I don't know about you but when a whole weekend passes with hardly an hour or two spent with a book in hand I feel like my world is a little off-kilter. Something was missing this weekend and now I don't have much to write about today (even if I haven't been reading I can tell you about what I want to be reading, right?). I have had a number of house projects going on, which I think are mostly taken care of for the moment, so now I can perhaps get back to the books!
I have lots of 'finished' books to tell you about. As a matter of fact a small pile seems to be growing right next to my computer so in the next week or two I hope to write about at least some of them. Let's see, I have two nonfiction books, a classic, a mystery and a novel. All very good reads in different ways. I always like writing about a book I've read as it helps place the story more firmly in my mind and then I can refer back to the post later. It's almost as though writing something about it is part of the reading process for me. Only when it has gotten some sort of mention here can I put the book back on the shelf (or send it out into the world to 'recycle' it).
I did read one short story, a noir crime story for my class later this week that I'm feeling a little 'meh' about. It was okay, didn't quite sweep me off my feet, but I think it is down simply to a matter of taste in terms of subject matter. I finished the first Avraham Avraham mystery, The Missing File and have moved on to the second book, A Possibility of Violence, which is the novel we will be discussing (along with the story, which is from the collection, Tel Aviv Noir) in class this week.
Avi Avraham is an interesting character. He's sort of sedate and maybe even a little uncertain--certainly not your usual anguished lone wolf sort of crime investigator. I liked the first book, though I am not sure how I feel about Avi. It's interesting reading two mysteries like this back to back. The story, in some ways, is a continuation of the first, though the actual mysteries are quite different. It will be good to be able to compare and contrast as the translators are different. Often, though, it is less the mystery that draws me in and more the setting (the Tel Aviv suburbs in these books) and characters.
Mysteries seem to be my book type of choice lately to reach for (I should have called this post the 'Mystery Edition'!). I am zipping along in Laura Lippman's Baltimore Blues and enjoying Daisy Dalrymple's museum of natural history adventures. She has quite the knack for getting herself smack dab in the middle of murder investigations. I need to get back to Mary Russell, however, and I am very much in the mood for more of C.J. Sansom's Dominion, in which I seem
to be making stately (though slow) progress. And then there is Maisie's latest . . .
Even with such a varied lineup of mysteries (for once I actually do have a variety--one in translation, one American, two 1920s cozies, one set before WWII and one post-WWII alternative history!), that doesn't stop me from pondering my next choice. My problem is I have had an influx of new books and with such itchy fingers as I have, I'm ready to start yet another. I broke down and ordered Elly Griffith's The Zig Zag Girl. I couldn't wait for the US edition (not until September!) so ordered it from the UK (much prefer the UK cover illustration by the way). Ken Bruen's The Guards (thanks, Liz!) looks most interesting--spare, hardboiled and one of the blurbs calls it "grimly hilarious"! It also looks like it will read really fast, too. Then there are two new-to-me authors who are part of Europa Editions World Noir series, Stav Sherez and Philippe Georget. All are first books in the series (because heaven forbid I read a mystery out of order), of course. And maybe only because I am reading the latest Maisie Dobbs, but I am having this overwhelming urge to read the next Bess Crawford mystery, A Bitter Truth. (Though you know how I operate . . . ask me in a day or so and I'll tell you I want Agatha Christie or Thomas Cook or someone else entirely).
It's book lust, I'm afraid. Almost all my mysteries are stored in bins (save a couple of shelves on a small bookcase in my bedroom) in the room where my computer sits. So any time I am working on the computer the mysteries are within arm's reach, so when you see them so close by one will catch your eye and then . . . oh, yeah, I really want to read . . . well, fill in the blank.
So, this week--lots of mysteries I suspect. I am hoping to finish my Infinite Riches short story and my New Yorker story in the next day or two. But tomorrow, the last day of the month, really needs to be devoted to my serial read, At the Source. The post is likely to appear late in the day, but maybe I can still get it in before the calendar must be turned and April arrives.
I am unrealistically thinking how I would love to finish one more book this month (since March is turning out to be a not very successful reading month--much like January and February). Surely, out of the massive pile of in progress books on my night table, I have one lone book with fewer than 100 pages to read.
I am happy to put winter behind me, but I wouldn't mind a snow day about now so I could plant myself on my rocker with a stack of books at my side to make up for this weekend's lost time. I better knock on wood now, since snow is not unheard of in April! I'm not only behind in my reading, but I have also fallen behind in emails and responding to blog comments--but all have been read and are most appreciated and I will be answering them soon, too.