Books over Break !
Welcome back! Hopefully everyone at Lakeview had a relaxing, safe and enjoyable holiday!
Students sometimes ask me what books I’ve read or, alternatively, “Do you do anything besides reading?”. I do of course, but reading and critically reflecting on what you have read is ( or rather, should be) an important part of life; much of what I learn is eventually incorporated into my teaching and shared with the students. At times, their questions lead me to see the books I have read in an entirely new light.
Over break, I had the pleasure of reading the following books:
Mao: The Unknown Story by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday
This massively researched biography is designed to “de-mythologize” Communist revolutionary and ruler of China, Mao ZeDong as a sociopathic schemer and mass murdering tyrant. The authors have brought many new Chinese language sources to light for the first time as well as rare interviews with Mao’s surviving associates, servants and victims.
The Mislabeled Child by Drs. Brock and Fernette Eide
A husband and wife team of medical doctors who are also neuroscience researchers wrote this book to illustrate the complexities of brain activity behind conditions like autism spectrum disorder, “giftedness”, dyslexia, ADHD and what hidden strengths these conditions also create that can be leveraged to help a child learn. Superbly researched and easy to read.
Virtual Light by William Gibson
William Gibson, along with the late Philip K. Dick, is one of the most influential science fiction writers in the last half century. A successful futurist, Gibson coined the term “cyberspace” and wrote stories that featured virtual reality, nanotechnology and artificial intelligence years or decades before these technologies became known to the general public. Virtual Light revolves around a pair of stolen, high-tech, sun-glasses and the secret they contain, a secret that some are willing to kill for.
Science, Strategy and War by Colonel Frans Osinga