So What Are You Reading?

Reviews of Books.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

El Deafo

El Deafo by Cece Bell
Author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her subsequent experiences with a very powerful, but very awkward, hearing aid. Delightful illustrations colored by David Lasky illustrate a sensitive and revealing story of growing up with hearing loss.

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

A Case of Two Cities

A Case of Two Cities by Qui Xiaolong
I don't often read mysteries or what are called Police Procedurals but I have become fond of Qui Xiaolong's series about Inspector Chen Cao of the Shanghai Police Department. The Inspector is a poet who has become a cop, and he navigates the complex political and social milieu of modern Shanghai while solving difficult cases with a poet's mind. With a lot of emphasis on the local foods, I have fallen in love with this author's depiction of life in the city he grew up in as seen through the eyes of a poet detective.
In the fourth volume of the series, A Case of Two Cities, he is given a case dealing with corruption that may lead to the highest levels of Chinese government, but the culprit has fled to Los Angeles. Filled with food, poetry and politics, this is a detective story with a unique perspective that I find irresistible.

Sunday, July 01, 2018

Christmas on Record

Christmas on Record: Best Selling Xmas Singles and Albums of the Past 40 Years by Craig W. Pattillo
Craig Pattillo has gathered together an amazing set of lists about the most popular Christmas songs and albums of the 42 year period beginning in 1940 and ending in 1982.
His first list is 20 pages long and contains Charted Xmas Singles alphabetical by recording artist.
The next list is a one page list of the Number One Christmas Songs for each year from 1940 through 1982.
The next two lists are the Top Christmas Songs By Artists of the Past 42 Years and the Top Christmas Songs of the Past 42 Years.
Then there are two lists of Million Selling Songs, first by number of copies sold, and then by Year.
The 20 Top Christmas Single Artists are listed next, with Bing Crosby as number 1.
Following these, is a 50 page list of Notable Xmas Singles & Artist Index which lists artists alphabetically with their holiday singles.
Next is a 25 page Xmas Song Index by song title, listing the artists who sang each.
This is followed by a series of lists of Extended Play (EP) records.
A 25 page listing of Charted Xmas Albums from 1945-1982 is arranged alphabetically by artist and lists the serial numbers for various releases.
This is followed by a one-page list of the Number One Christmas Album of each year from 1942 to 1982.
The next list is a ranked listing of the 254 Top Christmas Albums of the Past 37 Years.
Another 25 page list contains an Artist Index of Notable Christmas Albums, going from Abbott & Costello to Loretta Young.
There are also lists of Albums related to Television shows or that are compilations of various artists.
I used this book to create a YouTube playlist of the Top Christmas Songs from 1940 to 1982.