Books shelved under “Culture”

115 reviews found

  1. Book cover for IMPACT

    IMPACT: Colonialism in Canada

    by Warren Cariou

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I picked this up several years ago and am finally diving into it. It’s not what I expected—I was looking for something with essays, including personal essays, but this includes a lot more poems and other, shorter and more artistic pieces. IMPACT: Colonialism in Canada is an anthology that makes quite a statement. If it’s what you’re looking for, it’s going to satisfy. In my case, it wasn’t quite what I wanted, but don’t interpret…

  2. Book cover for Can't Even

    Can't Even: How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation

    by Anne Helen Petersen

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Last year, I read the BuzzFeed article that inspired this book, and Rebecca and I discussed this topic in an episode of our podcast. I didn’t learn that Anne Helen Petersen had turned her article into a book until just around the publication day. Fortunately, I was still able to receive a review copy through NetGalley! I was very excited to dig into this book. Although in some ways this book could never…

  3. Book cover for Lost Feast

    Lost Feast: Culinary Extinction and the Future of Food

    by Lenore Newman

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    The concept of culinary extinction came to my attention late last year, and it was one of those very intriguing, “Oh, yeah, I want to know more abou that” moments. I listened to Lenore Newman on an interview with Quirks & Quarks, and I also added Rob Dunn’s Never Out of Season to my to-read list at the same time (my library just happened to have this book and not Dunn’s, so I’m reading…

  4. Book cover for x + y

    x + y: A Mathematician's Manifesto for Rethinking Gender

    by Eugenia Cheng

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    At first I admit to some scepticism about the idea that we could use mathematics to rethink our conversations around gender. I was apprehensive because science, and even to some extent mathematics (or at least more applied subsets of its, like statistics) have been misused and abused in service of gender stereotype fallacies. Indeed, Eugenia Cheng points this out herself, and this, along with her careful and patient exposition of her topic, eventually won me…

  5. Book cover for Unacceptable

    Unacceptable: Privilege, Deceit & the Making of the College Admissions Scandal

    by Melissa Korn and Jennifer Levitz

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    To an outsider (Canadian) like me, the United States college admissions system is bizarre. First there’s the byzantine distinctions between community colleges, state schools, private colleges … as opposed to Canada, where university and college have distinct meanings. It’s not just the vise-grip of the standardized testing agencies on students’ futures … it’s the whole ranking system, the prestige, and the intense competition among post-secondary schools for money and athletes. As an educator, I look…

  6. Book cover for Sisters in Hate

    Sisters in Hate: American Women on the Front Lines of White Nationalism

    by Seyward Darby

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    My colleagues and friends keep coming to me for recommendations for anti-racist reading, and I, of course, want to keep educating myself. So I was chuffed when Little, Brown offered me a review copy of Sisters in Hate: American Women on the Front Lines of White Nationalism. Now, I’m trying to mostly read anti-racism books written by people of colour—white people writing such books is fairly problematic, but Seyward Darby has seized on the…

  7. Book cover for Power Shift

    Power Shift: The Longest Revolution

    by Sally Armstrong

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Power Shift: The Longest Revolution exemplifies why the CBC Massey Lectures is such a compelling format. Sally Armstrong delivers, in 5 chapters of roughly equal length, a concise overview of the inequities faced by women around the world. She provides historical perspective, discusses the overt and covert biases present throughout our society, and includes examples of how we can change things for the better. She does her best to be inclusive and intersectional, not to…

  8. Book cover for The Sense of Style

    The Sense of Style: The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century

    by Steven Pinker

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I thought I would balance out my recent mathematical non-fiction read with a non-fiction read about the English language. Not only did I have one gathering dust on my to-read shelf for years, but it’s one that is just as technical and interested in education as The Math(s) Fix was. So, of course, it took me longer to read too. Also, I was apprehensive regarding Steven Pinker (more on that at the end of the…

  9. Book cover for Bossypants

    Bossypants

    by Tina Fey

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    My boss, fittingly, gave me Bossypants! She gave it to me in June after I broke my elbow, and I promptly put it on my shelf and did not read it, like I do with most books. But now is the time! The time to read Tina Fey’s comedic memoir.

