Monday, September 14, 2009

Read All About It

I'm going through a bookish phase - what else is there to do in Ramadan, really? - and have been having a wonderful time. Diaries, mostly, but also dipping into favorite books of essays (it strikes me that there's not nearly enough shouting about Sarah Vowell, for example, let alone David Rakoff, who appears to be that rare creature, someone who doesn't write enough).

Our Sultanate got its first really good bookstore (a Borders, quite incongruous in these parts) a year or so ago, and as a result my reliance on Amazon has declined (it's cheaper, yes, but I'm all about the instant gratification). Nonetheless, when I linked to the site earlier this month it made me feel good to know it's still there.

Also gratifying: when I did add the link to Mr. Lerman's The Grand Surprise, it was loitering somewhere in Amazon rankings below 500,000. Since then, I've seen it as high as 125,000 or so, although it's as of right now down a shade. Now, I'm not claiming to have sold all that many copies, but it's nice to feel I've played a part.

So what are you reading?


  1. Sadly, I am reading scripts for Thursday's board meetings. After plowing through the 2 dozen reports listed on the agenda, it's all I can do to stay awake.

    At home, I manage NY Magazine and some shelter magazines on a regular basis. My Life in France is not getting nearly the attention it deserves. And Mr. Lerman sits on the coffee table waiting for me to pick him up and dive in.

    Goethe and Wedekind are in the night stand along with some Dickens, Amy Sedaris's I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence and a book about Welsh Corgis. When I'll get to them is anyone's guess.

  2. Sarah Vowell is the bomb. She's coming to my town next month and I plan to fling myself at her feet, grab her ankles, and scream 'be my Mommy!' I like it even better when she reads her own work in her Jeanine Garofalo-like deadpan.

    I'd be really curious what your local Borders chooses not to stock compared to, say, mine in the Pacific NW.

  3. Whoops...nonresponsive comment. I'm reading:

    Barzun's "From Dawn to Decadence", the best-written and most intelligent romp through five centuries of cultural history ever, Alain de Botton's "The Architecture of Happiness", and Carmel Snow's autobiography (with a lavender book cover, of course).

  4. Homer & Langley by E.L. Doctorow.

    A fictionalized account of the Collyer Brothers.

  5. The Human Element and other stories by Somerset Maugham...

  6. A 1979 Buster bio, "Keaton-The Man Who Wouldn't Lie Down"

    I'll let you know why he wouldn't as soon as I find out!