Friday, July 19, 2013

Friday Reading Assignment: On the Nightstand

My nightstand has some very exciting things on it right now.


Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens.  This was my grandfather's favorite book--because of the descriptions of the food, he used to say--and I have his old copy of it.  I have difficulty with Dickens, particularly his earlier works, but I do love to read good food descriptions.

Grandfather's signature in Pickwick Papers


Music of the Swamp by Lewis Nordan.  If you aren't familiar with Lewis Nordan, I suggest you look him up.  I've read his memoir and a few of his other novels--which are mostly about boyhood in Mississippi.  His novel Wolf Whistle is about the lynching of Emmett Till. I'm afraid to read that one.  Music of the Swamp is another coming of age in the Delta book with some really good writing.

At Mrs. Lippincote's by Elizabeth Taylor.  I am so excited to read this one.  I loved Mrs. Palfrey at the Claremont and have always wanted to read more of Elizabeth Taylor.  Then I saw Mrs. Lippincote mentioned over at Leaves and Pages , so I had to get it.

Wild Strawberries by Angela Thirkell.  The Angela Thirkell shelves at the Alderman library caught my eye one day.  One of the books had a little blurb describing Thirkell as the "new Anthony Trollope," so of course I must read her.  I chose Wild Strawberries after pawing through the whole collection and finding the one with the earliest publication date.  One likes to start near the beginning.  No idea what it's about, but the book opens with, "The Vicar of St. Mary's, Rushwater, looked anxiously through the vestry window..."

The Town by William Faulkner.  For the Fifty Classics project.  As I've said before, I find Faulkner incredibly difficult, so I may be gritting my teeth through this one.

Miss Mole by E. H. Young.  Written in 1930.  I read a compelling review at the Bamboo Bookcase, so now it's on my bookshelf.

Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) by Jerome K. Jerome.  Classic Victorian humor, and the author's name is awesome.

Wait for Marcy by Rosamund Du Jardin.  I love vintage young adult books.  This one was published in 1950.  I think I may have read it when I was young, as our public library had a fantastic collection of old fashioned books for girls.

Reverse of the Medal by Patrick O'Brian.  Another in the most excellent Jack Aubrey/Stephen Maturin series.  I am nearing the end of the series, and would be bereft except that I'm already looking forward to re-reading it.  Seriously.  If you have never read Patrick O'Brian, I suggest you get Master and Commander as soon as you can.  And see the movie too, in which Russell Crowe performs admirably as Captain Jack Aubrey.

Also hanging out on the nightstand, Nancy Pearl's More Book Lust, which I haven't had a chance to read yet, Nina Garcia's Little Black Book of Style, which I suppose I ought to read, and I (heart) Your Style by some chick whose privileged background is more disheartening than inspiring.  I've looked at the pictures in that one, which are pretty, but it mostly functions as a bookend.

What's on your nightstand?

17 comments:

  1. That's some stack you've got! I adore your reading taste.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I clearly do not have your good taste. I'm almost done the last Stephen King Dark Tower book. And then? Whatever looks interesting at the library. And a few cookbooks....

    ReplyDelete
  3. I bought "Wait for Marcy" from Scholastic Book Club when I was in grade school, and read the covers off. I also read one or two other Marcy books that I found in the library, although I can't remember them now...

    That's a much more intense reading list than I could handle. As much as the classics (and a lot of other tough reads) may be enriching, I don't find them relaxing, and that's why I read.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jenny, I'm glad to hear from someone else who has read Wait for Marcy. I'll have to look for the other Marcy books.

      Delete
  4. My nightstand is an obscene display of books. Not because any of them are obscene, but because the stack is enormous. Currently reading "Orange is the New Black".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've heard of that one, and it seemed like a compelling subject matter, but now I can't remember what it's about. I'll look it up.

      Delete
  5. My nightstand is bereft of good reading. It contains a Danielle Steele novel - yikes! Plus three knitting books, Cleaning House by Kay Wyma, a Nicholas Evans novel I've started and put down three times and my Bible. I mostly read to fall asleep these days so not much going on there.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Danielle Steele! Yikes, is she still around? I always read to fall asleep.

      Delete
  6. Just finished: The Human Division, by John Scalzi (science fiction, in the excellent Old Man's War series).

    Currently reading: The Riddle of the Labyrinth, by Margalit Fox (nonfiction, about the decipherment of the Linear B script of ancient Crete).

    Next up: probably Good Man Friday, by Barbara Hambly (mystery, in her excellent Benjamin January series).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm not familiar with any of those, Becca. I like a good mystery from time to time, and the book about Linear B sounds interesting. I should get my son to read it, as that is right up his alley.

      Delete
  7. That book about Linear B was so interesting I was recommending it to everybody at work today, even when I had to start by explaining what Linear B was. Very well written.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I need to read Where'd You Go, Bernadette? for a book club. I also need to read The Orchid House by Lucinda Riley, A Soldier of the Great War by Mark Helprin, and The Thief by Fuminori Nakamura because I paid for them and haven't even opened them yet. Also, I need to read Because I Said So by Ken Jennings because my daughter gave it to me for my birthday. Also, it should be funny. I could stand to laugh more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I haven't heard of any of those. I am really out of the loop where conventional lit is concerned.

      Delete