    Let’s start with the obvious: Fey is a comedy genius. That isn’t in question. She is funny. This book is funny. If you like…

  10. Book cover for Come As You Are

    Come As You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life

    by Emily Nagoski

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Come As You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life has been on my to-read list for a while (I blame Hannah Witton), but I finally bought it as a birthday present for a friend who shares my interest in these subjects. Emily Nagoski’s book is a comprehensive guide to how people with vulvas can become more comfortable and fulfilled in their sex lives. It’s a little bit science text, a…

  11. Book cover for For the Love of Men

    For the Love of Men: A New Vision for Mindful Masculinity

    by Liz Plank

    5 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Huge note: Since writing this review, I’ve actually come out as transgender! So, uh, enjoy all the parts here where I laughably reaffirm my cis-ness! I will revise this review at some point. (Note to future Kara: actually do that.)

    I received this book as a gift from a friend who shares my interest in feminism. She found For the Love of Men: A New Vision for Mindful Masculinity somewhat revelatory. Like me, she…

  12. Book cover for White Fragility

    White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism

    by Robin DiAngelo

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I am white. I am extremely white, because I grew up (and currently live) in Thunder Bay, Ontario. Despite this city being situated on the lands of Fort William First Nation, it remains incredibly white and segregated (see Seven Fallen Feathers for more info). That’s changing a little now, and we have more people of colour coming here as immigrants and refugees. But I grew up largely sheltered from socializing with children of immigrants or…

  13. Book cover for High Heel

    High Heel

    by Summer Brennan

    3 out of 5 stars

    Updated | Reviewed

    I bought this as a birthday gift for someone I know who has quite the collection of shoes/heels, although it was on my to-read list before I considered it as a gift. High Heel is an unconventional treatise on this type of footwear. In short, easily-digestible chunks, Summer Brennan ponders the evolution of high heels in our history and culture. She wrestles with the conflicting attitudes towards high heels evinced by feminists, as well as…

  14. Book cover for Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers

    Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers: Monstrosity, Patriarchy, and the Fear of Female Power

    by Sady Doyle

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Women are monsters, according to the patriarchy. That’s the thesis of Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers: Monstrosity, Patriarchy, and the Fear of Female Power, Sady Doyle’s follow-up to her 2016 Trainwreck: The Women We Love to Hate, Mock, and Fear... and Why. To elaborate a bit more, Doyle argues that the portrayal of women (and femininity) in our media and culture overlaps with our understanding of the monstrous, the Other, the unnatural or…

  15. Book cover for Freedom Fallacy

    Freedom Fallacy: The Limits of Liberal Feminism

    by Miranda Kiraly

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I don’t remember how Freedom Fallacy: The Limits of Liberal Feminism came on my radar. Someone somewhere must have mentioned it; it looks like I bought it from Book Depository four years ago. Anyway, I finally got around to reading it last summer. I was hoping to dig deeper into some of the essays, but honestly things like breaking my elbow took up most of my time, and now I just don’t have the inclination…

  16. Book cover for The Sleeping Giant Awakens

    The Sleeping Giant Awakens: Genocide, Indian Residential Schools, and the Challenge of Conciliation

    by David B. MacDonald

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I live in Thunder Bay, the place of the eponymous sleeping giant, Nanabozho, and a location steeped in anti-Indigenous racism and an ongoing legacy of colonial oppression. So, despite being a white settler and thus the privileged party here, I do have to deal with these issues—and like other settler Canadians, I’ve got a tremendous responsibility here. I picked up The Sleeping Giant Awakens: Genocide, Indian Residential Schools, and the Challenge of Conciliation because…

