Sunday, September 20, 2009

Fun Nonfiction

This past summer our staff had our own summer reading program. Below are some of our favorite fun nonfiction books--those you wouldn't pick up for a homework assignment but are fun to breeze through with friends. All of these got the highest rating possible: "It was amazing!". Thanks to Gina, Lisa, Roberta and Sue for the reviews.

Subway Art : 25th Anniversary Edition
This is a new edition of the historic book that first put graffiti art on the radar of many and a book that helped spread the art form beyond urban cities and thus created a worldwide sensation.

Plush You! Loveable Misfit Toys to Sew and Stuff
Oh my lovely goodness, this book was MADE FOR ME. Or at least for people who like to handmake me wonderful little presents. :) Includes a list of materials and necessities to make everything, including an inside out bird, a much-loved Socktopus, the precious pink pirate bunny, or my fav: Wiggle, the Sweater-Wearing Tooth. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!

I Can Has Cheezburger?: A LOLcat Colleckshun
If you'd like to know the history of monorail cat, ceiling cat or even the cheezburger joke itself, this LOLCat colleckshun is the book for you. It's full of cute cat pictures with funny captions and all things considered the humor gets rather sophisticated.

More Chinglish: Speaking in Tongues
Oliver is free to makes happy fun of bad English translations in China. Tasteless or delicious? You decide too! Emotional free to visit his blog site:

The Travel Book: A Journey Through Every Country in the World
This book offers 4 pages on every country in the world. For a country you've never heard of this is just about right but for countries that are a popular travel destination this format doesn't quite work. It's fun to browse though and picture how it would be to become a world traveler.

Extreme Pumpkins II
Do you ever get tired of carving that boring old pumpkin with a toothy grin? Check out this book for inspiration on how to bring your next pumpkin to a whole new level. For example, the goop is KEY to increasing the yuck factor. From vomit to messy diapers, the goop that everyone else just throws away is really the one ingredient that makes your pumpkin EXTREME.

Body Drama
Detailed advice, fast facts, plus some lighthearted charts and lists (like “99 nicknames for boobs”), this book includes everything a girl needs to know but is afraid to ask. Includes info on shaving, breasts, periods, STIs, nutrition, diet and exercise, plus the truth about airbrushed photos (with before and after pics!).

Show Me How: 500 Instructions You Should Know
Show Me How is jam-packed with "instructions for life from the everyday to the exotic." The authors admit to monthly gatherings where they get together with friends and show each other how to do cool stuff. This eclectic collection uses clever illustrations and clear instructions to teach the reader an amazing range of skills and knowledge. Need to know how to carve a hollow book? see # 14. How about how to create a chain mail bikini? #25 (I already knew how to do chain mail, but learning new styles is always fun.) My favorite was #406-learn how to mount a camel. Not so often needed, but still an immensely useful bit of knowledge.

High Voltage Tattoo
"If AC-DC opened up a beauty parlor, it would be High Voltage."

Kat Von D, star of L.A. Ink, has more tattoos than just about anyone I've ever seen, and plans to get more until someday she has a full body suit.

Her book describes her life on the edge, her TV show, her art, and the people who influenced her. Lots of photos and descriptions of the tattoos of both Kat and her many customers make this a fascinating read.

Faces of Sunset Boulevard: A Portrait of Los Angeles
Anyone from California can tell you that the state has everything and anything, and this fabulous and poignant collection of photography proves that just one street in LA has that and more. This photographer has put together a yearbook of sorts featuring the individuals he met down Sunset Boulevard, which runs through many unique Los Angeles neighborhoods, from Echo Park to Bel Air. Judging by this book, LA is officially home to the poets, the rockers, the misfits, the posh, the damned, the working stiffs, the beauties, and the ones just barely holding on, and that's just a drop in the bucket. There are lots of famous faces, like our very own Governator and even Henry Winkler, tons of not-so-famous-but-who-knows-someday-they-will-be-famous faces, and faces that would have gone on completely anonymous if it weren't for this book. Art at its most real and personal, and reality at its most artistic.

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