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Member: beelzebubba

CollectionsYour library (519), kindle (54), on deck (2), Wishlist (136), Currently reading (4), Read but unowned (55), Favorites (28), To read (171), All collections (769)

Reviews21 reviews

Tagsfiction (182), history (54), one and done (50), evolution (34), sailing (28), core (26), roman (26), computers (25), woodworking (25), essays (23) — see all tags

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About meI work in a library. For me, that's akin to being an alcoholic, and working in a liquor store.

I believe the WHITE CHOCOLATE MACADAMIA NUT COOKIE to be the crowning achievement of western civilization, and dare anyone to prove otherwise.

I've managed to make it to ripe middle age without ever having accomplished a single thing of import. No mean feat, I can assure you.

Currently, I have two priorities in my life:
Priority No. 1: making my daughter laugh until she pees herself
Priority No. 2: making sure I get enough fiber

About my libraryThere is a wide variety of subjects that interest me: ancient rome, boatbuilding, cryptography, languages, evolution, etc... My wife refers to me as a butterfly. No, not for my beautiful, graceful wings; but for my inability to maintain my interest in any one subject for a substantial length of time. I'm constantly fluttering around from one subject to the next, sampling the nectar from each. But is that so bad?

The only problem I would admit to having is acquiring books faster than I can read them; which has resulted in about half of the books in my library having yet to be read. And then I'm always checking books out from the library, and reading them, which exacerbates the problem. If I could only stop acquiring more books, until I've had a chance to read some of what I already have!

GroupsInfinite Jesters, The Clocks Have All Stopped, The Group Formerly Known as Trannys for Jaysus!, Tropic of Ideas

Favorite authorsSaul Bellow, Jorge Luis Borges, Albert Camus, Fyodor Dostoevsky, T. S. Eliot, William Faulkner, William Gaddis, William H. Gass, Hermann Hesse, James Joyce, Thomas Mann, Friedrich Nietzsche, Ezra Pound, Thomas Pynchon, Philip Roth, Jean-Paul Sartre, David Sedaris, Seneca, William Shakespeare, John Steinbeck, Neal Stephenson, Mark Twain, David Foster Wallace, Peter Weissman (Shared favorites)

Favorite publishersNYRB Classics


Real nameBeel Z. Bubba

LocationAustin, TX

Account typepublic, lifetime

URLs (profile) (library)

Member sinceAug 9, 2008

Currently readingFranz Kafka The Complete Stories by Franz Kafka
The Book of Disquiet (Penguin Classics) by Fernando Pessoa
Dostoevsky: A Writer in His Time by Joseph Frank
Mardi: and a voyage thither by Herman Melville, Professor

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Maybe he did age 20 years during those four or five years when he denied himself nothing. He was an old man at 27. He sounded like it, and looked it. Either the documentary in the link or perhaps a revised version of it played locally at one of the indie theaters in Hollywood last weekend. It was advertised as "The Making of L.A. Woman" but most of the clips had it as "The Story…" so I don't know if they're the same or not. I heard some of that last Zeppelin concert from '07, the one-off they did for Ahmet Ertegun (sp?) in London. Sounded as good & nasty as they ever did. I'd like to see the movie/documentary of that.
Mister Mojo Risin': The Story of L.A. Woman, have you seen this? It's a pretty cool documentary.
The same Charles Olson. I drive by his grave several times a week in the Summer - it is in an old cemetary at the off-ramp from from a highway to a little beach house we stay at. Call Me Ishmael is a short little book, but packs a wallop.
By the way, one of the interesting things about Melville biographies is that he's someone no one thought about writing a biography about until well after he and most of his friends were dead. So there's a big puzzle to putting his life together from fragments. When really great authors tackle the problem, they sort of celebrate the lack of biographical information and pull as much from his books as from his letters or notes and do something creative and focused more on the ideas than the bits of fact.
For a true biography, I would probably say that Weaver's [Herman Melville: Mariner and Mystic] remains my favorite, even as it approaches its centennial and even though Weaver grossly under-esteems the non-Moby Dick part of Melville's work. It was the book that is most often seen as driving the Melville Revival. These days, Herschel Parker's various writings on Melville seem to take up the most air in the room, but I think the more interesting debate about Parker is whether he is best described as a sub-sub-librarian or a poor consumptive usher.

For broader critical works with a bit of biography in them, I really like Bruce Franklin's [Wake of the Gods: Melville's Mythology], and it is a very fun read with a lot of life in it, and Charles Olson's totally unique [Call Me Ishmael] breaks every mold of literary criticism and biography and reads more like a poetic homage. I haven't read Elizabeth Hardwick's biography, which came out about 10 years ago and has some good reviews, and if you're looking for something more contemporary that would probably be the best try. If you try a Herschel Parker, his best stuff is probably in the biographical notes for the Northwestern series of every word Melville ever wrote (avoid the editorial notes, where he can spends two pages on whether a comma should be a period), and the correspondence volume is the volume where the notes probably put together the whole breadth of his life (with lots of years of total silence).

Other good stuff with a bit of biography and a bit of lit crit would include Robert Penn Warren's essay on him (which helped rescue Clarel from oblivion - he declared it to be proto-Wasteland), D.H. Lawrence's from the late 20s, Ivor Winter's diatribes in [Maule's Curse: Seven Studies in American Obscurantism], and Elizabeth Foster's introduction to [Confidence Man], which helped rescue C. M. from obscurity.
Melville?! I wasn't aware that Melville was an option! He wasn't listed! How did you decide on him? I've searched your library and unless I'm overlooking something and not seeing those tomes staring me right smack dab back in the face, I don't see you being the owner of even one book by Herman. What was his first one, Typee or Omoo? I have an extra copy of the former as well as extras of The Confidence Man, Redburn & Pierre. If you need them or want them they're yours. And don't forget either about Paul Metcalf, Herman's great-great-grandson. He could probably use some readers too.

How did we end up in the NY area? Short version: My husband got a job offer and the company was willing to pay for our move. We had lived 11 years in L.A. and had loved it, but were ready for a change. We when first came to this part of the country we lived a couple of years in Brooklyn before crossing the George Washington Bridge for NJ suburbia. Let me know if you ever come this way.
Just saw your post about Ithaca and Binghamton over at Peter's (where I was going to leave a note, I promise I'm not stalking!) That area is lovely. My daughter and I visited Ithaca this past summer (she was taking a look at schools). Ithaca is small and seems to have a bit of that old hippie vibe. Nice place. Friendly people. Bet the winters are rough, though.
We do get recognizable seasons here, which I like. On Thanksgiving and Christmas, for instance, the season and the holidays mesh. Columbus Day weekend is actually the big autumn holiday.