  17. Book cover for A Terrible Thing to Waste

    A Terrible Thing to Waste: Environmental Racism and Its Assault on the American Mind

    by Harriet A. Washington

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    The common reaction to people seeing what I was reading with A Terrible Thing to Waste was, “Environmental racism? What’s that?” So I explained it to them, fairly succinctly I think, because it really isn’t that difficult of a concept. Indeed, when I mentioned that, historically, decisions about where to dump waste and where to build factories and how to zone cities or rent houses have disproportionately affected marginalized and racialized people, most of those…

  18. Book cover for The Hormone Diaries

    The Hormone Diaries: The Bloody Truth About Our Periods

    by Hannah Witton

    5 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Just over two years ago I read and reviewed Hannah Witton’s first book, Doing It!: Let’s Talk About Sex. I loved seeing a YouTuber I respected and whose videos I so enjoyed meet with success in book form. With The Hormone Diaries: The Bloody Truth About Our Periods, Witton does it again. Based this time on a long-running series on her channel chronicling her journey of self-exploration by discontinuing her birth control pill,

  19. Book cover for Not That Bad

    Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture

    by Roxane Gay

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    With the news coming out of the United States about abortion bans and lawmakers who actually use phrases like “consensual rape,” this seemed like the right time to read Not That Bad: Dispatches from Rape Culture. Also, I was going on a library run and it was available. Roxane Gay collects 30 essays about rape or rape culture, some previously published and others newly written for this book. This is a serious book, sure,…

  20. Book cover for Palimpsest

    Palimpsest: A History of the Written Word

    by Matthew Battles

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Oh boy, I should have checked out the Goodreads rating and reviews before buying this one. But I couldn’t resist! It was on sale at Chapters, and a whole book that seems to be about the history of writing? Sure, I flipped through the first few pages and detected a slightly pretentious tone—but I just thought it meant the author was very passionate and serious about their topic! I was seduced, I say! Seduced!

    Palimpsest:

  21. Book cover for Blood, Sweat, and Pixels

    Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are Made

    by Jason Schreier

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I love behind-the-scenes looks at industries that we don’t often think about. Whether you’re buying a game in the store or downloading it from Steam, chances are you aren’t that knowledgeable about what the game development industry is actually like. Oh, you might have read some horror stories on Reddit, heard some of the gossip going back and forth on gaming blogs. Blood, Sweat, and Pixels: The Triumphant, Turbulent Stories Behind How Video Games Are

  22. Book cover for Hello World

    Hello World: Being Human in the Age of Algorithms

    by Hannah Fry

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Algorithms are increasingly an important part of our lives, yet even as more of us become aware of this, how much do we actually stop to consider what that means? How much do we stop to consider who is designing these algorithms and how they actually work? And why are we willing to give up so much control to them in the first place? Hello World is a short tour through the various ways in…

  23. Book cover for Bad Feminist

    Bad Feminist: Essays

    by Roxane Gay

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Bad Feminist has been on my radar for years, but as with many such books, it took someone physically putting it in my hands for me to get around to it. In this case, my best friend Rebecca (with whom I have started a podcast!) gave this to me as a going-away present when she moved to Montreal (I’m not sure she understands how going-away presents work?). She inscribed it, “To our first book,…

  24. Book cover for Delusions of Gender

    Delusions of Gender

    by Cordelia Fine

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Pink is for girls and blue is for boys, and that’s just the way it is, right? Girls like nurturing toys and boys like toys that involve motion or action, and don’t even bother trying to change those habits—they’re ingrained at birth, yeah? Doubtless you’ve heard these and other stereotypes and claims about the biological origins of sex differences. In some cases, such as the pink/blue divide, you might already be aware of the history…

  25. Book cover for All Our Relations

    All Our Relations: Finding the Path Forward

    by Tanya Talaga

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    One year ago I read Tanya Talaga’s Seven Fallen Feathers, in which she remembers the seven Indigenous youths who died far from home while attending Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School here in Thunder Bay. In that heartbreaking and essential work, she links these deaths to a structure of colonialism and white supremacy and an ongoing form of cultural genocide in which the government and the rest of us remain complicit. Now Talaga is back…

