Monday, April 04, 2005

Happy Birthday to Me!

Today is my birthday and around this house occasions like birthdays means gifts and gifts mean books. When I met my Bookman we discovered we were two peas in a pod. Other gifts were nice--clothes, music, movies--but the best gifts of all were the ones that come with two covers and lots of pages with words and sometimes pictures in them. That is why there are so many books at my house. It is not due entirely to me. I sometimes joke that I married my Bookman for his books. So true to gifting form, I have received from my beloved some new books:

  • Tishomingo Blues by Elmore Leonard. This is my first Leonard book. I have meant to give him a try but never have gotten around to it. I guess I will now, eventually.
  • Runny Babbit by Shel Silverstein. I love Silverstein, his silliness and the way he plays with language. This is a new book (no Silverstein is still dead) that he completed prior to his death.
  • High Latitudes by Farley Mowat. Loved his book about wolves (and the movie) and I had a good cry over The Dog Who Wouldn't Be and made my husband read it so he could cry too.
  • Lighthousekeeping by Jeanette Winterson. It got a great review in the TLS
  • War and the Iliad by Simone Weil and Rachel Bespaloff. It's an analysis of the Iliad and, well, war. This means I'm going to have to read the entire Iliad instead of just excerpts. Of course then I will have to read the Odyssey too. Any translation recommendations?
  • Wrong About Japan by Peter Carey. Great write up about it in the TLS
  • On Bullshit by Harry G. Frankfurt. This is the book reviewed by The Sunday NY Times Book Review the full title of which they would not print. They reviewed it as "On Bull----."
  • The Wit and Wisdom of Don Quixote de la Mancha edited by Harry Sieber. This is a delightful little book that organizes quotes from DQ into different sections like "Adversity," "Courage," and "The Quest." Here are a few examples: "The more you stir it the more it will stink." "If the blind lead the blind they are both in danger of falling into the ditch." "[To] turn poet, they say, is an infectious and incurable distemper."
Then there is the non-book bookish item, the Shakespeare Action Figure with Removable Quill. Shakepeare Isn't he cute?