My Reading List

It has lately occured to me that I am not doing enough reading, excepting of course the various articles and monographs which I am always reading as part of my research.  Last time I realized this I responding by doing the 50 book challenge, back during my livejournal days.  Perhaps something like that is in order again in the near future.

In any case, lately stacks of books have been forming at my home and office, and I’m realizing I’ll need to make a conscious effort to set aside time for reading.

So here are the ten books at the top of my “to read” pile.  I’m sure this tells you everything you need to know about me.  Whatever that may be.

  1. An Imaginary Tale: The Story of \sqrt{-1}, by Paul Nahin.
    This one I’ve actually started reading; it was a graduation gift from my former undergraduate adviser, current coauthor and friend.  It’s a very well-researched look at the history of imaginary numbers, which is a story I thought I knew pretty well, but I was wrong.
  2. Strange Attractors: Poems of Love and Mathematics, edited by Sarah Glaz and Joanne Growney.  I guess the title says it all, and if it doesn’t the website does.  Since I am interested in aesthetic values of mathematics, every once in a while someone asks me my opinion of this book.  I’m tired of having to say I’ve never read it.  (It’s not available in libraries or in stock in bookstores near me, and I enjoy buying books online much less than I enjoy walking into a bookstore.)
  3. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith. Let us call this an adaptation of the classic which everyone’s read
  4. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen. Because I haven’t.
  5. The Moose that Roared: The Story of Jay Ward, Bill Scott,  a Flying Squirrel, and a Talking Moose, by Keith Scott.
  6. A stack of back issues of “Poetry” which a local librarian gave me, presumably in response to my well-received reading of Billy Collins’ “Litany” at the Poetry Night a couple months back.
  7. The Color of Magic, by Terry Pratchett  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve read the first couple dozen Discworld books.  I’m going to start over and work my way through them again, this time with my wife.
  8. O Alquimista, by Paulo Coelho.  I bought this in Portuguese from the Brasilian grocery in Columbus.  I read it about halfway through before getting buried under my dissertation.  Time to restart.
  9. Cien Años de Soledad, by Gabriel García Marruez.  I minored in Latin American literature.  I haven’t read it yet.  Enough said.
  10. The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why Democracies Choose Bad Policies, by Bryan Caplan.  Heard about this via an interview with the author on Econtalk.  Read about half.  Insightful.  A little discouraging re human society.

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