I want my family and friends to better understand what I'm going through when I'm depressed and/or anxious. Are there good books (fiction or nonfiction) that explain what being clinically depressed is like? [more inside]
I loved A Song of Ice and Fire, The Kingkiller Chronicle and the Stormlight Archive. I'm in book 2 of the Mistborn series and it's enjoyable but not as good as the previous. Where should I go next? Needs to be on Audible (I have a 2 hr commute every day).
Please help me resolve an argument about what Amazon will and will not sell. Party A claims that Amazon will not sell any book with corpses shown on the cover art. Party B despairs of the work involved in a late change to their book's cover. My gut feeling is that this is a ludicrous exaggeration of their actual policy and that there should be plenty of blatant counterexamples, but it's not an easy thing to search for. That's where askmefi comes in. [more inside]
I'd like to try acquire the rights to material from a few related out-of-print nonfiction books published in the US during the 1920s and 30s, in order to create interactive electronic media from the material. (Initially a website, possibly an offline phone app. in the future.) This is almost certainly not fair use, and copyrights have been renewed for most of the texts. I'm hoping for a sanity check and some pointers from someone who knows more about book rights than me. [more inside]
My uncle is interested in reading science fiction or futuristic fantasy books that involve music as a strong narrative element. He has read some Anne McCaffrey that did this, as well as Patrick Rothfuss, but was hoping to find other options, and I drew a blank. Can you guys think of any more music-tinged works?
For a couple chapters of a book I'm writing, I could choose to adapt short stories that I already released under a Creative Commons license. Even with the adapted chapters, the book would be 95% new material. What are the implications of mixing the new material with the CC material? [more inside]
What are the best history (non-fiction) books concerned with the Oregon Territory, the Pacific Northwest, Washington State, the Puget Sound region, or Seattle?
What is the best service or method for designing and printing about a dozen copies of a cookbook? Lulu? Amazon? iPhoto? Kinkos? [more inside]
I was at Busboys and Poets a few months ago and I found an amazing book that "prescribed" other books for various physical and mental ailments - e.g Jane Austen for the brokenhearted, Heart of Darkness for malaria. I think the author had a blog/service all about book recommendations and was called the "book doctor." Help me find this book!
I want your book recommendations. I have just finished watching the first season of The Americans, a TV series about two Russian spies who live as an American couple with two children during the Cold War, and was surprised that I loved it a lot. I want more of that, but I don't usually love this kind of tv series. So I thought, instead of looking for other tv shows like this, I could try to find some books that I like. [more inside]
My question is two-fold, really. First, please recommend to me all of your favorite titles on the history of science, math, technology, and medicine. Secondly, how do you go about searching for good books in these topics? My favorite booksellers don't have a "history of science" search tag, unfortunately. Some of my past favorites and extended explanation below the fold. [more inside]
I'm getting fairly tired of science fiction set in the near or medium future where society and motivations are an extension of modern life. I'd like something set so far in the future that there is nothing that really calls back to earth politics or history or culture, or something which may well be in an alternate universe because earth-like things never even come up. [more inside]
My wonderful partner has a 7-year-old, 2nd-grade son who is having a little trouble keeping up with his peers in the reading department. We're trying to give him some extra attention in that area so that he can catch up, and we'd like to try and foster in him a genuine interest in reading. What books (or comics, or anything) could we give him that he might like, and which would be appropriate for his reading level? [more inside]
Hi, My 10 year old girl loves to read. When she gets started, she loves it, but it's the "getting her started" that I have a problem with. [more inside]
Please help my husband and me find words or phrases (any language!) that describe the sensation of knowing how far you are from home. Not really alienation or nostalgia or being homesick-- just the understanding/realization of the distance. [more inside]
Seeking literary fiction with a transient, often solitary, female hero, please! [more inside]
My friend is graduating next month with a degree in Museum Studies. I'd like to get her a book as a graduation present. Can you recommend any good memoirs or biographies or popular nonfiction books set in the museum world? I would rather it not be mainly about heists or looting or art crime.
A couple of years ago I read a piece online written by a teacher about using Finnegans Wake as a teaching tool. He had them analyze the ending of the book, or rather, the beginning/end. Their analysis of it surprised him. Many of the students came up with different interpretations showing how many ways it can be read. I can't for the life of me find it anywhere. Could someone help me out?
