Books I Received for My Birthday

A few weeks ago I celebrated a birthday, and I did so on my blog by posting a list of books I wouldn’t have minded receiving.  Click here to see Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Getting for My Birthday.  Well, my birthday has come and gone, and I did get some books.  Some of them were even on my list!  Here they are.


The Last Kind Words Saloon (2014) by Larry McMurtry came from Kate at the blog Reasons to Be Single.  She saw my post about the books I wanted and generously picked one at random and mailed it to me.  It was a wonderful gesture, and I can’t wait to dig into McMurtry’s latest novel.  Thank you, Kate!  You are lovely.

A similar story can be told about Jerry Mahoney’s Mommy Man: How I Went from Mild-Mannered Geek to Gay Superdad (2014).  Jerry, whose blog is Mommy Man: Adventures of a Gay Superdad, saw my wish-list post as well and noticed that his book was on it.  He kindly told his publishers to send me a copy.  Thanks, Jerry!  I’ll be interested in seeing how much his experiences line up with my dad’s.

Plato’s The Republic (380 BC) was required reading for my undergraduate degree.  I probably won’t be revisiting it any time soon (or ever?), but I do love this beautiful version of it.  My husband got this one for me, as he always buys me nice copies of books for display in our home.  You can see some of the ways I’ve decorated with books here and here.  I think the thing I’m most proud of in this situation, however, is that I’ve actually read the books I decorate with.

Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption (2010) is a must-read.  My sister Haley got this one for me, and while she didn’t realize that I had already read it, I still love it because I didn’t own a copy.  Now I do.  I sometimes prefer to buy copies of books after I’ve read them because then I know I like them.  However, it prevents me from annotating the book unless I’m willing to reread it.  I reviewed Unbroken with this post: Louis Zamperini: Olympian and POW.

My sister Afton got me the last book called When Everything Changed: A Keepsake Journal: The Amazing Journey of American Women from 1960 to the Present (2009/2014) by Gail Collins.  Obviously, my sister knows my research interests and reading tastes.  I love that this book has space for writing, and it also has questions to ask of female relatives or friends.  I see some of those questions coming in handy when I begin research for my dissertation.  I hope to interview some women, and this book will likely be a good starting place for coming up with questions.

My dad got me the camera that took the picture of the books above.  It is a fantastic camera, one that does much better than my ipad in taking pictures for this blog and while traveling.  Thanks, Dad!

My original post about the books I wanted for my birthday encouraged you to make your own lists.  As far as I know, only one of you has done so.  Please check out Grace’s list at her blog Cultural Life.