Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Summer Reading

I'm threatening (myself not my work) with my two weeks notice and am leaving Mississippi for the summer within a month (HURRAH!) so I'm thinking summery thoughts and from thence has come the summer reading list. My favourite thing in the universe is to go to Wonder Book in Hagerstown and buying bags full of books for five dollars (somehow when a book only costs ten cents you will buy a much more varied selection) so I'm sure there will much more read this summer but this is somewhere to start.

A) Happens Every Day by Isabel Gillies is apparently wonderful, there was an excerpt in Vogue and everyone from my favourite NPR reviewers to Elle Magazine loved it. The fact that Gillies isn't a writer is suppose to be a benefit but we shall see (this coming from someone who read Tori Spelling's book so take it for what its worth).

B) Jill and the Perfect Pony and other Jill Crew books by Ruby Ferguson. My mum read these as a child and I picked up the torch pretty early, Mum bought me the whole set for my graduation last year. Superficially they are about horses but really they are about being keen and enthusiastic and the importance of white-wash and bucking up and making do. All of which seems rather pertinent right about now.

C) The Ambassadors by Henry James seems like something one ought to read and every summer I attempt an 'ought to' especially since avoiding complete brain atrophy seems essential post college. I heard one of my favourite authors Ann Patchett speak this past weekend at the Southern Literature Festival in Jackson and she said Henry James is "life ruiningly wonderful" which I thought was pretty groovy, listen to her talk about it on NPR here.

D) The Thin Place By Katheryn Davis was called a "brilliant, peculiar book" by the New Yorker which is enough for me. Read the wee reviews here.

E) The Drunk Driver Has the Right of Way by Ethan Coen of film fame. While Coen's poems will not be taught at my alma mater any time soon, I think they are kind of fun and who doesn't want to read a limerick involving "a well-endowed rhinoceros making love to a Sherman tank"

F) Bangkok 8 by John Burndett because no summer reading list would be complete without a book about a dead marine in Bangkok and some exciting police espionage. Yes. Thank you.

E) Serve the People By Jen Lin-Liu. There are only so many times you can read Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto and I have an obsessive need to read about noodles and dumplings.

As I write this I am working in the back garden and it's finally cooled down, it was 98 at lunch. Maybe Mississippi isn't so bad...

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