BOOKLOVE: April 2014
I have been on a book buying frenzy these past few months and I don’t feel sorry. I’m pretty sure that it’s supposed to be a bad sign but nothing negative has come out of my spree yet so I’ll deal with the possible consequences when they come. Anyway, last month, I visited several branches of Booksale and this is what I found:
- Suddenly, A Knock on the Door by Etgar Keret – Etgar Keret wrote an article/story for Tablet with the title ‘Fungus: Who’s to Blame When Bad Things Happen to Good Characters’ and the story captured my attention in a way that only a few writers can. A few days after reading the story, I saw this collection of his and I just had to buy it.
- Love in a Fallen City by Eileen Chang – Eileen Chang’s story, ‘Red Rose, White Rose’, is one of the many stories included in the superb anthology, My Mistress’s Sparrow is Dead, and I have been on the lookout ever since for collections where the stories from the anthology were originally featured.
- The Other Walk by Sven Birkerts – I have been buying a lot of essay collections lately and my affinity for essay collections is the only reason why I bought this particular book since I know nothing about the author. At the very least, there are positive blurbs from David Foster Wallace and Jonathan Franzen.
- Regarding The Pain of Others by Susan Sontag – Another book bought because of my sudden urge to buy nonfiction. This time, at least, I know and have read a few Susan Sontag’s essays so I know what I’m getting and the book is actually based on an interesting premise regarding war photography. Apparently, Sontag’s aim in writing this book is to answer one of the questions posed by Virginia Woolf in her book, Three Guineas, “How in your opinion are we to prevent war?”
- The American Idea: The Best of the Atlantic Monthly edited by Robert Vare – Hands down my best purchase for April. The anthology includes pieces written by American luminaries such as John F. Kennedy, Mark Twain, Martin Luther King Jr., Theodore Roosevelt, and Ernest Hemingway.
Also, at the end of the month, I went to a certain Fullybooked branch and got these books from what is apparently one of my favorite publishes, Melville House:
The first two are from Melville House’s Art of the Novella series and the other two are from their Neversink Library series. Parnassus on Wheels and The Haunted Bookshop, both from Christopher Morley, both concern book sellers and their trade. Marek Hlasko’s The Graveyard is about a man persecuted by a repressive regime while the Strugatsky brothers’ Definitely Maybe is a scifi novel about Russian scientists being persecuted by an unknown force.
Well, April has left me satisfied so you’ll hear no complaints from me, TS Eliot.