  26. Book cover for Broad Band

    Broad Band: The Untold Story of the Women Who Made the Internet

    by Claire L. Evans

    5 out of 5 stars

    Updated | Reviewed

    Every so often, you read a non-fiction book that just speaks to you, that sticks with you because it’s not just informative but because it fits your level of background knowledge and expands your understanding of a topic perfectly. Broad Band: The Untold Story of the Women Who Made the Internet is such a book for me. Claire L. Evans traces the development of the modern Internet from its precursors, the earliest mechanical and electronic…

  27. Book cover for How Music Got Free

    How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, the Turn of the Century, and the Patient Zero of Piracy

    by Stephen Richard Witt

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, the Turn of the Century, and the Patient Zero of Piracy was published in 2015, and I was a little worried that being three years old would already render it obsolete. Fortunately, I was wrong. Stephen Witt’s explanation of the rise of mp3 and the transition from CDs to digital stores to streaming, along with the corresponding piracy, is clear and detailed and incredibly fascinating. This…

  28. Book cover for In Search of A Better World

    In Search of A Better World: A Human Rights Odyssey

    by Payam Akhavan

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    While I was not a fan of the last collection of Massey Lectures that I read, the brilliant thing about this series is that every year is very different. Each year brings a new speaker, a new topic, and an entirely new way of approaching the topic and the format. (I am very excited for this year’s lectures delivered by Tanya Talaga, author of Seven Fallen Feathers). Last year’s lectures by Payam Akhavan work…

  29. Book cover for Command and Control

    Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety

    by Eric Schlosser

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    This was a birthday gift, along with A Criminal Magic, from my friend Amanda, and I’m just now getting to it—which, especially when it comes to my non-fiction backlog, isn’t actually that bad of a delay! Amanda was just getting to know me at the time, so she picked two books off my to-read list. I’m not sure why I had Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety

  30. Book cover for Girl Up

    Girl Up

    by Laura Bates

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    It took me a while, but I figured out why it took me so long to read this book: the typeface.

    That might seem picky, or petty, but it's true. This small, heavyweight, sans serif typeface just did not appeal to me. I trucked on—because this book is definitely reading—but I did not, alas, enjoy the actual experience of reading it. Your mileage will probably vary, but typography is something I’m sensitive to.

    Anyway,…

  31. Book cover for Weapons of Math Destruction

    Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy

    by Cathy O'Neil

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    The profile of the term “Big Data” has risen recently. Yet, like so many buzzwords, people often don’t fully grasp the significance of the term. “Big Data” is more than the nebulous connotation of corporations collecting our information, and perhaps packaging and selling it—although it is that. It is, in fact, about how corporations quantify everything we do, even the information we don’t realize we’re leaking out into the world, and then use that data…

  32. Book cover for Policing Black Lives

    Policing Black Lives: State Violence in Canada from Slavery to the Present

    by Robyn Maynard

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Policing Black Lives took me almost an entire month to read, which is virtually unheard of, and it’s not a very long book. It is, however, very dense, academic, and not at all happy reading. Nevertheless, it is an important book. I first heard about it, and from Robyn Maynard, on an episode of the Canadaland Commons podcast devoted to the gaps in Canada’s curriculum on the history of slavery and anti-Blackness. Since I grew…

  33. Book cover for Belonging

    Belonging: The Paradox of Citizenship

    by Adrienne Clarkson

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Occasionally copies of the Massey Lectures show up in my hands (I think it’s usually my dad’s fault). Belonging: The Paradox of Citizenship is the collection of Adrienne Clarkson’s 2014 lectures. As the title implies, she examines what it means to “belong” to a nation, with specific reference to her experience as an immigrant Canadian. Clarkson is definitely a fascinating author for this topic. Given her background, her career as a journalist, and then her…

  34. Book cover for The Feminist Porn Book

    The Feminist Porn Book: The Politics of Producing Pleasure

    by Tristan Taormino

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    “My feminism will be intersectional or it will be bullshit.”

