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READING LIST & REVIEWS

GoodReads I love to read, just like I love to write. Below, courtesy of links to my GoodReads account, are a some of the books I've read of late, including my thoughts and reviews. I'd be excited to make your aquaintence on GoodReads, should you be interested. Just click on the icon to the left.



A selection of Scott's reviews: Click the book title to go to the full review

4 of 5 stars
Gladwell does a fine job of explaining how things happen: how fashion changes, how books get "hot", how group decisions get made, why decisions or directions taken sometimes defy logic. Especially important are discussions of now key peo...
5 of 5 stars
An excellent look into our food system from one of today's most thoughtful writers. The sections where Michael delves into the intricacies of our food system based on his first person experiences (on a farm, at McDonald's, hunting for bo...
5 of 5 stars
Spent a bit of time returning to one of the classics from one of my favorite authors of all time. THE PEARL is beautifully written and crafted tragedy about the human condition. Timeless. Along with his wonderful storytelling, I find mys...
5 of 5 stars
Crossing Divides artfully blends Scott Bischke and his wife Katie Gibson's agonizing struggle against Kate's advanced, recurrent, "terminal" cancer with the story of their three month, 800+ mile hike along the Continental Divide Trail ac...
5 of 5 stars
Wow, what a book! Sadly the explanation mark reflects on the evil that Krakauer reveals in the way Bush's government throws truth under the bus in using Pat Tillman's tragic death, accidentally inflicted by his own team while fighting in...
5 of 5 stars
An excellent book about exploration of the Amazon in the early 20th century. Fawcett was at once a complex and simple man, driven almost fanatically to find the "lost", golden city of Eldorado (Z). In his many treks to the Amazon he disc...
5 of 5 stars
An interesting look at the methods and philosophy of Google. Also looks at a number of other successful internet startups. Great information and lots of pearls of wisdom, especially if you are willing to buy in to "the economy of free"!
5 of 5 stars
Super interesting, well (ghost) written story about the tumultuous life of a tennis star. Agassi bares all, describing his life long hatred of tennis, a sport his father forced him to play from an early age. It's decidedly fun to get an ...
5 of 5 stars
An fun adventure story of high seas intrigue, filled with lost treasures, evil villains, and an interesting modern day tie to the unsolved World War II mystery. Written by my father-in-law!
5 of 5 stars
Amazing read that should be required for every college student, for every governor, for every Congressman, for the President! Hansen tells it like it is, laying out the rational for our pending climate disaster, plus how we can avoid it ...
5 of 5 stars
GOOD CAMEL, GOOD LIFE is a tale of hot yoga survival. In this joyful story, a neophyte yoga practitioner finds enlightenment of body, mind, and soul over the course of a 60-day intensive yoga challenge, running concurrently with a major ...
5 of 5 stars
A wonderfully interesting story about Louis Zamperini's harrowing story living (with many others) through the horror of WWII. Zamperini"s plane crashes at sea, he lives through months on a raft surrounded by sharks, and is eventually res...
5 of 5 stars
Scott Bischke and Katie Gibson have done what many of us dream. They quit their jobs and traded in their possessions for a year of travel and simplicity. During the course of their journey, the biked more than 8,000 kilometers and experi...
5 of 5 stars
Tremendous book about troubled kids and the changes that they undergo when sent--usually against their will--to wilderness camps in the desert. Gary Ferguson is one of our most talented nature writers, and a fellow Montanan. A super read!
5 of 5 stars
A simply beautiful book. Terry Kay has quickly injected himself onto my top 3 contemporary fiction writer list. Wonderful, skilled, smart writing, compelling characters, and a plot so interesting it doesn't require a bunch of murder and ...
5 of 5 stars
Highly recommended, fascinating story about the trials of a ship wrecked US crew in the Western Sahara. The crew was forced into slavery and driven without mercy. This is a harrowing story: the crew loses becomes emaciated, is forced to ...
5 of 5 stars
One of the finest, most touching books I have ever read. But get out the hankies--I sure needed them.
5 of 5 stars
A beautiful story about Dr. Sheehan's reflections on mind, body, and spirit--as seen through the eyes of a runner--as he slowly moves towards death by cancer. Always one of my favorite writers, both through his books and his years of wr...
5 of 5 stars
One of the best true-life adventure books I have ever read. Teddy Roosevelt is bigger than life. The audacity and naivety of this journey is simply amazing. Candice Millard does a wonderful job of bringing the story to life, pointing out...
5 of 5 stars
A super interesting story about an American exploring expedition that may have been every bit as amazing as Cook's travels, though poorly managed by the captain in charge.
