Tag Archives: Weekend Reading


I have become absolutely obsessed with audiobooks lately. It started on a long car trip to NYC a couple weekends ago. My husband and I were looking for something to occupy the time. Usually on car trips we listen to music, but a four hour car trip is a lot longer than a one and a half hour car trip and four hours of music just didn’t seem like it would occupy us. When I was a kid, we used to listen to audiobooks while driving with my dad. I have a vivid memory of listening to Ramona Quimby books. I have a vivid memory of listening to Ramona and Her Father where Ramona parroted a commercial she had a heard about stockings sagging and bunching and causing “elephant ankles” to her teacher, who was very embarrassed.

Ramona and her Father

On the car trip to NYC we listened to most of The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, which when I spotted it at the library, I remembered that Susan had recommended all the way back in 2012.

The No. 1 Ladies' Decetive Agency

This book kept me awake on the ride home, even when my husband fell asleep. I actually pulled off at a rest area just to change the CD because I knew that I was not going to make it without having a book to keep me company. But it was the night before I left for Virginia for the photo shoot and I didn’t feel like figuring out how to transfer the CDs onto my iPhone so I could listen on the plane. So instead, I downloaded the Overdrive app. This app allows you to borrow ebooks and audiobooks from your local library. And because my library is part of a consortium, which means that I can actually borrow from 28 different libraries.

Not every item is available as a downloadable audiobook (for example, The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency is available as an ebook, but not an audiobook), but there’s still a pretty wide selection. So before I left I downloaded The Anatomist’s Apprentice, which is the first book in the Dr. Thomas Silkstone Mysteries. Tessa Harris wrote an engaging story and Simon Vance’s soothing British voice brought the book to life.

Anatomist's Apprentice

I finished it the night I got home from Virgina and then quickly moved on to The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup and a Spool of Thread, which is actually a children’s book by Kate DiCamillo. It was captivating and not in the least because Graeme Malcolm’s reading was enthralling.

The Tale of Despereaux

Once I finished that book, which I devoured on Saturday, I began looking for more to read. I saved a bunch to my list by the same narrators because they both did such a terrific job at depicting the different characters that I knew anything else they read would also be delightful. Then I settled down to listen to A Far Cry from Kensington. This is a little slower to start, but I’m enjoying it as well. As it’s by Muriel Spark, I expect that that I’ll be really enjoying it soon. I fell asleep listening to it last night, so I’ll have to try and find my place again!

Far Cry from Kensington

I had no idea that I was going to enjoy listening to books so much. I’ve always had a tricky time sitting still and listening, but I expect that knitting will provide me with a good excuse to keep my hands occupied while I listen. As it was, this weekend I played a lot of Candy Crush and lazed about in bed as a welcome respite after last week’s go-go-go of the photo shoot.

What are your favorite audiobooks? Who are your favorite audiobook performers? What books do you wish you had listened to rather than reading?

A shout out to Sarah and Julie, who both recommended Overdrive to me!

Weekend Reading

THE ELEVATOR-RESCUE TEAMS OF MOSCOW from The New Yorker. (via Kitty V.)

How One Man Tried To Slim Down Big Soda From The Inside from NPR.

Today’s Polar Bears Trace Ancestry To … Ireland? from NPR.

In Moscow, Scandals Shake A Storied Ballet from NPR.

Small Farmers Aren’t Cashing In With Wal-Mart from NPR.

Chief of Mardi Gras Indians gets ready for the big day from the BBC.

Making it Hyperlocal: The Story of a (Partially) Homemade Pair of Slippers from GOOD.

The Largest Girl-Led Business in the World Teaches 5 Essential Leadership Skills from GOOD.

In Uruguay, Citizens Trade in Guns for Bikes from GOOD.

How To: Build a DIY, Pop-Up Seed Swapping Station from GOOD.

Since I’m no longer keeping up with the news, I would love your links to great things you’ve read this week.