The picture was taken by my daughter on the ferry from somewhere--I don't recall where--to Seattle. Yes, during our vacation.

The book is close. Meanwhile, I think I've lined up a publisher, but have to wait and see if I can interest an actual publishing house with salesmen and book space in stores. I have an infinitesmal lead on that. Close as the writing is to being finished, I keep finding little things that need a bit more, or less, but the end is in sight. Maybe I'll finish it by my birthday, in late November.

I tasted Lethem through a book of his essays, which I disliked so fiercely that I've stayed away from him since. Maybe I'll try one of his novels someday, when the animus wears off.
Took a leaf-peeper trip with the missus through Central N.Y. over the weekend, stopped in at Ithaca then continued north, fifty miles or so, to Syracuse. Lot of different age groups in Ithaca, I noticed; young couples with little kids, teenagers, lots of college age people, of course, and a good sampling of older graybeards like myself. I liked that about it. Hit a big book sale in a building put aside just for that--it's a yearly thing--very well-organized and highly discounted. Also got a kick out of all the Greek and Roman names in that part of the state. Just north of Ithaca: the towns of Vergil and Homer, and then of course there's Utica, Rome, Syracuse, etc. But we didn't come across Ovid.
Did you skip chapter 5 like slick warned you too in that Roubaud? I decided not to finish it; you guys are more dedicated to the difficult than me!
Jo is a much bigger fan of hers than I've ever been. Which is not to say I don't think what I've read of hers isn't exceptional, it's just so damn dark, that I've limited my intake to her short stories, and recently, as you know, her memoir. She goes to the same desperate places in her fiction that Vollmann does in his, without the page long sentences. "A Real Doll" is like the gateway drug for A.M. Homes. If you like it and find you want more, you may be irreparably hooked and there'll be no hope for you ....
Really?! She have a new book out? News to me if she does. You should get her to autograph something, and then offer to sell it to Jo. Have you ever read "A Real Doll"?
Thanks Bubba! Gettin' it ready for when I start posting the 1932 journal entries. Hope you're feeling much better.
From Bozeman, Montana:

Ithaca is better than Binghamton, I think, and with a higher (good) funk factor. They have their own money, you know, plus bookstores, restaurants, surrounding landscape. It does get cold in the winter, however, and it's a long winter, like mine. Taxes don't bother me, so I can't answer that on a concerned level.

Thanks, Bubba. Can't wait to skedaddle.
thanks beelz. all good here but no power. hope r feeling bettermurr
oh good. I'm positive it's my vibes and not the beer. The right brand of beer could make all the difference in the world too. What brand we talkin'?
Hang in there, Bubba. Sending you painkilling good vibes from out west.
Yeah, Kidd--surprise to me too--with his former Nets coach (Lawrence Frank) now his assistant. And how 'bout that trade? You might say this team, the way it's been assembled, makes it the anti-Spurs. It'll either be a championship season next year or disappointment.

It even sort of looks like you. :)
Those were awesome Bubba!!! You should post some in the Tropics. Seriously. ChocolateMuse would be offended by your Satan sonnets though. :) I thought they were great.
Hey, beezle. I'm not on vacation, just laying low; maybe permanently. The group doesn't suit me at the moment.

Yes, Peter Luger's is a famous place--for steak eaters, if you're into that, which I'm not. A classy old joint not far from the Williamsburgh Bridge, in Brooklyn, which I used to drive past while ferrying my daughter to day care through the then horrendous neighborhoods of North Brooklyn, which are now where just about all the twenty-year-olds in the world want to live.
And yeah, 5 stars for Didion sounds about right ;-)
No, I've never seen that. I read that essay of Wallace's on usage long time ago, but don't remember a thing about it. I'll pull it out this weekend and then read that link. Thanks for that!
Thanks man. I appreciate it.
"Between faith and ashes"... inspiring. I want to work on fleshing something out with that.
(Sorry, I was eavsdropping...)

I wonder how Midde C is. Is it even possible it could be as good as The Tunnel?
I really can't say enough about the job Sonia Navarro did in her memoir about me, and my arduous journey from my homeland. I hope you like the story. It's one I know I'll never forget.
Oh lucky you you bubbamucker!
Can't say I have, though looking him up, I see I should. You've got two of his, I see. What's he like? Into my book hunting notebook his name goes. I really dug Origin of the Brunists too. You've got to read his baseball novel soon.
Hey Bubba, I did get the books. Moravagine is moreawhackedout in really nice ways than I was expecting.
Sweet. I'll try to add some more selections to the trade collection this weekend for your perusal.
How's the Rilke? Can you rank so soon after finishing The Road where it ranks among the other Cormac's you've read?
As much as I've wanted that 7 volume Vollmann set, I doubt I could've justified pulling the trigger on $400 too. But still, to be so close to it, that had to have been maddening. What a steal it would have been to buy it new at its original list price that was in the $150 range if I recall.
You're right on about how up and down that bio was. There's much in it I'd prefer not to know, but I'm glad I read it and now know it. Very emotional reading experience.
Merry Christmas Bub!!! I hope you and your family have a great one.
That is cooler than Christmas! Did you win yourself a nice pot of dough? Who'd you have on your team that won it for you?
You're welcome. Glad you liked it Bub.
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Not too good for me either. I'm sure my cholesterol numbers are through the roof now.
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Zombie Claus. That really bites about Santa.
I've seen this guy getting mentioned in the same breath as Cormac. Do you know of him? Yet another writer I may need to hunt for.
Now that is surprising to me, Bubba, your not getting into Steps, grotesque and gruesome as it is. Can you pinpoint what the difference was in it v., say, what early Cormac brings to the table? You might like The Painted Bird, a bit more conventional of a novel, but equally as dark. But now that I think about it, Steps wouldn't sit well me today either so close to Friday's nightmare in Connecticut.

Never finished Sound & Fury myself. Faulkner is still a frontier in my reading life for the most part, besides his short stories. Hey Southern Comfort seemed to work well for him when he was writing, so why wouldn't it help his readers? Noticed you gave four stars to Town Smokes. You, Jo, & slick are all on the same page w/Pinckney. So I'm hoping to grab that tomorrow at The Bookman. Another day off for me in December; I'm so bummed.

I think Ben Marcus must be a self-styled mystic of some sort, to have written what he wrote in Wire & String. I know I've mentioned it elsewhere, but check out Rimbaud's Illuminations sometime if you can. Very similar style of paranormal prose poetry going on there.

Was able to grab some Arthur Machen this weekend. Ever read him? I read one of his long pieces in an anthology a while back but forget which one. Looking forward to it.
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Yes. I am concerned.
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My daughter's rendition of me. Would you be concerned if I told you it was very realistic?
Darn coyotes out there howlin' in the country, eh? Why not just throw back a few and get out there howling with them?

