Really. It's a good question. I turned around and more than a week went by without blogging. How in the world could that have happened? Well, it was the kids, the darned things take up so much of my time. But I did do some reading. And a little book-buying. You know, just to keep my hand in.
Here is the most recent pile of books, some of which were mooched, some found at my mom's house, and some bought full price at my very local bookstore. I actually have an account at that bookstore, which is a very dangerous thing. I walk in, I say, "I want this book, and could you put it on my account?" And then, miracle of miracles, I walk out with said book. Feels like the fifties, no? However, the bill does arrive at the end of the month, and it sometimes comes as a very nasty surprise!
I'm also pretty far into Of Human Bondage, which is a great book. Why haven't I read this before now? Here's a quote about reading, specifically a lonely child's awakening to the magical power of reading:
One day a good fortune befell him, for he hit upon Lane's translation of The Thousand Nights and a Night. He was captured first by the illustrations, and then he began to read, to start with, the stories that dealt with magic, and then the others; and those he liked he read again and again. He could think of nothing else. He forgot the life about him. He had to be called two or three times before he would come to his dinner. Insensibly he formed the most delightful habit in the world, the habit of reading: he did not know that thus he was providing himself with a refuge from all the distress of life; he did not know either that he was creating for himself an unreal world which would make the real world of every day a source of bitter disappointment.Ah, reading...what power it has!
Details of the pile:
- A Childhood in Scotland, by Christian Miller--I had read about this on a blog, and can't for the life of me find the entry again, so sorry to whoever I would have linked to! If you read this, let me know, so you can get the credit you deserve! My father grew up in Scotland, so I'm always attracted to books like this...
- Witch Child, by Celia Rees. Another family obsession. This is a children's book that I had heard compared to The Witch of Blackbird Pond, by Elizabeth George Speare, which I had read as a child and liked, and recently reread. So I ordered it from my son's Scholastic Book Catalog!
- Foreskin's Lament: A Memoir, by Shalom Auslander. I was intrigued by an article in the New York Times about Auslander and his journey away from orthodox Judaism. I did not realize at the time that Auslander is a contributor to NPR's This American Life, a radio show I really love, so that's a bonus.
- Uncensored: Views & (Re)views, by Joyce Carol Oates. I had to get this book after seeing it referenced on a blog, and again I can't find the reference. What is up with me and my memory? I remember seeing something on a blog, and then when I go back to where I thought I saw it, I can't find it. It's like the things you lose around the house, and you can picture where they are, but then you go to that spot, and there's nothing there. Arghh! Anyway, on the back it says, "In thirty-eight diverse and provocative pieces, Joyce Carol Oates freely speaks her mind on some of literature's greatest modern authors." It's supposed to be great.
- Run, by Ann Patchett. I have always enjoyed her work, so when I read a good review in the New York Times, I went ahead and got this one.