Saturday, November 11, 2006

Reading notes

The less time I have to read, the more I long to do it. I'm really looking forward to things slowing down in a month or so when I'll finally have some solid chunks of time to read. In the meantime, it helps to read shorter things, or I begin to feel bogged down. So the book I just finished, Hotel du Lac, was perfect, and the one I'm going to begin this weekend, Marguerite Duras's The Lover, is as well. And it's part of the From the Stacks Winter Challenge, for an extra bonus.

Am I violating the challenge, which involves reading books that I already own instead of buying new ones, if I admit I just bought two books on Amazon? Oh well, what can I do, since I need the books for two book clubs? The first is The Street of Crocodiles by Bruno Schultz, which I'm reading for the Slaves of Golconda. We won't be discussing the book until the end of January, so if you like, get a copy and join in.

The other is Doreen by Barbara Noble, which I'm reading for a group Emily just invited the Hobgoblin and I to join. This is a real-live, face-to-face group -- did you know Emily and I live practically up the road from one another? Okay, it's one town away, say 5-10 miles or so. We had no idea our houses were that close until very recently, and I'm very excited about meeting Emily in the flesh -- a blogger meet-up! I know nothing about Doreen, and I'm eager to get the book and find out.

I am about 20 pages from finishing Frances Burney's Journals and Letters, which has been quite a read -- it's pretty long and not uniformly interesting unless you're a real Burney fan (which I am), but it has a lot of really great sections, including one very exciting episode where Burney, at this point 65 years old, is walking along the coast and gets caught by the incoming tide. She scrambles up a rocky cliff and gets stuck and has to wait as the water rises to see if it will climb high enough to pull her into the sea. I knew as I was reading that she survives -- because the journals and letters continue -- but it was a suspenseful episode nonetheless.

And Proust is coming along nicely; I'm maybe 100 pages from the end of the second volume. I'm reading along steadily and enjoying it, although I haven't felt inspired to post about him on the Proust blog. I'm guessing with more time and leisure will come inspiration. Until then, I'll enjoy the book quietly.