So how is Omensetters? What's his style like in it compared to The Tunnel.

Nah, I've already passed on the new essay collection. Most of the pieces I've already read. In fact, many of them are already available, in some form or another, online, like the piece he wrote on Markson's Wittgensteins Mistress. One by him I will be buying when it's rereleased next year will be Signifying Rappers, not that I'm all that interested in the content, but so curious to see what he had to say. Along with it and Up! Simba, I've never even read an excerpt from it.
A master's thesis on Under the Volcano, not by Markson. Some good stuff there. Hope you're good. Any luck completing that doll house over Thanksgiving?
I've started Smuggler's Bible twice, and didn't finish it either time. No fault of McElroys. The concentration required was a bit more than my easily distracted mind at the time could bear. I'll get to it again and finish it. As fast as you read, I bet you could knock it off in less than a month. Or why not knock off Women and Men by New Years? C'mon, Man. Show us what you got!
I don't think anyone writes more elegantly or with such style alive today than Gass. I've never read Omensetter's. Need to. Not only does Gass have a new one coming out in April, but McElroy's long-awaited Cannonball I saw recently is due to hit the streets in June.
On Pale Fire:
Glad to know you're enjoying the Brain Pain group.

Here's a link to the Faust text we're going to read in January:

I haven't found a version of this can can be downloaded, so I copied and pasted the four sections into a Word doc. Came out to about 40+ pages.


Oui, c'est moi.

I probably shouldn't have replied to Bob like that, but someone who essentially says, "I will reluctantly consider lowering myself and join in your foolish reading pursuits, but only if you follow these patently obvious rules of English grammar.", how can I let an opportunity like that slip by?!

BTW, what is your GR name?

See you over with the IJ'sters!

I have a recommendation for you: Town Smokes by Pinckney Benedict. It is a collection of short stories that was published when he was just 23. I think it is better than The Devil All the Time, and I really liked that novel. I don't know if you have read Breece D'J Pancake, but he is similar to him. I really think you would like it.

There is not much about it here on LT so I have linked to Amazon for you:
I've seen that DFW interview book around. That story you relate about the shrimp was taken, I think, from the David Lipsky IJ Book Tour long interview he did with him. Are you seriously contemplating another dense tome after Volcano?! You go, Bubba! What an awesome symbolic read that is. But not quite so frustrating as Ulysses It's like he turned alcohol into alchemy, something like that. I'm reading a Pollock-type novel of bleak grimness at the moment, that I'd recommend as a shorter read in the interim between tomes, So Far Gone by Paul Cody. I was up way too late with last night with it. Glad to hear you got some relief at work, and can now hopefully get more reading in. I'll be sticking with slimmer stuff myself.
Hey, Bubba,

Are you still reading the D.T. Max bio? And what about the Volcano? Update me on that please. Am jonesing for your takes on both of them. I'll head over to IJesters this weekend and start a thread, see if we can drum up some more readers come 1/1/13.
Hey Bubba. Just checking in with you. Haven't heard from you in a while. Austin sucked. I didn't even get to see the real Austin; just the outskirts where my hotel was and where the clients' offices were. Had some really good fried oysters though. That was the highlight. And if fried oysters are the highlight of your trip, ya know it wasn't that great of a trip. I do hope to go back again soon and schedule it closer to a weekend so I can stay over.

I hope you're doing well. Take care.
That is always a good one to enjoy. Hey maybe we could form our own Fantasy Eschaton League, the FEL?

Just watch, some dumb owner will reward Hamilton's paltry effort with a big fat multiyear deal, and end up stuck like that Evil Empire you mention is stuck with ARod. The Angels would be fools to sign him long term. Don't do it, Arte Moreno!

When you've finished the Volcano I recommend checking out David Markson's book length study of it, forget the exact title, Understanding Malcolm Lowry's Volcano ... something to that effect.
Poor Quixada, not being able to meet The One, The Only, The GREAT BUBBA!! A damn shame.

Had to drop by and share my recent find of a first printing of The Tunnel for $3.00 at a thrift shop. Probably not as rare as I'd wish it were, but still, an upgrade I could not pass up. It was a very very good day at the thrift shop in fact.

p.s. I'm so so sorry re. the Texas Rangers. What the hell happened to Josh Hamilton? He was unstoppable in May & June!
Crap!!! I arrive in Austin Tuesday morning (10/16), meeting with clients all day, then taking a client out to dinner that night, then fly out at 6 am Wednesday morning. So it looks like I won't have time to visit any bookstores but more disappointingly I won't get to meet with the Great Bubba! My boss is coming with me and he dictated the schedule. Maybe next time I can come alone and schedule it more near a weekend so I can stay on extra days. I am disappointed. I was really looking forward to it. Now it is just pure business so I am dreading it.
Ditto re. work. I'm running on fumes.
Unsolicited recommendation: End Zone: West Texas Football meets nuclear warfare strategy theorized in college football terminology. Mildly philosophical, maximum reading pleasure.
Webster's 11th. The professional copyeditor's dictionary.
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That's purdy impressive! And you dropped that thing on your head?!
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Aw man!!! That looks like an amazing festival. Die Antwoord! Iggy & the Stooges! Alabama Shakes!
Hey Bubba,

I will be in Austin on 10/16. I won't be there very long. I might just be there overnight. I have two clients there, ACI (formerly Q2) and First Data (formerly FundsXpress). I will probably take one out to lunch and one out to dinner and be gone the next day. But just in case I do have more time, I wanted to give you a heads up. Also wanted to ask you if you had any used bookstores to recommend while I am there.
Good for WG! Didn't see that. May it bring him more readers. One of these days, I'll get the itch to return to.
Neither had I. And like the one review of it here in LT, I'd never considered that fresh immigrants to the U.S. went straight to battle. Just never conceived that possibility in my imagination. I don't think it's been written about very much. Couldn't pass on it when I saw it. The Pollock is soooooo good. Glad you recommended it. Funny I'd been considering my next Cormac, thinking I'd give No Country for Old Men a try, and one of the blurbs on the Pollock reads, "for fans of Cormac's No Country for Old Men ..."
Blurbed on the back jacket of Battleborn by Claire Vaye Watkins:

"As blistering-hot and wondrously expansive as the gritty, wide-open Nevada desert."
~ Donald Ray Pollock
I will look forward to your thoughts on Outer Dark. There's some passages I've wanted to quote but just haven't had the time. I thought it was one of his better endings. Rather snappy, ironic.

