I firmly believe that the first book or two I read in a year, really sets the tone not only for my reading list for the remainder of the year, but for where I put my energy and my focus in my daily life.
And this year was no different. In fact, I've got TWO books on the go right now that are setting my tone and my intentions for the year.
Thanks to Happy City, I want to actively seek out other books that remind me of this one. And that continue my exploration into sustainable, efficient, and future-thinking city planning. I can already feel that this topic is going to be a big deal for me this year.
"Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody." - Jane Jacobs
"Everyone of us has the power to alter our city." - Charles Montgomery
I already decided that I wanted to read more books by POC in 2017, so I am glad I am starting the year off with an amazing science fiction black lady author! Octavia Butler was a game changer in her time, winning science fiction awards that usually only white dudes had won before. Her books combine science fiction & fantasy with themes of race/racism, sexuality/sexism, and other heavy modern tropes. I've only read two of her titles, but I'm (mentally) putting her entire back catalogue on my TBR list.
"Most of us don't have to worry about being shot if we poke our noses outside. So we are comfortable, but the people I'm writing about are definitely not comfortable, and being shot while they're still inside is a good possibility."
"I was attracted to science fiction because it was so wide open. I was able to do anything and there were no walls to hem you in and there was no human condition that you were stopped from examining."
The Option of Urbanism by Christopher Leinberger
Retrofitting Suburbia by Ellen Dunham-Jones
Cities for People by Jan Gehl
Naked City by Sharon Zukin
Worlds Away: New Suburban Landscapes ed. Adrew Blauvelt
Wild Seed by Octavia Butler
Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson
Shadowshaper by Daniel Jose Older
Note: Most of the books I could find about urbanism, sustainable cities, etc. were written by old white guys, and as I am trying to limit their presence on my book list for 2017, I will continue to search for titles by minorities. And thanks to events happening in the US today (ugh shudder he-who-shall-not-be-named), I have already started adding titles to my TBR that involve resistance, feminism, civil rights history & activism and more.