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Month in review

Academic Discourse at Havana by Wallace Stevens
All-of-a-Kind Family by Sydney Taylor
Arabella by Georgette Heyer
The Big Pony Race by Erica David
Blue Hat, Green Hat by Sandra Boynton
Borders of Infinity by Lois McMaster Bujold
Bye-Bye, Big Bad Bullybug by Ed Emberley
Camp Buccaneer by Pam Smallcomb
Charlotte Gray by Sebastian Faulks
Child of the Owl by Lawrence Yep
Creole Ladies, Marti the Smuggler, Bullfighting by Maturin M. Ballou
Cuban Sketches (excerpt) by James Steele
Dancing Above the Waves by Susan Walerstein
The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper
Evergreen by Belva Plain
Enfant Terrible by Scott Dalrymple
Everybody Needs a Rock by Byrd Baylor
Flight of the Goose by Lesley Thomas
The Frog Prints by B. L. Harwick
Fullbrim's Finding by Matthew Hughes
A Grief Observed by C. S. Lewis
Havana Letter by William Cullen Bryant
If You Give a Pig a Pancake by Laura Numeroff
King Solomon's Mines by H. Rider Haggard
LoveHampton by Sherri Rifkin
Marlin off the Morro by Ernest Hemingway
The Minister's Wooing by Harriet Beecher Stowe
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie
My Pet Virus by Shawn Decker
Nana Volume 1 by Ai Yazawa
Native Tongue by Carl Hiaasen
The Penthouse Mystery by Ellery Queen
Reader's Guide by Lisa Goldstein
Red as Blood by Tanith Lee
The Roberts by Michael Blumlein
The Rule of Four by Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason
Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky
Sea Gift by John Ashby
Sin in the Second City by Karen Abbott
Singing to Cuba (excerpt) by Margarita Engle
Spiders and Scorpions: A Look Inside Series by P. D. Hillyard
Things I Overheard While Talking to Myself by Alan Alda
Unholy Domain by Dan Ronco
Virus Games by G. L. Sheerin
Zen of Fish by Trevor Corson

Miscellaneous:
Good Thing We Didn't Have Any Plans

Previous month

Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



Comments for Salt

SaltSalt: 07/13/08

I can remember sitting in my car listening to a review of Salt: A World History and an interview with Mark Kurlansky. Four years later I have finally gotten around to reading the book. Perhaps I should have read it sooner because the book didn't live up to expectations. I think part of my disappointment stems from having just enjoyed The Zen of Fish by Trevor Corson.

Salt is broken into three parts: the first covering why we need salt and how that need affected early civilizations; the second part focuses on the fishing industry; and the final part looks at how salt continues to affect society. Kurlansky has also written The Basque History of the World and Cod and he's clearly still interested in both topics. Large portions of Salt focus on both the Basque use of salt and the history of cod and salt. I am not all the interested in Basque history and The Zen of Fish is a more interesting take on the history of fish (and salt).

There are some interesting bits of Salt. I liked best the chapters about Italy that discuss prosciutto and Parmesan. I also liked the discussion of salt in China post revolution and the bit about how sugar is traditionally thought to balance the taste of salt. I had never heard of this old wives tale but it helps to explain why salt is always an ingredient in dessert recipes.

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