5 of 5 stars
Great adventure well presented. Only slightly diminished when we learn that the story was essentially under contract through much of its development.
5 of 5 stars
Just got this book for Christmas though I read it years back. As fine (and fun) a book about fly fishing as has ever been written. I may just read it again, a rare occurrence for me.
5 of 5 stars
I read this books moons ago but noticed it on my shelf the other day. I am not a sailor, but I found this book to be a page turner, start to end. Two men, father and son, taking a small sailboat around the tip of South America. Frighteni...
5 of 5 stars
An amazing, albeit difficult, book about the Bataan Death March of World War II. The book provides a fascinating look at the war in the Pacific, centered around the death march in the Phillipines, with interviews and perspectives from bo...
4 of 5 stars
I reread this book after 30 years just to recall why Agatha Christie is the master mystery writer of all time. And I was not disappointed. Christie reveals just enough information to keep the reader chugging forward, thinking they know "...
4 of 5 stars
Michener is loquacious, surely, but so much to be learned about Spain from ancient history through ~1970. A great travel companion while in Spain.
4 of 5 stars
Great book about how an untrained but perfectionist clock maker beats the scientific elites in solving the "longitude problem". Determining longitude was the critical issue for ocean explorers of the 16th - 18th centuries. The establishm...
4 of 5 stars
A fine read by a talented author (and physician). Verghese artfully blends multiple story lines: his friendship with David, one of his interns; their role reversal on tennis court where David was a one time pro circuit player; David's st...
4 of 5 stars
A quiet, gentle book about growing up during the depression. Little action but much happening as a boy struggles to mature while seeking clues about a father who died shortly after he was born. Simple, accessible prose nicely crafted for...
4 of 5 stars
A fine companion travel log while doing my own extended period of tramping in New Zealand. Ostensible the author sets out to walk all NZ's Great Walks but the joy is more the characters met, the landscape, and some personal soul searchin...
4 of 5 stars
This is a masterful children's book that works equally well for adults. I read it while on a 3 week walk across England and much of the story resonated beautifully with the landscape we were passing through in the Lake District.
4 of 5 stars
A fun adventure of a neophyte adventurer that ran the length of the Amazon River by boat. Even a better talk if you ever get a chance to see Joe Kane's slideshow presentation about the trip.
4 of 5 stars
A fine story about a couple's walk along the PCT. Realistic, fun, took me right out on the trail. Only minor complaint was a bit too much text dedicated to issues only peripherally related to the hike. Still a highly enjoyable read and m...
4 of 5 stars
A beautiful story of spiritual and mental growth dealing with a skeptical man who is forced to drive across the US with a wise Buddhist monk. While the actual trip is less than eventful, the lessons learned by the skeptic along the way a...
4 of 5 stars
An extremely well written book that nonetheless would have been improved by some strong editing (it is ~650 pages and would have been tighter and far more readable at 450 pages). The book is written by a physician and is about physicians...
4 of 5 stars
A wonderful, historic book about S Africa, built around an tragic happening between two families--one white, one black. Also, a super movie that I watched just a finishing the book.
3 of 5 stars
Very interesting look into today's medical practice. Nothing I did not expect, but the words of caution about the expertise our doctors actually have came with some gravitas given that the author is a surgeon. My only complaint is that t...
3 of 5 stars
This is a fascinating book about why some people survive harrowing situations, and some people do not. Gonzales uses multiple stories of shipwrecks, mountain adventure disasters, and similar to pull together his theories of what it takes...
3 of 5 stars
This is a fascinating book about the reality of climate change as revealed by the glaciologists, modelers, and others who study it. Much of my work involves climate change topics so I very much wanted to absolutely absorb the book. I did...
3 of 5 stars
An interesting look at the Maori culture and a nice companion while on recent travels in New Zealand. My recommendation is neutral because while I found the story quite interesting, I had a hard time deciphering the wording and phrasing....
3 of 5 stars
An enjoyable return to short stories, beautifully crafted. I greatly enjoy Jhumpa's writing but worry that all of her writing too singly thematic: the highly intelligent first generation Indian or Pakistani played off against the traditi...
3 of 5 stars
A fun murder mystery from a new who-done-it author to me, Patricia Moyes. Includes Inspector Tibbet, a Hercule Poirot-like character (ala Agatha Chrisrie), who doggedly tracks down the murderer. A fun pick up for us at the cheap table in...
3 of 5 stars
A fun walk up the PCT vintage 1970's with the inherent 80 lb packs and all the rest. A bit poetic with a huge reliance on journal entries--does anybody write that cleanly in their journal after a sweaty, gritty day on the trail?! Not me,...