Everything's better about the job except the possible commute. I say possible because there's nine different locations. One is close, one is the same distance I'm used to now, while the other 7 locations I could end up at are 30 minutes to an hour farther out than the hour commute I have where I'm at now. Maybe I won't get it and then won't have to decide!
I'm thinking maybe that Outer Dark is a better read than Child of God. How 'bout you? Had the 2nd interview on Tuesday. I think I got the job. In the meantime, I'll need to decide if I really want it should they offer it. My commute could potentially double, which is the biggest hurdle to taking it.

Knockemstiff didn't quite measure up to Pollock's other one, eh?
Let me know what that Orange Eats Creeps is like. One reviewer said it's the love child of Kathy Acker & Burroughs. 'Nuff for me. You might enjoy Steps by Jerzy Kosinski, now that I think about it.
I dint know ya'll talk like that down thar. I needs to reconfigure my mental image of your voice now!
Sorry, I was eavesdropping on your conversation with Brent. I can suggest some dark novels for you that you may not have heard of. They aren't southern, and not all of them have serial killers, but they are definitely dark and disturbing.

Tomb for 500,000 Soldiers by Pierre Guyotat (very experimental but I loved it)
Sniper by Pavel Hak
White Skull by James Havoc
Fantazius Mallare by Ben Hecht
The End of Alice by A.M. Homes (very dark, especially for Homes)

Now that you done gone finished that Sanctuary, best git you back to Cormac, Bubba. Don't make me keep talkin' like this.
Thanks, beeze. In fact I did come out of it okay. I can walk on that leg again, without pain, but need to build up whatever muscle growth was lost when I couldn't. The incision in my back hurts; it's hard to get into a comfortable position or sleep well, but then, I decided to do without the prescribed painkiller.
I got The Religion a long time ago as a next to nothing remainder, and honestly forgot about it. Could be a good one, based on your friend and perusing the reviews.

Thanks for the kudos Man! Fuels me to keep at it. I've got a Swan Song one simmering. I doubt I'd tackle any others of RAWs, only because at this point I'd have to reread it, and I got my fill, I think, for now, of that kind of material, excluding Crowley.

Hey, Bubba, did you just read Child of God in a single day?
Well, besides 'ol Cormac, can't think of too many other disturbing hillbilly serial killer type books, though I've been racking my brain. Have you read JoDavid's review of Samuel Delany's Hogg? I don't think I could read that book. I've always enjoyed Denis Johnson's darker stuff like Angels and Jesus' Son, but I'm not sure it's really in the same mold as what you're seeking. I'll keep thinking, though. There's a dormant "Disturbing Books" group here in LT, that I used to hang out in, that might have some recommendations for you.
Fabulous interview. The interviewer is an excellent writer too. Very snappy wit.

And Donald Ray Pollock! He was 45 when he thought he'd try his hand at writing and 53 when Knockemstiff was published. They mentioned Jesus' Son but I kept thinking this guys subject matter is vintage Cormac, Child of God or Outer Dark. Except Pollock may be even darker, and he considers himself just a regular normal guy. Yeah, what-ever. I think I'm all for this newfangled hillbilly noir. Whoo-wee, good Lawd! Thank ye for the linky, Bubba!
Your boss was so disturbed he couldn't finish it, and yet you can't put it down! Onto my wish list it will soon go. I really dig the disturbing, don't you?
Fun times, new books, new spines on your overcrowded shelves!

Crowley does go into great depth w/the mountaineering, not that I'm there yet, but a large chunk is dedicated to that. I'm not sure about the chess, not there yet either. He's far more lucid and saner sounding than I expected. I don't know why I'd imagined him as a crackpot (maybe those scary pics of him?) but he wasn't at all. Funny and acerbic and surgically sharp in his skewering of religious miscreants and their deluded ideologies. It's a better than expected read for sure. Very relatable character, surprisingly. I'll probably want to explore more of his stuff at some point.
Oh hallelujah, glory be to fate (even if late), your Dalkey order arrived!
Well that really sucks. Sorry to hear that. Hope it exits fast, the little bastard.

Not acquire anymore books because you have enough to read already for a good long while? Huh? Frankly, I don't understand nor can I relate to that kind of attitude because I don't believe in biblioabstinence.
Hey, Bubba, thanks for checking in. Look for me a few days or a week. I'll be great to "see" you guys!
Like father like daughter, very cool indeed.

Noticed your four stars for Grendel. You're probably aware of the ongoing debate Gardner had with Gass, but if not, here's a cool summary of it:
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Check out Bubba & his kid!

Thanks for your very kind comments! - as it happens I've been doing a lot more film reviewing recently so I haven't had so much time to review books - but i do have a couple in the wings at the moment!

Also noted that i have forgotten to post a couple of reviews (I generally post on Amazon first, or for films)

All the best
The beach ... and books! You're in Paradise. Hope you've had / keep having, a great time!
Nice recent grabs! I've never even heard of The Frog, and I thought I had Hawkes covered. Who are the commentators in that White Noise edition?
Ahhhh, Randy Rhoads. Just imagine what he'd of done if only ... Btw, Rudy Sarzo wrote a terrific autobio of his Blizzard of Oz years w/the band. In the preface, he writes about Rhoads waking him up one day in 1982, to see if he wanted to go for a ride with him on an airplane ... Sarzo obviously said no, and got a few more minutes of sleep ... until the explosion. It's a sobering opening to an otherwise fun fun read.

I had to throw down $30 for that Crowley. The asking price was $45. Just felt like splurging for a change. Certainly not a "thrifty find"!
Loving it! It is one of my favorite books ever! I am a little more than half-way. To tell where I am, without spoiling anything, Ebenezer is getting over having intervened in a colonial trial concerning an indenture and promise of land. I just read the story of Charlie Mattasin as told by the former travelling whore of Dorset.
Glad you liked the Marcus piece. I thought he nailed it. Yeah I think it's safe to say Franz won't be blurbing Ben anytime soon. The new one sounds intriguing (Jim Elkins wrote a perceptive review on it here in LT), but I'll probably wait and see if I can snatch it secondhand eventually.

Literary Entrails: Cynthia Ozick's response to both Ben & Franz, if you happen to be a subscriber to Harper's. If not, you do work at a library and I'll bet you could track it down for free!

