Reading Round-Up: October 2020

 We have reached the end of another month and boy, was I reading like crazy to try and meet every deadline, while also trying to keep up with due dates for various library books and planning for some of next month's reviews. Let's recap what I went through in October: 

The One and Only Bob Degas, Painter of Ballerinas The Prince of Mist Fairest of All Nightshade Meg
Creepshow Alan Wake Night of the Living Dummy Night of the Living Dummy II Night of the Living Dummy III Arthritis
The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook Vampire Diaries #1: The Awakening Nightwing Goodnight Kiss The End of Illness
Overcoming Arthritis Clean Slate

 The List:

  • The One and Only Bob by Katherine Applegate
  • Degas, Painter of Ballerinas by Susan Goldman Rubin
  • The Prince of Mist by Carlos Ruiz Zafón
  • Fairest of All by Serena Valentino
  • Nightshade by Andrea Cremer
  • Meg by Steve Alten
  • Creepshow by Stephen King (Bernie Wrightson, Michele Wrightson)
  • Alan Wake by Rick Burroughs
  • Night of the Living Dummy by R. L. Stine
  • Night of the Living Dummy II by R. L. Stine
  • Night of the Living Dummy III by R. L. Stine
  • Arthritis: Drug-Free Alternatives to Prevent and Reverse Arthritis by Lynne McTaggart
  • The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook by Mickey Trescott
  • Vampire Diaries #1: The Awakening by L. J. Smith
  • Nightwing by Martin Cruz Smith
  • Goodnight Kiss by  R. L. Stine
  • The End of Illness by David B. Agus
  • Overcoming Arthritis by Paul Lam
  • Clean Slate by Martha Stewart Living
The Prince of Mist, Nightshade, Meg, Alan Wake, Night of the Living Dummy (I, II & III), Vampire Diaries #1Nightwing, and Goodnight Kiss are all Halloween reads that were reviewed this past month. Please check out their reviews to find out more about them!

The One and Only Bob is a sequel to The One and Only Ivan, which I reviewed in September. It takes place after the events of the first book and focuses more on Bob and his new life. We will talk about this one this month. 

Degas, Painter of Ballerinas, is a non-fiction children's picture book that focuses on Edgar Degas, the famous artist. It is a biography, so it talks about his life and inspiration, while showcasing some of his artwork. It was very informative and I learned a lot about Degas. I like his artwork and think this would be a great book for young artists or art enthusiasts to learn more about an artist they may not know a lot about. During a pandemic, it is also a bit of a good alternative for "museum visiting" since a lot of those are closed and inaccessible to patrons right now. 

Fairest of All is the first book in a series that focuses on different Disney villains. This one focuses on the Evil Queen from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and we will be talking about it a little later, so keep an eye out for that review.

Creepshow is a graphic novel adaptation of the film that was written by Stephen King from 1982. The graphic novel was not written by Stephen King. He wrote the screenplay for the original movie, which was then adapted by Bernie Wrightson into this comic and illustrated by Michele Wrightson. This was the featured October read for a book group I am in. It was very interesting and harkens back to old school horror comics. I have never seen the movie, but I did enjoy this graphic novel adaptation.

Arthritis, The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook, and Overcoming Arthritis are all library books that focus on living with arthritis or other autoimmune diseases. My family has a medical history with these kinds of health issues so I did a bit of reading up on it all to be more informed about it. These were okay, but they definitely weren't the best books I've ever read on health topics. The most informative and beneficial one is probably The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook, because it talks the most about how diet impacts autoimmune disease and ways of handling autoimmune disease overall, day to day. Overcoming Arthritis predominantly focuses on using Tai Chi as a means of helping. McTaggart's Arthritis has some good information in it about nutrition in general, but it also throws a bit of what seems to be pseudoscience in. At least, I'm not as familiar with some of the methodologies in my experience, and refuse to speak to their benefit. McTaggart is also not a health professional. The authors of The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook, aren't either, but they live with various autoimmune diseases and are providing tips based on things that have helped them in their personal experience. 

The End of Illness is a book from 2011 that presents a different perspective on treating people. It proposes that new technologies at the time be used to more effectively personalize health care to each person. David Argus is an M.D. oncologist and he serves as a news consultant in California. His book was very interesting, but at times he ends up twisting himself in logical circles, partially defeating the points of his own advice. Furthermore, despite being an M.D., Argus does not include appropriate, professional citations and, as a Master's degree holder in library/information science who took classes such as Medical Informatics, I have to say that really irked me. I loved the discussion of how information technology can help people medically, because we talked a lot about that in my courses. The arguments presented were very good conceptually and I'd like to see some of it come to fruition, but for goodness sake, include proper references please. It makes Argus look unprofessional to not even include a proper bibliography at the end, considering the kind of book it is, the field it is, and how educated the author is. Again, interesting book, but it could have used a bit more editing to polish it up.

Clean Slate is a nutritional book that focuses on detox methods. It is generally a good book, but it is very much geared to a particular audience. It has general nutrition rules and tips, but doesn't take into account genetic factors that may alter what the best diet is for some people. Granted, this is a self-help book that is probably designed to be one size fits all, so I can understand why it says what it does (ex: Corn = skip, but if you have Native American heritage in any way, you can probably keep corn regularly in your diet; pork = good, but if you have autoimmune disease and certain heritage, you should probably skip out on it entirely since it may cause more harm than good). I think this book is a good stepping stone towards eating healthier, but I would encourage readers to also be prepared to make whatever changes they need in order to make it more beneficial to their own bodies and health. Definitely a good start though! 

I won't be reviewing any of the health books that I read, because it isn't a genre I have read a lot in and that isn't a topic I have discussed a lot on this blog. If anyone would like more information on any of those books, you can contact me and I'll provide more thoughts/info on them. 

This concludes my Reading Round-Up for October! I'll be back with another at the end of November. The posting schedule is returning to normal:

Monday - Magic Monday
Friday - Force Friday
1st Saturday = Shakespeare Saturday

 Until the next post and Round-Up, happy reading everyone!!!