Wednesday, July 8, 2009

The annual Powell's haul

Roughly once a year I make it down to Portland, and I can't come here without visiting Powell's--an amazing, ginormous bookstore with both used and new stock. It's one of my favorite places in the whole world. I could easily lose myself in there for days.

Today I ended up with $56 in store credit from the used books I'd brought down to trade in, so I kinda went wild (spending way more than $56, but I only get there once a year). Here's the list. It's almost all nonfiction, because I headed up to the history department first and easily could've spent my entire budget and then some just on the Britain and Ireland shelves.

THE WORLD OF DANIEL O'CONNELL, by Donal McCartney - eventually my WIP world will include Ireland, so I'm starting to stock up on sources on Ireland in the 18th and 19th centuries.

THE ART OF WAR, Antoine Henri Jomini - if I'm going to invent Napoleonic-era battles for my alternative history, I might as well study the actual theory of the era.

WEAPONS AND EQUIPMENT OF THE NAPOLEONIC WARS, Philip Haythornthwaite - I'm always seeking books to help me with the everyday details of my characters' lives.

NAPOLEON, Paul Johnson - a brief biography, and I'm hoping a balanced one. Napoleon tends to be portrayed as either the greatest man EVER or as lacking any redeeming qualities whatsoever. The former makes me roll my Anglocentric Wellington-fangirl eyes forever, while the latter...I'm sorry, you just can't compare Napoleon to Hitler. Not even the same league. Really. Which would you rather live in, Napoleonic France or Nazi Germany?

THREE NAPOLEONIC BATTLES, Harold T. Parker - analyzes the battles of Friedland, Aspern-Essling, and Waterloo.

ORGANIZING FROM THE INSIDE OUT, Julie Morgenstern - a resource for my ongoing struggle to organize my stuff and my life.

THE COMPLETE WRITER'S GUIDE TO HEROES & HEROINES, Tami D. Cowden, Caro LaFever, Sue Viders - a book on archetypes. I was at a presentation based on this book and found it intriguing.

PASSION & PRINCIPLE: THE LOVES AND LIVES OF REGENCY WOMEN, Jane Aiken Hodge - because I'm not only interested in war.


FOOD MATTERS, Mark Bittman - decided I needed my own copy.

NAPOLEON AND HIS COLLABORATORS, Isser Woloch - how Napoleon became First Consul and then Emperor, and who supported him along the way

THE BOOKSELLER'S DAUGHTER, Pam Rosenthal - my one fiction purchase, a historical romance set in France just before the Revolution.

HOW TO GROW A NOVEL, Sol Stein - looked like it might have good advice for my style of writing.

ACCESS 2003 BIBLE, Cary N. Prague, Michael R. Irwin, Jennifer Reardon - hopefully contains the solutions to a pesky database problem or two at work.

Oh, and I got my daughter all the Martha Speaks books that she doesn't yet have.


jmnlman said...

Johnson argues that Napoleon was the forerunner of the totalitarian leaders of the 20th century. Don't think you'll enjoy it.

Susan Wilbanks said...

It wasn't too expensive, so if I don't like it, it's no great loss.

And I can see Napoleon as a forerunner of the 20th century dictators. I'm definitely not an admirer--it's just that if I had to live under a dictatorship, I'd pick his over any of the more recent ones.