BOOKLOVE: May 2014
This BOOKLOVE post is long overdue but I have been lazy lately (I only finished one book this month which is why I’m having a reading marathon before June ends in our time zone). Anyway, I cannot let June disappear without updating the world of my escalating and increasingly worrying state of book hoarding. Here’s the damage incurred last May:
- Wild Child by TC Boyle – I have only read one short story by TC Boyle and that is “Greasy Lake”. However, the story carried enough oomph and convinced me that TC Boyle is an author that I should read. Wild Child is a short story collection and its centerpiece, “Wild Child”, is a fictional retelling of the Wild Child of Aveyron, a story that intrigues me.
- Outer Dark by Cormac McCarthy – McCarthy has always fascinated me with his terse writing style and bleak worldview. In my opinion, only a few novels can match the staying power of his works and that his antagonists are some of the most terrifying in all of literature. Outer Dark is the story of an incestuous relationship between two siblings that bore fruit and the consequences of such a relationship after the brother decides to leave their baby to die in the woods.
- Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison – A landmark novel about the plight of African-Americans during the early part of the twentieth century, Invisible Man cemented Ellison’s place in American literature, won him a National Book Award, and landed him a place in the TIME 100. At 99 pesos (about $2) from National Bookstore, this book was a steal.
- Spillway by Djuna Barnes – Djuna Barnes is an instrumental figure of 2oth century modernism and, although she is not as popular as Virginia Woolf or James Joyce, is credited for writing one of the most important novels of modernist literature, Nightwood. However, I’m not going to read a novel that TS Eliot described as “only sensibilities trained on poetry can wholly appreciate it.” So my introduction to Barnes would have to be this slim collection of her short stories.
- The Essays of Leonard Michaels by Leonard Michaels – I have not read a single work by Leonard Michaels but, because of my book hoarding, I have bought every book of his that was published under FSG Classics. I don’t know but the synopses of his novels have a certain pull and so is this collection of essays.
Also, being the uncontrollable bibliophile that I am, I apparently purchased three NYRBs this May:
- My Face For The World To See by Alfred Hayes – Alfred Hayes other novel, In Love, has been in my Goodreads feed lately with good reviews from friends so that had me interested. Then I saw this at Fullybooked Rockwell and decided to buy it after being made interested by its blurb about a Hollywood love affair.
- Autobiography of a Corpse by Sigizmund Krzhizanovsky – A short story collection filled with oddities about runaway fingers, a circus act based on a man’s lifelong quest to bite his own elbow, and other equally weird stories. Very intriguing indeed.
- The Case of Comrade Tulayev by Victor Serge – For some reason, I am inclined to buy all the works of Victor Serge, a forgotten writer from the Soviet Union. Highly critical of Stalin’s regime, The Case of Comrade Tulayev is Serge’s fictional account and criticism of the Stalinist Purges.
There you go. Apparently, there’s no stopping my bibliophilia.