• Current Reads

      Life after Life Jill McCorkle
      This Is Your Captain Speaking Jon Methven
      The Starboard Sea Amber Dermont
      Snark David Denby
      Bring Up the Bodies Hilary Mantel
  • Popular Tags

  • Recent Reflections

  • Categories

  • Moleskine’s All-Time Favorites

  • Echoes

    The HKIA brings Hong… on [788] Island and Peninsula 島與半…
    Adamos on The Master and Margarita:…
    sumithra MAE on D.H. Lawrence’s Why the…
    To Kill a Mockingbir… on [35] To Kill A Mockingbird…
    Deanna Friel on [841] The Price of Salt (Carol…
    Minnie on [367] The Rouge of the North 怨…
  • Reminiscences

  • Blog Stats

    • 1,083,145 hits
  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 1,710 other followers

Books on Books, Gearing for Read-A-Thon

Eva’s post reminds me of a book that has been sitting around for so long that I have yet got to it: Yellow-Lighted Bookshop by Lewis Buzbee. It’s a memoir, a book on the love for book and bookstores. I remembered buying a few copies of the hardbacks and gave them to friends as gifts when it was first released. It’s not a chunkster of a book–a little bit shy of 200 pages–but describes the thrill of his bookstore experience most bibliophiles would share. How he walks into a bookshop and feasts his eyes on the walls lined with stock, and gravitate to the tables and racks stacked with new and notable books. Woven into these personal essays is a tangential discourse on the history of bookmaking and book-selling, from the ancient Romans and Chinese to the modern era. I’m saving this one for the upcoming 24-hours read-a-thon.

Along the same tangent with Buzbee is Time Was Soft There: A Paris Sojourn at Shakespeare & Co. by Jeremy Mercer. Mercer, a former Ottowa Citizen crime reporter, finds himself at Shakespeare one gloomy Parisian day in 1999, in his late 20s, with not much money and no plans for the future, trying to evade some angry newspaper sources back home. With little fanfare, he is taken into the store by its owner, George Whitman, a kindly yet scatterbrained man, and begins working as an eager unpaid employee, running errands, acting as a referee between the writers who hang out there and ringing up sales. I have seen this one a while ago but have forgotten about it, glad I’ve found it again at Books Inc., which features the book on the wall. Another choice selection for the read-a-thon.

During my a-bookstore-a-day visit (where I usually have to fight the temptation of buying a book everyday), a book cover caught my eye. The Master Bedroom by Tessa Hadley is about the predicament faced by Kate Flynn, a brainy and forbidding beauty with delicate bones, “Nefertiti eyes” and a mean tongue, who has quit her professor’s job in London and returned to her grand but crumbling childhood home in Wales to care for her 83-year-old, increasingly forgetful mother. The boy next door, son of a friend, begins to hang around the house–he has a crush on the 43-year-old professor. I decided to get the book at the revelation of Hadley’s observations of the ebb and flow of female desire and frustration, which are reminiscent of Virginia Woolf, but she taps sensual undercurrents where Woolf wouldn’t have dipped her toe. Has anyone heard of this book?

6 Responses

  1. Ok, I really want to read the Yellow-Lighted Bookshop. I read some of the passages Eva highlighted and I can’t believe I haven’t made it a point to get this book! I haven’t heard of the Master Bedroom but it sounds intriguing.

  2. Oooh, some of these are new to me. Yum!

  3. The last sounds like a chick lit, but interesting. I’ll definitely look for the first two–love bookstores and always want to hear stories about bookstores and the patrons. They look awesome! 🙂

  4. Yes, I’ve heard of _The Master Bedroom_ , there was a bit of buzz a few months ago when the paperback was released. I haven’t read it, nor is it in my TBR, so I can’t give you any insight into it.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog (the post about Oprah being Oprah at Stanford!). I can see I’ll spend the next few hours investigating your list of “Bookish Places”.

    Good luck with your Russian Reading Challenge – the only Nemirovsky I’ve read is Suite Francaise; well done.

  5. iliana:
    The book is simply irresistible. That’s why I think it’ll be perfect for the read-a-thon. I’ll inhale the whole thing in no time! 🙂

    Think you’ll like at least the first two! 🙂

  6. John:
    Well there you have it. Let me know what you think. 🙂

    I have enjoyed reading your blog. I’ll continue to read for the Russian challenge since it’s my favorite sub-genre. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: