Ah, 2014. What wondrous works of nonfiction and fiction do you have in store for readers?
The weather is perfect for reading: (picture taken a few years ago, but by tomorrow, it might look something like this)
As my dad and I are fond of saying to each other (whether in a bookstore, at a used-book sale, at the library, discussing books or showing each other the books we’ve just acquired):
“So many books; so little time.”
Books by my bedside (a constantly revolving pile):
Relatively recently purchased books on ancient Egypt:
Christiane Desroches-Noblecourt’s 1963 book on Tutankhamen, in English *and* in French (Moi, je suis si contente, quoi!):
Before Gibson’s, our local independent bookstore, expanded (a rare and inspiring story!), I knew—by first name—almost everyone who worked there. They, in turn, knew me. Such a wonderful place, and the people working there are incredibly gracious and friendly.
I mentioned this to my sister—herself a reader, but not a bibliophile–when I met her later after being greeted by Sandy and John as I perused the aisles.
“Is that your version of ‘Cheers’?” she asked, with a look on her face I’ve come to know as an affectionate blend of ‘oh my god, you’re such a dork’ and ‘how am I related to this person?’
I don’t know about other avid readers, but there are many books on my bookshelves, on desks and tables, and throughout my abode that I have yet to read. That doesn’t stop me from finding new books (published recently or decades ago).
Select nonfiction books I hope to be reading this year:
I marvel at how authors choose their words, describe their thoughts, introduce their characters, unveil their stories, or how they revive history in chapter after engrossing chapter.
Speaking of words, I am currently reading The Debt to Pleasure, a delightful work of fiction by John Lanchester.
Told in first person by a highly educated food critic, it is the amusing tale of a total snob. But I need a dictionary as I read; Lanchester’s writing is peppered with obscure words. (My favorite so far: “tintinnabulation.”) To improve my vocabulary, not just to grasp the meaning of what I was reading and then move on, I began writing down the new words. I’m halfway through the book, and I have two pages (TWO!) of these words.
And it’s not enough to just read.
I love being surrounded by the printed word. I love being able to have—the very moment I’m in the mood to read it—the book of my choice and interest.
I love the feel, the texture, the smell of books.
Here’s to all booksellers, to publishers, editors, and to all authors! May 2014 be a very good year!