Reading Roundup: Heating Oil Fraud, Ancient Fire & Ice Volcanoes

I like to keep track of and reflect on the various things that I’ve read over the course of a month. Then I select the most interesting of those things and share them here in hopes that others get value out of what I’ve learned.


  • I read House on the Cerulean Sea and it was exactly what other reviews have billed it as: a heartwarming story about societal tolerance and a gay man who lets down his walls and finds love and belonging with a family of magical orphans and their caretaker.
  • I also finished the Gunnie Rose books by Charlaine Harris. They made for a fun weird west alternative history story. The granddaughter of Gregori Rasputin is a Texas gunslinger who falls in love with a Russian prince whose family rules California after the Spanish Flu topples America. It reminded me a bit of The Train Job episode of Firefly.




  • It’s an older article—2015—but I recently learned about how mafia involvement in heating oil fraud shows that they’re still active, just driven “underground.” It’s fascinating from the perspective of trying to understand how organized crime works.


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Did you learn anything from this? Have any insights to share? Lingering questions? Something you read recently you think I’ll be interested in? Let me know in the comments!


Eleanor teaches Ancient Civilizations and spends the bits of time left over writing stories that bring history -- and magic -- to life. She enjoys rock climbing, bullet journaling, & gardening focused on plants you can actually eat.

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