Book review: All the Birds in the Sky

In the aftermath of the 2016 elections, the lead up to November 8th, I had been reading a lot of political history of the latter half of the 20th century. After The Donald won, I needed a change.

While I have often found modern SciFi a bit hard to get into, I steeled myself and asked a High School friend, Chuck Serface for a couple of recommendations. First up was “All the Birds in the Sky” by Charlie Jane Anders,  which appeared on my Kindle as if by magic.

That night, when I picked up my Kindle at bedtime, I fell into a trance, reading the entirety of the first “Book” (the novel is broken into 4 “Books” in a fairly natural divisions). I usually nod off after 15 minutes or so, strong praise indeed.

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A shout out to Dover Publications

Dover Publications, also known as dover press. I first became aware of Dover when I was in college. Dover picked up the rights of old text books that had gone out of print, and packaged them as reasonable priced paperbacks. Since I studied physics, and much of the core material was pretty static (not the modern, high energy, or particle physics that were evolving rapidly, but mechanics, field theory, E&M, and others were quite relevant. Textbooks that had gone out of favor were often packaged for sale at very reasonable prices, as low as $6 up to the mid $20’s.  Text books that if were being used would cost (even in the 1980’s) $40 – $100.

While I bought my required texts, I also picked up others on the same subject to give me additional points of view on topics. I primarily bought mathematics and physics texts.

Recently, I have found the need to brush up on some basic topics. The products I work on use PID digital controls. So I started looking for digital control books. Amazon had several, but they were current text books (read: $100 or more). Ouch. Hit dover’s website, and I find dozens of texts for less than $15 each. I pick one up.

When reviewing it, I realize I need to expand my knowledge of discrete mathematics, again, Dover to the rescue. A classic under grad text (and a companion volume on topology) are on the way to my house. Total cost $27.95.

Back in university, the internet wasn’t even on the horizon, so I would make the trek to Cody’s in Berkeley. They had a huge selection, ready to be exchanged for my hard earned cash. But today, it is a lot easier, you can buy them online, and browse their entire catalog.

Dover does have a lot more than just geeky science and physics books. There are books for all ages, and of a myriad of topics. I highly recommend a visit to their site.