Saturday, December 15, 2012
December 15-16, 2012: Crowd-sourced Fireside Reads
[Earlier this year, I featured a series on AmericanStudies Beach Reads. But winter calls for something different—longer, denser works with which you can settle in by the fire for the long winter’s night. So this week I’ve highlighted authors and books that fit that bill. This crowd-sourced post is drawn from other Fireside Read suggestions by fellow AmericanStudiers—share your warm and cozy nominations below, please!]
Irene Martyniuk writes, “Any Dickens. I'm no fan of Dickens, but if you must read him, a fire is good. This is the man who includes spontaneous human combustion in Bleak House and defends it. Joyce, of course. Snowbound? Try Ulysses. If not, revisit Portrait. Well worth it. Proust. Science fiction and fantasy. Escape that snow. Dune. Just Dune. Don't worry about the later 5 books. Dune will stick with you. Same for Stephen R. Donaldson. Giants and leprosy and white gold. Amazing. Martin Amis' London Fields. Hilarious and complicated. Like Amis himself, I suppose.”
Isabella Greene writes, “Margaret George's The Autobiography of Henry VIII. A huge work of historical fiction where you can totally lose yourself in the life of one of the most complicated, fascinating, and in many ways, most disturbed monarch of all time. I'm gonna have to otherwise go with my girl Margaret Atwood. Both The Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake have that dark, apocalyptic density that will give you shivers even sitting by the fire.”
On Twitter, Kris Schindler nominates “anything by or about Katherine Graham.”
Next series starts Monday,
PS. What would you highlight for a good winter's read?
12/15 Memory Day nominee: Maxwell Anderson, for his important and influential plays, his interestingly varied collection of screenplays, and his equally talented AmericanStudier of a son.