Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday: Best Books of 2018, So Far

This week's Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by the Artsy Reader Girl, is the best books we've read in 2018.

In order of my reading them...

  1. Star Trek the Fall: Ceremony of Losses, David Mack
  2. Poetry Night at the Ballpark, Bill Kauffman
  3. Fares, Please! A Popular History of Trolleys, Horsecars, Streetcars,Buses, Elevateds, and Subways, John Anderson Miller
  4. Fool's Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan, Scott Horton
  5. Verbal Judo: The Art of Persuasion, George Thompson
  6. A Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval England, Ian Mortimer
  7. How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life, Russ Roberts
  8. Exploding the Phone: The Teenagers and Outlaws Who Hacked Ma Bell, Phil Lapsley
  9. Ready Player One, Ernest Cline
  10. Little Brother,  Corey Doctorow

About the books:
Star Trek: Ceremony of Losses  is only part of a series, but features compelling moral drama about a doctor who does the right thing when his government  is being manipulative.

Poetry Night at the Ballpark is a collection of miscellany by a favorite author. I likened it to encountering him at a bar and then having a long, fascinating conversation about a variety of things.

Fares, Please! really speaks for itself. It's a fun history of public transportation.

Fool's Errand is a critical history of the Afghanistan war that stirs the water and asks why the hell Americans aren't more pissed off at the constant bloodshed and waste of this war.  Ooh, did Queen Elizabeth just tweet something passive aggressive about her new daughter in law?  War? What war?

Verbal Judo is a pocket guide to nonviolent communication  and conflict deescalation.  Useful stuff if you work with the public.

A Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval History was a fun social history of medieval England.

How Adam Smith Can Change Your Mind  interprets Adam Smith's poorly-known Theory of Moral Sentiments,  to explore the meaning of life in being loved and being lovely.

Exploding the Phone reviews the phone-hacking scene of the fifties to the eighties, when computers made it more difficult and became objects of hacking interest themselves.

Ready Player One is...awesome.

Little Brother  takes the surveillance state, a kid, and a user's guide to cybersecurity and mixes them together for a YA techno thriller that not only argues for privacy, but gives readers the tools to achieve it against the government's designs.  That's my kind of self-government. 


  1. Hoping to pick up some Corey Doctorow on Friday - plus a few of the others you've mentioned lately. I *miss* SF. I need to get on that and dig some up...

    1. When I was updating my books-read list, I had to giggle at June. Almost nothing but science fiction, Star Trek, and Star Wars!

      Have you read any good SF involving human genetic engineering? I ask because I just finished "A Crack in Creation" and am curious. Wikipedia has a list with a fair few leads on it, but I'm not sure how quickly I can follow up on them.

    2. I've been thinking about your question and.... nothing really came to mind! I was a bit surprised by that. The only thing that popped into my mind was 'Blood Music' by Greg Bear which is *kind of* about GM.

  2. As someone who has to do a lot of talking when it comes to work, I think I need to pick up Verbal Judo. Also, Little Brother sounds like an interesting book that I would like to read!

    Elle Inked @ Keep on Reading

    1. With Verbal Judo it pays to be careful of the edition. The newest one with W. Lee Fjelstad as co-author is very different...it's not based on the primary author's (George Thompson's) lectures. Before he passed, he used to teach conflict management to law enforcement.

  3. The variety of your reading choices clearly pays off! That Adam Smith books sounds like a thought-provoking one. Verbal Judo, I probably need...

    1. There's a four part series on youtube that I watch at least once a year to keep the ideas fresh. Each part is 30 minutes, though.. ;)

      Part 1, if you're curious:

    2. The Sims? Is there an Adam Smith connection? Because that would be awesome. But I'm a wee bit confused...maybe I should just watch the video...

    3. Hah! No, I meant to paste the lecture link for Verbal Judo. Either I didn't copy that like I thought, or I copied another URL before I managed it here. I've been watching a Sims 4 comedy series, heh.

    4. That's ok, I got some laughs out of the beginning of the clip. :) I was able to find the Verbal Judo 4-part series, and am looking forward to starting it (hopefully this evening).

  4. Some good ones here that I added to my TBR because I saw your past reviews on them!

    1. I'm starting to wonder whose TBR pile is bigger, yours or Cyberkitten's!

    2. It'd be interesting to tote things up. I honestly don't know how big my TBR pile is. I'm afraid to count them!!!


Thank you for visiting! Because of some very clever spambots, I've had to start moderating comments more strictly, but they're approved throughout the day.