Do keep me posted on your Flann progress. Never read it.
Easter was the usual fun stuff w/the kids and then getting hooked on that last hour of the Masters. What a finish. Hope your daughter is doing much better. Very nice Frolic grab, which reminds me I should probably input another book or two in the legacy library soon. I'll get back in the swing here eventually.
Congrats on winning the Masters, Bubba!
May IJ keep blowing you away forever! Cool to hear we're not the only family that hits the bookstore(s) after dinner out.
I'll say you got back cataloging Gaddis! Good work. And way to spread the anti-Burgess/Arc d'X gospel. I don't want to make the claim that Burgess ruined Erickson's career, as some have suggested, (because he's continued writing wonderful novels ever since) but that BSB (Bitter Sour Brit) with his legendary reputation and mighty influence as a critic certainly helped squash substantially any aspirations Erickson might have had at the time in becoming more than just the beloved cult writer with a rabidly loyal fan base he already had. It's sickening to me that Barnes and Noble isn't even stocking his latest book. At least not locally. Never mind he's a local writer here in the L.A. environs!! A writer of such originality and preternatural vision like him shouldn't need a day job as a professor, unless he really wants it. End of rant.
Hey Michael, got it! Thanks! What a strange review. And I would argue that it's Erickson's lack of irony (at least in the one book I've read) that separates him from the pack.

Thanks, again.

and it's funny how a negative review can do that, make you wanna read it. I liked Burgess' not so subtle mockery of Pynchon's laud, and yet bemoaning the lack of respect given James Michener by them young whippersnappers. Huh? I think he was just having a bad day that day, and took it out on Steve Erickson's book.
Thanks! Can't wait ...
Another nice grab for Bubba! Reward no doubt for the dollhouse. Arc is one I've not yet read. Got a couple of his to read before I get to that one, but it won't be too long. I'm still hunting for the complete Burgess hatchet job on it. Pynchon blurbed it very positively, as did some other luminaries. Curious to see the complete contrast in opinions.
And McElroy!!! Glory hallelujah!!!!!
O praise the Black Clock for your Arc d'X acquisition! May you be converted soon!
Nice haul.
So what trumped Erickson? How dare you!

Don't even worry about the cataloging. I've slacked off considerably since the start. Kind of don't want the process to end.
The L.A. Times had a review of Adam Levin's new story collection, Hot Pink today. The lead story is titled, "Frankenwittgenstein"! Just thought you should know.
You hold that beer for me, Bubba! I just might take you up on that someday.
That just had to be so cool to be there at the Harry Ransom Center. I'd love to embark upon a road trip to visit that place. You know I've read somewhere that they're acquiring the papers of writers who are still alive, such as Denis Johnson. A new trend in acquisition, I guess, to get first dibs on the writers they most esteem before somebody else does.
oh yes, of course. Everyone drinks it here. It's too much of an acquired taste for my taste, though. It's like a strong version of sake, or a fishier version of Swiss obstler schnapps. very strong. Danger, warning.
Great day, though not as great as yours sounds like. That settles it. We're moving to Texas so I can attend the symposium.
Lucky you! Dying to know how your quest turns out.
Hey, great work on putting together the Gaddis Library! Following your and Brent's efforts avidly here.
I'd say it's totally up yer alley. You know, I think even the Dalkey Archive let Women and Men go out of print. I they're presently publishing his latest book, some short stories, but I don't think they've reprinted their first run of the megatome. The only place in all the years I've hunted that ever had McElroy on the shelf, was the late great Acres of Books, where I got two of his. Yeah, I think everything of his, except his latest, is out of print. His second novel was never released in paperback, and goes, last time I checked, upwards of $90 online.
Whoa! I'm following that Irishman myself now. Thanks for the tip. Very ambitious & astute reader there. I'll have to catch up and see what else he's covered besides Proust.

I saw your blog note: okay, I won't stop!

Somehow I reencountered this Lost Postmodernist article yesterday, and I could really kick myself for it, because it inspired me to pull the book featured in the article off the shelf last night and I began re-reading it and was immediately re-enrapted (is that a word?). But there's no way I can commit to that behemoth again right now, right? It was just a one night fling with a comfort tome in a moment of weakness, right? Because I'm already committed to Steve Erickson this year damn it!

Heh, heh
purrr away. I'm stil debating whether to get the whole 5 volume set. three of the 5 are for sale in my local bookstore here (unbelievable, no?).

I enjoyed P&V's translations of Gogol. they actually made him funny, which is the whole point of G. Hope you enjoy them too.
purr from Murr
The inaccuracies and just general carelessness of the William Gaddis Papers catalog are deplorable. I'd be embarrassed if that were my work on display. There's obviously either little double checking or editing going on there. It was probably just a dang chore, and not a passion, for the person who had to do it.

I've not checked out Worldcat. Just been googling to find whatever confirmation of facts I need. Is it more efficient you think, than google?

Your Literary Criticism addition to the collections was a great idea. I've gone through what I've input so far and added several to it myself.

Get better soon man!
For the love of Gaddis! Bubba been busy!
I love the Dalkey's too. However, there's a typo in Gass' intro on the first page! They mispelled "Recognitions"! I wish I didn't notice stuff like that.

My first impression of the JR cover was meh. But then when I noticed it was a copy out of Gaddis' own letters and then when I looked closely and really saw that U.S.A. flag drawing of his, with the accompanying commentary, then I though, uh, not so meh after all.

I've been reading the first one. Not sure if I'm going to truly commit to it, but man could he write. His erudite humor just floats off the page seemingly effortlessly paragraph after paragraph. It'll be hard to put down if I do put it down....
I didn't know of the connection either until I read it last year and started googling some stuff. Listen, if the Broom is a failure, then we're all just crushed ants and insignificant so-and-so "failures" ourselves. Consider how DFWs demise might have negatively affected his harsh perspective of his talents. Sure, the Broom's not canonical like IJ will be one day, but it was nothing for him to feel bad or embarrassed about either. Sam could probably pick apart more detailed and lucidly why he considered it the way he did, I don't know exactly except what I've inferred hearing several people say the same thing you are. Although ... memory's being scratched, there's an old Salon interview, now that I'm thinking about it, from '96, in which he touches on that subject. But again, he was promoting Infinite Jest at the time, and how could anything he'd ever done previously possibly measure up to what he accomplished in it? "Failure" by unfair comparison. So, I can see his point, but just because The Broom isn't as elaborate or its threads all as cohesively executed and tied together as its successor, in no way negates its literary value or makes it some supposed "failure." It's one of the funniest books I've ever read. It's funny like his essays are funny. I didn't follow all the Wittgenstein connections, since following Wittgenstein for me is rather mystifying, but I was cognizant they were there and curious enough to google sporadically. Truly phenomenal that a person who we found out after the fact had been so damn clinically depressed for two decades, could be so hilarious too. But then, seems I've heard, from a lot of older school comedians who were actually funny back in their day, that their comedy came out of their depression, that the two emotional extremes were somehow symbiotic, fueling and inspiring the other. I suspect there may have been a similar dynamic at work in the fiction of DFW.
I meant to include this the other day on your blog, DFW on Wittgenstein's Mistress:
and you can get more ring finger extension when you grimace.
Lovely poison is right! 45 hours of exquisite perdition. I thought you'd like that. I heard a few years ago he was at work on another novel that he'd been at work on for over a decade. Hope he finishes that one. He's gettin' rather long in the tooth.
For your Gass & Kohler edification:
Saw the five stars. Lemme know if and when a review is posted!
Really?! Well that aspect of The Recognitions went straight over my head the first time around. I failed to recognize it. I think I'll follow your lead and buy the Dalkey Archive editions once they come out and correct that oversight.
I read your review: talk about the air blustering out of your idol's balloon! Oh no. I sort of "get" what he's attempting to communicate, as you allude -- the pitfalls of affirmative action applied to the study of literature in academia -- but he sounds like he's such a bigoted punk about it, I can see why you dropped him.

