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Not so much a blog; just lots of books

Currently reading

In the Bleak Midwinter: A Clare Fergusson/Russ Van Alsyne Novel
Julia Spencer-Fleming
Ninefox Gambit
Yoon Ha Lee, Emily Woo Zeller
The Black Tides of Heaven
JY Yang
Engineering Animals: How Life Works
Alan Mcfadzean, Mark Denny
Progress: 125/314pages
The Rise of Yeast: How the Sugar Fungus Shaped Civilization
Nicholas P. Money
Conservation of Shadows
Yoon Ha Lee
Progress: 22%
Le premier jour
Marc Levy
Progress: 180/496pages
Moby-Dick: or, The Whale (Penguin Classics)
Herman Melville
Manifold: Time
Stephen Baxter, Chris Schluep
Progress: 99/480pages
The Long War
Stephen Baxter, Terry Pratchett
Progress: 68/501pages

The Royal Art of Poison by Eleanor Herman

The Royal Art of Poison: Filthy Palaces, Fatal Cosmetics, Deadly Medicine, and Murder Most Foul - Eleanor Herman

This is a popular history account of the final illnesses of various historical personages reputed to have died of poison. It also has some general poison information and some more modern poisons and poisoners. Plus some historical medical information, ghastly as it may seem to us.


The author's tone sometimes veered toward condescension when talking about various mercury and arsenic cures but it's interesting that some of them actually worked. Of course, poisoning the patient was a potential side effect but avoidable in the right dose. Anyway, it was interesting that the author combined the historical autopsies with the modern diagnoses and autopsies (if available) because I honestly had no idea that autopsies were such a common thing that long ago (at least among the nobility).


I was also introduced to some historical personages that I hadn't heard of before (I'm not exactly a history buff) so that was cool, although a lot of the people were English, French, and Italian. Anyway, it's not overly rigorous by any means, but I found it interesting.