52 books

though i’m no longer a public librarian (hence responsible for suggesting fiction), i’m still plugging away at a book a week. it’s on my mind because today i’m on schedule for the first time in a while, having finished le carrĂ©’s the constant gardener. and as i was updating my log, i realized i never recapped 2007/2008.

i finished 38 in 07/08, far short of my 52 book goal, probably due to a mix of job change and pregnancy. many of these were ultimately unremarkable (including, unfortunately, the new russo novel). but there were some standouts, looking back, and all fiction. denis johnson’s tree of smoke, cormac mccarthy’s the road, and don delillo’s falling man all standout as masterworks, well worth reading. i was pleasantly surprised by anne proulx’s the shipping news (heaven knows why, it was so highly credentialed). and i loved m. t. anderson’s young adult novel, The astonishing life of Octavian Nothing, which promises a sequel.

so there it is, the recap. i should probably mention richard arsenault’s freedom riders: 1961 and the struggle for racial justice, which was illuminating, but you’re probably tired of massive civil rights histories from me by now.

what are you reading now, by the way?


Wall of Firethis past week i picked up peter elkas’s 2007 release wall of fire, and i have to say i haven’t been as pleased with a straightforward singer-songwriter pop album in a long time. it’s just a good, easy, adult listen, a little jackson browne-ish. his contribs to local rabbits always stood out. an easy recommendation.

parallel play

the upcoming sloan album, parallel play, has possibly my favorite jay (ferguson, one of the four band members, all of whom contribute songs) track since pretty together, “witch’s wand.” you can stream the whole album from yep roc records’s site.

speaking of, if you’re family and you’re reading this, and you don’t want to knock yourself out thinking what i might like for my birthday, please consider my amazon wishlist. it’s all the cds i’d love to buy if i had the money. if it’s on there, i don’t have it. seriously, i’d be over the moon.

here’s your earth day link

easy ways to conserve energy and resources. surprise entry: go to a car wash (uses less water on average than washing your car in your driveway).

(bonus link! remember these atari 2600 titles? me neither.)

(extra bonus bonus link! a smattering of albums you can listen to in their entirety at last.fm:

Destroyer – City of Daughters / Streethawk
Portishead – Dummy / Portishead / Third
Son Lux – At War With Walls And Mazes
Grand Archives – The Grand Archives
Band of Horses – Everything All The Time / Cease To Begin
Michael Gallaugher – Enraptured / The Cross / Sing Your Praise
Iron and Wine – The Shepherd’s Dog

like i said, that’s just a smattering.)