READING

 

I’ve always been an avid reader… especially when I began going on long expeditions and needed to keep preoccupied during storm days, rest days, loss of sanity days. One of my favorite things to do, still, is going to the library and check out a book. It’s like Christmas morning, especially if I’m fortunate to be the first to read a brand-new book they’ve just acquired.

 

The reason I’ve decided to start posting books I read is a selfish one.  If this gets one person to put down their smartphone, turn off their laptop or TV, and sit for an undisturbed period of time to enjoy a good book, then it’s worth it. The benefits are abundant.

 

Most books I read have been suggested to me by other readers, admirers, or in magazine reviews. Not every book I read I like… though a majority of those won’t be posted because I just can’t finish them… too boring and won't hold my attention.

 

Get outside, sit under a tree or pop in a tent, and read.

Skål,
Sean

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100 Years of the Best American Short Stories, Lorrie Moore

It was interesting to see how in the 1990s there was a return to straight realism in literary fiction. Perhaps it was the response to the anti-realism of the late 60s and 70s, the minimalism of the 80s. I enjoyed how the stories that were chosen from the thousands and thousands out there displayed experimentation, nudging the boundaries of form… as if they are willing to try anything once. I read one from the 20s – Hemingway’s ‘My Old Man’, Faulkner’s ‘That Will Be Fine’ from 1936, but skipped ahead to the 1960’s to present for the meat of it. The 60s exploration of the hidden complexities of the 1950 happy family; the frankness about sex in the 70s, though definitely the ‘me decade’; the 2

Reading Behind Bars, Jill Grunenwald

Jill’s story of how during the ugly recession, no job and bills to pay, drove her and her master’s degree to seek and acquire a job as a prison librarian. It’s not a maximum security prison, though minimum-security prison is nothing to sneeze at either. As green as you can be on your first day, she goes in to detail on the day-to-day life as a librarian having to deal with prisoners, the humanity in everyone, and inner strength she never knew she had. Not a real page turner, and skimmed a few pages…a quick read. It made sense that she never felt vulnerable or that afraid because the Library was a prisoner’s was a sanctuary, an inner sanctum and privilege that no one dared to screw up. Books

The Beautiful Ones, Prince

A terrific insight into the life of Prince. I had the fortunate luck of being the first person to check out the book from my local library (love that new book smell on glossy pages). It opens with the last few months of Prince’s life with co-writer Dan Piepenbring… who does a great job in the first 47 pages to relay his relationship with Prince. Told in 4 parts through candid photography, actual pages of song lyrics, and the words of Prince himself with his actual written pages and no editing from others. We see how Prince became Prince. A great tribute and must-have addition to any Prince fan’s library.

©2020 by Sean Burch