My Summer of Irving?

John Irving,

has a new novel coming out,

on May 8Th!!!!

How cool is that?

a week before,

my birthday,

I know what I’m getting myself,

for my birthday:-)

John Irving

The ‘old’ man is looking good,

seems to be in fine form,

for someone who will soon,

be turning,

seventy!!!

Way to rock the shirt, he’s so butch:-)

His new novel,

In One Person,

is the story of a bisexual man,

Billy Abbott,

through the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s

and into the AIDS crisis of the 80’s.

Abbott is a writer,

in New England,

who wrestles.

Sounds familiar to Irving fans, that bugs some people, familiarity, I’m not one of those people.

Also present are,

quintessential,

Irvingesque elements,

Vienna,

sexual suspect-ness,

etc.

I don’t want to,

read too much about it,

spoil the punch,

it will be great,

coming right after,

my re-reading of,

Cider House Rules,

which I’m still,

working my way through.

Smells like,

a John Irving Summer,

complex,

woodsy,

with a touch of citrus,

and,

danger.

Hmm authors as cologne,

could be a fun game,

Hemingway?

Bay rum,

all the way:-)

Later girls,

BB

Latest reading impressions

It’s a nice morning,

well,

almost afternoon,

sunny.

I feel so much better,

I’ve even managed to get,

through a couple of books.

I read Conrad’s The Secret Agent,

a very political, radical, anarchist novel,

I liked it.

I read a mystery novel,

something I haven’t done,

in a while,

Barry Maitland,

The Marx Sisters,

the first in a series,

featuring Detectives Brock and Kolla,

intelligent and well plotted,

I intend to read more.

I also finished Lady Chatterley’s Lover,

beautiful book,

very sensuous,

an astute observation,

about class distinctions,

and,

male female roles,

at the time,

I wonder how much things have changed?

and,

aspirations,

sexy,

and,

raw,

reminded me a great deal,

of Hardy’s Jude The Obscure,

a satisfying read,

that needs time to sit.

I had thought,

of re-reading some,

John Irving,

at the beginning of the year,

but,

I hadn’t got around to it.

Last weekend,

I took a copy of Cider House Rules,

off the shelves,

in the bookstore,

it’s one that never seems,

to last long.

I read it years ago,

and,

I have sketchy memories,

of it,

I remember the orphans,

and their odd names,

I remember Homer,

working in an apple orchard,

but, not much else.

My sinus problems,

have forced me to read,

slowly,

and,

for short stretches,

which is perfect for,

such a long,

plot heavy,

complex novel,

what a master story teller,

Irving is,

you can see every character,

even the ‘walk ons’,

you care about them,

all of them,

they are so human,

the good,

the bad,

the strong,

the weak.

The thing with Irving is,

you want to read quickly,

to get to the end,

‘see’ what happens,

but,

if you do that,

and,

don’t re-read,

you miss most of,

the moral,

philosophical,

tapestry.

Good people do bad things,

bad things happen to good people,

life is full of joys,

and,

full of tragedies,

he shows this,

doesn’t tell,

and,

never judges,

you don’t know what he thinks,

not really,

it’s a thing of beauty,

his artistry,

in the guise of storytelling.

I don’t know,

if any of this,

makes sense to you,

just sharing impressions.

ūüôā

Later girls,

BB

 

I’m going back to Irving

 

My all time favourite novelist, John Irving.

It’s weird,

I am surrounded by books.

In my apartment,

obviously,

in the bookstore,

I am a member,

in good standing,

of  la Bibliotheque Nationale,

and yet,

I can’t seem to find,

anything I feel like reading!!

Weird,

very weird.

So,

I have decided to re-read,

John Irving.

I love Irving,

the plaid clad,

intense eyed man,

in his thirties,

intellectual yet,

earthy,

a sensitive writer,

and,

also a man’s man.

He wrote such strange plots,

about such strange,

and lovable characters.

The middle Irving is,

the man of ideas,

deeply interested,

in,

moral dilemnas,

the great questions,

about faith,

and love,

and,

the difference between,

right and wrong.

His hair has grown gray,

but,

the intensity,

and vigor,

are still there.

The first Irving novel,

I ever read was,

The World According To Garp,

I’ve re-read it a few times,

but,

I haven’t in about five years,

I’ve grown a lot,

in five years,

I wonder if I will love it as much.

So, my plan is to read his novels,

in the order,

in which I first did.

So,

Garp,

The Hotel New Hampshire,

The Cider House Rules,

will be the first three,

I figure one a month.

October: Garp,

November: Hotel,

December: Cider House,

and then we’ll see in January,

because,

I’m not quite sure,

which I read next,

and there are two,

I’ve never read,

Son Of The Circus,

and,

The Water Method Man.

I’d love it if some of you,

would join me.

For some,

it could be,

discovering,

a brilliant writer,

and for others,

revisiting,

an old friend.

Think about it.

Let me know.

You know where to find me:-)

Later girls,

BB

 

Desert Island Books

What books would I want to have on a desert island?

I have always found that to be a interesting game to play with myself.

In a perfect world, fantasy world that is,

I would land on an island populated sparsely,

 with women.

I would wash on to the beach,

 closely followed by my giant steamer trunk,  

 filled with books.

The desert island game would then become,

 Fantasy Island.

No, but, seriously.

I have considered this game many times over the years,

played it with friends,

with customers.

To make it interesting I take five books,

 two are very small.

All would fit in an overnight bag.

Obviously, a Kindle or some such device would be great,

 because of storage capabilities but,

there is no electricity or power sources on a desert island,

and I’m no engineer.

Number one,

84 Charing Cross Road  because I love this book,

also it is tiny.

Number two, W. Somerset Maugham Collected Short Stories Volume 4

Again tiny,

 and it contains my all time favourite short story,

 The Book Bag.

I would bring my favourite novel by my favourite novelist.

The World According To Garp by John Irving.

Also I would bring Rat Bohemia by Sarah Schulman.

I see it as a work of staggering power and originality.

Schulman is one of the best writers I have ever read,

¬†and I wouldn’t mind spending the rest of my life rereading her.

So, that’s four.

I am very comfortable with these choices.

The fifth is tough.

The situation deserves analysis,

since I have recently been accused of over analysing,

I should figure this out.

I believe the fifth book should be a book I have never read,

just for the sheer discovery factor.

Also, it should be an acknowledged classic,

 great work of literature.

It should be a tough read,

¬†to keep me thinking, stimulated and prevent Alzheimer’s.

So upon analysis and reflection,

 I have narrowed it down to three,

Moby Dick, Ulysses or War and Peace.

I have read none of these,

all are considered great and,

 have been on my to be read at some point in my life, list.

All are one volume,

 and fit the requirement of the overnight bag size.

So it comes down to,

 do I want to spend the remainder of my days with,

a stoic New Englander, a weird Irishman or a Russian Count.

Do I want to read about obsession and the slaughter of Whales,

a drunken and poetic odyssey,

or the horror and heroism of war.

I think I would opt for Ulysses.

A hard and long read but, based on nothing but,

second hand info,

 a happier read.

If any of you,

 play or have ever played this game,

let me know your choices,

it would be fun.

Later girls

BB