Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Book Stack Changes

Yep, another library trip. Yet again Son2 got some novels (Star Wars) despite my efforts to steer him toward books with pictures! He loves to "read" in the car just like big brother, and announce things like, "I'm on Chapter One, page two!" He also practices his counting to 100 with the page numbers.

Son1 (and I!) picked up the requested Book Six in the Young Underground series; I got mixed up so we checked out books 7 and 8 last week and are impatient for book 6. More fun in post-WW2 Denmark with kids' adventures and a little faith mixed in, very nicely and with a light touch despite my doubts. We're both hooked on this series.

Son1 also got two more Bionicle "novels," and the second and third Wrinkle in Time followups, A Wind in the Door and A Swiftly Tilting Planet. I read the first and second books as a kid, but not the third. I'll be reading these too.

My requests and interlibrary loans arrived! I waited for a while for Bill Clinton's My Life. I wonder how many people requested it -- they have nearly a hundred copies in the regional library system! I used to read autobiographies and bios all the time, and this summer I've picked it up again. If I'm still up for it, I'm planning to try George and Laura again after W.J. Clinton's book.

Interlibrary loans: How Cities Work: Suburbs, sprawl, and the roads not taken and Suburban Nation: The rise of sprawl and the decline of the American dream. Yep, I really like urban planning, smart growth, community stuff. I heard an author interview on public radio awhile ago with some great discussion about suburbs. After some Amazon wandering and the library catalog, I found these books in the system.

I also borrowed Edge City (sort of about suburbs becoming their own economies), but I'm going to wait on that 'cause the nonrenewable ILLs go to the top of the stack.

Only now, upon blogging about it, do I search the Diane Rehm Show archives and find what I heard was the second hour of the June 29 show, with David Brooks, author of On Paradise Drive. A request has now been placed via the library's online catalog.

Two of the ILLs' back cover blurbs refer to Jane Jacobs's The Death and Life of Great American Cities, which I loved when I read it long ago. I may or may not be able to concentrate enough to read all three of these books over the next few weeks, but we'll see.

Oh, and I returned From My Mexican Kitchen (just couldn't get into it right now).


Sarah Dylan Breuer said...

If you're interested in urban planning issues, you've GOT to check out the Gamaliel Foundation, which brings people of faith together around issues of common concern in the community, to see whether they're doing some work on those issues in your area. They're doing some fabulous work in the Baltimore region to try to get workforce housing (i.e., housing that's affordable to teachers, police officers, fire fighters, etc.) and low-income housing distributed throughout Maryland. Let me know what happens!

Barbara said...

Thanks -- I'm browsing through their info now. It's really interesting! I'm on a 100+ member citizens committee in my small city that's been working with consultants and the city on an update to the long-range zoning plan. In the table groups where we work each meeting, it's been very encouraging to discover some commonalities with the realtors and bankers, lol. Still more encouraging to me was the discovery that the smart-growth and no-growth voices resonate with many more of us when it comes down to telling the consultants what we want for our city. As a result, those voices are heard by the consultants and the city management. We'll see what the draft looks like next month, but it's seemed to be a surprisingly good process.