Category: Non-fiction

Jul 24 2018

The Unwomanly Face of War: An Oral History of Women in World War II by Svetlana Alexievich

I can’t even imagine the amount of work Svetlana Alexievich put into writing this book: not just tracking down, transcribing and editing the testimonies of these brave, undervalued women, but also the sheer weight of bearing witness to so much courage and heartache. The Unwomanly Face Of War is an exceptionally moving historical document written …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/07/24/the-unwomanly-face-of-war-an-oral-history-of-women-in-world-war-ii-by-svetlana-alexievich/

Jun 14 2018

The Royal Art Of Poison by Eleanor Herman

I’m one of those overwhelmingly practical (some would say dull,) people who, when asked which historical time and place I’d most want to live in, answers “Right here and now is just fine.” Don’t get me wrong, like any other closet romantic, I have a fancy for the decadent trappings of bygone Europe, with the …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/06/14/the-royal-art-of-poison-by-eleanor-herman/

Apr 22 2018

How Not to Be a Professional Footballer by Paul Merson

Absolutely cracking depiction of the lifestyle of a professional English footballer in and around the 1990s. Paul Merson is an Arsenal legend whose off-the-field antics were just as noteworthy as his sporting accomplishments, tho perhaps in a far different context. Merse is a larger than life figure who was as well known for his ebullient …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/04/22/how-not-to-be-a-professional-footballer-by-paul-merson/

Oct 10 2017

What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton

How to review a book by one of the most polarizing politicians of recent memory describing an election campaign and aftermath that still elicit strong feelings from large swathes of the electorate? If you think Hillary Clinton is the devil incarnate, I’d be very surprised that you’d even consider reading this book, and then I’d …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/10/10/what-happened-by-hillary-rodham-clinton/

May 24 2017

Traveler of Worlds by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro

The important information on this book’s cover is the subtitle, Conversations with Robert Silverberg. Traveler of Worlds is entirely a set of interviews with Silverberg, who recently passed 80 years of age. He’s one of the grand old men of science fiction; he has attended every Hugo award ceremony; he was incredibly prolific back in …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/24/traveler-of-worlds-by-alvaro-zinos-amaro/

May 17 2017

Mozart in the Jungle: Sex, Drugs, and Classical Music by Blair Tindall

By the time Blair Tindall gets to the skills analysis that tells her she’s terrible at logic and analysis, I was so frustrated with this book that I said aloud, “You got that right.” Other things she gets right in the book: the fly-on-the wall look at the life of a professional classical musician of …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/17/mozart-in-the-jungle-sex-drugs-and-classical-music-by-blair-tindall/

Nov 01 2016

The View from the Cheap Seats by Neil Gaiman

One of the descriptions of Neil Gaiman that has stuck in my head is “reasonably facile writer.” He used the phrase in a New Yorker profile back in 2010, and there’s a British self-deprecating quality to the description, but there’s more than a little truth to it, too. Gaiman writes quickly, and with reasonable facility, …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/11/01/the-view-from-the-cheap-seats-by-neil-gaiman/

Sep 09 2016

Fresh Off The Boat: A Memoir by Eddie Huang

I’m a fan of the charming ABC comedy of the same name, which was how I first heard of this memoir, and was taken aback to discover that Eddie Huang himself had very negative opinions of the show. But then I read this book, and I get it. Mr Huang had an abusive childhood, and …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/09/09/fresh-off-the-boat-a-memoir-by-eddie-huang/

Jan 12 2016

The Art of Travel by Alain de Botton

  I purchased The Art of Travel on the way out of town during a spring break beach trip. The options at the Baylor Bookstore (the prep school, not the university), were limited to the sorts of things high schoolers either should read (such as Night by Elie Wiesel) or must read (insert Shakespeare title …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/01/12/the-art-of-travel-by-alain-de-botton/

Dec 20 2015

Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina by Misty Copeland

So I’m torn. I’m a big fan of ABT (because Center Stage is the best dance movie ever, and also everything ABT stands for) and I knew of Misty Copeland but I never really cared about her any more than the average principal dancer till I saw her judging on So You Think You Can …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2015/12/20/life-in-motion-an-unlikely-ballerina-by-misty-copeland/