3 of 5 stars
A fun travelogue about one Brit's through hike of the CDT.
3 of 5 stars
Very well written book with a number of disturbing twists.
2 of 5 stars
This book came highly recommended but didn't work well for me. While I found a few pearls of wisdom, the book seemed largely pointed at people who find writers' block an ever and on-going struggle. Since I never find that a concern, I fo...
2 of 5 stars
Sadly, I am about to put this book away and not finish it. Seems the perfect read for lots of things I love including travel and bike touring. But as I have made my way to 50% complete I am finding it somewhat repetitive. I love books th...
1 of 5 stars
Another best selling author whose book was, in my mind, poor enough that I did not finish it even though 2/3 the way through. I am beginning to think the "New York Times Best Seller" should be a warning to me that I don't like what other...
2 of 5 stars
My version of this book included a forward by author Bill Bryson who called it "One of the funniest books you will ever read." For me, not so true. While a did get a couple of good chuckles out of the book, I also found it a bit dry. The...
2 of 5 stars
An interesting book but once again I don't understand what makes a book a best seller with the general public. The writing is good and the plot marginally interesting, but the book centers on murder, torture, and abuse of women and all k...
1 of 5 stars
On travel I have been trying to get into some of the big sellers in the US. I found this an odd story, well written but not that engaging, and in the end turned it back in even though I was 80% finished.
4 of 5 stars
I recall greatly enjoying this book, but read it too long enough for a detailed review. For someone who has heard of "Mutiny on the Bounty" all their life (haven't we all?!), this is a super way to get the details.
5 of 5 stars
Alan Kesselheim is one of my favorite contemporary writers, a fact not diminished by his also being a friend here in Bozeman. Alan's writes in beautiful, tight prose. His powers of observation and reflection reveal great insight, wheth...
5 of 5 stars
From the Author-- FISH TANK exists for a simple reason: to engage people—via a hopefully captivating story—in thinking about the critical issue of our times, climate change. My ultimate goal for the book is to help change society’s dis...
5 of 5 stars
From the Author-- FISH TANK exists for a simple reason: to engage people—via a hopefully captivating story—in thinking about the critical issue of our times, climate change. My ultimate goal for the book is to help change society’s dis...
5 of 5 stars
This is a wonderful story built on both plot and character. Ms. Collins does a superb job of pulling us into a bizarre (and, admittedly, gruesome) world and painting a picture that pulls us deeper and deeper into the story. She gives u...
5 of 5 stars
I found this book fascinating on many levels: * the history of cellular science research and critical breakthroughs; * the medical system's horrible treatment of patients and the trampling of their rights, often with no willingness to r...
5 of 5 stars
I read Cassie Kautzmann's COMFORT ZONE it in two sittings as it was both compelling and inspiring. Cassie's book shows how she combined medical expertise, the love of her husband, the love of family and friends, and especially her own un...
5 of 5 stars
I just completed Mike Mahoney’s RETURN OF THE NAMERS. This is a fascinating book full of big ideas wrapped in a story that is one part fantasy, one part science fiction, one part religious tome. It falls, for me, a bit along the lines ...
4 of 5 stars
Read long ago, but I recall this as a great story. I do see I marked it up a bunch, and have to say I love this excerpt from Asher as one of the all time great descriptions of the love between a couple, especially a couple facing great ...
4 of 5 stars
Read this book a long time ago but know that I have always really enjoyed Rick Bass's work and description of all things wild. Here's a favorite passage of mine he provides about the place of wolves in today's society: --- There is a de...
4 of 5 stars
Read this book many years back and enjoyed the incredible story of Lance's survival. My greatest kudos to him and joy that he, like my wife, has survived cancer. (A side note: Something perhaps a bit lost to me when a book is written ...
4 of 5 stars
A book I read eons ago but based on the number of underlines and check marks, clearly it spoke to me. Anyone who loves Abbey for his great works of monkey-wrenching owes it to themselves to tackle his other works. A great if atypical c...
4 of 5 stars
Read this book long ago as I work my way through my shelves and get them up on-line. Enjoy Rick Bass's work--pretty much everything of his I've ever read. While this book is about his love of a special place, Montana's Yaak Valley (his...
5 of 5 stars
Loved this book, though read long ago. Though his slant seems regularly irreverent, Abbey nonetheless surely calls to all of us who revere the outdoors, just as he did.
4 of 5 stars
A little tough for me not to rate this book highly as it tells the story of one of my Dad's favorite mountain men, and one of Montana's best known explorer. I might give this 5*s but this is a bit of an academic tome and for me, even in ...
