Happy Sunday! I hope everyone’s day is going well. Around here we have some shopping and housework to do to get ready for family visiting for the American Thanksgiving holiday later this week. Hopefully I’ll get a chance to squeeze in some time to read my new copy of Alice Munro’s latest story collection, Dear Life. Last week was busy work-wise and I didn’t collect as many links as I would have liked, but here are a few things of interest I found. Enjoy!
- Some book reviews make me want to read the book, and some book reviews make me want to follow the reviewer. If I didn’t already follow Teresa at Shelf Love, then her review of Swimming Home would certainly make me want to start doing so.
- The Cue Card reviews Neil Young’s autobiography, Waging Heavy Peace. Based on this review, I am putting this in line right behind Bob Dylan’s Chronicles.
- It’s difficult for me now to imagine a time, as little as five or six years ago, when I didn’t read any mysteries. The Murder of Halland by Pia Juul, reviewed over at Alex in Leeds, sounds right up my alley: “From the very beginning you need to unpick the story and look beyond what the characters are saying. Everything is ambiguous.”
- This story collection, An End to All Things, by Jared Yates Sexton, sounds unusual and intriguing, based on the review over at The Literary Man blog: “Despite his direct address to the reader, Sexton doesn’t have an arrogant tone. He doesn’t believe that his authorial insight is any more important than the reader’s. What he does have, however, is the desire to start a conversation with his audience, and to open their minds to the reality that everyone either fears the end of things, or is numb to this fear.”
- I don’t know about you, but I spend so much time typing these days that my handwriting has gotten pretty atrocious. This book—Whither Handwriting?—explores the loss of the art of handwriting.
- Have you checked out Bloom Site? Created by The Millions contributor Sonya Chung, it’s a site dedicated to authors over 40. I was especially interested in the Q&A with Donald Ray Pollack, who I heard in this interview on NPR’s Fresh Air earlier this year and whose books Knockemstiff and The Devil All the Time are on my wishlist.
- Here’s a short but terrific interview on writing fiction about the Iraq War with two 2012 National Book Award finalists, Ben Fountain and Kevin Powers. (Shameless self-promotion: You can read my thoughts on Fountains’ Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk here.)
- Finally, from Bourbon & Pearls, a little non-bookish but quirky something to make you smile.
The Album Project
Not exactly going strong, but still committed! I listened to:
- Aladdin Sane, David Bowie. Favorite tracks: “Drive-In Saturday” and “Panic in Detroit”
- Almost Famous, soundtrack. I love this movie for many reasons, which I’ll share in a forthcoming post.
- American Beauty, The Grateful Dead. Favorite track: “Box of Rain,” which is why I bought the album. I was never a Deadhead, but watching Lindsay Weir dance alone to it in her bedroom on the sadly short-lived Freaks and Geeks drove me to buy the whole album.
None, nada, zilch, zero.
Books added to wishlist:
- Safe as Houses, Marie-Helene Bertino. Via Largehearted Boy. This won the Iowa Short Fiction Award.
- The Care and Feeding of Exotic Pets, Diana Wagman. Another one via Largehearted Boy. (I swear I am going send that guy a bill for all these books he keeps making me add/buy.)
- Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, death, and hope in a Mumbai undercity, Katherine Boo. Why? Won the 2012 National Book Award for nonfiction, that’s why.
All right folks, that’s all I’ve got. Have a great day!