For years, my dad has enjoyed the New York Times Sunday crossword puzzle. Now that he's retired, he has a lot more free time and I think he's running out of his backlog of these puzzles. He likes the larger size of the Sunday, so I doubt he'd be as interested in the weekday puzzles. For those of you who regularly solve the NYT Sunday, are there puzzles you find just as challenging? [more inside]
You know how you can just remember a few details about some subject from your youth, and it's going to bother you until you can reveal the full scope of that memory? Yeah, I'm right there. I'm looking for a series of books. They were in the SF/F section in the 1980s. They were probably popular because their covers resembled Frazetta prints, and they tended to be really violent (i.e. jumping on the popularity of Conan). [more inside]
Is there a definitive activity book? Sort of like a cookbook, but for Activities To Do? [more inside]
Can you recommend fiction books that feature a main character who is entering middle age and is evaluating his or her life so far, and what direction their life should take? [more inside]
My soon-to-be-17-year-old niece is interested in pursuing forensic science as a career. What are the best books on the subject that would both entertain and inform her? Fiction and non-fiction suggestions are welcome.
I am trying to find a book I read as a child in the early/mid 90s. Set in the UK. [more inside]
What is the name of the book and movie about a simple-minded, poor man who lived with his mother, carried a pet bird with him and gets innocently involved in an social uprising? I think he discovered gold near the beginning and his clothes are tattered.
I'm helping to design a course for college juniors and seniors in the health sciences. What books (textbooks, popular non-fiction, or even novels), articles, essays, and websites would be most helpful for the students as they finish up their degrees? [more inside]
There used to be a service that took your stared tweets, and make them into a book. I can't find it now and it would be awesome for all the family stories and comments I've saved over the years... [more inside]
Sometime around 1997/1998 I read a strange book and since then I've forgotten almost all the details. About the only thing I can remember is that there were some creatures who 'spoke' multiple concepts at once. [more inside]
In high school English class, I remember reading a novel but can't recall the name or really much of the plot. I don't even remember liking it, but I still need to know the title! Here are some of the details I remember. A couple gets married, and then they have a child seven or so months later. They weren't together before the wedding, so it's known the husband isn't the father. The wife had other children from a previous marriage/relationship. I believe the grandparents also play a central role. The father works at a furniture store or for a cabinet maker? At one point, he joins some religious group and they have a gathering at his house. Somebody leaves a water ring on a nice oak table and the party fizzles out shortly after, even though they successfully remove the ring with soap. Any guesses?
Help me identify this bizarre book I attempted to read as a kid. [more inside]
Give me your most well written genre fiction! [more inside]
I'm trying to track down a book from my childhood that is a version of the Mama's Going to Buy You a Mockingbird song. [more inside]
What are good "owners manuals" for new dog owners? [more inside]
Back in the late 80s/early 90s, I read an excerpt of a book about a man's experience as a crab fisherman in the Bering Sea in The Reader's Digest. I was only around ten years old, so I wasn't exactly thinking about taking notes of the title and author. Help me now find this book, please! Details inside. [more inside]
So I told my partner you guys were amazing at locating obscure SF stories. Can you help him find this one? About 1970-72 I read an SF anthology with a story I've lately been trying to find on the Google with no luck. Said story involved a protagonist asked by friends to accompany them on a night out playing a game/sport he'd never heard of called, if I remember right, "torming." He said yes though he was too embarrassed to admit he'd never heard of it. It turned out to involve (avoiding potential spoilers here) tech well beyond the 1970s. Ring any bells? Googling "torming" is less than helpful. I may have misremembered the sport's name. Thanks!
What novels or short stories grapple with the decline of a superpower? I'm thinking waning-British-Empire stuff, primariy, but the decline of other global powerhouses is fine too. Must be fiction. Decline-of-Empire can either be primary to the plot or a backdrop against which other key aspects of the story unfold.
My best friend is getting married in June and I'm a bridesmaid. I've offered to put together a guestbook for the couple as part of the big day. I've heard of so many creative ideas - books with photos, framed signed photos, puzzles, etc., but some of them seem impractical. I want this to be something they can potentially display in their home as a reminder of the ceremony. I need ideas, links, personal anecdotes (what made your guestbook special?), to help me put together the best guest book for a lovely couple! It can be DIY or for purchase.
What comes next after popular medical non-fiction? [more inside]
I have a PDF that I'd like to convert to ebook format. It's straightforward - body text with just a handful of images - but the ebook needs to have the same font and style of the PDF. (I also have it in InDesign, if that helps.) I'm looking for a designer, or design agency, who has worked on ebooks before, who can take this on. Any recommendations? [more inside]
I want to get a firmer grasp of the English-speaking countries history. [more inside]
What are some exceptionally weird tie-in novels and comics? I'm looking for books which are especially weird as a result of not fitting the tone or form of the source material, or of the usual tie-in product. Preferably in fantasy, sci-fi, & horror. [more inside]
I am writing a guidebook for my industry and while I want to catch some of the increase in reputation that comes from going through a real publisher, I also pretty much want to give it away (electronically but also in hard copy as gifts for clients etc) to as many people as possible. Is there a way to achieve both of those goals? Published by an independent, real publisher, printed for those that want to pay, and those I am willing to pay for, and free for me to distribute as much as I want?
