What was all that about keeping life simple, reducing the amount of stuff on hand, etc.? I seem to have taken a step or two back, and it’s no surprise that books were involved.
I had been quite good about not buying a lot of books lately—that is until the bookish stars aligned in a most particular way in the past month. Suddenly I find myself inundated with a large pile of books from: 1. a library book sale; 2. my local used book store (where I at least turned in some books for credit); 3. Paperback Swap and 4. a sale at Abebooks.com. (I also bought a couple books from my library’s used book store as well. It’s a sickness, I tell you.)
I justify this sudden influx of books by noting that I’ve only bought books that I either can’t get at my library, books I especially want to add to my personal collection, or books that I need/want for reference for a writing project. I also can’t help it that one of the books on my Paperback Swap wish list became available during this same period…
And just when my to-be-read stack seemed to be shrinking.
Curious about all this book bounty? This post would be far too long if I describe all of these, so I’ll just share a few:
Tales of the City, Armistead Maupin. I found this at my local used book store. I was under the impression this was a series of essays, but it turns out it’s a novel, set in
Francisco. After visiting San
Francisco, I’ve wanted to read more about it, and more
books set there.
Hollingsworth Gessler. Another travel-inspired title. I’m adding this little
illustrated book to my growing list of books about Orleans New
Orleans, one of my favorite cities.
The Solitary Summer, Elizabeth Von Arnim. A novel by the author who wrote Elizabeth and Her German Garden. In this book,
is to have a summer all to herself, with no guests, but plenty of time for her
books and her garden and general roaming of the countryside. Sounds like heaven to me. I bought this one and the next from the
The Lady Vanishes, Ethel Lina White. I love mysteries, and this sounds like a good one. Originally published in the 1930s as The Wheel Spins, Alfred Hitchcock eventually made a movie out of it.
Pears on a
Tree, Leslie Pietrzyk. This was one of
the books my son could have chosen to read from his school’s summer reading
list last summer. He didn’t choose it, but I decided to read it. Described
as “a multigenerational roadmap of love and hate, distance and closeness….four
generations of mothers and daughters of Polish ancestry are bound together by
reminiscences and tangled relationships.” (Doesn’t sound like anything a
teenage boy would want to read, does it? Who chooses the summer reading lists,
anyway?!) Another purchase from my library’s bookstore. Willow
Cousin Kate and The Spanish Bride, Georgette Heyer. I used to read Georgette Heyer’s historical romances when I was a teenager and young adult. This summer, I picked up Heyer’s biography, which turned out to be fascinating, and renewed my interest in her work. She was a very private woman, refused to do interviews to promote her books, and was quite expert on the Regency era in
in which so many of her books were set.
Belle Weather, Celia Rivenbark. A collection of funny essays focusing on southern life. I’ve read her other books (including Bless YourHeart, Tramp, and Stop Dressing YourSix-Year-Old Like a Skank) My library bookstore had Belle Weather for just a dollar, so I snatched it up.
I admit I go overboard with books. I really do not need to own all these books, but chances are pretty good that I will pass at least some of them on eventually, back to the used book store, library or Paperback Swap. In the meantime, I will revel in the wealth of printed material I have to choose from. I just finished a novel, so what shall I pick up next?
What do you go overboard with?