Wednesday, March 18, 2009

David Macaulay show in Tacoma

I've been a fan of David Macaulay's books for along time. His detailed drawings of how things work are very cool. For those of us who like to know weird stuff his books are at the top of the list. I've just found out about a showing of his drawings down at the Tacoma Art Museum. I haven't been yet but it's on my list of things to do soon.

His most recent book about the human body, The Way We Work, is fascinating and fun. The descriptions of the processes of the human body are comprehensive but not designed for casual reading. You need to spend some time with each spread to understand what is going on, but it's well worth the time.

Don't forget his earlier books about castles, cities and skyscrapers.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Very Short Introductions

The place to begin to satisfy your curiosity is Oxford University Press' Very Short Introduction series. There are over 150 titles in this series and for curious people like us this is a gold mine. Topics include history, religion, science, politics, art and many others. They are written by British professors who are experts in their field and unfortunately many are too dry and scholarly. But since you don't have to read the whole book you can just read til you fall asleep.

One of the newest ones is on the Meaning of Life. This is a discussion of the question "What is the meaning of Life?". In the preface the author refers to story about Bertrand Russell and the taxi driver. Not familiar with this story I went to Google and found this essay in the Guardian. (That's the thing about being curious. I have to keep following links to find out more)

It's an interesting book in spite of his disparaging remarks about Douglas Adams' suggested answer of 42, which I think is as good an answer as any.

Why Do I Blog?

I've been in the bookselling business off and on for over 10 years. One of the reasons I enjoy it is that I like to know a little bit about a lot of things and in this business I get to see books on just about every subject. I rarely finish a book but I read enough to find out about a particular subject to satisfy my curiosity.

So this blog is a place for me and my staff to talk about things they've learned from books. I'd also like to read what you are curious about and interesting books you've read. Let's make this a discussion about what we're curious about.

The gadgets on the sidebar are for your time wasting pleasure. If you have suggestions of other playful fun things let me know.

I'll also mention upcoming events here at the store, thoughts about bookselling and the business of bookselling.