Sunday, November 14, 2010


I don't know what's gotten into me. Ennui.

I think it had something to do with arranging my classics books--double-stacking all the Latin on two shelves--and discovering innumerable forgotten books.  Joyce Carol Oates among the Cicero, a biography of Emily Dickinson among the elegiac poets, and a rousing historical novel about Cassandra with the Virgil.

So many good books to read.  But when?  

Conscious of this, and also of the fact that I will read most new books only once, like John Casey's well-written new novel, Compass Rose, I have cut back.

So I've declared a moratorium on books...but I really do want a new book.

At Borders:  nothing. I bicycled out there the other day.  I carried several books over to one of the comfortable chairs and dipped into Kate Morton's new novel and a biography of Cleopatra.

But I wasn't sure I would read them.  I wasn't in the mood.

I almost bought Susan Cheever's new biography of Louisa May Alcott.  But at the last minute I needed to avoid somebody:  you know, somebody very nice, but sometimes you're just not in the mood.  So I raced out the door, sans book, of course, and rode home. 

At B&N:  I thought about buying Tales of the City.  Good thing I didn't because I found my copy at home.  I want to reread the Tales of the City series so I can catch up before reading Maupin's latest novel about Mary Ann Singleton. Many of us in an office years ago passed these novels around and exchanged humorous observations about Mary Ann, Anna Madrigal, and Michael Tolliver.

Then I almost bought Susan Cheever's new biography of Louisa May Alcott but they didn't have it.  A clerk probably could have found it for me, but there was someone I wanted to avoid again.  I'm haunted these days by people I want to avoid.  

This is called Teaching and Running.

Amazon. I've put some books in my cart lately and not bought them. Do you think I should buy Susan Cheever's biography of Louisa May Alcott? Or pass.  Or maybe some science fiction; I've been craving science fiction lately.  Any suggestions?


Tony S. said...

I was suffering a bit of ennui in my reading after a few less than spectacular books. However, that's all gone now that I'm well into "Trespass" by Rose Tremain. I can't imagine how any Booker judge could have passed this novel by for the shortlist. Every chapter is a delight.

Frisbee said...

It sounds good, Tony. I love Tremain but haven't gotten to this one yet.