It is becoming absolutely ridiculous how many books I check out from the library and then return unread. I have tried to turn this into a positive, by viewing the carrying home and returning of books as my exercise regime, while at the same time boosting circulation numbers for my local library. But in reality it is just annoying, as so many of the books I have to return (most often because they are overdue and other patrons are waiting for them) are ones that I really want to read. Not always, but often. So here's last month's list of unread books. I'm sorry if these are annoying posts, but they will function for me as a sort of back-up TBR list--I can't read these books right now, but I'd like to get them back in the future. I thought you might enjoy seeing them too--a lot of the times they're books that fly slightly under the radar but might be interesting to you all the same. For the most part I'll quote off their dust jackets, which are sometimes painful to read, but which should give you an idea about their contents.
Heimbuch, Craig J. And Now We Shall Do Manly Things: Discovering My Manhood Through the Great (and Not-So-Great) American Hunt. Requested this one after I couldn't get through Steven Rinella's American Hunter, and I wanted to see what this new subgenre of "hunting memoirs" is all about. Here's a bit from the back cover; this book is: "the witty, moving, and insightful story [see what I mean about painful?] of one man's quest to free himself from the shackles of his domesticated suburban lifestyle by immersing himself for one year in the hunting culture his family has always cherished." The book seems like it might be an okay read, but not a great one; here's how he describes a mounted bear head in his dad's basement: "The bear, on the other hand, gives me the creeps. It's all soft fur, claws, and teeth. And the eyes--I swear it's looking at me, pleading with me to be taken down from the wall of the dim basement. 'Put me in a ski lodge,' it's saying to me. 'I want bikini models lying on me. I want to be the set of a late-night Cinemax movie. Please!'" (p. 4.)
Speck, Jeff. Walkable City: How Downtown Can Save America, One Step at a Time. From the front cover blurb: "But in the typical American city, the car is still king, and downtown is a place that's easy to drive to but often not worth arriving at...Speck reveals the invisible workings of the city, how simple decisions have cascading effects, and how we can all make the right choices for our communities." I still really want to read this one. I love and believe in walking, but no one else in my Midwestern city does. I live approximately two blocks away from an awesome grocery co-op and I put my life (and CRjr's life) in danger whenever we walk there, because we have to pass through an insanely busy and poorly marked intersection that I call "the intersection of death."
Sullivan, Robert. My American Revolution: Crossing the Delaware and I-78. Not too interested in the subject of this one (the Revolutionary War and its place in the history of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania) but I love Robert Sullivan, and have ever since I read his fantastic book Rats.
Vonnegut, Kurt. Kurt Vonnegut: Letters. Damn. Damn damn. Having to take this one back unread really hurts me. Love reading letters; love Kurt Vonnegut; 'nuf said.