Essays, eh? I'm totally completely biased (besides DFW) on Joan Didion. Perhaps you've already read her? The pieces she wrote in Slouching Toward Bethlehem & The White Album remain relevant and provocative today even if the current event subject matter she happened to be writing on at the time is long forgotten: obscure murder cases, the Doors, Joan Baez's neighbors trying to sue her over zoning violations, John Wayne, etc. Laser like dispassionate precision. Love her.

If you google her name and "Spur Posse" you might find the scathing piece she wrote on that infamous incident in Lakewood, CA, in the early '90s. I don't think it's collected yet in any of her books.
I take it you like Joseph Epstein? I cataloged Snobbery tonight and noticed while most people had, say, one (1) or two (2) books by said author, you, by Jove, had TEN (10!!!!).
Many thanks! It is a fun book; doesn't get enough credit for the fun element.
I always enjoy that day, and sometimes even more the day before, which is why I suspect that I might have been born then, or maybe very early on the morning of the 24th, the feel in the air quietening me, leaving me feeling innocent, young, like boy, sometimes even tongue-tied in a curiously pleasant way. It was in fact a bit too much that it fell on Thanksgiving this year, all the people, the need to talk, to relate, when in fact I would have been more content to be quiet and dwell within myself.

And how are you doing, bubba?
If anybody would know he had a contract with Satan, it would be you, Beelzebubba!
Meant to send this to you sooner. You asked how he looked. Here he is, Yngwie at the actual show I saw.
Patrick McManus? Egad BB! Now I can confess to reading anything!

Seriously, though, both my Dad and my husband have laughed out loud at ALL of his books. I've yet to succumb, though he must be amazingly funny.

By the way, I gather form your blog that you health is A-OK. So glad to know.

My best,

Finished writing this latest? Holy moley, no. I finished the 23rd chapter/story yesterday, and I suppose there are at least another ten chapters to go, maybe fifteen. I've been (sporadically) noting my progress and some impressions on this thread:

On the two published books: I know I learned some things, got better at this and that, between the first book and the second. Also, that the second book is preferable to many, being the story of life in one's twenties, rather than centered around drugs. But that first book: I lived with it on and off for almost thirty years. It's my firstborn, and I'm as proud and fond of it as a doting father would be of a son or daughter. Which that will probably always be true.
So far the testosterone seems to have made you quiet. Or maybe the therapy hasn't started yet and you are quietly imagining whether it might turn you into bubba or beezle. We'll see, I suppose; some of us, maybe, before you do.
Wow. Coffee and fat. Count me in!
how are you guys? I hope you are all safe.

All of my family is fine. Thanks. I'll keep sending good thoughts your way. Keep us updated.


I've just returned from Texas where I was visiting my folks. I'm hoping you are safe from all of the chaos that has broken throughout the state. Keepin' a good thought for you and yours.

Just awful, Bubba. I saw the reports on the news this morning.
Oy. I'm still working on it; I'd inadvertently hit publish post instead of save. Premature posting. The post is something along the likes of "The Best Metal Tunes You've Never Heard of (and Probably wish you'd still never heard)," something like that. A mix of some really cool stuff by "lesser" bands I once dug and yet who completely flew under the mainstream radar mostly --Krokus, Saxon, Vandenberg, U.F.O., TNT, Dirty Looks, etc.-- with some gimmicky novelty metal "classics" (i.e., "See You in Hell" by Grim Reaper) and some more off color, risque metal masterpieces. There's one I'm including from a band, Drown (ever heard of 'em?), whose lead singer I graduated high school with in '87.

I'd love to see your own list! Perhaps we could collaborate on a MASTER METAL LIST.

Did you hear that Jani Lane died? Aug. 11th. Heard about it on That Metal Show last night. Love that show. You ever catch it? It's on VH1. They started their latest season last weekend with a full hour devoted to Tony Iommi. Epic episode!
You're absolutely right about the Gaddisian being the proper "ian" or "esque" -- whatever you call those suffixes.

I don't recall at all how funny The Recognitions was the first time around. Much went over my head back then. But man, the snide humor and sarcasm all over the place, just so tasty to me reading appetite right now.
That is a funny inside-joke quip from Gaddis. I remember reading somewhere (could it have been the Gass intro?) that Gaddis truly thought he had own Invisible Man in hand, as in the Ellison debut, rather than The Invisible Book The Recognitions became to all but the most hard core cultists, and was severely disappointed when the material success didn't materialize. If anyone could've known what Herman Melville ever felt like, being a genius that the public and most of his peers didn't recognize, it's Gaddis. And skewered them all, the bozos, in JR, having had two decades to let his "vengeance" on Americana simmer.
It's funny you mention writing notes in the book, because it's curious to me seeing what struck me seven years ago from my notes, compared to what I'm underlining and noting now.
Hi. Sorry so long to respond. I've been taking a, shall we say, hiatus? The writing's going ok. I have project I'm working on now. How are you?
I remember the first 150-200 pages being quite memorable, and then things start getting more difficult to follow. I love how right off the bat, he's talking "masquerade," "mask," Catholicism....

Not as far as you ... yet ...
I read the funny -- and insightful -- intro by Gass late last night. I'm in.
My how you've changed!

