Posted in Paper Chase

Q1 + Q2 Read It 2022

Reading this book in early 2022 while the trucker’s “Freedom Convoy” worked its way across Canada to then occupy downtown Ottawa was a stark contrast in realities. Colson Whitehead’s book, The Underground Railroad, from 2016 was hugely popular – it won a Pulitzer Prize before eventually being turned into a TV show.  The book follows Cora as she escapes the plantation she is enslaved on in order to find a better life. In the book, the underground railroad is an actual railroad that takes ex slaves around America through secret tunnels. Even as Cora runs further and further away from the plantation, her past is never far behind. It’s a powerful book that should be widely read.  

9/10

The first book in a series that will follow the songs of the Bee Gees decade by decade. Starting off in the 60s, this volume is split between the group’s Australian beginnings and it’s first brush of international fame with their first UK albums. The book written by several authors including Winnipegger (and friend) Grant Walters is expertly written with many in-depth anecdotes about the Gibbs’ brothers writing and recording history. It is a book that will keep both the hardcore and casual fans entertained throughout.

8/10

On top of work, working towards a Business Analyst certificate occupied a lot of my time in early 2022. This book taken for the Business Re-Engineering course was a companion for a few months.  Workflow Modeling is a way of looking at the design of work/process mapping to gain more insights into where process improvements can be made. Certainly, dense with a lot of information, the second edition by Alec Sharp and Patrick McDermott has several interesting business stories and is swimming with swim lane diagrams.

7/10

Prairiefire Magazine – Summer 2021, Volume 42 No. 2

Posted in Paper Chase

Q1 Read It 2019

The subtitle of Susan Cain’s 2012 New York Times Bestseller Quiet is “The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking”.  Quiet is a well-researched look into how introverts handle a world that is geared towards celebrating the extrovert ideal.  There are many examples that introverts will readily notice in themselves.  The Harvard student who feels like he’s yelling if he talks above his normal, low speaking voice, the woman whose husband wants to entertain friends every week and the professor who has to seek out quiet areas after giving (very well received) speeches.

Cain’s writing style is interesting and can be quite funny at times.  Some of the material feels geared to more of an extreme introvert, can be a bit too rah rah for the quiet ones, and a bit too harsh in regards to society.  I would consider myself an introvert but have never been uncomfortable in work places that have cubicles and generally enjoyed my co-workers chatter.  However, I definitely seek out quiet at the end of the day in order to recharge the batteries. It is nice to read that some of the social tics introverts have are felt by others and that it’s perfectly OK to say no to nights out on the town vs staying at home to read.

7/10

Before releasing the commercially and critically unsuccessful punk rock album Animal Rights in 1996, Moby was a rising star in the world of dance music.  His 1995 release, Everything Is Wrong was rated as Spin’s album of the year and is solidly one of this writer’s favourite discs of all time. Moby’s first book, Porcelain, focuses on his rise through the New York DJ ranks to his mid-90s commercial failures and the recording of Play that would make him a mega star.  The conflicted Christian and staunch vegan, it is interesting to read Moby navigate New York’s music world while remaining sober through much of it.  The book is not only a look at Moby but also what living in NY was like on a shoestring budget.  It’s hard to like Moby at times but it’s a fascinating read for even those with a passing interest in the music industry and electronic music world.  The follow-up, Then It Fell Apart, came out on May 7th.

9/10

Prairie Fire – Volume 39, No.  4, Winter 2018

Prairie Fire – Volume 38, No.  4, Winter 2017