Genre Archive : non-fiction

(Genres are usual for categorising stuff but apart from that they mean very little to me, so you might not agree with what I have listed where)

The chimps of Fauna Sanctuary

chimps of fauna sanctuary

A true story of resilience and recovery

In Fauna Sanctuary Gloria Grow rescues animals. There are dogs, horses, swans, a donkey, and of course the chimpanzees. Most were retired from research facilities where they were the subjects of medical research into Hepatitis, HIV, and the like. There are a few who were circus chimps. Some of them started life as pets, cute little chimps to dress up and play with, until they grew too big and strong and dangerous. Anyone who heard of Travis and his attack on Charla Nash knows that a chimp is not to be taken lightly. And yet people continue to try and keep them as domestic pets.

In this book Westoll spent a year working in the Fauna Sanctuary. He gets to know not only the people who work there but also the chimpanzees themselves, and their horrific lives spent as test subjects, being knocked out, biopsied, infected, and isolated.

Old Burnside

A memoir of a Southern Girlhoodold burnside

In 1913 Harriette Simpson Arnow moved to Old Burnside, Kentucky, with her family. This is her recollections of life in the once bustling lumber town. She was only four years old at the time, and yet she still manages to recreate the town and people she knew back then. It is a small book, only 125 pages in the edition I read, but there is plenty going on.

Cinderella ate my daughter

cinderella ate my daughterAfter a career writing about feminism and girls in culture Peggy Orenstein found herself the mother of a girl. And so brought face to face with the practicalities of what she had been theorising about, how to raise a girl to believe in herself and how to try
and avoid the madonna/whore dichotomy. And then her daughter entered her “Disney princess” phase.

Ghosts of Vesuvius
ghosts of vesuvius

It is hard to blurb this book. On the one hand it is about Vesuvius and volcanic explosions and disasters both natural and man-made. But it is also a book about the origins of the earth, of the universe, and about how precarious our existence is. How so much of what we are today is dependent on natural events a thousand years ago, or a millennia ago, or so long ago that it is almost pointless to count the time because it is so difficult to grasp those sort of numbers.

Rainbow Pie

a memoir of Redneck America ISBN: 9781846272578 It happens perhaps once of twice every August: a deep West Virginia sundown […]

Delusions of gender

How our minds, society, and neurosexism create differences ISBN: 0393068382 ; Quotes I liked Suppose a researcher were to tap […]

Inside of a dog

What Dogs See, Smell, and Know
Like the author I am a dog person, I like cats too, don’t get me wrong. Actually I like all animals, but there is nothing quite like having a dog about the place. And any pet-owner likes to know that they are doing their best for their dog, and most love to know what is going on in their heads. So I really enjoyed reading this book. The author is a scientist; she teaches psychology and has worked with many animals, including dogs. But this is not a science-book per se. It is easy to understand, and easy to read. But it has the science behind it, as well as plenty of anecdotes. Which, I know, aren’t scientific, but it still makes for a good read.

Writing Horses

ISBN: 9781611380309 All too often when writers tackle the arcana of the equine in their novels and stories, they miss […]

A vindication of the rights of woman

In the present state of society, it appears necessary to go back to first principles in search of the most […]

Singled out

Full title: Singled Out: How Two Million British Women Survived Without Men After the First World War ISBN: 9780670915644 In […]

The Grudge

Full title The Grudge : Scotland vs. England, 1990 ISBN: 9780224082761 JIM Telfer often said that if he’d been knocking […]

Myths about suicide

What do you think when you hear that someone has committed suicide? Many probably wonder why? and then begin to speculate. Some will accuse the suicide victim of being selfish, or cowardly and not being able to live. But for Joiner these responses are not answers. They are myths. He has researched this topic at great lengths, and he also has personal experience, as his father committed suicide. As did his maternal grandfather. In this book he lists the main myths that people use to try and explain suicide, and then he debunks them.