My current literary life

While there is as little truth in the stereotype that librarians go around shushing everyone in sight as that of farmers showing up at the dinner table barefoot and chewing on a blade of hay, they (the librarians, and probably some farmers) do go around asking each other what they are reading right now.

I’ve just had a weekend of this. For me, it’s a cringe-worthy question, mostly because if I answer truthfully (and I always do), I am met with either a quizzical look or a good eye-roll. (There are exceptions, of course, to this generality.) But it continues to be a fine book year (here year being the most recent twelve months, not the calendar year or even the fiscal). And I continue to get down with all manner of new ones–and some old buddies in spite of what “everyone” expects that I should be reading instead.

Yesterday, for instance, inspired by the excellent new group biography, The Beats: A Graphic History, which has been my ferry reading the past couple days, I found myself rereading “Howl” and then “America” (the latter better than I’d remembered it).

And then I moved on to Highway to Hell, a more literary YA novel than the title–or the cover illustration–suggests. But not before making a side step back to the somewhat irritating Pierre Hadot interviews collected in The Present Alone Is Our Happiness (irritating because the two interviewers are so out of synch with each other that it’s like watching a tug of war between parents, unhappy in their marriage, vying for the kids).

So, librarian or not, what are you reading? I promise not to roll my eyes, twitch or otherwise judge how you spend your book time.

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8 Responses to “My current literary life”

  1. carole leita Says:

    “Rosa Raye, Crime Reporter” by Sue Kerman. It’s a Penguin Reader that I’ve just read in preparation for reading it into a tape recorder for my friend Nicole, who has been studying English off and on for 30 years now.

  2. Marg Says:

    I just finished Kate Atkinson’s When Will There be Good News and am now on to Late Nights on Air by Elizabeth Hay.

  3. flotsam Says:

    No eye rolling, eh? Ok then, I’m 1/2 way through a nice anthology of fluff called Moving Targets (Mercedes Lackey, ed – I’m a sucker for anything with her name on the cover)

  4. Sandy Says:

    I’m no fun at all. I am most of the way through Motivating Employees, by Anne Bruce and James S. Pepitone. In between times, I’m reading Excel 2007 for Dummies, which informs me that there are major differences between Excel 2003 and Excel 2007. Despite the fact that I’d used both versions for the past couple years (2003 at work, 2007 at home), this piece of information was news to me. I’d never even noticed.

  5. Von Allan Says:

    No eye-rolling, promise? Ok. I have a major soft spot for Valiant Comics. It’s odd. I’m not a huge superhero fan but I do truly love these comics. Something about ’em (and I’ve never quite put my finger on what that something is) brings me back to them again and again. Especially when I’m a bit stressed and recovering from one bugger of a cold.

    Feel good comics? Damn right! 🙂

  6. Dick Says:

    Halifaxing, A good read, sounds like fun. I was somewhat disapointed about your description of Barton though. As a resident of 45 years it certainly isn’t as bad as you painted it. Like anywhere it can look pretty bad on a bad day & we have our fair share of Chavs, as do most places. Perhaps you can look it up on Wiki – Here.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barton_upon_humber

    Come back on a better day & have a look. Some great pubs with good beer.

    Dick

    • halifaxing Says:

      Hi Dick, Thanks for the alternative view and I’ll prompt Fred to check Barton Upon Humber out in a less pressured moment.

  7. Ellie Goldstein-Erickson Says:

    I’m reading The Disappeared by Gloria Whelan, part of a new collection of fiction titles at school relating to Latin America. We are making great connections with teachers in the International Baccalaureate program, picking books that tie in to their curriculum. Whelan’s earlier book, Homeless Bird, about a girl in India forced into marriage, has been incorporated into a ninth grade literature list.
    As a way of catching up with friends, I almost always ask what they’re reading. I frequently learn about titles I want to add to my “books to read” list. Could this be a peculiarity of our profession?

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