Bookish Pleasures

May 24, 2013

One of my greatest pleasures is reading. But not just the reading itself—also thinking about reading, planning what to read next, even reading about reading. This week I’ve spent more time than usual doing the fun little tasks associated with reading: shuffling piles, consolidating the to-be-read (TBR) list, and so on.

I always have piles of books lying around: books in progress, books lined up for one of the reading challenges I’m doing, books I’ve finished reading, but want to reread select parts of or write notes about. But the very best pile of all is the one of books next up to be read. I got this little pile at the library this week, except for the top one which I own and had already started to read. Here’s what I got:

What I Learned at Bug Camp, Sarah Juniper Rabkin. I’m always on the lookout for collections of essays, and I read about this one on Susan J. Tweit’s blog. Rabkin is a naturalist, artist and teacher, and I’m very much enjoying her thoughtful writing.

The Muse Is IN: An Owner’s Manual to Your Creativity, Jill Badonsky. This brightly-illustrated book looks like a fun jump start to creativity. It might help me with my proposed 30 Days of Creativity (coming soon!).

The Cursing Mommy’s Book of Days, Ian Frazier. A humorous novel written in daybook form, the main character is a “hilariously desperate housewife with a taste for swearing and large glasses of red wine, who speaks to the frustrations of everyday life.” I read about this in the New York Times, and it sounds like a good antidote to stress, don’t you think?

Moving to Higher Ground, Wynton Marsalis with Geoffrey C. Ward. Marsalis writes about lessons learned in a lifetime in jazz—I’m quite excited about finally checking this out, because it’s one of the books that’s been on my TBR list the longest!

Gone Girl, Gillian Flynn. The novel that made such a splash last year, apparently a twisty/turny thriller. I’m looking forward to seeing what the fuss was all about.

I’ll have to start Gone Girl first because there are people signed up after me to read it and I won’t be able to renew it after the checkout period is over. This might be a challenge, because next week will be given up to entertaining out-of-town family and celebrating my son’s graduation from high school. Surely I’ll be able to sneak a little reading time in there. I hope.

In addition to piles of books, I have lists of books. On Sunday I spent an hour puttering through my TBR list, consolidating and updating. I’d finished a book, and wandered through the library catalog looking for something new to put on hold (see pile above for the result). I checked reviews on Amazon to see if I still wanted to read a few books that had been on my list for a while, crossing out a few, but mostly transferring them to a clean page in my organizer. My library recently changed its cataloging system, and it took me a little while to figure out how to best use it.  Occasionally, a book on my list will disappear from the catalog and I have to decide if I want to try interlibrary loan, buy a copy, or discard the book from my TBR list. Momentous decisions!

I’ll be spending some time getting a start on one or more of my new books this weekend before all the company arrives. What are you reading this weekend?

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  1. I could just about have written this post--it is all so familiar and I do the same exact things. I think I spend almost as much time thinking about what I am reading or what I might read or what I definitely want to read--as I do reading itself! The whole library thing really is a dilemma--the excitement of the new (or maybe the really old if it is an ILL book) but then those books always get to jump ahead in the queue. I have The Gone Girl too, but must admit I broke down and bought it since I was able to get it really really cheap---as yet unread...such a surprise. Enjoy your holiday weekend--and hope you get to spend part of it with that pile of books! :)

  2. I can't wait to hear what you think of Gone Girl. I read it recently and really liked it. I'm currently reading Libra by Don DeLillo. I've never read him before. It's pretty good, but not as good as I'd hoped (at least not yet; it may get better). I finished The Greenhouse right before we left on a little trip. I really liked it; thanks for sending it. I'll get it back to you after we get back and I write about it on my blog, which I'm behind on once again.

  3. Danielle--Thinking about reading is half the pleasure! I am hoping to sneak in a little reading here and there. I'm finishing up Ann Bridge's The Portuguese Escape today, and hope to start on Gone Girl tonight or tomorrow. Hope you have a great long weekend, full of bookish pleasure!

  4. Cheryl--I hope to start Gone Girl today or tomorrow, so I'll let you know what I think.

    I don't think I've ever read Don DeLillo, either. Will you be writing about him?

    Glad you liked The Greenhouse. It was a different type of book for me, but I found it very readable and enjoyed the story very much.