Wednesday, May 23, 2007

My End Table

I glanced over at my table at the end of the sofa last night and thought, that's a nice little pile of books there. I have plenty of good stuff to last me over the next few weeks. On top there, open and facedown, is the new Haruki Murakami--I like it, and I'll post about it in detail in a couple of days. Next is the latest from Kjell Eriksson, the Swedish crime writer I posted about a few weeks back--I'm looking forward to that one in a big way.

Under that is Jim Crace's The Pesthouse, which I got started on, then dropped for some reason. Gotta get back to that soon, it was good. I liked Quarantine. Next, two NYRB Classics, crime stories, one by Georges Simenon, the other by Kenneth Fearing. I don't even know what they're about--I like that series, and I liked the covers.

Below them lies Alison Lurie's Familiar Spirits, a memoir about her friendship with the poet James Merrill. Alison's a friend of ours here in Ithaca--she gave me a copy when I asked her something about Merrill at a dinner. Her husband Edward Hower also gave me one of his books, a collection of fables, which is underneath.

Then there's the first Kjell Eriksson, and then a couple of web design books I bought to try and revamp my website. Mission accomplished, but I must say, they are not engaging reading. Finally, we have a home repair manual, which I can tell you is seriously coming in handy this week, as we fix up this old house we bought; and finally there is a book of sheds, complete with plans. Our old house has a writer's studio shed out back, and I miss it--so I will be building a new one, eventually.

What's on your end table? Or, better yet, in your bathroom?

EDIT: Whoops, Rhian just informed me, I forgot two of the books. There's a Hard Case Crime paperback by David Goodis--I haven't read it yet, but the series is beginning to bug me a little. There's been a run of lousy stuff. The other one is Ellen Baker's Keeping The House--Ellen is a former student of mine, and this is her first novel. I've been meaning to plump for it here, so there it is: go read it!

7 comments:

McQ said...

Isn't that ol' Marcel I spy up near the top? You whizzed right over him, too. I'll bet he feels all sad and neglected now...

Burl Veneer said...

My stack is under the bed (after eight months here we still don't have bedside tables): John Cowper Powys, A Glastonbury Romance; M.P. Dare, Unholy Relics; R. Chetwynd-Hayes, Tales from the Shadows; Alan Hess, Googie Redux; Herbert Read, Modern Sculpture; Alvaro Mutis, Maqroll (stalled); Mervyn Peake, Titus Alone (also stalled); Stanley Ellin, The Blessington Method.

The Fearing novel is good, but when I read it I had a big deja vu moment when I realized I'd already seen the plot in a film, under a different title.

bhadd said...

Bathroom has sports--bedroom Finnegans Wake. Finnegans Wake rocks, I promise.

jrlennon said...

Man alive, I tried Finnegans Wake and I just could not keep my mind on it. I think I am too uptight for it. I am a huge, huge, Ulysses fan though, so don't think I'm a complete C student.

Burl, as with your taste in music, your taste in literature is like a parallel universe to me--I don't know any of those people! Stanley Ellin I've heard of, but only because I always used to find his books when looking for Stanley Elkin's...or Rhian's.

Anonymous said...

Your post made me think of this flickr pool I saw the other day. Do I know what a flickr pool is? No, I don't. Nonetheless, take a look at other people's reading stacks:

http://www.flickr.com/groups/readingstack/pool/

wing said...

Mmmm, Murakami... I'm glad you like him. I haven't read that one yet. Who translated it?

wing said...

Oh and, this is the only picture of a reading stack that I have (I should take another, I have plenty of those laying around). http://www.flickr.com/photos/jonathanwing/514699673/

But yes, that is George Saunders under there... CivilWarLand in bad decline.