Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A few blogs worth a look

Work has been busy, we're redecorating the house and there has been some travel, of late. In other words, lots of lame excuses on my part for not being more up to date but since no one actually reads this thing, I'm cool with getting to the 5 or 6 books I've read this month (most of which I've really liked) when I have more time.

However, I've come across a few interesting book blogs I thought I'd pass on to the people who don't read mine.

First up, Lou Reads. I don't know a lot about her but we seem to have similar taste in some of the books we read and blog about. She's got a nice, breezy style and I appreciate her take on what she reads. Plus, it's called Lou Reads and I'm a sucker for a play on words that leads me back to the irascible Velvet Underground guitarist and singer.

And the colored girls blog:

I haven't tried Miette's Bedtime Story Podcast yet but I LOVE the idea. When's the last time someone read to you? For the short story lovers and those who love to hear the written word, I dig it. Great mix of authors and stories--The Cask of Amontillado, Richard Brautigan, Roses for Emily, to name a few.

Start downloading at

Last is Field-Tested Books. As they say on the site, "We had this notion that somehow through experimentation we could identify how our perception of a book is affected by the place where we read it." So they've collected some well-known writers (Andrei Codrescu, James Finn Garner), some up-and-comers and some scribes that are new to me and posted their pieces on what it meant to them to read Hunter S. Thompson in Bangkok or C. S. Lewis in New Jersey and many others. Kind of cool, kind of insightful.

To start your field work, go here and then click Field-Tested Books on the right side.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

On being a hater

There are plenty of books I've never made it through despite their reputation and certain authors whom I've found to be just awful even though they've been canonized as great masters. Maybe those books were "of their times" or I'm just not smart enough but mostly, I can only guess these books and authors just didn't speak to me the way others do.

Going through my reader after being on vacation, I found this terrific piece from the Times Online:

I thought this was great to see people own up to hating D. H. Lawrence or Dostoevsky or admitting to throwing a Patricia Cornwell novel off a boat.

Take that, Henry James!