    This powerful statement, first deployed and used in this essay by Flavia Dzodan, is often on my mind. And I choose to open my review of The Feminist Porn Book with it, because that is how I want to position myself. As a white man who tries his best to be feminist, I recognize I have a hell of a lot of privilege in…

  35. Book cover for The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

    The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks

    by Rebecca Skloot

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Our science teachers do a remarkable job with what limited resources, time, and support they have in school today. However, one of the many areas in which public science education could be improved is the way in which we examine the hidden systems that power science itself, and the way these systems intersect with our society. Cell lines are a great example of this. We learn about biomedical research in school, about cells, about vaccines—but…

  36. Book cover for Female Chauvinist Pigs

    Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture

    by Ariel Levy

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Although I’ve been familiar with the concept for a while, I think I first came across the term Female Chauvinist Pig in Holly Bourne’s excellent How Hard Can Love Be?. In her novel, Bourne presents us with Melody, a stereotypical busty blonde who struts her stuff and embraces her sexuality and “hotness” because she believes that this is what makes her empowered in today’s society. It’s such an intriguing concept, something that interests me…

  37. Book cover for Algorithms of Oppression

    Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism

    by Safiya Umoja Noble

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    So you read So You Want to Talk About Race and now you have more questions. Specifically, you’re wondering how privilege affects your life online. Surely the Internet is the libertarian cyber-utopia we were all promised, right? It’s totally free of bias and discrimina—sorry, I can’t even write that with a straight face.

    Of course the Internet is a flaming cesspool of racism and misogyny. We can’t have good things.

    What Safiya Umoja Noble sets…

  38. Book cover for White Privilege

    White Privilege: The Myth of a Post-Racial Society

    by Kalwant Bhopal

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    So let’s say you acknowledge white privilege exists. (If you don’t, you should back up and maybe read something like So You Want to Talk about Race.) But maybe now you’re wondering how much white privilege actually affects people, particularly when it comes to issues of education and the workplace. That’s what White Privilege: The Myth of a Post-Racial Society tackles. Kalwant Bhopal carefully and in great detail pieces together a picture of how…

  39. Book cover for Crash Override

    Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate

    by Zoe Quinn

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Watching GamerGate unfold from the outside and listening to Zoë Quinn describe it in her own words are two very different things. Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate is more than a memoir; it’s a comprehensive dissection of a flawed facet of the Internet. I read it not just because I wanted to hear Quinn’s account of what happened but understand, from the…

  40. Book cover for You Are Not a Gadget

    You Are Not a Gadget

    by Jaron Lanier

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    My first reaction upon starting this book was trepidation regarding how long I had put it off. Published in 2010 (and therefore probably finished in late 2008 or early 2009), You Are Not a Gadget is nearly 10 years old. That’s an eternity in the world of technology. I’ve had this sitting in my to-read pile for years, just haven’t gotten around to it! I was curious to see how well Jaron Lanier’s self-titled manifesto…

  41. Book cover for Everything All at Once

    Everything All at Once: How to Unleash Your Inner Nerd, Tap into Radical Curiosity and Solve Any Problem

    by Bill Nye

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    When I taught in England, I wore a bow-tie every day to work, because I was not down with neckties. They are too long and floppy. While I was, in part, emulating the Eleventh Doctor, I’d be remiss if I didn’t give some credit for this sartorial preference to a much older role model: Bill Nye the Science Guy.

