College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Liberal Arts Matters

Because Ideas Matter...

The faculty and staff of Butler University's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences presents...

Recommended Readings (Feb. 2011)

Need a good book? Take a look at the recommendations below. This page is designed to highlight readings suggested by people in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. We've created this site because expressing our enthusiasm for a favorite book is a wonderful way to share ideas, to stimulate discussion, and to simply embrace a love of reading. We hope you will find this useful in your search for a good book!


Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen, Algonquin Books, 2007 - Reviewed by Richard McGowan

If you ever entertained ideas of what it's like to work for and travel with a circus, consider reading Sara Gruen's eminently enjoyable Water for Elephants first.  You might reconsider unless circus life has changed significantly from the depression-era circus depicted in this book.
Complete Book Review


The Beijing Consensus: How China's Authoritarian Model Will Dominate the Twenty-First Century  by Stefan Halper, Basic Books, 2010 - Reviewed by Su-Mei Ooi

Halper's book does a brilliant job of providing the reader with a clear picture of how China's economic clout is now coupled with a growing sophistication in international diplomacy. Nevertheless, while Halper provides a convincing account of how China's economic rise is allowing many developing countries to circumvent. . .
Complete Book Review


Coop: A Year of Poultry, Pigs and Parenting by Michael Perry, Harper, 2009 - Reviewed by Travis Ryan

Coop is at once a cautionary tale for anyone who has romanticized the idea of heading into the country to take up life on a small farm and hearty encouragement for doing exactly the same.  In this memoir, Perry covers the ups and downs of marrying near midlife, becoming a father (first to his wife's young daughter, then quickly to a newborn), and moving his family to a farmstead in rural . . .
Complete Book Review


The Elephant's Journey by Jose Saramago, Harcourt, 2010- Reviewed by Eloise Sureau-Hale

When King Joao of Portugal and his wife resolve to present Archduke Maximilian of Austria with a matrimonial gift, they think big! What better way to show their appreciation than to send a live elephant. Now the question that arises is that of transport. No plane, no train, no large motorized vehicles because it is 1551!
Complete Book Review