Reading List


I enjoy a good book when I've got some time available, and with summer again upon us, I though I'd share what I'm currently reading (beginning in May 2012). Most of these should be available from your local library. I'll extend this list as time goes on in reverse chronological order. Maybe you'll find a good book that you will also like!

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas, translated by Robin Buss
All God's Creatures by Sister Seraphim
T. Rex and the Crater of Doom by Walter Alvarez
A recounting of the search for the source of the dinosaur's extinction from one of the geologists involved over the years. Also, you can tell it's going to be a good book when it opens with an excerpt from The Lord of the Rings!
A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking
Hawking's famous popular science book covering cosmology, from the beginning of the Universe to black holes and time travel.
Flatland by Edwin Abbott Abbott
A commentary on Victorian culture, but more importantly through examining a 2-dimensional world and moving to three dimensions we can try to comprehend higher dimensions.
The Mouse That Roared by Leonard Wibberley
A satirical novel about the Cold War and the world's smallest nation declaring war on the United States. Through a series of absurd events, they are successful and along the way capture the world's most powerful weapon.
Unfinished Tales of Numenor and Middle-earth by JRR Tolkien
A collection of unfinished stories that tell more of the history of Middle-earth.
March Book One by John Lewis
A graphic novel that tells the first-hand account of Lewis' experience during the civil rights movement in the United States.
The Lady Tasting Tea by David Salsburg
This is a very well written and interesting book that tells the story of the development of statistics throughout the 20th century, and the impact that they had on the world around us. As a fan of statistics, it was exciting to learn more about the people whose work I had previously studied. It was also fun to see references to other areas of math and science that had their beginnings or strong roots in statistics, like operations research. Originally recommended to me by Dr. Wetzell.
The Two Towers and The Return of the King by JRR Tolkien
Parts two and three of The Lord of the Rings.
The Elements by Euclid; translation by Sir Thomas L Heath
One of, if not the best, translations of Euclid's 13 books of the Elements. In addition to just the Elements themselves, Heath provides historical background, commentary on Euclid's proofs and alternative proofs that have been devised since. The original Greek text is also available, which I enjoy since I took Ancient Greek in college.
The Complete Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson
Every single Calvin and Hobbes comic published, all in a nice three book set. Easily one of the best comic strips of all times.
The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien
The first book in Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. I really like the edition I have -- the Ballantine Books publication from the 70's. Why? Because the cover of each book has a painting done by Tolkien himself! Here is what Hobbiton looked like to the author.
A Short History of Nearly Everything, by Bill Bryson
A "casual science" book that tries to tell the story of everything, from the beginning of the Universe to the rise of civilizations. Along the way, the story of the events and individuals making these discoveries is related in a way that is accessible and provides jumping off points if the reader wishes to learn more about a topic.
The Hobbit, by JRR Tolkien and illustrations by Alan Lee
The classic tale by Tolkien (which is also going to be a movie this December!!) with absolutely beautiful illustrations by Alan Lee. This was one of my favorite books growing up, first read to me by my father and followed shortly by The Lord of the Rings.