The Girl on the Velvet Swing – Simon Baatz

This is a true story that took place at the turn of the 20th Century in New York.  The essential facts of the story are as follows: A sixteen-year-old girl – Evelyn Nesbit – arrives in New York in 1901 and meets a wealthy, influential man three times her age – famous architect Stanford White […]

The Best Game Ever – Mark Bowden

This is the third book by Bowden that I’ve read this year and probably fifth or sixth overall.  I’ve yet to be disappointed – he’s really good at whatever subject he takes on.  In this case, it’s the NFL Championship Game played on December 28, 1958, between the Baltimore Colts and New York Giants – […]

Ice Bowl ’67 – Chuck Carlson

According to the short biography of the author that’s included on the book jacket, Chuck Carlson was a sportswriter who spent 11 years covering the Packers and this is his tenth book on the team.  That being the case, my guess on how this book came about is that his publisher called him up and […]

Behemoth – Joshua B. Freeman

I’ve spent the majority of my working life in manufacturing, so I had high hopes for this book – thought it would be interesting to read.  It tells the history of factories starting with British textile mills in the 1600s all the way through to the giant factories in China today.  It’s a large book […]

The Kings of Big Spring – Bryan Mealer

The book is a history of the author’s family that essentially covers the Twentieth Century.  His forbears migrated from southern Georgia to an area of Texas later called Big Spring.  The story covers their experiences during booms and busts in the oil industry, the Depression, and multiple wars.  The author starts with the story of […]

Timekeepers – Simon Garfield

This book should have been better.  It’s all about time – how we live with it, how we track it, how it dominates our lives, how people in history viewed it compared to now, what changes there’ve been over the centuries that affect our interactions with it, and how there are so many contradictions in […]

Killers of the Flower Moon – David Grann

The Osage Indians of the plains met the same fate as most Indian tribes in the 19th century – they were forced from their land and made to resettle in a place no one else wanted.  In their case, it was in a rocky area of Oklahoma.  When they were resettled, however, the Osage did […]

Off the Charts – Ann Hulbert

The subtitle of this book is “The Hidden Lives and Lessons of American Child Prodigies.”  Sounds interesting, doesn’t it?  I thought the subject matter was fascinating and I had high hopes for it.  As a parent (NOT of prodigies [no offense, kids!]) finding out how parents dealt with extraordinary kids in some extreme circumstances sounded […]

The Finish – Mark Bowden

The book tells the story of the killing of Osama bin Laden.  As is typically the case with any Bowden book (and I’ve now read four, I think), it’s incredibly well researched and well-told.  He gives a blow-by-blow account of all the planning, searching, sleuthing, and luck that went into finding and killing bin Laden. […]

The Mayflower – Rebecca Fraser

Mostly enjoyed this book.  Parts were really interesting, parts were a little less interesting, parts read like a US History text book.  I actually had to go back and re-read some sections because I realized I had just sort of glazed over them.  When I re-read those sections, I actually enjoyed the book more. The […]