Posted by: montclairlibrary | July 9, 2016

Short & Sweet

Books with One-Syllable Titles, a list by the Friends of Montclair Library

Author Mary Roach, who will be visiting the library July 19, has to be the undisputed queen of one-syllable titles, with books like Gulp, Stiff, Spook, Bonk and the brand-new Grunt to her name.

Here are nine non-fiction books titled with a single syllable (not counting our era’s de rigueur multi-word subtitle, of course).

Gulp: Adventures On the Alimentary Canal by Mary Roach (612.3 ROACH)
Few of us realize what strange wet miracles of science operate inside us after every meal. In her trademark style, Mary Roach investigates the beginning, and end, of our food, addressing such questions as why crunchy food is so appealing, how much we can eat before our stomachs burst and whether constipation killed Elvis.

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell (153.44 GLADWELL)
“A book about how we think without thinking, about choices that seem to be made in an instant–in the blink of an eye–that actually aren’t as simple as they seem.” (Goodreads)

Snoop: What Your Stuff Says About You by Sam Gosling (155.91 GOSLING) (not at Montclair)
“Psychologist Sam Gosling has dispatched teams of scientific investigators to poke around bedrooms and offices, check out iPods and peek at personal websites to see what can be learned about us simply from looking at our belongings.” (Goodreads)

Rust: The Longest War by Jonathan Waldman (620.11223 WALDMAN) (not at Montclair)
An environmental journalist traces the historical war against rust, revealing how rust-related damage costs more than all other natural disasters combined and how it is combated by industrial workers, the government, universities and everyday people.

Rain: A Natural & Cultural History by Cynthia Barnett (551.57709 BARNETT) (not at Montclair)
Weaving together science with the human ambition to control rain, Barnett tells the story of rain — elemental, mysterious, precious and destructive.

Cold: Adventures in the World’s Frozen Places by Bill Streever (910.911 STREEVER) (not at Montclair)
Streever explores history, myth, geography and ecology in a year-long search for cold, from glaciers to “The Year Without Summer.” He has also written Heat and Wind (coming in 2016).

Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky (553.63 KURLANSKY) (not at Montclair)
“The only rock we eat, salt has shaped civilization from the very beginning, and its story is a glittering, often surprising part of the history of humankind.” (Amazon) See also Kurlansky’s similarly monosyllabic Cod.

Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation by Michael Pollan (641.5 POLLAN)
Recounts the story of the Pollan’s culinary education and the roles of the four classical elements of fire, water, air and earth in transforming natural ingredients into delicious meals and drinks.

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed (BIO STRAYED)
A powerful, blazingly honest, inspiring memoir of a woman’s 1,100 mile solo hike (in case you haven’t heard of it).

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