TOPTENtuesdayTop Ten Things Books Have Made Me Want To Do or Learn About After Reading Them

(I only have time to write about three today)


I was always pretty good with horses. After reading Seabiscuit, I became a little bit obsessed. I learned so much about bugboys and claiming races. I visited my family’s county fair with renewed interest in the thoroughbred races and became adept at picking the Kentucky Derby winners (I picked Mine That Bird, just sayin’).

At the Cumberland County Fair, Greenup, Illinois

Robert Fortune

Always a fan of tea, I admit to becoming more snobbish over the years as I learned more about it. Then I read about covert spy and plant thief Robert Fortune when I read For All The Tea In China. When we went to the UK on our honeymoon, I made sure to visit a couple of his haunts, including the Royal Botanical Garden in Edinburgh and the Chelsea Physic Garden in London. I actually squealed when I saw a specimen that had his name in the taxonomic.

Inside the Palm House in Edinburgh

Lee Miller

I first learned about Miller in a fabulous class I took in college — Paris / NY in the 1920s. Since then, I keep coming back to her incredible story and her brave work. At first a model for Vogue and Man Ray, she became a great photographer in her own right, and even refused to leave Europe during the war, choosing to document it instead. Her eye for “street” photography and surrealism lent a different cast to the images coming back. Check out Lee Miller’s War.

Fire masks become strange creatures in Miller's lens.
Fire masks become strange creatures in Miller’s lens.

There are so many more, but I had to cut this one short today.

2 thoughts on “Top Ten Things Books Made Me Want To Learn”

    1. She was “trained” in surrealism so many of her photos have that aspect to them. At the same time, they show a very gritty reality. She is really a fascinating person. She eventually married a British lord and the book I mention was put together by her son.

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