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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Hot Off the Presses and Other Good Reads

There's a hale crop of winter books this year. Not all will make it to a library near you, because of the recent cuts. Around here we have an "interlibrary loan" system, where you fill out a form and your local library borrows it from another library who has a copy. I don't know how big this system is, but check to see if yours is part of one.

The Jefferson Bible has been printed at last:

Jodi Kantor's sensationalist book about the Obamas is likely only the first in a string of election year stinkbombs

Was the Arab Spring uprising foreshadowed in fiction? The International Prize for Arabic Fiction seems to show it was;

Here's the latest NY Times bestseller fiction list. There's always something of interest in there:

And I have to mention The Game of Thrones series, which has captured my attention and imagination for months now. GRR Martin has produced a series that truly blows my mind. There aren't any thoroughly good nor thoroughly evil people, just like real life, but there are entirely evil forces and impending doom on the horizon. I can't wait to see how this turns out. The books are so dense that you can't rip through them, which makes now a good time to start, as he's in the finishing stage of work in the sixth of the seven planned books.

The boxset of the first 4 novels is a bargain:
with A Dance with Dragons available separately and the soon-to-be published Winds of Winter probably being released later this year.

This is my favorite thing about winter; long reads. I also recommend anything Margaret George writes. She takes history and fills in trivial fact and imagination to make a tiramisu for the mind. Her Autobiography of Henry VIII is a particularly wonderful romp. And there's always Dickens. I find different subtexts to Dickens every time I reread his books.

And of course this is the perfect time for reading all those classics you've never gotten around to reading. I'd planned to tackle Proust's RTP this winter; that'll have to wait for next year, there's not time now and I'm not going to read half as I always have.

So check out a book or two this winter. Remember your library needs your support and patronage. If we don't use it, we'll lose it.


CarrieBoo said...

Crikey, see you in Spring. ;) Great suggestions. Such a wonderful, non-guilty way to relax (and block out all the shooting and bleeping around here).

Austan said...

The best part of retirement is reading til your eyes give out. Shooting and bleeping!? Make them stop!

Anonymous said...

I always thought I would read more when I retired but I find that the hubby doesn't appreciate it when I have my nose in a book.

H A R R Y G O A Z said...

Have a SUPER week!

Lisa said...

We've given up on our library. They're moving into the "download books and movies and songs with 5 trillion steps to go thru to get it!" system. The majority of the new books are "if you're not Christian or republican, you need to leave the country and die" type books. They don't have librarians anymore - you have to check your own books out. When you bring them back, 90% of the time they flub up checking them back in. Then someone else checks it out, but it's still on your card, and then you're fined for it. It's very disheartening.

Austan said...

Lawless- it's an issue in my brother's house too. We grew up with a book in one hand.

Harry- You too!

Lisa- Thanks for that bit of info. Now we know what to watch for. I'm sorry it's happening. Any way to stop it? Any groups forming?

Lisa said...

LOL - no. Remember where you're talking about. We have to go 20 miles to get to a decent book store. Unfortunately, we can't afford to get all the new books I want. But, Sirius/XM Book Radio plays the audio books I like all the time. And, I've heard parts of other books I never would have thought to look at, but enjoyed hearing. So, I've got a bunch of those to find now, too.

Austan said...

Well I hope the library sitch is better where you're going. Damn.