Moby-Duck: The True Story of 28,800 Bath Toys Lost at Sea and of the Beachcombers, Oceanographers, Environmentalists, and Fools, Including the Author, Who Went in Search of Them
by Donovan Hohn (551.462 H)
Let’s say you go to the beach, and for the heck of it throw a rubber duck into the ocean. Or thousands, why not? What happens next? Where does the current take them? Could you track them? These are the questions Hohn set out to answer, and his travels take him from a beautiful remote Alaskan peninsula to the heart of a Chinese toy factory, back and forth across the Pacific. A recommended read for fans of Bill Bryson, or anyone who loves wide-ranging social histories.
My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me: 40 new fairy tales
edited by Kate Bernheimer (813.54 MY)
Featuring authors like Joyce Carol Oates, Shelley Jackson, Neil Gaiman, and more, dip into this book of “new” fairy tales (most were inspired / influenced by the themes of traditional tales) to give you something to take the edge off that Harry Potter craving. Be warned, though-- these stories feature adult themes, and are quite a bit darker than your average Disneyesque adaptation.
The Mind’s Eye
Oliver Sacks (616.855 S)
What is it like, to be able to write, to play music, to comprehend individual letters...yet be unable to read? Or to be unable to recognize faces, no matter how familiar? Or to walk down a sidewalk outside one’s home, knowing a wrong turn means being impossibly lost...even after living at the same address for years? Oliver Sacks writes about people with each of these conditions with humor and insight. On being face-blind: “To me, she says, “Don’t just say no-- that’s rude and will upset people. Say, ‘I’m sorry, I am awful about recognizing people. I wouldn’t recognize my own mother.’” This is an exaggeration-- I had no trouble recognizing my parents, though I was less adept with my huge extended family.”
The Geeks Shall Inherit the Earth: popularity, quirk theory, and why outsiders thrive after high school
Alexandra Robbins (303.324 R)
This is one of those books that everyone is talking about. Robbins’ basic theme is that many teens who feel excluded, lonely, and isolated in late middle school and high school are, paradoxically, the ones most likely to be successful later in life. In addition, she follows up the details of her study by following six teens-- given “themed” titles like “The Band Geek”-- through a year of high school, showing through interviews and stories how the traits that we would identify as “interesting” and “likable” in adults actually lead to alienation in the extremely cliquish social environment of grades 7 -12. This title is being billed as “invaluable” for teachers, schools administrators, and anyone else who works or lives with someone in this teenage Twilight Zone.
All of these titles are available at the UCC Library for your reading pleasure!