Weekend Reading

Former NYC Mayor Ed Koch dies and I wasn’t informed?!?

Are Shooting Ranges The New Bowling Alleys? from NPR.

How Owls Spin Their Heads Without Tearing Arteries from NPR.

In Order To Live With People, Canines Evolved To Love Carbs from NPR.

 Lovely Shetland Ponies Dressed in Sweaters to Promote Scotland from Bored Panda.

These Airbags For Cyclists Might Save Your Life When A Car Slams Into You from GOOD.

Melting Masterpieces: Impressive Works of Art Made from Snow and Ice from The Atlantic.

What Muscovites get up to in traffic jams  from BBC News. HINT: They knit!

Vegetarians ‘cut heart risk by 32%’ from BBC News.


Pale Blue Blobs Invade, Freeze, Then Vanish from NPR.

Matthew Allen, Missing Australian Teen, Found After Surviving 2 Months In Bush from The Huffington Post.

Sinkhole Swallows Entire Building Complex In China, 300 People Evacuated from The Huffington Post.

It Takes Planning, Caution to Avoid Being ‘It’ from The Wall Street Journal. This article is a about a group of men who have kept a game of tag going for 23 years. Delightful!

Should What Happens at Applebee’sStay at Applebee’s? from The Atlantic. This is a really interesting article about the way power dynamics are shifting due to the democratizing effects of the internet. Very thought provoking.

For 40 Years, This Russian Family Was Cut Off From All Human Contact, Unaware of World War II from Smithsonian.com “In 1978, Soviet geologists prospecting in the wilds of Siberia discovered a family of six, lost in the taiga.” This is the best thing I’ve read in ages! READ THIS!

Weekend Reading

Manti Te’o’s Dead Girlfriend, The Most Heartbreaking And Inspirational Story Of The College Football Season, Is A Hoax from Deadspin. This story is just too weird for me to even wrap my head around.

Conrad Bain, Father on ‘Diff’rent Strokes’, Dies at 89 from The New York Times. Am I the only one who wonders why they spelled “diff’rent” that way in the original show title? Was it supposed to be more urban to leave out that e? And do you think the guy who came up with the title was psyched to see it spelled that way in the Times?

Cash for Hay Driving Thieves to Move Bundles from the Times. I have often wondered why this doesn’t happen more often. Every time I drive by a field full of round bales I think, “look at all that money just sitting there.”

Sudden Death of Show Pony Clouds Image of Elite Pursuit from the Times. I have a lot of feelings about this story but I would like to hear yours first.

The Enduring Fallacy of Astrology and Why Your Sign Actually Isn’t Your Sign from GOOD.

Great Escapes: A Magical Hobbit House from HGTV.

How Lead Caused America’s Violent Crime Epidemic from Forbes.

DNA Links Bloody Handkerchief To French King’s Execution from NPR.

There Are Whales Alive Today Who Were Born Before Moby Dick Was Written from Smithsonian’s Smart News. Mind blowing, isn’t it?

My reading was a bit limited this week due to lack of internet access. What did I miss?

Weekend Reading

In The Battle Between Health And Taste, Why White Bread Still Wins from NPR

Supersizing Literacy? U.K. McDonalds Swapping Happy Meal Toys for Books

Gacy Victim Search: Chicago Housing Complex Warrant Approved By County Prosecutors from Huffington Post

White House Crushes Death Star Petition, Nerd Dreams Everywhere from The Atlantic

Phooey On Flu from NPR. It’s a video but really interesting.