I so wish I knew about this, A Reader's Guide to Gaddis' The Recognitions by Steven Moore, when I first read the book. I suspect you're already on top of it, but just in case not, it's an excellent resource from a critic who truly appreciates and gets the book like no one else I've ever encountered.
I consider you blessed, My Child. Go in peace and maintain your perseverance in the pursuit of Brother Gaddis. If you'll excuse me, this fun nun just showed up by my side, and I've now a holy ritual to perform ...
Are you reading The Recognitions, bubba?
"You got to, got to, got to ... " From a Wilson Pickett song, I believe.
In the book I'm working on now, my (second) wife got cancer just after my daughter was born, and then eight years later, after we moved to the country (from Brooklyn), she got it again, in the other breast. So I've witnessed and heard a lot of the advice, and charlatanism, around illness that can kill. It comes down to being at peace with yourself. But you seem to know that. Good for you.
I love hearing that! Bubba, you're my bubba, & I love you man!
Thanks Buba. I haven't read much manga, mostly because what's offered seems to be the rather childish stuff. To remedy this, I'll try to find your suggestion and read it!
There's a few of us that aren't that far into Porious. I'm barely past the first 100 pages. Someone else has just received their copy. Yet another person has said they're only at Chapter VI. So if you start, that's at least four of us, and Murr is keeping us company until those of us bringing up the rear have seen it through.

Porious is a bog, of sorts, but one I enjoy. I'm averaging no more than 10 pages a day, but enjoy every bit of it. I'm also re-reading The Mabinogion alongside.

On the subject of Jarmusch—I just watched Dead Man recently. My 3rd Jarmusch film. No one else could have made it. Odd and slow and at turns humorous as I've come to expect, but it was ultimately a darker, tragic film. I didn't come away loving it as I had the other two, but I find it's sticking with me.
My wife didn't care for Coffee & Cigarettes. I'll check out the Lurie—it looks fun.
well, it's ok but there are several things wrong with it. It focusses too much on Dostoevsky's religion, assuming for example that Dostoevsky had no struggles with it, and that's wrong. It also is heavily influenced by symbolist readings of Dostoevsky: Mochulsky is convinced that D's 5 great novels together make up the 5 acts of a spiritual tragedy, which is putting the cart before the horse, a bit.

It does however quote extensibly from D"s notebooks, which is very useful, and of course it's by a Russian, so it's sympatico.

avoid at all costs Henri Troyat's stupid book.

I would go for Professor Frank's new 1 volume redaction of his 5 volume bio. I have not read this yet, but by all accounts it will become the standard work for the next 100 years.

hope this helps!
How could I not follow the meandering drivel of someone who lists The Seventh Seal, The Seven Samurai, and Down By Law in their favorite films? Unthinkable. I must follow. I discovered Jarmusch because of Tom Waits, and have only seen DBL and Coffee And Cigarettes. I do have plans to remedy this, however. Kurosawa has been one of my favorites for as long as I've been watching good films. And what can one say about Bergman? Well, quite a bit actually, but...
Ooooh, I'll keep a lookout for that new Recognitions release. My Penguin's a bit battered; might need to update.
Nice Flann O'Brien pickup! Whoa, in fact, nice last six pickups, at least.
Thanks, bubba. I did enjoy that site. I'm getting to the point where I'm focusing pretty well.

I read EF's post below. I got two words for ya: Dunning-Kruger (they may not be spelled correctly).
You know what, bubba, if you just put up the "crappiest" excerpt you can think of, then you'll know it can't at least get any worse than that, right, and that alone might make you feel better about it! That's Twisted Psychology 101.

Seriously, w/out going too therapeutical-analytical on you buddy, from my own experience, assuming it can be at least somewhat transferable to yours, the low self-esteem devil can blind the afflicted individual to the true merit and value of their creative output. And if you're a perfectionist on top of it, oh God, then you're really screwed! I can identify with what you're describing, and certainly the similar means one uses to cope with it. It's hard to overcome.

This link probably won't help, but it might make you laugh. Have you seen this old blog post of mine:
Your "blue me away" brother, on my blog, caused me to emit an outburst laughter. So, thank you, I needed that!
You're very welcome, bubba. I glad you're getting something out of it. I've been putting it to use, but I haven't gotten a routine down yet. It's easier to be brave when you understand the enemy, no?
meant to add, if you're looking for more David Markson style experimentalism, check out Walter Abish's Alphabetical Africa sometime. It's sort of like Perec's A Void, only more structured and, I think, more difficult to have written, with its self-restrictiveness.
You're in for a treat with that Wind Up Bird Chronicle. Fabulous book. Only one of his I've read.

After hearing citygirl's praise of The War of Art, "brain-cleansing," she called it, I think, I'll be very curious to hear your thoughts. Being disciplined day-in, day-out, as a writer, is damn difficult with wife, kids, and a day job. I saw your blog post. Don't berate yourself too hard. You're in a good crowd of frustrated people. Lead us out, bubba; lead us to the end of a finished novel!
Will do Man. It's easily the best of his I've read so far. I think it surpasses Blood Meridian and The Road by far. Funniest book of his easily, and probably one of his most complicated leading characters too.

So you think you might've bit off too much trying to read The Tunnel & Porius simultaneously? Well, if so, maybe you should mix in Gertrude's The Making of Americans too, to mix in some light easy reading. ;-)

How you liking The Tunnel?
Nice blog btw
Thanks, bubba. I see that it's up. It does help, I think. Hopefully. I haven't sold a copy of that book on amazon since ... probably since you bought your copy.
it's my lunch.
Nice, uh, pic!

It's going sloooooooooowly. But going. Sketches mostly at this point. Beginning some seemingly benign (but reoccuring) memories to mine whatever lies beneath.

Breakthroughs are wonderful. Is this a (or not a) novel you've been toying with?

Markson is great. I haven't read that one. I've looked at it, held it, but didn't buy it like I should have. And you described it's layout to a tee. I've read Wittgenstein's Mistress (but don't ask me to explain it) and an excellent book of criticism he wrote on Under The Volcano.
Great. I'll mail it today.
Hey, apologies?? No need for that! I'm delighted that your review is on HR. I had my moment of glory :)

Congratulations, and don't call your review lame - it isn't, and fully deserves to be on HR. It was my pleasure to pimp it.
Number one review... again...
Danke sehr!
You're so welcome. It was the perfect statement. I wanted to tell it to people at the Little League game I went to tonight, but there was no one there who would have appreciated it. I got another little chuckle just thinking about it though.
Thanks. Ozick is fine, but I really hope you enjoy Schulz.
I love hearing that. Truly. Supposed coincidences. My life is guided by omens. I used to think it was something I picked up as a hippie during my drug years, but it's persisted well past that, and now I believe I have a medieval sensibility. I'd say it bodes well for you enjoying my book.
Libraries, bookstores: when you publish your own book, they don't let you into that club. You pay to have a company do that for you, and then you have to peddle yourself online. (A bit of irony there: a forebear of mine, one of the three so-called founders of Yiddish literature, took the pseudonym Mendele Mocher Sforim--Mendele the Bookseller.)

