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Literary fiction, classics, dystopian, history, memoir, prize winners, and of course the 1001 books. You really might catch me reading anything!

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Empire of Cotton: A Global History
Sven Beckert
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The Big Tiny

The Big Tiny: A Built-It-Myself Memoir - Dee  Williams

Dee Williams is at her best when writing about relationships. And though the subtitle suggests this book is about the building, it is really about the relationships changed and strengthened and even made because of the building.


Williams' diagnosis of a serious heart condition caused her to reconsider her lifestyle—and she had plenty of time to think while in the hospital. Her job and the travel required, her traditional house and all the work (and money) required to keep it in tip-top shape, all her stuff.


Not long after the diagnosis, hospitalization, and discovery of her new normal, she heard about tiny houses. And she had her answer. She did most of the work on her traditional house herself, so why not build one! With a lot of optimism about her abilities and denial of her defibrillator, she jumped right into the project.


But back to those relationships. Williams has a host of friends, and they are all on her side for this project. One neighbor lets the building go on in her own driveway. Another gives her all the cedar siding she needs in exchange for her fixing a broken rafter in his roof. A man she had never met stopped to help her lift a skylight into place. A huge farewell party occurs when she finishes and is ready to move, and is trying to downsize all that stuff. Old friends let her park in their backyard when the house is done. And she helps with their kids and their wonderful great aunt, who loves Williams' dog as much as she herself does.


Heartwarming and fascinating, this book made me wish these people were my friends too.