Thanksgiving Week Apologia

I’m off to Atlanta tomorrow afternoon for the rest of the week. I’m still not sure what I’m bringing with me to read. Butterfly Stories by William Vollman? Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe? Caesar by Adrian Goldsworthy? The choices are endless. I’m not bringing the Pynchon because it’s just too damn heavy and I can’t imagine a worse place to read it. One needs total concentration with this book, which I cannot get while traveling in the air. Any suggestions for some good plane reading? In the meanwhile, here’s some links to keep you busy, if only for a short while:

  • They’re making a movie of Patrick Suskind’s Perfume and a young perfumer has also created, wait for it, perfume to go with the movies release. It actually sounds pretty cool. I’d love to smell it.
  • Apparently Scholastic bookfairs are too commercial for some schools. We didn’t have bookfairs all that often when I was growing up. Then again, I lived in Alabama, so…I do agree with those who object to the product placement in the books. Sure Dora the Explorer and SpongeBob are great, but shouldn’t they be a gateway to reading other things, not just more of the same?
  • Did you read Rachel Donadio’s piece on literary disputes in last week’s NYTBR? I thought it was pretty lame. Others agree. The essay seemed both arbitrary in examples and boring.

6 thoughts on “Thanksgiving Week Apologia

  1. ed

    I would advise against “The Butterfly Stories,” the only Vollmann volume I haven’t cared for. (It’s sort of a warmup for “The Royal Family,” which is a far more compelling book.) If you’re new to Vollmann, I’d recommend “The Atlas” (or even “Expelled from Eden”), which is a good overview for how he portrays the world.

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  2. DH

    I haven’t bought it yet, but I’ve heard good things about the new Dave Eggers book.

    Also: For a quick but compelling read, Vonnegut’s A Man Without A Country.

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  3. Bookdwarf

    Uhm, I would think that the dead virgins smells more fresh? Danielle Steele probably smells like a combo of mothballs and dead flowers.

    I have a copy of the Dave Eggers. I’m always reluctant to travel with hardcovers for some reason. I think I’m going to bring V. by Pynchon and Christine Falls by Benjamin Black aka John Banville. Thanks for the suggestions folks!

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  4. vv

    Yeah, we’ve been doing a bunch of book fairs for Cambridge schools. Which is excellent (even though it means the freaking inventory is in shambles) — much better selection than the Scholastic crap, which seems to have gone even further downhill since my elementary school days. Though the free kitten and unicorn posters you got when you ordered through the catalog were pretty awesome…

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