Carnival Prize
  • Paper Covers Rock by Jenny Hubbard
    A Cybils nominee (in YA fiction) that didn’t make it to finalist. Boy at boarding school borrows from Moby Dick while journaling his story. He watched his best friend die. He ran. He might have been responsible. He certainly feels responsible. But then another friend makes a plan and the (female) teacher he has a crush on pays him special attention (because she knows he’s not telling something about how his friend died? because she likes him back? he doesn’t know.) It’s a pretty good story, but has a lot of YA-y material (homosexuality, masturbation, and sexual fantasies are all addressed/included at length.)
  • The Secret of Pirates’ Hill by Franklin W. Dixon
  • Young Cam Jansen and the Dinosaur Game
  • Young Cam Jansen and the Double Beach Mystery
  • 9 Children’s picture books

Juvenile Non-Fiction

    Brave Deeds: How One Family Saved Many from the Nazis by Ann Alma
    A wonderful story of a family in the Dutch Resistance preserved many from the Nazis. Though the story is told by a fictional nameless young narrator, all events (and names) except those directly pertaining to her “back story” are historically accurate. This is a fantastic story told well.
  • Rescuers defying the Nazis by Toby Axelrod
  • 1 book about math

Don’t forget to drop by 5 Minutes 4 Books to see what others are reading this month!

What's on Your Nightstand?

10 thoughts on “Nightstand (January 2012)”

  1. My husband just finished “Freakonomics”. I read it a year or so ago and had my daughter read it this year as part of our economics study. Although–I agree with you that technically calling it “economics” might be a stretch. ha. It did contain some interesting data though. I’d like to read Superfreakonomics.

    Hope you get caught up on sleep soon!

  2. I want to read “Dangerous Book for Dogs!” How funny! And I’ve wanted to read “Freakonomics” for ages and still haven’t. Your list sounds really good.

    5 Minutes for Books

  3. Wow! You’ve read a lot, yet again. Lady in Waiting was a really good book. I want to take a look at some nonfiction books that look at the events in that story. I’m curious how much of the historical aspects are true to life.

    Get some sleep! :) Happy February reading.

  4. Your book lists always look interesting to me. I read Dana’s Valley years ago and remembered being teary-eyed about it; I was probably 12 at the time too and the thought of my sister (or me!) getting sick like that was scary.

    I haven’t read Lady in Waiting yet but I love Meissner’s writing! I think the only one of her’s that I’ve read is The Shape of Mercy, which I really enjoyed.

    Happy reading!

    What’s On My Nightstand


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