Lest We Forget

51I+TJjcZgL._SX305_BO1,204,203,200_.jpgWell, maybe it’s not that important to remember but each day I publish a new title that catches my interest and, despite the odds against it, I just might read one of these days. Actually, I probably read two or three of these books eventually and if you read two or three of these books and if … well, chances are someone, somewhere will contemplate reading one or more of these books so the suggestions will not be in vain.

Although I am currently reading a lot of detective stories, I tend not to include them on the suggested reading lists. After all, they tend to be simple entertainments that breeze by before the little gray cells get ruffled. Unfair? Probably. Remember, one of the main criteria I use for selecting the suggested reading is that the title catches my eye: with detective stories and mysteries, all the titles are designed to catch my eye. Luckily I tend to read digital copies of these texts: can you imagine if I was selecting reading suggestions based on the lurid, half-naked artwork that adorns so many of these novels? I still have dreams about Mickey Spillane’s I, The Jury.

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Stacking Up the Titles

download.jpgI was recently congratulated for having completed my monthly reading pool. Books, though, are like enchanted brooms and no matter how many I read, these is always a tide of new reading threatening to wash me away.

Besides, my current quest to read beaucoup de genre novels, especially detective and mystery fiction, results in five or six completions in the same time it might take me to read one George Eliot or Charles Dickens.

This month I’ve toyed with the idea to read a select few big, fat books, or once again race through a couple dozen more direct entertainments. I opted for the long list of fun reading with one or two more challenging titles thrown in for sustained interest. Next month, however, I’m contemplating two-out-of-three falls with the likes of A Man Without Qualities and Clarissa Harlowe.

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The Cult Books That Lost Their Cool

images.jpgHephzibah Anderson of the BBC has exposed a selection of books that have traditionally been highly regarded but nowadays fail to evoke the interest and accolades they once deserved.

When I was studying literature at the university I was introduced to a similar phenomenon. At that time authors such as Charles Dickens and Theodore Dreiser were quite low in the academic esteem department. Hemingway is another well known author that tends to go up and down through the years (he should stay down).

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Wuthering Heights

images-1.jpgBack in the early 1960s I was the sleepy blond surfer with the denim Converse and the sea-salty epidural itch. I was an inadvertent undercover scholar who passed for being bored in class because I was bored in class. When the teacher asked a question I often allowed the tense quiet to build before I almost imperceptibly raised my arm and grunted the correct answer.

My favorite class was English and in my senior year I happily read lots of books, drawled out correct answers, aced all the quizzes and tests, all while affecting a bad boy attitude toward school and learning.

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