Book: Animals Make Us Human: Creating the Best Life for Animals

Another good book by Grandin. This one is focused on our principal domesticated animals (dogs, cats, cows, pigs, horses, and chickens) and what we can and should be doing to make their lives better.

Book: Anthill: A Novel

So one of the world’s leading authorities on ants wrote a novel! And it has ants in it. Wilson is a great writer of non-fiction, but his skills as a novelist clearly need some honing. There is, however, a little gem of a story buried in the middle of the book and it is quite good. Spoiler alert: That story is about ants.

Book: We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves

My wife Beth introduced me to this dark and deeply affecting novel liberally laced with comic relief. The writing voice is quite unique as well. Plus some bonus nostalgia for anyone who has spent a lot of time in Davis, CA. Highly recommended.

Book: The Spy Who Loved: The Secrets and Lives of Christine Granville

The writing in this biography is not always engaging, but the raw facts of the matter more than makes up for that. The story of this remarkable woman, a Polish Jew who spied for Britain during WWII, has to be read to be believed.

Book: The Origin of Financial Crises

A pretty good but not great book about the recent(ish) history of money, finance, and financial crises and what we should do about them. The author never delves very deeply into the details of macroeconomics and that lack of rigor shows towards the end, particular when it comes to his prescriptions about what is to be done. They sounds nice enough, but one wants a bit more detail in their justification.