Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Another big pile of books
Normally I take a selection of books away with me (whilst sticking to the sensible no more books than knickers rule) I never read all of them and often buy more - because I just can't help myself. This time I thought I'd take one long book. Just the one. Maybe two, I feel very off about only having a single book; deeply insecure (I don't have a problem, honestly I don't, do I?) So just the one book to prove I can do it - the idea being that if I don't have the time to work my way through a pile of them I can at least make inroads into one wordy monster.
The top of the list is Trollope's 'Can You Forgive Her', it's bulk is currently standing between me and the rest of the Palliser series. I know when I start it I'll love it but dammit it's got enough pages to be 4 books. I've had the A.S Byatt sitting around for a couple of years and want to read it but something shorter has always intervened, the same is true of 'The Thorn Birds' - which might make better trashy holiday reading (it's the other really serious contender at the moment). 'Moby Dick' was a Christmas present, also a couple of years ago from an English teaching friend who recommends it highly, I want to read it I really do but I got a whole handful of Nicholas Blake's today from Vintage and will be able to read them in the same amount of time that 'Moby Dick' will demand. Tough choices.
I'm really looking forward to the Robert Macfarlane but it was booty from a Penguin jolly and doesn't come out for another month, read it now and I'll struggle to write about it with any justice (or accuracy) then. 'Island Going' is sort of earmarked for a holiday later in the year, it fits really well with the island and otter's theme I've been enjoying so much this spring, but at the back of my mind is the suspicion that if I don't read it soon I'll forget about it in favour of other exciting books. 'Helen' and 'Old Mortality' are yet more books I've had for a while and not quite found the time for, both look interesting but I fear they might not be long enough and I'll be left needing a second book.
I need to make up my mind by bedtime tonight so I can pack my choice* (it's also just struck me that the book I go with will determine the hand bag I carry - these are the things we worry about when life isn't a life and death struggle...). Which will be the perfect holiday companion?
*At this point I always expect somebody to yell e-reader at me but I love this ritual of choosing which books to take away and have done for as long as I can remember, quite apart from anything else it's a treat to spend time considering what's on the shelves, there are always books I'd forgotten I had to get enthusiastic about all over again.