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140. Books Bought & Read, March 2015…

30 Jul
140. Books Bought & Read, March 2015…
Plenty of presents and purchases in preparation for my impending new job as a tour guide in NYC which, incidentally, is where the majority of these books were bought on a flying visit to the Large Golden Delicious: 50 in total, in fact, and only a dozen read.
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In yet another wildly unbalanced month, my bought/read ratio was damaged as I dedicated myself to my own novel, meaning that I was much more picky about the books I read. I finally got around to reading the seminal graphic novel ‘From Hell,’ Alan Moore’s interpretation of the Jack the Ripper murders, covering themes from royalty to masonry and the supernatural, all in a detailed, Sherlockian analysis. It was the only one of my reads this month to be awarded the coveted ‘Borges Book of Brilliance,’ by me.
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The latest Gladwell was everything I expected it to be, (although nothing more), and Christos Tsiolkas‘ sophomore offering ‘Barracuda‘ does for swimming what Chad Harbach did for baseball and David Foster Wallace for tennis: the story of a teen’s on/off relationship with the sport through the social prism of modern-day Australia. It wasn’t quite as good as his debut, ‘The Slap,’ but enjoyable nonetheless.
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My reading was really all over the place in March: a series of essays on language, by writers who were born in one and write in another, was only bought due to its beautiful, braille cover but proved to be fascinating, (especially for a linguist and writer like me); a bizarre kids’ classic in ‘Emil And The Detectives‘ was followed by an even more bizarre Japanese classic by the other Murakami, and later in the month I continued my slow assault on The Russians by reading my first and highly enjoyable Turgenev; and Portuguese history was joined by the always-amazing essays of David Sedaris, and this particular one on Dutch Christmas myths may be my new favourite by him.
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I finished the month with another essay collection, slightly different from the Sedaris ones: ‘Sprezzatura,’ a wonderful Italian word for invention with flair, was a series of 50 three-page articles on the most famous people, inventions and historical moments in Italian (and, indeed, world) history, which left me with a deeper insight into the country I once spent six months inhabting. From St.Catherine of Sienna, (who lent her name to a school I once taught in) to St.Francis of Assisi, DaVinci to Dante, and ballet to law, there was something fascinating on just about every page of this two millennium journey.
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Books Bought, March 2015
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The Ask and the Answer,’ Patrick Ness
Everyone Loves You When You’re Dead,’ Neil Strauss
69,’ Ryu Murakami
Falling Man,Don DeLillo
Hopes And Prospects,’ Noam Chomsky
The BFG,’ Roald Dahl
Just So Stories,’ Rudyard Kipling
Black Mischief,’ Evelyn Waugh
Religion For Atheists,’ Alain DeBotton
Penguin: Great Ideas, Vol.II (20 book box set)
McSweeney’s Quarterly, issue 4
McSweeney’s Quarterly, issue 9
The Sometimes Cloudy Patriot,’ Sarah Vowell
The Alcoholic,’ Jonathan Ames
The Pale King,’ David Foster Wallace
A Confederate General From Big Sur/Dreaming Of Babylon/The Hawkline Monster,’ Richard Brautigan
By The Book: writers on literature and the literary life from the new york times book review,’ ed.Pamela Paul
That Is All,’ John Hodgman
David And Goliath,’ Malcolm Gladwell
Information Is Beautiful,’ David McCandless
A Child Again,’ Robert Coover
Assassination Vacation,’ Sarah Vowell
The Knowledge: how to rebuild civilization in the aftermath of a cataclysm,’ Lewis Dartnell
A Caça Ao Snark,’ (The Hunting Of The Snark), Lewis Carroll
O Incrível Rapáz Que Comía Livros,’ (The Incredible Book Eating Boy), Oliver Jeffers
Equívocos, Enganos  E Falsificacões Da História De Portugal,’ (Errors, Mistakes And Lies Of Portuguese History), Sérgio Luís De Carvalho
Grandes Entrevistas Da História,’ volume 1
Grandes Entrevistas Da História,’ volume 2

Grandes Entrevistas Da História,’ volume 3

Books Read, March 2015
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The Last Wild,’ Piers Torday
Emil And The Detectives,’ Erich Kästner
69,’ Ryu Murakami
The Genius Of Language,’ ed.Wendy Lesser
From Hell,’ Alan Moore & Eddie Campbell  51-r5H5xvML._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_
Black Mischief,’ Evelyn Waugh
Barracuda,’ Christos Tsiolkas
Holidays On Ice,’ David Sedaris
First Love’ & ‘Diary Of A Superfluous Man,’ Ivan Turgenev
David And Goliath,’ Malcolm Gladwell
Equívocos, Enganos  E Falsificacões Da História De Portugal,’ (Errors, Mistakes And Lies Of Portuguese History), Sérgio Luís De Carvalho
Sprezzatura: 50 ways italian genius shaped the world,’ Peter D’Epiro & Mary Desmond Pinkowish
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Posted by on July 30, 2015 in BOOKS

 

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