A few months ago we shared with you the personal project of library IT guy, Mike Fields. Mike has set the wildly ambitious goal of reading one book from every shelf in the Columbia Public Library’s nonfiction collection, and he is chronicling his progress on his blog, Man Vs. Nonfiction. Since we last checked in with Mike, he has been interviewed about his project by KFRU’s David Lile and been profiled by The Missourian. He has also finished few good reads, so we wanted to share some of the intriguing titles he has tackled. Read on, Mike!
- “Claim of Privilege: A Mysterious Plane Crash, a Landmark Supreme Court Case, and the Rise of State Secrets” by Barry Siegal (2008). This investigation of the landmark 1953 Supreme Court case U.S. v. Reynolds describes the suspicious deaths of three civilian engineers and the methods by which the government set a precedent for withholding evidence and blocking litigation processes.
- “The Lady Tasting Tea: How Statistics Revolutionized Science in the Twentieth Century” by David Salsburg (2001). Salsburg examines statistics and how statistical modeling impacts scientific research. Salsburg provides lively stories and biographies in addition to historical data regarding the start of the use of statistics during the 19th century and how statistical modeling continues to impact scientific research.
- “Tracks in the Sea: Matthew Fontaine Maury and the Mapping of the Oceans” by Chester Hearn (2002). Amateur historian Hearn examines the life and career of Matthew Fontaine Maury, whose greatest achievement lay in his mapping of the water currents and wind directions in the world’s oceans.
- “Where the Road Ends: A Home in the Brazilian Rainforest” by Binka Le Breton (2010). This memoir follows concert pianist Le Breton and her husband Robin, an agricultural economist, after their decision to uproot themselves from their home in Washington, D.C. and start a new life on a farm in Brazil.