Back on 17 January 2006 when I wrote my first blog post I was reading these books:
I remember the pleasure of reading this book about all aspects of ice from where it comes from (used to come from ice ponds in New England - there was one near my house in Massachusetts) to icicles, icebergs, and frostbite. Delightful.
Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope (1857) I have re-read this book three times since 2006 and that was by no means my first reading of the novel. My taste in books and my favorite novels are both wobbly but one thing remains firm: my love for the novels of Anthony Trollope. All 47 of them. Some more than others, of course, and this one is among the more cherished half.
The Gentleman in Trollope by Shirley Letwin (1982) This is another book that I was re-reading in 2006 and that I'm planning to read again soon. The term "gentleman" was important in the 19th century and sometimes the plot of a Trollope novels will hinge on whether a character is accepted by society as a gentleman or not. It has been said (by Trollope himself as well as others) that Glencora, the Duchess of Omnium, was a fine gentleman. (She was a bit edgy to be a real lady.) The most obviously gentlemanly man in Trollope was her husband, Plantagenet Palliser, Duke of Omnium.
Garbage Land: On the Secret Trail of Trash by Elizabeth Royte (2005) Everything you might want to know about waste disposal and recycling. What happens to garbage after many years in a landfill? The author is a scientist and she talks to other scientists: an odor chemist who explains why garbage smells bad and an ecological specialist who is trying to clean up polluted waters. Very good book if you are interested in the subject . . .
Tea with Jane Austen by Kim Wilson (2004) This lovely book was a gift from a friend who knows how much I love the 18th century and how much I admire old china and silver. And like to drink tea. And read Jane Austen novels. It's a treasure.
John Ruskin: The Early Years by Tim Hilton (1985) This enormously long biography comes in two volumes, this first one with 320 pages and a second with 544 pages. I didn't get to the second volume, though it's around here somewhere and I'm certain it would be the more interesting of the two. Soon. Maybe.