Friday, October 12, 2012

Reading over the vail

via City Lights Booksellers

I love the phrase this vail of tribulation and tears, probably because I find myself in one of late -- for some obvious reasons and some not-so. Reading novels is how I get through, to tell you the truth, and right now I'm reading three. John Irving's In One Person is a bit slow, a story of a small town and the mostly eccentric characters that live there. I don't know whether it's because I downloaded it onto my Kindle (I find it difficult to read novels on a Kindle) or whether I'm bored by Irving's contrivances, but I don't know if I'm going to finish it. I'm speed-reading through Leah Hager Cohen's The Grief of Others, a beautifully written story of a family grappling with tragedy, and have just started Michael Chabon's newest, Telegraph Avenue. I've also got Near to the Wild Heart by Clarice Lispector, sitting on my bedside table, an intriguing story by an equally intriguing writer that I read about somewhere -- where?

I've said a thousand times that reading might just be the only constant in my life.

Reader, how are you navigating the vail?


  1. Reading is a reliable way to navigate the vail, no doubt -- though walking and photography help me a lot too.

    I find that it takes me longer to read a book nowadays than it used to. There are just so many other things, publications, online articles, blogs etc. competing for my attention. I've been reading the same Junot Diaz novel for about three weeks now, I think!

  2. One moment at a time, one foot in front of the other, head down.

  3. Actually.... I used to read constantly & compulsively. Part of why I don't read (as much) now, other than the kids/job/commute/dogs, is that I am so much less patient with the stories. *Really? This is your crisis? Ha!* It used to be an escape & now I find a lot of it inane & pointless. Maybe I just hit a string of really bad books? Almost all of my reading now is on the blogs - real people navigating real life, occasionally with dignity & humor. As a bonus, also, the story doesn't end.

  4. i can only manage to read about five pages at night in bed before i go to sleep. takes me about four months to get through one book. must carve out some time during the day. i envy those who devour books. xo

  5. Reading, always. Of course. After I finished Telegraph Avenue I had such a strong desire to go back and begin it again, feeling that finally I had begun to understand it all.
    Maybe I will.

  6. Oh, good, I'm not the only one struggling with John Irving's latest! I just finished "The Light Between Oceans" - loved it - and "The Orchardist" which I never would have read if I hadn't downloaded it digitally because a novel that is 700 pages would have felt too enormous. Thank God for reading and friends who read!

  7. "Bored by Irving's contrivances" pretty much sums up the difficulty I'm having with A Widow For One Year.

    In lieu of reading, this stitch-work I'm doing keeps me up way past my bedtime and is a balm, in an odd and unexpected way.

    And I love what krir said: "Really? This is your crisis?

  8. DFW's Infinite Jest the new Forklift Ohio Heinlein's Friday, Diane Arbus: A Chronology, and King Dork. Devouring each and every one without ceasing as it has ever been in Rebeccaland.

  9. I had to give up on Telegraph Avenue after 30 or so pages. I don't care for snazzy, clever writing, though if Ms. Moon likes it, there must be something good. I'm reading "Where'd You Go, Bernadette?" by Maria Semple. Haven't enjoyed a book this much in a long time. It's hilarious to boot.



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