Dear one, what are you reading?

I found a copy of Paraic O’Donnell‘sThe Maker of Swans” while I was in Seattle, it seems the perfect thing to distract me from the news this evening and take me into some kind of sorcery, that I’m more than intrigued by, and have no clear concept of, as I’m only on page 48. I will tell you this, it has a heroine, Clara, a child of words and wonders, that I’ve fallen in love with.

Speaking of words and wonders, let’s turn to F. Scott Fitzgerald. On that same trip up the coast I left behind a copy of “I’d Die for You: And Other Lost Stories.” It’s a collection of his works that were submitted to magazines, or pitched as scripts, but were never filmed or printed. The stories are profound and strangely topical, while the introductory notes by the editor, Anne Margaret Daniel, are illuminating. I’ve just placed another copy in my Amazon basket.

When I was a kid I remember summer nights, lamp aglow by my bed, while I read until the house was very still, and all that existed was another world mapped out on the page…

Now, tell me what books are ringing your bells, I’m on the hunt for total immersion!

15 comments

  1. Am reading “No Applause – Just Throw Money: The Book that Made Vaudeville Famous” by Trav S.D. Fabulous and well-researched history of Vaudeville. It’s keeping me absorbed, but it may not be what you’re looking for…

    Aside from that, I hope the month of June is treating you well. 🙂

    • So far, June has been lovely! I follow Trav S.D. on some platform, and I know he has a keen historical sense, but I didn’t know he had written a book. I will search it out, thank you.

  2. I’m into the Poldark series right now … the Masterpiece episodes are following the books very nicely … better than I’ve ever experienced. Usually I’m forehead smacking when I see what filmakers do with books. Your recommendation of unpublished Fitzgerald … how exciting … thanks for the tip!!! I did a bit of reading about Zelda years ago … she always fascinated me.

    • I seem to remember seeing a Poldark series the *first* time it ran on Masterpiece… I think the best film adaptations of novels took place in the 1940s — the real standout is “The Heiress” starring Olivia de Havilland, based on “Washington Square” by Henry James. It’s a powerhouse!

  3. btw … yeah … summer nights … no ac … hot hot upstairs bedroom under the eaves … giant window fans whirring. Finally falling asleep around 2 or 3 when the house cooled down. I remember being into Edgar Allen Poe one summer. Lord, how I ever got any sleep at all, I’ll never know. Which brings me to another fabulous old story. I strongly recommend … probably written in the 30s or 40s … “The Uninvited” … by Dorothy Macardle. It’s AWEsome!!!

    • “The Uninvited” looks perfect. “…The man who built a house like that in a place like this should be condemned to haunt it for all eternity…” I still find a fan better for sleeping than the ac, and now I think you’ve revealed why. xox

  4. I read Michael Chabon’s Telegraph Avenue while we were in Guanajuato Mexico this spring. It was quite fun especially since I knew most of the locations from when I lived in Berkeley in the 80s. I’m now nearing the end of his Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, and not getting the same vibe. Ah well. Haruki Murakami will have to remain as my go to for immersive books 😉. And since its summer, I may have to pull out some Raymond Chandler 😉

    • I read Chabon’s “Wonder Boys” when it came out, and pretty much cackled my way through it, I loved it, and then I never read any more of his work. I will check out “Telegraph Avenue.” Raymond Chandler is great any time of year 😉 !

      • I keep threatening to re-read Murakami, but not reading enough to get there! Maybe if I start reading books on the bus instead of The New Yorker. Or quit watching TV 🙂

  5. I just finished a glorious book by one of my favorite authors, Beatrix Williams. It’s called “The Secret Life of Violet Grant.” It has a dual narrative from different times zones – 1960s New York and pre-WWI Europe linked by two women who are related by don’t know. Williams can turn a phrase like few authors I know.

    • Yes! How often do you get to read that someone’s hangover-face is “chartreuse”…I’m hooked, and into my library queue it goes. I am loving these suggestions, thank you!

  6. “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” (“Dangerous Liaisons”) by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos – published by Penguin Classics, translated to English by P.W. Stone. One of my favorite escapes – I read it at least once a year! I prefer Stone’s translation to the others, because he uses the French “Maman” instead of the British “Mummy” as some other translators have, and there are a lot of references to mothers in this story. Too many mummies and it’s a horror story instead! 😎

    • My favorite French rose is called Maman Cochet… That said, I will find Les Liaisons. Thank you! Currently have Memoirs of Madame de la Tour du Pin in my reading queue, she escaped the guillotine by fleeing Paris and wrote the book in the form of a letter to her daughter. The first page just grabbed me. Happy early Father’s Day!

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