I couldn’t help myself. I had to get the new George Saunders book. There’s no way I would let Lincoln in the Bardo slip past me. Simultaneously, it was important to note a recent collection of short stories by Clare Beams (We Show What We Have Learned and Other Stories) that Joyce Carol Oates really approved of. “Literary, historic and fantastic collide”? Yes. Or how about Haruki Murakami’s What I Talk About When I Talk About Running. A Murakami memoir? I’m there. The book arrived in the mail and I had forgotten that I had ordered it. This is Out-of-Season Adult Christmas.
I know that right now we are drenched in a downtime of book buying. As summer sales slowly advance toward us and the holiday purchases recede farther away, we will follow the patterns that publishers expect. But, this is also the season during which I need to catch up. As I purchase new books, there is this faint voice calling to me from the back of my mind: “You may never read these. You didn’t get to the last ones your ordered. You will never read these.”
. . . .
As I purchase new books, there is this faint voice calling to me from the back of my mind: “You may never read these. You didn’t get to the last ones your ordered. You will never read these.”
I’m worried that the voice is right. I don’t want to be what the Telegraph noted as someone who buys a book to show their personality rather than to actually read. That’s the worst. I don’t want to fulfill that Japanese word, Tsundoku— the act of purchasing books and then letting them collect without reading them. I REALLY don’t want to be the person who says, “I’m collecting books to read when I retire.”
Link to the rest at BookRiot and thanks to Dave for the tip.