Okay, here’s where I veer from the original challenge for the first time. I had wanted to only read items that were already in my kindle for as long as I possibly could. And so initially I had planned to read a biography about Coco Chanel for the nonfiction category. However, while browsing online for books from the list that were cheap ($5.00 or less for the kindle), I learned that Nick Offerman has written a new book entitled, Gumption. I promptly purchased it (and am realizing now that I never did my review of his first book, Paddle Your Own Canoe so I’m going to need to finish that!), and changed the book for the non-fiction category. New rule for the challenge: the book is allowed to change, as long as it changes BEFORE the reading begins. I suppose there may have to be a “out” clause at some point, in case I’ve chosen something completely unreadable that’s slowing me down, but that’s the rule for now.
I love reading Nick Offerman’s books, mainly because I read them in his voice and can picture Ron Swanson giving a lecture. Gumption proves that Offerman would be a fascinating history teacher. I love the way he spins words together, and he has quite the vocabulary using words like perspicacity (which oddly I just learned the meaning of recently while looking up another word for my students). But then you get sentences like “After all, what were the colonies going to do, put together a ragtag bunch of militiamen and throw a tiny revolt? How precious!” He’s talking about how the British reacted to the idea of an American revolt. Oh, how I wish I had had a history teacher who described things this way. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I know a decent amount of history, but I really would’ve remembered more stuff this way.
The subtitle of the book is “Relighting the Torch of Freedom with America’s Gutsiest Troublemakers.” It’s organized by chapter, each about a different person. And while Offerman discusses the history of each individual and what he feels made them great, he also discusses his own personal credos as a result of “getting to know” these men and woman of historical fame or otherwise – for he chronicles quite a few people who are still alive and well, and plenty of people who had nothing to do with shaping our nation’s government, but who have contributed in a wide variety of other fields. Most I had heard of, some I had not.
Though I enjoyed reading about the historical figures, the book started to get a little tiresome for me around the halfway point as, truth be told, I just wasn’t as into some of the people as Offerman was. Even so, I kept going because interspersed into these stories were tidbits of Offerman’s own, and I really, really enjoy reading his philosophies on life as I find we share almost every single one. Of all the nonfiction books I could’ve picked, I’m glad I went with this one.
If I ever have the pleasure to meet Nick Offerman in person, I would love to buy him a Lagavulin.
Other Posts in this Series:
Book # 18: A Book Set During Christmastime – A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens
Book # 17: A Popular Author’s First Book – Carrie, by Stephen King
Book # 16: A Book Based Entirely on It’s Cover – Paper Towns, by John Green
Book # 15: A Book Your Mom Loves – Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn
Book # 14: A Book Set in a Place You Want to Visit – Beautiful Ruins, by Jess Walter
Book # 13: A Book with a Number in the Title – Eleven, by Mark Watson
Book # 12: A Book by an Author You’ve Never Read – Let’s Cure Diabetes with Owls, by David Sedaris
Book # 11: A Book with a Color in the Title – One Lavender Ribbon, by Heather Burch
Book # 10: A Book at the Bottom of Your To-Read List – If You Were Here, by Jen Lancaster
Book # 9: A Book Set in a Different Country – The Secret Place, by Tana French
Book # 8: A Book with Antonyms in the Title – Together Apart, by Natalie Martin
Book # 7: A Book Set in the Future – Cinder, by Marissa Meyer
Book # 6: A Book By a Female Author – We Have Always Lived in the Castle, by Shirley Jackson
Book # 5: A Book More Than 100 Years Old – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L. Frank Baum
Book # 4: A Play – Pygmalion, by George Bernard Shaw
Book # 3: A Book You Started But Never Finished – The Husband’s Secret, by Liane Moriarty
Book # 2: A Mystery or Thriller – The Silence That Speaks, by Andrea Kane
Book # 1: A Book Published This Year – The Glass Kitchen, by Linda Francis Lee