Short notes on reading, mid-July

by , under books and reading, depression, LibraryThing, TSCPL

I finally just finished my last LibraryThing Early Reviewer book, a short biography of E. M. Forster. It was quite good, and with a block of free time and in the right frame of mind, I could easily have finished it in only one or two days. Instead, it took eleven days. I’m sure it isn’t the fault of the book, but all a reflection on me.

I feel not quite ready to write my review, even though I expect it’ll be a short one. I procrastinated about starting the book, took more time to read it than I should have — I think I must wait a day or two before writing the review, keep the pattern consistent! But also, I’m thinking ahead to what’s next. I’d like to start reading The Passage, but starting right in tonight isn’t a good idea; I need to get ready for bed soon, back to work tomorrow. Perhaps I’ll have to grab a book of poetry, and just read a few pages before turning in.

There’s one other book I purchased recently that I might have to start on fairly soon. I bought a few books at the library’s booktique this past week, and when I entered them into my LibraryThing catalog, that activity was cross-posted to Facebook. A couple of my college friends both commented on that post, specifically about The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, which they’d both read. A couple of days later, I picked up the book and read the synopsis and review blurbs while I ate breakfast. Honestly, I’d bought it based upon the fact that it had been widely praised, mentioned on a Books on the Nightstand podcast, I had the sense it was “literary fiction” of the type I’d probably enjoy … and because it was in great condition and had a bargain price. I really didn’t know what the story was about (she said sheepishly). Once I looked at the book flap and back cover, I wanted to start reading it ASAP. But I had the Forster bio on the front burner, and also wondered whether Hedgehog would be too “literary,” too complex for the current state of my scattered mind. Oh, but it does sound wonderful!

One more book in my TBR mountain that was recently recommended to me by a friend, is a short novel called The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett. In addition to its length, one other note in its favor is that it would count for my Read Your Own Books (RYOB) Challenge, whereas the other two technically wouldn’t, as they’re recent purchases. I also need to decide on my next audiobook; I’ve been listening to podcasts in recent days rather than starting another audio. But soon, soon, I will.

Today was not great, of course, but I’d recovered enough from last evening to finish the Forster book, and had only a few teary moments at times during the day — no explosions of sobbing, no crazy wishes to escape. I did escape, in a way, to the library, for about an hour, only because a book Kyle had requested was ready for pick-up. I browsed some of the poetry, and then spent more time in the booktique, but resisted the urge to check out or purchase anything, except the book for Kyle.

It was so good to spend some time thinking of Forster today, and his beautiful fictions. Thank God for those writers who speak to me across time, some from beyond death, who make me feel, think, and question, who bring me insight, excitement, and knowledge. Thank God for those writers and their books, that comfort me, almost always comfort me.

© All the parts of my life 2008-2015.

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