Monday, April 12, 2010

No Baby, Just Books

I bet you thought I was off having a baby, eh? Yeah, not so much. He's still warm and cozy apparently, and I'm a week away from my due date, so we'll see if he decides to emerge before then. We have a memorial service for my uncle tomorrow at 2:00, so my mom is putting her money on tonight or tomorrow, since she's almost sure this child will be as hard-headed and attention-fond as I was in my youth.

In the meantime, I've been bookish, and it's about darn time. I woke up Saturday with a single-minded determination to go to Barnes & Noble and check out the in-store content available exclusively on the Nook. I've meant to go do this for a while now, since I actually received my device in January, but it seems like the proverbial stars always align their shiny butts to stop me. The last time I went, my battery had just dipped below the point of no return, and for the life of me, I couldn't find my charger or an outlet.

This weekend I was prepared! Fully charged and ready to go!

So this is the way it works: You walk into a B&N and the Nook (we'll call him Dobby today) automatically connects to the store wi-fi, and voila! You have free content from cool authors. And coupons. I love coupons. I downloaded these goodies:

"A Dreadfully Good Interview with Austen-Loving, Zombie-Slaying Author Steve Hockensmith" - Hockensmith is the author of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: Dawn of the Dreadfuls. If you're not already familiar, this is the prequel to PP&Z, which illustrates how Elizabeth came to be a zombie butt-kicker. The Q&A was really entertaining. When asked if he'd read Pride and Prejudice when he got the offer to write Dawn of the Dreadfuls, he writes:

I first read PP (as true fans don't call it) a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, otherwise known as college in teh late 1980s. I found it kind of frustrating as I recall, because nobody just came out and said what they were really feeling, which resulted in a lot of what seemed to me like unnecessary drama. to my 19-year-old  American male brain, it was infuriating. "Darcy, dude, just tell her you love her already! And don't be an ass about it!"
He later re-read and had a far finer view of things, I should add. I couldn't get into Pride & Prejudice and Zombies at all, but I'm kind of excited about Dawn of the Dreadfuls since the lack of original writing was what put me off of PP&Z.

To continue the undead theme, Carrie Ryan, author of The Forest of Hands and Teeth, offers some suggestions for survival in "How to Avoid a Zombie Death."

My favorite find of the trip was probably Rebecca Skloot's short essay, "From Veterinary Morgues to Immortal Cells: My Path to Writing About Science." It seems like everyone is reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks lately, so I'm sure Skloot's name is pretty familiar to y'all. I can't wait to get my hands on it. Come on, library holds list!

In the essay, Skloot writes about the "aha" moment when she realized she could move an audience by writing about science. Her topic: the veterinary morgue at the school she was attending to be a vet. She was maddened by the number of animals killed in the name of experimentation when there were interactive computer programs available to cut down on the deaths. Needless to say, her classmates were just as affected as she was, and it was a magic moment that set her off on her current path as a science writer.

Finally, I downloaded an Easter recipe from Giada de Laurentiis, "Pea Pesto Crostini." Everyone in my house is on a bruscetta kick, so I thought this might be a nice next step when we get sick of our bruscetta.

There was much more to download, but these were the ones that really struck my fancy.

And you know my wishlist didn't go unscathed as a result of this trip. Books added to my wishlist ("e" and otherwise) while sitting in B&N:

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