    My favourite line of Everything All at Once comes in the very first chapter: “Thinking like…

  42. Book cover for So You Want to Talk About Race

    So You Want to Talk About Race

    by Ijeoma Oluo

    5 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Do you ever accidentally inhale a book? Like, you meant to read it with your eyes, but, whoops, suddenly there it is, lodged in your esophagus and now you have to go to the hospital and explain, in various gestures, how you breathed in an entire book? This happens to me more often than I would like to admit. So You Want to Talk About Race, by Ijeoma Oluo, is just the latest…

  43. Book cover for Proofiness

    Proofiness: The Dark Arts of Mathematical Deception

    by Charles Seife

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    As our society becomes ever-more data-driven, I am increasingly interested in reading books such as Proofiness: The Dark Arts of Mathematical Deception. I want to know how numbers, algorithms, data, and mathematics are being used (or abused) to make decisions, mount arguments, and influence the course of civilization. Sound lofty? Good. Charles Seife’s incisive and interesting writing brings this topic to life. With clear, topical examples, he shows us how misunderstanding or misplaced faith…

  44. Book cover for Residential Schools and Reconciliation

    Residential Schools and Reconciliation: Canada Confronts Its History

    by J.R. Miller

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    As Canada celebrated its 150th birthday this year, reconciliation was increasingly a buzzword on the lips of politicians, journalists, and celebrities. Most people seemed to recognize that we have a ways to go in our relationship with Indigenous peoples—but most people also seem unwilling to put that recognition into action. As my recent review of Seven Fallen Feathers shows, our country is still a hostile place when it comes to Indigenous lives. And the present…

  45. Book cover for 1517

    1517: Martin Luther and the Invention of the Reformation

    by Peter Marshall

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    First of all, can we agree that it should be “95” or “ninety-five” but never “ninetyfive”, like WTF.

    Distinctly weird hyphenation aside, 1517: Martin Luther and the Invention of the Reformation, is a thoughtful examination of one of those well-celebrated yet mythologized moments in history. Peter Marshall uses the stories surrounding Luther’s apocryphal posting of the 95 theses to examine the character of the Reformation in Luther’s time, his legacy and effects on the…

  46. Book cover for The Future of War

    The Future of War: A History

    by Lawrence Freedman

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Not actually my cup of tea, The Future of War: A History is a massive data dump and analysis of what we used to think about the future of warfare. Lawrence Freedman has clearly Done the Research, and I have to hand it to him: there’s compelling stuff here. Thanks to NetGalley and Public Affairs for the eARC.

    I love the premise of this book. It kind of merges my passion for literature and my…

  47. Book cover for Seven Fallen Feathers

    Seven Fallen Feathers: Racism, Death, and Hard Truths in a Northern City

    by Tanya Talaga

    5 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Seven Fallen Feathers: Racism, Death, and Hard Truths in a Northern City is one of those books I wish didn’t exist but am so grateful it does. Over the past few years, I’ve seen my city come up in the national media from time to time—and often related to Indigenous issues, such as the deaths or inquests of the students in this book. But after the interest in those stories dies down, and the spotlight…

  48. Book cover for Bad Girls from History

    Bad Girls from History: Wicked or Misunderstood?

    by Dee Gordon

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    This is one of those tough books to rate and review, because anything I say is going to feel too harsh. Bad Girls from History is not a bad book by any means; I think there is a sizable audience out there for whom this could be an interesting and informative read. I’m just not a member of that audience. Dee Gordon’s dive into presenting 100 women who misbehaved is a little too encylopaedic, a…

  49. Book cover for Evolving Brains, Emerging Gods

    Evolving Brains, Emerging Gods: Early Humans and the Origins of Religion

    by E. Fuller Torrey

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    One of the benefits of deciding to request books from NetGalley is that it exposes me to more academic science writing than I might otherwise find. Thanks to Columbia University Press for letting me read this. I’m really fascinated by the study of religion, from a sociological and anthropological perspective. I love to learn about the history of religions, and also about how we know what we know. Evolving Brains, Emerging Gods looks at the…

  50. Book cover for Jane's Fame

    Jane's Fame: How Jane Austen Conquered the World

    by Claire Harman

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Yeah, my dad bought me two books about Jane Austen a few birthdays ago, and I figured I should read them back-to-back so I could compare them. The other was A Brief Guide to Jane Austen. This one, Jane’s Fame: How Jane Austen Conquered the World is much less a biography or analysis of her individual novels and much more an examination of how Austen went from moderately successful author in her time to…