I’m feeling like a reading underachiever this week, y’all, but I’m hoping to make up for it ASAP. As you read this, I’m winging my way toward Portland, ME for a bookish friend’s very bookish wedding, and I’m not-so-secretly hoping we’ll get snowed in for a couple extra days. A girl can dream!
Inbox (Books Acquired)
The Expendable Man by Dorothy B. Hughes–I fell for Dorothy Hughes (and hard) when a friend recommended that I read her 1947 thriller In a Lonely Place as a follow-up to Gone Girl this summer. I loved it so much that I immediately ordered this one from my local bookstore. I have no idea what it’s about, but I trust Hughes to keep rocking.
Gossip: The Untrivial Pursuit by Joseph Epstein–A renowned essayist explores the role and function (and necessity!) of gossip in modern life. Be still, my narrative nonfiction-loving heart.
Sex and the Citadel: Intimate Life in a Changing Arab World by Shereem El Feki (Pantheon, January 2013)–An examination of political, economic, social, and religious trends in the Arab world, through the lens of sexuality. (One of my most favorite of lenses!) Can’t wait to read this one.
The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud (Knopf, April 2013)–Claire Messud! Passion! Desire! Twisted family dynamics! Get excited!
Outbox (Books Finished)
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell–My first experience with Mitchell, and on the whole, a pretty great one. I finally understand why everyone talks about the nesting-doll stories, and HOLY CATS, can we please get a new metaphor? They are nested. I get it. Anywho, I read this with fellow Rioter Greg, and I’mma save my clever comments about it our post together. Stay tuned!
Daring Greatly by Brené Brown–This academic but totally accessible look at vulnerability and why it is good and useful and important in our lives (even when it’s scary as all hell) rang so many of my bells at once, I don’t think I’ve completely processed it. It veers a tad too much toward self-help every now and then, but for the most part, this is a data-driven (but again, totally readable and accessible) discussion of what it takes to show up and let ourselves be seen, and how it pays to take those kinds of risks.
In the Queue
The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2012 edited by Dave Eggers–This one’s not technically in the queue any more because it’s been my bedtime reading, one piece per night, for the last week. But it’s gonna take me another week or two to finish, and I wanted to mention it because it’s awesome, so.
Hallucinations by Oliver Sacks (Knopf, November 6)–If you’ve not read Oliver Sacks before, allow me to introduce you. Sacks is a professor of neurology and psychiatry, and he writes fantastic themed essay collections about his patients and their experiences with various neuro-psychiatric phenomena. If you’re at all interested in how your brain works, why it does some of the weird things it does, and what crazy things could happen to it, you wanna read Oliver Sacks. This latest is about exactly what you’d think from the title.
Your turn! How was your reading week?