This was the month I intended to only select a half-dozen large and demanding books and blow off the lesser novels which so often interfere with the big fat ones I have been putting off for years. I started with five fat ones but then added a few very tempting texts with more manageable page counts. Then I added a few more and soon I was caught in the cycle of posting works I really wanted to read as opposed to works I really should read.
Is reading A Man Without Qualities and crossing off yet another book from my bucket list more satisfying than ready three of four novels from other authors around the world?
It was a struggle but I opted for continued variety and a promise that I will try to work at least one bucket list tome into each month’s reading pool. This month there are actually three titles that may earn me the dubious satisfaction of having read something great and challenging: The Golden Notebook, They Were Counted, and Frog.
Interestingly I have lugged my copy of Stephen Dixon’s Frog around from state to state for almost twenty-five years and for this reading pool I dumped the paper and ink copy in the Goodwill box and purchased the digital version. Not only are my eyes growing weaker, my wrists are refusing to hold up those big fat books.
So this is the reading pool for October.
- Inter Ice Age 4 — Kobo Abe
- The Proof — César Aira
- They Were Counted — Miklós Bánffy
- The Little Girls — Elizabeth Bowen
- Frog — Stephen Dixon
- Bright Magic: Stories — Alfred Döblin
- Schultz — J. P. Donleavy
- Strangers On a Train — Patricia Highsmith
- Angels — Denis Johnson
- The Exile — William Kotzwinkle
- The Golden Notebook — Doris Lessing
- Taipei — Tao Lin
- Peru — Gordon Lish
- African Psycho — Alain Mabanckou
- Asura Girl — Otaro Maijo
- Faceless Killers — Henning Mankell
- Mother and Child — Carol Maso
- The White Dominican — Gustave Meyrink
- Notes of a Crocodile — Qiu Miaojin
- Lives of the Saints — Nino Ricci