Shaped from clay: The rapidly evolving pottery of Mata Ortiz, Mexico from LA Times

One Dad’s Ill-Fated Battle Against the Princesses from The Atlantic

‘Simple Cooking’: Blogging since before the Internet was invented from LA Times

Gifted, Talented and Separated from NY Times

World War II Exhibit Asks Visitors, ‘What Would You Do?’ from NPR

What Food Crisis? We Just Need To Make Use Of What We Have from Fast Company

How Hot is That Pepper? Unpacking the Scoville Scale from Smithsonian Magazine

2,000-Year-Old Treasure Discovered In Black Sea Fortress from LiveScience

DIY or Buy: Natural & Eco-Friendly Cleaners from Apartment Therapy

Gratitude Healthy: 10 Reasons Why Being Thankful Is Good For You from Huffington Post

25 Bizarre Interview Questions From America’s Most Famous Companies from Huffington Post

What are you reading?

Weekend Reading

Pothole gardener’s Christmas display from the BBC. (Okay, this is a video but it’s pretty awesome.)

Cheap vitamin D ‘would boost health’ from the BBC.

Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2013 is…from apartment therapy.

Not Industrial, Not Organic: the Marsden Farm Study Shows Us a Third Way from GOOD.

How to Be a Weekday Vegetarian from GOOD.

Women in Peru’s Sacred Valley Became Breadwinners by Making iPad Cases from GOOD.

Steal This Idea: Glove Love Rescues Single Mittens from GOOD.

Big cats versus livestock – simple solutions reduce conflicts on Namibian farms from National Geographic.

Loafing Around: A Brief History of Fashion’s Favorite Flat from the Times Magazine.

Abandoned Suitcases Reveal Private Lives of Insane Asylum Patients from Collectors Weekly.

Decoding Secret Societies: What Are All Those Old Boys’ Clubs Hiding? from Collectors Weekly

Why Do We Blink So Frequently? from Smithsonian’s Surprising Science blog.

Where’s Rudolph? Inside the Decline of Alaska’s Caribou from Smithsonian’s Surprising Science blog.

The Best Inventions of 2012 You Haven’t Heard of Yet Part 1 and Part 2 from Smithsonian’s Innovations blog.

Eat, Drink, Be Nice from The New York Times. As a childless person who likes to eat in restaurants, I applaud this effort!

The One-Eyed Man Is King: How did the monocle become a symbol of wealth? from Slate.

Gerry Anderson, Animator of Puppetry, Dies at 83 from The NY Times.

36 Hours in El Paso, Texas from The NY Times. This book-The New York Times, 36 Hours: Europe - should have been on my Christmas list but I totally forgot about it. D’oh!

What did you read this week?

Weekend Reading

America’s Most Cutthroat Christmas Tree Market? Gotta Be Manhattan from the Atlantic Cities. Don’t know why but this article tickled me to bits.

The Deadly Fun ‘Sport’ of Russian Train Surfing from the Atlantic Cities. Don’t try this at home anywhere.

Do Armed Civilians Stop Mass Shooters? Actually, No. From Mother Jones.

Do Armed Citizens Stop Mass Shootings? A history of intervention attempts. From Slate. [Not editorializing here; just sharing what I've read this week.]

Spider That Builds Its Own Spider Decoys Discovered from Wired. Amy and Maddie’s worst nightmare.

Commenting on a Death Gets a Puppet in Trouble from The New York Times. I’ll be honest; I haven’t even read this! But the headline made me giggle for days.

Good Name Is Restored in Terrain Known for Tea from The NY Times. This is brilliant!

Ancient Bones That Tell a Story of Compassion from The NY Times. Very interesting.

Prison Could Be Productive from The NY Times Room for Debate section. I really like these features that give all sides of an issue.

Holidays Without God from The NY Times Room for Debate section.

The Human Cost of Cheap Clothing from The NY Times Room for Debate section.

Snow Fall:The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek from The NY Times (via my friend Bill)

Facebook Responds to Anger Over Proposed Instagram Changes from The NY Times. Way to complain, y’all! It looks like it may have worked.

NOTES ON DISTRACTION from The New Yorker. I am totally guilty of this.

The Best Astronomy Images of 2012 from Slate. Not reading, strictly speaking, but you must see these.

