April 11, 2008


The saddest number in my life might be the books read to books owned ratio - about 1:5 at any given time. I've tried forbidding myself to buy any more books until I've finished reading the ones I have - and that, in my favorite used bookstore or airport newsstand or (worst of all) the Buy 2 Get the 3rd half off table at either of the big Bs, becomes "Oh, well maybe what it should be is that I should not buy any books unless I haven't started any of the ones I already have." Into the canvas bag goes the desired book (go the desired books?). They arrive at their new home, where I tickle the first 15 or so pages, go "I'm SO glad I got this!" and pop it onto the shelf next between my dust-coated psych textbooks and my unread collection of CS Lewis (which has its own special spot because I really do mean to read those, they're perpetually "next on my list").

So, a progress report on what's listed on my Facebook "shelf" as Currently Reading:

Eat Pray Love. I'm freaking finally in Indonesia. I don't know why something this readable is taking me so long to get through. Maybe it's because of how slowly I savored Elizabeth Graham's trek through Italy, hoping she'd just keep eating (and forget she was supposed to also pray and love.)

The Audacity of Hope. Politically disinclined though I am, I bought and started reading it because I had to know what was behind the impressively delivered words of this politician who has so much of the jaded populace buying into his version of the tired message that things can be better than they are. And though I've only canvassed 47 pages, I don't care how many skeptical pundits dismiss Obama's sweeping statements as substance-free - we as a nation lack passion, we lack hope, and even if hope is all he is capable of providing (which I seriously doubt, but I'll have to read more than his book to get a better feel), we'll be stronger than we are right now.

Digging to America. No progress whatsoever. I still revisit my old Anne Tyler books - just pick one up and read a random page while brushing my teeth or eating my cereal - but ever since Back When We Were Grownups left such a weird taste in my mouth, I've stopped religiously waiting for the next Tyler to come out, and pick them up when they're, well, on that Buy 2, etc. table. (I thought I'd love this one, incidentally. Being a Korean adoptee myself, I thought it would be the novel that would lure me back in to Anne Tyler's Baltimore ... so far, not yet.) Visual Bookshelf thoughtfully e-mails users when a book has been on the "Currently Reading" shelf for more than a week. I guess I should take this one down.

Son of a Witch
. I opened the book, said "Who the hell's Oatsie Manglehand?" and reached for Wicked, which apparently I need to re-read. Note to self: Don't read stuff you want to remember while vacationing in Vegas.


Anonymous said...

Reading is a great way to get rid of extra time when you could be spending money. Unfortunately I prefer the appeal of a bookstore over the practicality of the library.
I too have a ton of unread books and an even longer list of 'to read'. I've been halfway though Jane Eyre since June. Started the latest Kevin Smith book, two chapters into a Sophie Kinsella and I too am dying to read Marley and Me. In addition to a ton of other classic (and not so classics).
I have a list somewhere of every book Rory Gilmore "read" during the run of Gilmore Girls. I want to tackle that list some day.
Reading has been added to my long list of 'stuff I'll do when I move'.

Anonymous said...


damned_cat said...

THE RORY LIST!! That's why you rock.

Oh, a caveat on Marley and Me - have tissue on hand. I hate those books that are marketed as tearjerkers but this one is sincere and you won't be able to help yourself.

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