Warmer weather brings out the bookworm in me
Photo by Flickr user indi.ca
Most of my reading these days happens at my son's bed time, and tends to run more toward Harry Potter and Encyclopedia Brown than anything on the New York Times bestseller list. But ever since the weather started showing signs of spring, I've made a pledge to take time away from TV and all my various electronic devices - BlackBerries and iPod Touches and laptops and netbooks - and indulge in some serious reading.
I've been working my way through the pile of books on the "you should feel guilty for not reading this" shelf on the bookcase in my bedroom. You know those books - the ones you pick up because someone recommended it or Maureen Corrigan gave it a glowing review on NPR. So far I've gotten mad at Mamah Cheney for leaving her family for Frank Lloyd Wright in Nancy Horan's "Loving Frank;" I've mourned lost young love in Ian McEwan's excellent "On Chesil Beach;" and I've celebrated the mystery of life and death in Paul Harding's Pulitzer Prize winning first novel "Tinker."
I've got my next couple of books lined up. I had totally lost track of Walter Mosley in the last few years and was thrilled to discover that he has started a series with a new character. I'll miss Easy Rawlins, but am excited to meet Leonid Trotter McGill. Mosley's protagonists are always well-drawn, complicated characters, and on first glance "The Long Fall" promises to deliver more of the same.
When I finish up with Walter Mosley, I'm diving into science fiction writer Octavia E. Butler's "Kindred." I became aware of Butler when hot new singer Janelle MonÃ¡e claimed Butler as an influence on her music in a recent NPR interview. "Kindred" uses time travel to tell the story of slavery in the pre-Civil War American South.
After that, I'm wide open and looking for ideas. What's on your "must read" shelf? What books have you read and not been able to put down?