WWW Wednesday November 25

It’s Wednesday, so it’s time to take a look at what I’ve read, what I’m reading, and what I’m planning on reading. Normally I do a lot of blog hopping, visiting about 100 blogging friends who participate in this challenge, but I’m working today and had to schedule this post ahead of time. So sorry, fellow bloggers, I won’t have time to stop by this week. I’ll be back “live” next week.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

Demagogue: The Life and Long Shadow of Senator Joe McCarthy (Amazon) (AbeBooks) Joe McCarthy came from my husband’s hometown, and was a United States Senator for Wisconsin. There’s a section on him at The History Museum at the Castle in Appleton, Wisconsin where I’ve taken my kids many times (their whole second floor is devoted to Harry Houdini, who was born here, and there are lots of really cool displays). I had to write a paper on him in college, and I knew from all my independent reading what damage McCarthy did to lives back in the 1950’s.

From the publisher: “The definitive biography of the most dangerous demagogue in American history, based on first-ever review of his personal and professional papers, medical and military records, and recently unsealed transcripts of his closed-door Congressional hearings

In the long history of American demagogues, from Huey Long to Donald Trump, never has one man caused so much damage in such a short time as Senator Joseph McCarthy. We still use “McCarthyism” to stand for outrageous charges of guilt by association, a weapon of polarizing slander. From 1950 to 1954, McCarthy destroyed many careers and even entire lives, whipping the nation into a frenzy of paranoia, accusation, loyalty oaths, and terror. When the public finally turned on him, he came crashing down, dying of alcoholism in 1957. Only now, through bestselling author Larry Tye’s exclusive look at the senator’s records, can the full story be told.”

I normally listen to audiobooks at work to whittle down my TBR pile, but for the holidays, I’m helping out the retail division of our company because they can’t hire additional workers because of current restrictions on how many people can be in the building at one time. So until the holidays are over, I won’t be making much progress from week to week like I used to.

What did you recently finish reading?

I just finished the audiobook of A Promised Land by Barack Obama. Twenty-nine hours long (although Obama speaks so slowly and deliberately, I was able to listen at 1.5 speed to shorten that length some) or 700 pages if you read it, this is a tome. I’ll say it over and over, when it comes to reading about the presidents, I’m strictly non-partisan. I read books from both sides of the aisle. My favorite presidents are both Democrats and Republicans. I’ve voted both ways, depending on who was running and what the big issues of the day were. I’m strictly an independent. Review to come later today!

Did you know that the presidential memoir goes back to Harry Truman, who was dead broke when he left office? (there was no presidential pension or Secret Service protection when he left office). So he signed a big book deal and wrote a two-part memoir that was a big hit.

From the publisher: “A Promised Land is extraordinarily intimate and introspective—the story of one man’s bet with history, the faith of a community organizer tested on the world stage. Obama is candid about the balancing act of running for office as a Black American, bearing the expectations of a generation buoyed by messages of “hope and change,” and meeting the moral challenges of high-stakes decision-making. He is frank about the forces that opposed him at home and abroad, open about how living in the White House affected his wife and daughters, and unafraid to reveal self-doubt and disappointment. Yet he never wavers from his belief that inside the great, ongoing American experiment, progress is always possible.”

What do you think you’ll read next?

She Come By It Natural: Dolly Parton and the Women Who Lived Her Songs (Amazon) (AbeBooks). Dolly Parton is a musical goddess: singer, songwriter, performer, LIVING LEGEND. She also has a great program called Imagination Library in many cities to get books into the hands of kids who wouldn’t normally have access to them (sadly, not in my town, but our county library runs a similar program every Christmas). In my eyes, Dolly is a rock star. Just a few months ago I reviewed another book on Parton called Unlikely Angel: The Songs of Dolly Parton (Amazon) (AbeBooks) (you can read that review here) and couldn’t wait to read more about her.

From the publisher: Far beyond the recently resurrected “Jolene” or quintessential “9 to 5,” Parton’s songs for decades have validated women who go unheard: the poor woman, the pregnant teenager, the struggling mother disparaged as “trailer trash.” Parton’s broader career—from singing on the front porch of her family’s cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains to achieving stardom in Nashville and Hollywood, from “girl singer” managed by powerful men to leader of a self-made business and philanthropy empire—offers a springboard to examining the intersections of gender, class, and culture.”

What are you reading? Do you have any recommendations? Drop your list in the comments. Thanks for stopping by!

For more reviews, visit www.bargain-sleuth.com

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