26 Moments That Restored Our Faith in Humanity This Year from GOOD. Don’t know about you, but I needed this this week.

‘Zooborns’ Baby Animal Photos Are Adorable ‘By The Numbers’ from The Huffington Post

Why Has it Been 26 Years Since Time Magazine Named a Woman as Person of the Year? from GOOD. Um, yeah Time Magazine. Why IS that?!?

Alex Moulton, Creator of Quirky Small-Wheeled Bike, Dies at 92 from The NY Times.

Weekend Reading

Mom Invents A Million-Dollar Idea To Take The Sting Out Of Shots from The Huffington Post. I’m ordering one.

Gotcha! Alleged iPhone Thief Takes Photo Of Herself Using Stolen Phone Thanks To Security App from The Huffington Post. Gotta get this app!

In Girl’s Last Hope, Altered Immune Cells Beat Leukemia from The New York Times.

Vodka ‘saved’ elephants in Siberian freeze from the BBC.

Why are Swedish women healthier than the British? from the BBC. (Video)

A Sign From Above? Needing New Roof, Monks Sell Rare Beer In U.S. from NPR. I love this story!

Great Reads In Store: Indie Booksellers Pick 2012′s Best from NPR.

Why Legos Are So Expensive — And So Popular from NPR’s Planet Money. I have always wondered this.

How A Middle-School Principal Persuaded Students To Come To School from NPR’s Planet Money.

Intermission: Here’s What Happens When a Piano Is Abandoned on the Streets of Manhattan from Good. (Video)

Cheaper than Solar: Gravity-Powered Lights for the Developing World from Good.

The Way Life Should Be: The House of E.B. White from Writer’s Houses. My love for E.B. White knows no bounds, and I was pleased to see that his house is just perfect.The best thing I’ve read this week  this month.

What are you reading in this busy-busy holiday season?


Weekend Reading

Back to the Future With 1970s Space Colonies from Slate.

The Mole Skin that Got a Civil War Widow Her Pension from Slate.

The City of Lights Is About to Go Dark from The Atlantic Cities. “Starting in 2013, Paris will shut off all neon lights between 1 and 7 a.m. Will it kill the city’s famous nightlife?”

Life and Death on the Tracks in New York: Would You Be a Hero? from The Atlantic Cities.

The New Rise of Segregated Schools from The Atlantic Cities.

Stop the Parade! from Slate. ”Should we be wasting our dwindling supply of helium on floating cartoon characters?”

How to Devise Passwords That Drive Hackers Away from The New York Times.

Cavemen Trump Modern Artists At Drawing Animals from The Huffington Post.

Wandering in Japan’s ‘Suicide Forest’ from The New York Times.

When Felines Attack: Do house cats ever kill people? from Slate.

The Big McThink! How TED Became a Consumer Franchise from Wired.

What’s Inside: Southern Comfort Egg Nog from Wired.

How Trusting in Vice Led to John McAfee’s Downfall from Wired.

What are you reading this week?

Weekend Reading

The Quiet Rise of the Much-Maligned Condo from The Atlantic Cities.

Inside Fast Food Workers’ Historic Fight for Living Wages from The Atlantic Cities.

100 Notable Books of 2012 from The New York Times.

Can a Jellyfish Unlock the Secret of Immortality? from the NY Times.

The Hard Life of an N.F.L. Long Shot from The NY Times.

 The Hazards of Growing Up Painlessly from The NY Times Magazine.

The Big Shrink from the NY Times. I love this article about downsizing homes.

Could Cameras Be the Best Weapon Against Climate Change? from GOOD.

Labor, Interrupted: Cesareans, “cascading interventions,” and finding a sense of balance. From Harvard Magazine.

The Man Who Charged Himself With Murder from New York Magazine. “In the fall of 1993, Trevell Coleman, a former rapper part of Puff Daddy’s Bad Boy crew, shot a man and fled. Haunted by the incident, Coleman turns himself in to the police nearly two decades later.”

What are you reading this week?