Help me find books that convey a jolly feeling of appreciation for the wonders of modern life. Ideally these would be books that have a sci-fi or fantasy feel, but in which nothing overtly magical or fantastic happens. The best recent examples I can think of are Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore, which has all the elements of a fantasy novel but is set squarely in our world, and William Gibson's most recent novels, all of which feel fantastic to me but are grounded in real life. [more inside]
I'm going to be stocking a small bookcase with 5 to 10 books, and placing it in a room inside a college. I need a way to prevent the books from being stolen. Options seem surprisingly limited. Any help? [more inside]
I'd like to brush up on my understanding of American politics today. Could anyone point me in the direction of an accessible, well-regarded book that approaches an interesting political phenomenon, or American politics in general, in a relatively non-partisan way? I'd prefer to stay away from highly ideological works about how either conservatives or liberals are leading America to its doom.
I'm starting a book club among my friends where we just read the dirty bits from popular books to each other. They don't even have to be popular books - just books that I can actually find easily. And it's not exactly a book club. More like a reading-to-each-other club. Anyway, can you remember and recommend any notably hot sex scenes from books you might have read? [more inside]
I just finished reading Zealot, by Reza Aslan, and I found it to be a fascinating book. I'm looking for similar books! [more inside]
I'm looking for non-fiction books that describe the day-to-day life of an allied tanker (guy in a tank or other AFV) in World War II. [more inside]
I'm yet again looking for some books I read over a decade ago. Details below. Somewhere in there I swear is a link to Frank Herbert, but I don't know for sure (every time I search for his bibliography it comes up all Dune). [more inside]
I've recently finished Marcus Sakey's Brilliance and Max Barry's Lexicon and I'd like more thrillers like them. By "like them", I mean: fast paced, lots of twists and action, an intelligent, speculative, science-fictiony central idea, but the book is not marketed as genre science fiction, but rather as a thriller. Some literary aspiration is a plus, as is a good Bechdel test score (both of the above books kind of failed on that latter criterion). Already read: Atwood, Gibson, Stephenson. I read a lot of "literary mysteries" like Tana French and the like, but here I'm more interested in action/thrillers and not so much mysteries or procedurals.
Book suggestions for a gift exchange recipient that combine business, Haruki Murakami, David Foster Wallace, and/or music? (here's hoping my recipient isn't also a Mefite!) [more inside]
I'm trying to create a travel book and website for tourists to NYC. Are there any resources I can use for free or very low cost in regards to the street maps in the printed version, especially those including subway and/or bus stops (nice, but not required).
Can you point me toward any negative reviews of Asimov's Foundation Trilogy? [more inside]
I again have time to consume books like a cookie-monster. I've avoided lists of classics-by-genera because I tend to like only 5% of what's on them. It's not that I specifically like reading dystopias or sci-fi - I liked the Poisonwood Bible for instance, as much if not more than Lord of the Rings. In addition to book recommendations, it would also be useful if, given the books listed below, you have any ideas for other trends that could help me search out books myself. Your advice is much appreciated! :) [more inside]
I want to learn how to watch movies with more of a critical eye. I want to know what to pay attention to - technically, narratively, and so on -- and how to judge these things, so I can better appreciate what's going on. I'm looking for books or maybe documentaries that will help me do this. [more inside]
My partner and I were remembering our differing childhood experiences of homemade spaghetti. At one point, she brought up using the leftovers in a spaghetti sandwich. I've never had one, but this triggered a vivid memory of a favorite picture book which had at least one illustration of a spaghetti sandwich. Among other odd sandwiches, possibly. I'd love to remember the title of the book and, ideally, see that illustration. [more inside]
Please recommend fiction about obscure subcultures. Basically, I'm looking for the fiction version of this question. More contemporary books (written recently and about contemporary subjects) are preferred but not required.
Trying to find the perfect book to scratch a partner's literary itch for macrohistories related in some way to music. Details within. [more inside]
If I'm going to succeed in a field I am considering (bioinformatics), I'm going to need to learn a good deal of statistics. I have limited experience in the subject and have never found the details of it especially compelling. Can you recommend some books on statiistics (not necessarily light on the details) that are well written and interesting? Something designed to get the layman interested in the details could be good, but textbook recommendations would also be good.
Looking for books/long articles about Lyndon Johnson and the Great Society- the history, the political effort, the hits and the flops. [more inside]
What newly released books would my nerdy, geeky, incredibly smart, completely rad uncle enjoy? [more inside]
I like to learn about different places and cultures by reading fiction set in those places and with characters from those cultures. Can you recommend to me a contemporary novel about American Indians? I'm particularly interested in books about Native American communities in the continental US. [more inside]
Sometimes, one of the first pages of a library book will bear an identifying stamp made of perforations punched through by a special tool. This practice seems to have disappeared, and Googling for it has only frustrated me. What is the tool called and where can I find one? [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'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]
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'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!
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]
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]
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]
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.