Which is why it was an amazement that an Italian publisher got in touch with me after somehow coming across my first book, offered me a contract for the translation, and is now selling Penso, dunque chi sono? in Italian bookstores as well as on the Internet. It's also why some salonistas now call me Piero.
Thanks man! And now I need to go find that Salon article. It wouldn't happen to have been the one in which DFW itemizes practically every influence of his and writer he admires? Prob'ly not because I don't recall Denis Johnson being mentioned in that one.
You going to take part in the upcoming reading, bubba? It should be fun, and nearly painless; which is to say, the price of admission is a book--which they say you can get by March 15th if you order today:

And here's where we'll be meeting:
Ok got it. No Epstein for me! thumbed
Did you read Homeric Moments ? Do you advice it ?
Ok got it. No Epstein for me! thumbed
and PSYCHED you should be. Sweet. Now just don't let Gass psych you out. Took me a couple tries to navigate that mighty monster.
yes, that one is ok, not the best, but not the worst.

Have you seen this?
What the heck am I talking about: Stanley Mitchell, not David Mitchell. Apologies for the confusion.
why thank you sir!
Check out those recent acquisitions of yours. Niiiiiiic. I've never read or seen a book by Isaac Babel, though I would snatch it up if I did. I'm excited to see The Recognitions and The Tunnel, especially, two very very difficult, demonic in their demands, books that can't help broaden the reader's mind and vision and vocabulary simultaneously. And Mulligan Stew! And Wittgenstein's Mistress! Holy Shiitake Mushroom, I'm getting so excited I better go find my wife now ....
good question. go for James Falen, if you want a poetic version, and David Mitchell if you want a more novelistic version. EO is a verse novel, so you kind of have to choose between them. my favourite is Falen's, which I think is sublime.

Avoid at all costs Douglas Hofstadter's.
Thanks Bubba, I'm happy I was able to convey my enthusiasm. If you can't make it by the bookstore, there's a wealth of info at Esselstyn's website The videos are fun because he has a droll sense of humor.

That's a great compliment bubba. That the excerpt stayed with you awhile. That's encouraging to hear. Now, if I could only stay with it for awhile, long enough to finish it, that would be sweet. It's been on the back burner for too long.

If you like Gaddis you're bound to love Under the Volcano. Ulyssux, I'm afraid, still does not do it for me. But I'm sure it's just me and not the book's fault.
Hey there Bubba. Happy to hear it. It's not the easiest thing to read, so if you do, don't rush it and hang in there. Feel free to consult me anytime you wish.
Just speakin' me the truth, bubba! You should go take a look right now at Hot Reviews ...
I recommend drinking it as fast as possible, then storage is not necessary. Yes, in the freezer is good.
You just made my day beelzebubba!
WRT the Salon welcome, you are quite welcome! It is a great site and I've fallen inot this unofficial welcomer role.

I lived out in the New London area for a couple years; beautiful part of the state, as are the adjacent parts of little Rhody.
You are quite welcome, beelzebubba! I'm very glad you've joined us.
why, thank you! your profile is vastly amusing and intriguing. Are you aware of le Salon? I believe you would fit right in.
all the best

Thanks you very much indeed! I'm glad you enjoyed them, I hope to have a whole bunch more over the coming year... fingers crossed ;-)
Thanks! It's crochet. I'm attempting to make about 100 of them to put together for an afghan.
Probably the easiest way to reach "Word Association"

is to go to the "Hogwarts express" page; as of

3:50 PM EDT, it was #8 on the menu of their threads.

The last post to it was (by me!) at 3:02 AM "Yesterday"

--EDT, I assume. Sounds right, as I probably posted

it at about 9:02 PM, Aug. 2. Hope it wasnʻt too

difficult to play on.

Hmmm - for Tom Holt, I'd start with The Portable Door, and if you like that, the sequels are In Your Dreams and Earth, Air, Fire and Custard (I think I've got those the right way round!). He's written tons, though, so they're not hard to get hold of - they're not as inventive or generally wonderful as the esteemed Mister Pratchett, but they are pretty good fun and rattle along nicely ... Hope this helps!
Watch out if you engage your cats in chess...for they are devious and masters of the hunt.

I have two indoor cats and a feral one who condescends to eat my kibble.

How old is the daughter you are trying to amuse to extremes?
Thanks - yours too!
Oh Yeah... (sorry bad pun considering my latest profile picture of Mr. Waters)

There were many recommendations that I added to my burgeoning TBR pile. Sometimes I spend more time reading books about books, and lurking on LT, than I spend reading anything else! If you have a similar category, I'll have to check it out.

I'm particularly fond of all those Basbanes books.
Nice library and one of the best LT tags I've ever seen!


Oh no! I just did a Google images search.
Thanks for the kind words. It's encouraging to see a library so similar. I can't say that I know many classicists with a strong interest in skepticism/science.
Where The Sidewalk Ends
by Shel Silverstein

There is a place where the sidewalk ends
and before the street begins,
and there the grass grows soft and white,
and there the sun burns crimson bright,
and there the moon-bird rests from his flight
to cool in the peppermint wind.

Let us leave this place where the smoke blows black
and the dark street winds and bends.
Past the pits where the asphalt flowers grow
we shall walk with a walk that is measured and slow
and watch where the chalk-white arrows go
to the place where the sidewalk ends.

Yes we'll walk with a walk that is measured and slow,
and we'll go where the chalk-white arrows go,
for the children, they mark, and the children, they know,
the place where the sidewalk ends.
Thank you for your kind words. How are things in Austin? Sometimes I dream of the old Half Price Books on Lavaca, gone these 20+ years...
I have a similar problem with my husband - can't sleep if there's a pinprick of light from my side of the bed though I'm supposed to sleep through tossing and turning, snoring and grunting that would do credit to a warthog. These are the things we should check out before we head up the aisle!
And what a lovely thing to say! Thank you so much. Feel free to browse around the library any time you want. It's really nice of you to say you enjoy the reviews and posts. I know I sometimes upset a few people too, but I can only say what I feel and hope for the best. It's really encouraging to know others find my somewhat rambling comments entertaining. I see you are a bit of a Neal Stephenson fan. I read his Quicksilver a while ago and absolutely loved it. Unfortunately, my eyesight could be better and I do quite a bit of reading in bed in a poor light and I just found the very tiny typeface in my edition too hard to take so I haven't been able to read any of his other books. Maybe one day I'll get them all in audio.
Thank you! I am glad to hear that you enjoy Gravity's Rainbow, it gives me hope that I too may someday finish reading it and enjoy doing so. I am ashamed to say that I haven't been technically reading it for a little while, it is just so easy to fall into reading more straightforward books. I left it slightly past the half-way point, but I intend to pick it up again soon. My favorite part so far was the short aside about melatonin producing cells, their pride in their neuronal heritage, and the terrible secret about their fate. That little section was inspired.
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