The Vault of the Heavens Taught by James B. Kaler (Portable Professor series)

Not one of the better offerings in the Portable Professor series. While quite informative, it was full of way too many instances that required visuals. Professor Kaler repeatedly described objects as “about this big” or as moving “like this”. I believe that taking a class from him in person would be fascinating and very enjoyable, but this did not translate well in the audio format.

Astronomy For Beginners

The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Cover of "Persepolis"


I might have gone into this book with too-high expectations. Persepolis has won numerous awards, as has the film adaptation. That being said, I felt a little let down after reading it. Don’t get me wrong, it was a good story and an intriguing look behind the scenes of the Islamic Revolution in Iran as well as general Iranian culture. But Marji herself does not come across as a very sympathetic figure. I loved her ten year-old self in the beginning of the book, but by the middle, she had lost most of what made her so adorable and strong. I will grant that most of us go through the same thing during adolescence, but the fall did seem much more precipitous for Satrapi. Is she redeemed in the end? I won’t say here, but would love to hear other’s thoughts on the subject.

Y: The Last Man, Vol. 1: Unmanned by Brian K. Vaughan


Cover of "Y: The Last Man, Vol. 1: Unmann...

Y: The Last Man, Vol. 1: Unmanned


While there are plenty of stories revolving around the idea of being the last survivor or group of survivors of some cataclysmic event, Brian K. Vaughan‘s story is a little different. What if you weren’t the last human, but the last MAN? In this first volume of the series, Yorick Brown finds himself in just such a predicament (along with the only other known male survivor of any species, his pet monkey Ampersand).


This first volume sets up the series and the immediate aftermath of the death of all the males. There are a LOT of angry women. Some Republican Senatorial widows attempt to storm the White House in an attempt to take over their husbands’ now vacant seats. The Amazons are reborn. And there is a supermodel/actress driving a garbage truck. Somehow through it all, Yorick, whose mother just now happens to be POTUS, cares only about finding his girlfriend…


An intriguing beginning to the series. Am interested to see where it leads…