It’s Different, It’s Unusual

Top Ten Tuesday Freebie


Unusual Books On My Bookshelf

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a freebie topic, so I thought I would list some of the more unusual books that I own, those which will probably never feature on any other Top Ten Tuesday. Prompt from the Broke and the Bookish.


1. Little Plum – Rumer Godden

I re-read this the other night and I’d forgotten just how sweet it is. It’s essentially one of those stories about being kind and money isn’t everything, but somehow it’s better than average.


2. Rack, Rope and Red-Hot Pincers: A History of Torture and Its Instruments – Geoffrey Abbott

Otherwise known as the book that creeped my mum out when I asked her to buy it for me. It’s a history and encyclopedia of torture methods, handy for when you’re reading books set in the medieval period, the Spanish Inquisition, the Salem witch trials or The Mermaids Singing by Val McDermid.


3. If Chins Could Kill: Confessions of a B Movie Actor – Bruce Campbell

Bruce Campbell played one of my favourite characters in Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, and I think he might have popped up once or twice in Xena: Warrior Princess as well. What I didn’t know at the time was that he had grown up with Sam Raimi, who directed many of the episodes. This is a great book for anyone who works or would consider working in tv or movies, as Bruce Campbell himself points out “though you might not have a clue who I am, there are countless working stiffs like me out there, grinding away every day at the wheel of fortune”.


4. Living With Egypt’s Past in Australia – Rober S. Merrilles

This book was published by Museum Victoria as part of the Gold of the Pharaohs exhibition in 1989. It examines the history of Australia’s connection with Egypt, including how certain Egyptian artefacts came to Australia, and how Egyptian style has influenced Australian architecture (including the Syme Family Memorial pictured above on the cover, which is heavily influenced by Trajan’s Kiosk at Philae). My mum found it at a book sale.


5. Travel in Vogue – Various Authors

If you can find this book, buy it. It’s a collection of travel articles taken from Vogue over the years. Contributors include Aldous Huxley (‘In A Tunisian Oasis’), Noel Coward (‘The Lido Beach’), Antonia Fraser (‘Return Voyages’) and Diana Rigg (‘Yucatan, Hotel Cozumel Caribe’).


6. The World of Robert Jordan’s ‘The Wheel of Time’ – Robert Jordan & Teresa Patterson

I was a big fan of the Wheel of Time series and was very fond of this book. It’s one of those useful and interesting books that fill in the background of fantasy series, including the world history, maps, animals, clans and my favourite section, the background of the characters, particularly those of the bad guys (the Forsaken in the case of the Wheel of Time) who were totally my favourite characters.


7. On A Marché Sur La Lune – Hergé

I won this as a book prize at a French language seminar, just after I loudly announced that door prizes are ridiculous and they’re all rigged. How embarrassing.


8. Architecture and Democracy – Deyan Sudjic, with Helen Jones

This is a subject I’d never thought about, but it is an interesting one. There are chapters on Westminster, the Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly, and brief examinations of the history of national meeting places and parliaments (like that on the Isle of Man, which is still held in the open air since the Vikings introduced it in the 13th century).


9. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Opera – Stanley Sadie

This was a Christmas present and is a handy guide to just about any opera you can think of. Each opera has a bit of historical background, a synopsis and even a recommended recorded version.


10. The Book of Days: Oddities and Curiosities in the 365 Days of the Calendar – Elizabeth & Gerald Donaldson

This would make a great gift book. Each day of the year is presented with odd little facts, historical events and famous births and deaths that occurred on that day. For example, on 25th May, Ralph Waldo Emerson the poet was born in 1803, St Urban the saint of wine died in 230 and the flower of the day (as decided by medieval monks) is the common arens.


One thought on “It’s Different, It’s Unusual

  1. Pingback: Top Ten Top Ten | legolegislegimus

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s