Saturday, October 21, 2006

Lots of Reading; Not Much to Show for It

In the past few weeks my reading choices have been eclectic, fragmentary, and cross-pollinating. How's that for spin?

By eclectic I mean that my choices have ranged far from my usual focus on contemporary fiction, and instead have consisted in large part of cookbooks (Ina Garten: Barefoot Contessa Family Style, and Barefoot in Paris), knitting books (Mason Dixon Knitting, by Kay Gardiner) and a few magazines (Everyday Food, Threads). Obviously I must be feeling domestic.

By fragmentary I mean that I have started several books that didn't work out. These include The Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich, Truth and Consequences by Alison Lurie, and Flying Leap by Judy Budnitz. I know I said in my last post that I couldn't wait to read something else by Budnitz, but this collection was just weird. And the Louise Erdrich book is one I tried before -- I must really want to like this book, but I can't seem to get beyond the second chapter. Alison Lurie I used to read years ago, but haven't tried anything by her in maybe ten years. This one just failed to grab me.

And by cross-pollinating I mean that instead of sticking in an organized way to my TBR list, I've been letting books jump the queue, and have been reading things that lead to other things, as it were. The Judy Budnitz story in This is not Chick Lit lead me to her collection Flying Leap. An article in the New York Times led to a book by Allison Glock called Beauty Before Comfort, which I just finished this morning, and so haven't yet reviewed. I feel a little panicky whenever I do this, like I'm going to end up wandering the side roads forever and never get back to the highway.

I do have three books finished but have not yet written about them here; these include the Glock book I mention above, and also The Tiger in the Attic by Edith Milton and The Rottweiler by Ruth Rendell. I haven't yet decided what I'm going to read next, but I have a feeling that the highway is still far away, because in a few minutes I'm going to the library to pick up Felted Knits and Pursenalities: 20 Great Knitted and Felted Bags! Can't wait!


Anonymous said...

Yes, it's funny how reading goes in jags, isn't it? I often find that in one week I might find several spectacular books, while in other weeks I can't pick up any sort of book that seems worthwhile. I think that's the logical result of the sheer number of things being published: wide, wide variance in what there is both to love and hate. And, frankly, I've never been able to enjoy any of Louise Erdrich's books. I try, but it just doesn't work out. Also, enjoy the side roads of reading...I find I usually stumble across a lot better things than what I go out of my way to order and put on my TBR pile. Good luck!

Post a Comment