Thursday, May 19, 2011

So many books to read...

Last weekend was my girlfriend's college graduation. I went up to see her and be there for her. It was a fun time. But, if you want that story, check out her blog. Well, kind of. She blogs about restaurants in Morgantown and wrote about the dinner we had after her graduation.

Aside from seeing her, one of my favorite things about going to Morgantown is making a trip to Barnes & Noble. I like to read. Or, to try and look smart, I could say that I'm a vociferous reader.

While I was there, I picked up two books. One was from several years ago by Paul Levesque, a professional wrestler known as Triple H. I've wanted to check it out for a few years but had never been able to find it anywhere (and am too lazy to order it online). It's called Making the Game: Triple H's Approach to a Better Body and is something like a workout guide. It's not quite an autobiography, as it doesn't just tell his life story, but it is about bodybuilding and how that helped him achieve his goal of becoming a WWE superstar.

The other book I picked up was Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler's autobiography Does the Noise in my head bother you?: A Rock 'n' Roll Memoir. I've read some good stuff about it, that - to borrow a cliche-d literary phrase - he pulls no punches and it's very revealing.

These books will now be added to my Summer Reading List. Aside from those two, I have 11 books that I would like to read. It's not that I don't like to read or am a slow reader or whatever. These 11 books will take no more than 15 days to finish. It's just about finding the time to actually sit down and enjoy reading them.

I'll start with four that I have already started reading and then segue into the rest of them.

Decision Points, George W. Bush ... I bought the former President's memoir shortly after it came out. It is not a chronicle of his life so much as it is a book about certain key decisions in his life and presidency. Bush writes about things like quitting drinking and the Iraq War. The first chapter is actually like a traditional autobiography, as he writes about his childhood and early adult life. I haven't actually read any of the decisions. I put the book down before I got to that point and never picked it up again. It's on my to-do list.

Dirty Sexy Politics, Meghan McCain ... The other political book on my list, this book by Senator John McCain's daughter had a lot of advance praise and I've heard a lot of good things about her. I've followed her on Twitter for the last couple years, so I knew about the book back when she was still writing it. I actually don't know if I'm going to finish this one. I've read most of it. It chronicles her time working on her father's 2008 presidential campaign. I read up until where she writes about Obama winning the election. She just comes off like she's very spoiled and like she thought her contributions to her father's campaign were a lot more important than they actually were.

No Speed Limit: The Highs and Lows of Meth, Frank Owen ... I was very intrigued by this book after realizing how huge of a problem meth is in Princeton. It charts the rise of methamphetamine use and the underground selling of it in America. The reason I stopped reading this book was because it started to bore me. Owen started talking about how meth started in one area, then another area, then another area, then another area, and so on. After a while, it seemed like I was reading the same "here's how meth started" story over and over. I might give it another shot this summer.

You Never Give Me Your Money: The Beatles After the Breakup, Peter Doggett ... This looks at the group's formation of Apple Records and how that played into the breakup of the Beatles. I started it and then never got around to finishing it. It was interesting and an aspect of the Beatles that isn't written about much, I just wasn't in the mood to read and never picked it back up.

Broken Hearts: The Life and Death of Owen Hart, Martha Hart ... I've honestly been a little wary of reading this book. I don't want to read something that has a negative slant on professional wrestling and I'm worried that this book will have that tone. It's sitting there waiting to be read, so hopefully it will one day.

Evel Knievel: Life of Evil, Stuart Barker ... I've always thought Evel Knievel was an interesting man, so I randomly picked this up one day when I saw it. One of the last things he was in the news for before he died was suing Kanye West for impersonating him in a video. Click here to see it.

1984, George Orwell ... A friend of mine was shocked to know that I had never read 1984. I guess I should read it.

Misery, Stephen King ... I've never read a Stephen King novel. I saw the cover and thought it looked interesting. I'll give it a shot and see how it goes.

The Accountants Story: Inside the Violent World of the Medellin Cartel, Roberto Escobar ... This looks pretty cool. Drugs, gangsters, all that good stuff.

Under the Radar: How Robert Tucker Built Shoe Show, Inc. into the Nation's Largest Independent Shoe Retailer, Howard Covington, Jr. ... Yeah, the title makes it seem like the lamest book in the history of the world. But, not to me. They sell this book at the Shoe Show, Inc. at the mall and that's where I bought it. The lady that sold it to me commented that I was the first person to ever buy the book there.

Planet Simpson: How a Cartoon Masterpiece Defined a Generation, Chris Turner ... A pretty thick book about how "The Simpsons" became the juggernaut that it has become. Since it's not an officially licensed book, there are no pictures in it. The book is 438 pages and not a single page has a picture from the cartoon in it. I'm very excited to read it.

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There's my Summer Reading List. If you've read any of those and want to let me know how they are, feel free to offer an opinion. If you'd like to share your own list of books you want to read, do so.

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