Nearly every surface of our small bungalow is covered in books -- mom's books, the boys would say -- but what's sitting on the table next to my bed is where the real reading lives. Right now, I'm plowing through The Patrick Melrose Novels by Edward St. Aubyn. There are four of them in the volume that I have and evidently the fifth, At Last, came out recently and is the best. These are British novels, and St. Aubyn is a masterful writer with an ascerbic wit -- the stories are dark and mannered and I can't put them down.
The other book that I'm flipping through with great joy is At Home on the Range, a cookbook presented by Elizabeth Gilbert of Eat, Pray, Love fame and written by her great-grandmother, Margaret Yardley Potter. This is a charming book of beautiful design by McSweeney's Books, and while I'm not a huge fan of Gilbert, I really enjoyed her foreword which precedes Potter's introduction:
Married to a man whom my father describes as "impossible," constantly in debt (sometimes slipping out of foreclosed homes just ahead of the sheriff's arrival), struggling with the alcoholism that would periodically land her in psychiatric clinics and grim hospital wards, my creative but unconstrained great-grandmother was not the first or the last woman in the history of female hardship to take refuge in food.
What are you reading?