4 of 5 stars
I enjoyed this book, much as I did the HUNGER GAMES. In the 1st book the key plot item was pretty much apparent in the first say 25% of the book. Here again I felt I knew most of what was being set forth, and where the story would go, ...
4 of 5 stars
I loved this book and only later learned of the controversy about its accuracy. Given that uncertainty to its accuracy, I will give it a 4 not 5. But even if some literary license was taken, the story is powerful, sad. A bit of my fav...
4 of 5 stars
Read this long ago and kept it as a reference to the mountain men of the old west, the great historical love of my father.
4 of 5 stars
A fun mystery set in Yellowstone National Park, right out my backdoor!
5 of 5 stars
Though I read this long ago, a bit tough not to give it a 5 when I see a dozen bookmarks of pages with bits of wisdom I wanted to recall. An example: --- To often in what we do, we fail to consider the two most important things: the co...
3 of 5 stars
I loved some aspects of this book, really disliked others. First, Bryson is a wonderful and engaging writer, that's the love part. So truly funny--at least as presented--aspects to his hike. But the dislike part came about because I a...
5 of 5 stars
Recalling this book from long ago, loved it as I seem to love most of Cahill's writing. He has a great knack for capturing the essence of being in the outdoors, often focusing on adventure in the outdoors, in a unique and insightful and...
5 of 5 stars
I read this long ago. Quite an amazing story of growth and survival.
5 of 5 stars
This is a wonderful book that helped set the basis for Mr. Obama's first presidency. It may actually be better in retrospect, here as the next election is approaching. As with all politics, I urge folks to listen to the politician, not...
3 of 5 stars
Not sure what I expected as a conclusion to the HUNGER GAMES. Hmmm....I appreciated the difficulty Ms. Collins, or any author, has in pushing through a trilogy, holding true to the storyline created, and keeping it interesting. I was c...
5 of 5 stars
I read this book long ago so my comments are decidedly distant. Here's my key memory of Dee Brown's work--that it provides a powerful reminder of how Native Americans were overwhelmed during the settlement of the American West. As a so...
5 of 5 stars
A great educational/informational book for those--like me!--who love to get out in bear country. Nicely formatted to allow the reader to jump around t sections for interest.
5 of 5 stars
Read this years ago and greatly enjoyed Haig-Brown's ability to evoke the spirit of the river and the fisherman. My copy is all marked up with quotes I loved, with the simple, elegant imagery Haig-Brown paints. ---(pg 352)--- I still do...
4 of 5 stars
Read this book ages ago and while I don't recall it to be phenomenal, it did hang with me as my first look at how future societies might orient themselves. Likely there was an entire genre of such books before Callenbach produced ECOTOP...
5 of 5 stars
OK, truth is this is just a super inspiring book, perhaps the most inspiring book I have read in years! How many books really impact you for more than a short time? I am on a new diet, running long (for me!) distances again, thinking a...
3 of 5 stars
A fun book to read while backpacking. It includes some plucky English types involved as hero/ine and villain and interesting interplay between locations in rural and urban England. My complaint is that Moyes reveals the mystery right a...
4 of 5 stars
I found this to be a thoroughly enjoyable read, which is not always an easy thing to say about a book of, essentially, history. But the story of the Panama Canal is phenomenal and McCullough brings it forth with great flourish and inter...
4 of 5 stars
I loved this book for the simple fact that it highlighted the challenges young women who aspire to the sciences face. It was fun to read about the period--late 1890s--but the story of the bias against women seeking careers in the scienc...
5 of 5 stars
I loved this book--the story of an enigmatic young woman who doesn't fit in with her high school group and for the most part, doesn't care. And she is sooo enigmatic that the book is a joy to read. Told from the perspective of a boy wh...
5 of 5 stars
Read this book shortly after completing BORN TO RUN, being inspired by the latter and intrigued with ultra-marathoning, the ultra-marathoning life, and Scott Jurcek. Loved reading about his exploits in any of a hundred races, the crazy ...
4 of 5 stars
Cheryl Strayed puts forth a highly compelling story that ebbs back forth between her sorrow over losing her Mom to cancer and a subsequent walk on the Pacific Crest Trail, from mid-California to the Columbia River. She tells a powerful ...
5 of 5 stars
Steven Lee Gilbert is a talented writer who tells an interesting story of a broken family. It's a plot so topical today, I suspect that this book would make a great movie or TV show. Gilbert's writing is compelling, key to me as the st...
5 of 5 stars
John Green presents one of the most beautiful, sad stories I have ever read. I cried a dozen times. As we are a family deeply steeped in cancer, the book hit very close to home and brought up so many memories. Green really gets it, t...

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