Wednesday, December 27

A good haul

On Monday morning a large cache of books was discovered beneath a tree off Lambert's Cove Road. Here is how the treasures were divided:

Books now in my possession:
Sixty Stories - Donald Barthelme
The Stories of John Cheever - John Cheever
CivilWarLand in Bad Decline - George Saunders
The Areas of My Expertise - John Hodgman
The Paris Review Ineterviews, Volume I
The Better of McSweeney's, Volume 1

Books for Mom:
We Tell Ourselves Stories in Order to Live - Joan Didion
Brick Lane - Monica Ali
The Echo Maker - Richard Powers

Books for Dad:
A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines - Janna Levin
The Geographer's Library - Jon Fasman
Waiting for the Barbarians - J.M. Coetzee
The History of the Siege of Lisbon - Jose Saramago
Yiddish with George and Laura - Ellis Weiner and Barbara Davilman

Books for Brother:
The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2006
A Fictional History of the United States (with Huge Chunks Missing)
100 Hikes in the Inland Northwest

What books did you all get? Louis, you get anything good?


LTS said...

Funny you should ask, Ben. As it turns out, I had a very "Benny-G" xmas:

Murakami's South of the Border, West of the Sun from "MK47"


J-Dilla's The Shining from "J-Rock" (I know, I know, you had nothing to do with the J-Dilla, Ben)

All I can say is that you're lucky the Mookster has such a perverse sense of humor...

Best part of xmas: Diane's stunning excoriation of the book, which she had just finished reading herself it turns out. Perhaps literary taste is partly genetic.

I only have a few pages to go myself, after which I might find the energy for some kind of blog posting. Actually, Ben, I'm grateful for your sneaky maneuverings. I've always felt that the holidays were for receiving as gifts those things you might not actually buy for yourself.

Ben said...

I hope you got a good laugh upon unwrapping the Murakami. I do believe this is indirectly/unofficially the first Book-Loop exchange. Your brother and I were meandering through the fiction section at Elliott Bay--he had asked me to help him find a book that was both fun and literary. I pulled the usual suspects from the shelf: Davies, Mitchell, Auster etc. Then, jokingly, I handed him a Murakami and explained why it would be funny if he went home for Christmas reading it. After deciding on Kunkel's Indecision for himself, MStyle had the idea for the Murakami gift. A stroke of genius.

I'll be interested to hear what you thought of it. I have not read that one. Just recently I gave up on Wind-Up Bird right around page 400. Considered by many to be Murakami's masterpiece, it just didn't do it for me. I wouldn't take this to mean I have soured on Murakami, but perhaps I enjoy him in smaller doses. I was making my way through it extremely slowly, and with all my great gifts to read, I just decided to leave it at home where I had where I had borrowed it from.

Ben said...

On your last point, the holidays are absolutely the time to get loved ones things they might not buy for themselves. That's the fun of the game. I take particular pride in introducing my parents to new writers each Christmas. My mom, rather surprisingly, had never read any Didion, nor any Powers. My father has been blind to Nobel Prize winning novelists Coetzee and Saramago until now. I am willing to stake all my gifts on the fact that they will enjoy these books.

My parents on the other hand, well, they each gave one another a book they already owned.