Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Old, new

I've had next to no time for reading. While I didn't manage to finish up my work to my satisfaction before the holiday, I did deliver it before people were at their desks this morning. And I am, however, well over halfway through the Globe and Mail's annual Christmas crossword puzzle (1193 clues).

I did manage to finish The West Pier, by Patrick Hamilton, while away, hiding in my mother's bathroom.

I have renewed enthusiasm for The Red and the Black. I'd've finished by now if it weren't for having to work, or that crossword puzzle lying around.

Received for Christmas:

Moral Disorder, by Margaret Atwood. You know, Atwood. This will be the mortar, or grout, between all the bricks I intend to read over the next few months. Or perhaps a spindly yet strong scaffolding. Or something.

Against the Day, by Thomas Pynchon, which scares me a little. I've never read Pynchon — is it OK to start here? It's this one that actually calls to me, having been released on my birthday, having an epigraph from Thelonius Monk, and featuring the Tunguska Event (which gets discussed in this household more often than in most, I'll bet).

Pyongyang: A Journey in North Korea, by Guy Delisle, which I've never heard of. A graphic novel. Which I'm starting to read right now. Hah! — he takes 1984 with him.


Suzanne said...

I just realized I did NOT get Moral Disorder for Christmas even though I asked for it. Hmmph. Looking forward to reading your reviews!

sevenpointman said...

Against the Day is terrific and exciting-finished it in three weeks.
If you are picking at it without feeling it will leave you cold.
I would warm up for this one by either putting everthing aside-or reading Pynchon's first novel V.
Good luck.

Darby M. Dixon III said...

You did inspire me sometime last year to pick up The Red and the Black when I saw it at the used book shop. But, uh, I don't think I'll be getting to it any time soon enough to contribute to the discussion...

callie said...

I am just preparing a short post on this very thing -- which Pynchon to tackle first? I've read V (very good recommendation to start there!) & I had a brief affair with Gravity's Rainbow as an undergrad but I don't remember a lick of it and certainly wasn't mentally prepared for it at the time. So, now that Against the Day is on its way to me in the mail...I wonder this: Gravity's Rainbow (properly) or Against the Day? I'm in a quandry.

It is good to know I'm not the only one in a quandry! And not the only one intimidated by the tome!

Bybee said...

Oh cool! A graphic novel about Pyongyang! Thanks for mentioning this in your blog!!!

danielle said...

I have always wondered about Pynchon. I know he has quite a following, but I'm not sure he is up my alley. I will wait to see what you think!