Books Read in February 2011

A Paramedic's Story by Steven "Kelly" Grayson

It's not great literature, by any means, but it's an entertaining set of stories offering an illuminating perspective into the life of an EMT.

The Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman

I hadn't been sure what to expect when I pre-ordered this book. I just knew I'd talked to Josh over the last few years, found his reading list useful, and was very interested in seeing what he had distilled from his extensive individual study. He did a great job of condensing many ideas into one book, which turned out to be organized more like a reference work than a narrative. I'm intending to write about it more extensively, so I'll leave this as a short recommendation to get your own copy if you want a business education.

Death's Excellent Vacation by Charlaine Harris and Toni L. P. Kelner

Amusing colleciton of paranormal oriented short stories. Nothing striking enough to make me wish I'd bought it instead of borrowed it but worth my time to read. 

Spun in Sorcery by Barbara Bretton

Nice breezy paranormal mystery with a bit of a knitting/craftwork theme to go along with.  

Invention by Design by Henry Petroski

This book wasn't exactly what I expected. I thought there would be more meta/abstract discussion based on the sub-title of "How Engineers Get From Thought to Thing." As it was, it was a collection of storied examples which included comments on dead-end paths and evolution of patents and such things. I enjoyed it, of course, as I always enjoy Petroski's stories. 

The Sleeping Beauty by Mercedes Lackey

I always enjoy the 500 Kingdoms stories, where the fairy tale tradition is actually a force of magic shaping people's lives. I especially liked the crossing of a few different typical stories within this one and the unexected friendship between the two main suitors for the princess' hand in marriage.

Making Things Move by Dustyn Roberts

For all that I'm an engineer by training, the mechanical bitses were never something I was particularly in to. I was more interested in the materials they were made of and why that mattered. So it was fun to read this book intended for DIYers and hobbyists about motors and gears and bearings and bushings and other such things you can use to make various mechanisms at home. It was useful, understandable, and even included basic projects so you could try things out. I'm not intending to pick up a new hobby right now, but it's nice to know there are books like this out there.