Trying to name a novel where a couple finds each other throughout different lives/reincarnations by placing newspaper ads. [more inside]
I am learning French and am struggling with how to relate French grammar to its English equivalent. The problem: I have no general understanding of grammar. Six months ago I didn't even know what an adverb was! [more inside]
I've been racking my brain trying to remember a book I liked when I was a kid. As I recall it was a small chapter book, with a reading level somewhere in the 2nd - 3rd grade range. It was about a group of forest animals, and I think most or all of them were nocturnal. The main one was a flying squirrel. [more inside]
Ancient Roman and Greek civilizations set my imagination ablaze, and while I've loved Homer's works right now I'm interested in works written in, say, the last century that take place in those times, or thereabouts. [more inside]
Help me find this ridiculously obscure book. [more inside]
I'm looking for board books that do not just portray white children. Books appropriate for ages 1-4 would be fine, but I'm buying for a 2-year-old so a bit on the simpler side is better. Thank you!
I recently moved to the Boston area, and realized that I don't know anything about it, or the main period that it's famous for. Please recommend me some non-fiction page-turners. [more inside]
At the airport a while back, I stumbled onto this book written I think by the people at MSN Finance. The book was called something like "Do this or that?" and the arrangement was as follows. A question was posed such as "Should I rent or stay with my parents to save on rent?" and two colorful pages were devoted to explaining which option was better. Another such question was "Should I rent or buy" as well as "Should I pay monthly for a gym membership or pay everything at all once." Its structure was similar to what one saw in those "Eat This Not That Books" that are so popular among dieters. The book I am talking about is fairly new and probably pretty popular as it was one of the titles at this airport I visited a month ago. The book was in hardback and had lots of colorful pictures. Thanks
I'm going through some boxes of old books I had in storage and came across this one, which isn't what it seems. I suspect it was created as a prop fro a play, but I can't think of a play I worked on, or have read that features this book. What play might have used this book prop?
Please recommend your favorite stores for books for kids in Chicago. I am interested in finding used books, quirky books, and progressive books. Not necessarily all three and not necessarily in that order. Toddler Xalf is almost 1.5 years old, but I'm happy to buy books that will be over his head for the next few of years. Any part of Chicago is fine. Suburbs too, especially those to the north.
What's a good introduction to running book? I'd prefer a quick read, not too technical, humorous but not insulting. Something that starts with the basics (shoes, feet, clothing) and goes on to talk about things like all weather running and maybe even the basics of marathon training. [more inside]
I'm trying to help a friend find a graphic novel he read years ago and would like to re-read. Here's what he remembers: There were three volumes, each a large (8 x 12) soft cover book of around 100 pages (about an inch thick). There was no indication that they were published in serial form previous to these volumes, which were probably published in the mid 90's. The art was simple and unadorned, pen and ink, and mostly in regular equal square frames. The story was a real-world fantasy about spiritual awakening, but it was not religious and there were no battles; it was a story about a seeker finding himself. The title may have included the word Journey and the author/artist may have a name like Wasserman (though I've googled the hell out of those two details and had no luck.)
Do you know the name of the fiction book which was likely published in the last decade, takes place around the mid-1800s to early 1900s about an immigrant Jewish woman, who is either sent away as part of an arranged marriage or she runs away? [more inside]
I read a book in 2006 or 2007. I believe it had just come out. It was a compilation of chapters by accomplished female authors; I think largely chick-lit authors. It was sort of quarter-life crisis type of book. I specifically remember one chapter by a woman who broke up with her boyfriend repeatedly, and then he died. Her friends remarked that if she had married him line he wanted, she'd be a widow and she said she would rather have been his widow than be his nothing. Is there anyone else on earth, or on AskMe who's read this book and can help me out with a title, author, or editor?
Looking for books in Spanish that cover the basics of food and nutrition. [more inside]
Pretend I came from another planet yesterday. Pretend that today I listened to everything by The Rolling Stones. Pretend that tomorrow I want to read a book about the band/their history/their music. What would that book be? [more inside]
I'm drawing a blank on the title and author of a YA book I perused in a bookstore a few years ago. [more inside]
Please recommend fiction and nonfiction novels which depict folklore and mythology created by children who are free of adult supervision and authority. [more inside]
My partner read a novel a few years ago at a book exchange in a hostel. Here's what she remembers:
- About a family (a father, son, and daughter-in-law) who are taken by the secret police of a fictional South American dictatorship (a stand in for an unnamed Argentina or Chile). The characters are tortured, and the novel focuses on their psychological recovery afterwards. The woman might be pregnant.
- She read it in English, but it may have been a translation.
- The title was some word that she thinks translated as "fish" or "sea god" or something similar. She thinks it maybe began with "P," but she's not sure.
Recently, I purchased a complete set of Balzac's Human Comedy for my Kindle. At roughly the same price as my morning coffee. Balzac was a infamously productive writer. So I'm asking for some recommendations to help me navigate this hyoooge corpus. [more inside]
Looking for recommendations for a book of poetry collections for someone new to poetry. [more inside]
It's driving me crazy - the book was about fishing/fisherman and featured dark linocut illustrations. I think the cover was blue and black. My recollection is that the tone of the book was sad. This was in Canada, early 1970s, if it matters. Help!
My pediatrician's office had a book in the waiting room--true stories of terrible accidents told by the kids and teens who managed to survive them. Anyone know the title? [more inside]
What are the best resources for learning about hip-hop from the very beginning to the present day? [more inside]
I am looking for a book that was published in the late 1980s. I cannot remember the title or the author, only that it is a memoir, and that the cover of the book (oft advertised in the New Yorker) had a small picture of a boy jumping between two rocks. The design of the cover was very much like this one for Lewis Thomas' The Fragile Species, with the picture of the jumping boy there in the center. The only other thing I can remember is that the author's name started with two initials, i.e. T R Something or A R Something. Please help!
Wikipedia claims that "Pageant Wagon" by Orson Scott Card has only ever been in the short story collection The Folk of the Fringe (1989). This is wrong, as I've read it, and I've never read an OSR short story collection. I can even remember exactly when and where I read it, but not the name of the short story collection. So, what other short story collection has it been in? Possibly under another name? [more inside]