Rating 4 stars
My second read for the 20 Books of Summer reading challenge is Frankenstein Unbound by Brian Aldiss. I’ve known Aldiss’s name in relation to science fiction for a while but never read anything by him. I picked this novel up in Bookmark, a second hand bookshop in Falmouth, drawn by its cover art.
It is simultaneously, as with most science fiction, a reflection on concerns about the contemporaneous era, and a projection of where current science might lead. It is also a meditation on Mary Shelley’s gothic masterpiece, Frankenstein.
Rating: 4 stars
Shrinking Violets: A Field Guide to Shyness is what it says: a guide to what makes people shy and why shyness causes certain behaviours. It’s part sociology, part social history, part psychology.
I came to this book via a review on The Guardian, which name checks a whole bunch of people whose work I admire. Continue reading
Rating: 3 stars
This book has been on my shelf for almost a decade. People who think about what archives are and what archiving is refer to it a lot. I was at a conference recently about the role of research in museums, and I found myself thinking about my own attitude to research, and to reflection. I came to the conclusion that I am a do-er rather than a thinker. I would rather do the practical job of being an archivist, gaining satisfaction from collecting archives and describing them, then making them accessible to the people who do the thinking. I’m not one for contemplating my own navel, which is how thinking about archives feels to me. That’s why I’ve never picked it up before now.
I picked it up now because I nominated it for the March Madness challenge on The Reader’s Room. So I had to read it! Continue reading