Archive for the ‘non-fiction’ Category

RDC celebrates Science Literacy Week 2016

September 8, 2016

Science Literacy Week, celebrated across Canada from September 19-25, 2016, showcases the excellence and diversity of Canadian science outreach institutions and highlights our outstanding scientists and science communicators.

Science Literacy Week Logo_FINAL-01RDC Library joins over 100 partners across Canada in this celebration. We’re so excited that we’re celebrating Science Literacy Week not just for a week, but for the whole month of September! Check out our themed book display on Floor 2 and our posts on our various social media accounts.

The Science Literacy website has a guide to great ideas and great writers; a look into the minds of some of the most engaging and important scientists of all time. Check out the list of interesting and thought-provoking books, blogs, websites, and podcasts for you to explore. Most of the books are available in our library (check out the display on Floor 2) or we can bring them in for you via our interlibrary loan service.



The Dog Eared Review of ‘Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers’ by Mary Roach

March 25, 2016

“The way I see it, being dead is not terribly far off from being on a cruise ship. Most of your time is spent lying on your back. The brain has shut down. The flesh begins to soften. Nothing much new happens, and nothing is expected of you.”

Due to the graphic nature of this book I won’t go into much detail of the contents therefore making this review substantially shorter than others but, as I am perfectly aware that there are those who share in my curiosity, I believe it falls within acceptable parameters being that I am writing for a post-secondary institution. 51f-QUJNhnL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_

With my slight significant fascination for the macabre and an even greater appreciation for modern science, Stiff immediately became a necessary read when I first noticed it as I was perusing old, ‘read this book before you die’ lists somewhere online. With an exaggerated nod to my somewhat over-fed appetite for grisly knowledge of all kinds, Ms. Roach’s narrative brings to life what happens to those bodies predestined for organ donation or those which have been generously donated to science. With a respectful yet tastefully humorous look at what happens with donated cadavers, the author peels away the layers of ongoing questions and speculation about medical history from the early centuries to modern day science.


The Dog Eared Review of ‘Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness’ by Susannah Catalan

August 2, 2015

“My tongue twisted when I spoke; I drooled and, when I was tired, let my tongue hang out of the side of my mouth like an overheated dog”.

A self-described Beautiful Mess, Ms. Cahalan employs a straightforward and in your face candor throughout the account of her battle with NMDA-receptor autoimmune encephalitis.  While some chapters are uplifting, others are unnerving with first hand descriptions of partial seizures and her inability to perform tasks such as being able to put simple words

Exposing herself through many intimate and painful moments, the author never tries to paint herself in a positive light. Instead, she pens this memoir as a reflection of what I can only imagine to be a terrifying glimpse into the hell of what each of us have the potential to be thrust into. While some readers may think labeling the events of a singular month as a memoir is a little misleading, I feel it’s justified based on the fact the amount of suffering endured was more than enough to last a lifetime.