Friday, March 26, 2010

library books and stuff

Apparently I have worn myself out lately. I woke up on Thursday with a tummyache, felt horribly unrested, so decided to stay in bed a wee bit longer. A "wee bit" turned into 2-3 hours, and by the time I checked my email again my lovely boss had kindly suggested perhaps I just take the day off to rest. I took her advice. I think there is a lot of background stress happening and I'm having trouble slowing everything down enough to keep up with it all, so I end up spinning and spinning late into the night and not getting enough rest, etc. So, I rested. I slept in, then went to the library and got some great stuff:
  • Tropic of Cancer, Henry Miller. Have always wanted to read this. It popped off the shelf at me, so I figured it was time. Or, at least, time to bring it home and see how it goes. You know how it is with library books. Paris in the 30s; debauchery. Sign me up!
  • Witches Abroad, Terry Pratchett. The only Pratchett I've read so far is Good Omens, which of course I liked a whole lot but didn't lose my mind over, to the dismay of Pratchett/Gaiman fans the blogging-world over... still, was reminded by my walking buddy last night that he's very much worth reading, so I decided to give it a try. Can I just leap into Discworld or should I start somewhere else rather than here?
  • Carry On, Jeeves, PG Wodehouse. Another classic author which I've never read. I started to read Remains of the Day last night, but it was just feeling too sad and melancholy (although of course beautifully written), so I decided to just return it and try again in a few months. However, I do love English-butler stories, so Jeeves and Wooster will be perfect, I think.
  • The Third Man, Graham Greene. Another author I've seen in library shelves FOREVER. My walking buddy (from hereon called Jenn) also recommended Greene. This looked not-too-taxing and sort of noir-ish and fun. I think actually I've seen the movie, now that I think about it. But it was so long ago, I have no idea what the book is about, but I'm sure I'll enjoy it.
  • The Te of Piglet, Benjamin Hoff. Because come on, it's Piglet! Perhaps a little Taoist Piglet-y philosophy will help carry me through until April 13. I like Taoist writings. This also just leapt off the shelf into my hand, so... how could I refuse? Also, anything classic-Pooh-related makes me happy.
As I said, I had started to read Remains of the Day last night, but although it was beautifully written and although I could tell that I would like it (someday), I really need something not so slow and melancholy. I'm a little overtired, overstressed, overworried (all of this sort of in the background... I'm not fully aware of worrying and stressing, but I am tired and feeling distracted, so am taking body cues and assuming I am all of these things). I need something interesting, fun, on the light side (but still worth reading). Luckily I already had a copy of Charles de Lint's Forests of the Heart, which I've been saving for an emergency. I picked it up last night and it's, of course, perfect. This particular story seems to be especially perfect for some reason. Good enough. Thank you, yet again, Mr. de Lint.

Also, a kind blogging friend suggested I read some Jane Hirshfield, which I will be requesting from the library since my local branch didn't have any today.

So, armed with a stack of excellent books, we hunker down to wait out the last few weeks before this dang hearing and getting on with the rest of the year already!


Care said...

I'm going to read Tropic of Cancer for my John Cusack Challenge! and I still need to read Wodehouse (I read a great bio of him and still have only seen some movies! sad) Great list - and it sounds like you have a great boss. Have a great weekend!
(oh AND, I didn't like Remains of the Day but loved the movie...)

Daphne said...

John Cusack Challenge? What's that?? Sounds like I made the right call @ Remains of the Day.

Rachel Cotterill said...

I hope you're feeling better soon.

I think you should be fine starting in the middle of Discworld, each book stands alone - but there are different sub-series with different sets of characters, and the *feel* is very different (to me, at least) so don't rule out the whole lot if you happen to not be bowled over by this one.

30s debauchery sounds very interesting to me :)

~ The Jolly Bee ~ said...

You know, I don't mind reading about English butlers, but I would so rather have an English butler and a char and a cook -- oh, let's not forget the nanny too. Then my life would be perfect.

I hope you're feeling less stressed surrounded by your books.

Have a great weekend.

Theresa said...

Oh! Oh! I love Terry Pratchett's Discworld, and Wyrrd Sisters was my favorite which has hte same characters as Wytches Abroad. I hope you like it. I love the witches. Nanny Ogg is hysterical

Susan said...

I vote for the Tao of Piglet, because he's my favourite Pooh character!! lol then I vote for something lite and brainless, something funny. I think some Jane Austen is in order :-)

I read through some of the recent posts to catch up, and you know my prayers are with you and Terri that the hearing goes in your favour. Fingers crossed too.

I love, love, love your header, and the post you did with the photos of San Francisco! Beautiful pictures!!!! Its' lovely when we remember to go outside, isn't it? I've been able to do some walking again, and just hearing the birds come back for spring is so cheering!!!

Susan said...

PS not that Jane Austen is light!! but she will take you away for a while. :-D

Nymeth said...

You can technically started Discworld anywhere, as all books but the first two are stand-alones. Some people prefer to read the sub-series in order, though. Personally I never thought it much mattered, but here's a neat little graphic that explains it all :P

Kate said...

Yeah Pratchett! I was always more of a Pratchett reader than a Gaiman reader, having started with Good Omens too. (In fact I just reread Good Omens and was having fun picking out the clearly Gaiman bits for the first time - and I think you know how many times I've read it!) With Discworld I'm a proponent of starting anywhere, and I think I did actually start either with Wyrd Sisters or Witches Abroad. The witches continue to be my favorite characters, especially Granny Weatherwax. But the series is not particularly sequential and if you don't like Witches Abroad for some reason (I can't imagine what!), try another book with a different cast. I've said it a million times: there is a Discworld for everyone.

And I loved Jeeves. Reading it for the first time made me wonder why I hadn't been reading it all my life.

Happy reading!

Stefanie said...

I'm sure I commented on this yesterday but it looks like it got eaten by the Blogger comment monster!

Now let me think what I said...I'm reading My man Jeeves and loving it. I'm sure Carry On, Jeeves will be equally as brilliant. I liked the Tao of Pooh better than the Te of Piglet, but it's still good and I hope you enjoy it. Oh, and Terry Pratchett, you are in for a treat!

Jane Hirschfield is great. I bet you'd like Mary Oliver too if you have never read her and Jane Kenyon, particularly her collection called Otherwise.

Daphne said...

wow, I totally fell behind on the comments on this one!

Rachel: I'm hoping I enjoy this one right off the bat. It *looks* like fun...

Bee: Oh, I would love to have a butler. And a maid, and a chef. And a masseuse. Then I think I would be much less stressed.

Theresa: thanks! I'm glad I made a good first choice...

Susan: you are right, Jane is good for times like this as well. I've started Te of Piglet.. I like it so far. Am currently a wee bit puzzled by one part, but I'm sure it will be clearer as I read on...

Ana: ooh, thank you!

Kate: Good, sounds like I'm in good company, then!

Stef: I can't wait to start Jeeves. I wanted to read Tao of Pooh first, but the library had Te of Piglet, so that's how it goes this time. Will request the Pooh one! I can't wait to start Pratchett too! And yes, I love Mary Oliver. Thanks for the Kenyon rec... I now have a giant list of books on request from the library.... :)

Nishant said...

it sounds like you have a great boss. Have a great weekend!
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