dream sequence of books read

My summer has been fast and busy. I didn't get much reading done in June due to my two week trip to Egypt, so I decided to combine June and July.

books read: June & July

The Pyramids: Great Mysteries of Archeology by M.R. Luberto

Lots of pictures and short paragraphs and information from all over the historical, religious and archeological perspectives and opinions about the facts and fictions and mysteries of the only one of the Seven Wonders of the World left standing.

The Romantic Dogs by Roberto Bolaño

Good as a companion piece to his other books, but perhaps they all work together like that anyway. Bolaño believed more in the genre of poetry than in the genre of fiction, yet his fiction leaves a longer impression than his poetry.

Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi

The original before Disney got their hands on it version of the little wooden puppet. The original Pinocchio is a little brat who by the end deserves to be a real boy, but much like St. Augustine never forgave himself for all of his prior misdeeds before converting to his orthodoxy, Pinocchio may never be able to forgive himself his whiny, stupid and stubborn past. Ah well, he is a piece of wood.

Savage Detectives by Roberto Bolaño

It took me too long to read this book, but when I finally sat down and finished it I was glad. Bolaño intelligently filled this book with adventure after adventure, padded with musing after musing, and filling in the cracks and crevices: some excellent writing, story-telling and a talent for novelistic structure that can only come from one who considers themselves a poet.

Adrift on the Nile by Naguib Mafouz

I read this book after I came home from Egypt, and certain things about it reminded me of my vacation. It was a quick read that I did enjoy, but the characters’ positions in life were a little vague to me because I am not full of 20th century Egyptian history. This being said, I still enjoyed reading this book and finished it rather quickly. When Mafouz gets inside his main character’s head, his narration is flawlessly interesting.

1984 by George Orwell

Leave it to me to not have read this book until I am 25… and I was even born in 1984! This novel is classic and a necessary reference point for all further novel reading. In the very next book I read the word “proles” was mentioned, a 1984 reference that I wouldn’t have understood had I continued to ignore Orwell’s substantial contribution to modern literature.

Bright Lights, Big City by Jay McInerney

Quintessential “New York” novel must-read for anyone who has ever suffered at their own plus this city’s hand(s).

Wittgenstein’s Mistress by David Markson

A witty book that in the middle gets a bit repetitive, but at the end, the repetition comes in handy to make sense of the novel and does not seem to have been at all in vain. It is about a woman who believes she is the only creature alive in the earth and her adventures prior to the writing of the novel as well as during its composition. In between, it is a list of true or false facts and anecdotes about people who were once famous when the earth was populated. The uselessness of some of these facts to one who is the only living thing on earth contrasts with the fact that she remembers them and hits home at the end.

The Sonnets by Ted Berrigan

I read this quickly in fast few hours picking it up putting it down not sure at first if it was at all as good as everyone claims it to be, but after completing the whole thing like in a marathon, I was very glad I read it and wished that I owned it in order to read again and again occasionally. Perhaps I will take care of that eventually. The Sonnets is a book of poems written and torn apart; a book of rearrangements of Berrigan’s own work, and donated works of friends. There is an appendix at the end that explains some of it, but the best way to get the most meaning out of this excellent book of poems, if I can wager such a suggestion, is to read this book again and again and again.


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