The past couple of months have been slow on the blog. Reading has continued, but most of the books did not inspire my comment. The busy time of year has also been a factor. Doorstop-length books curtail blogging as well. My interests are perhaps becoming less conducive to blogging. I am reading more history these days and am usually not willing to devote the time required to write about those books. Blogging about history is much less fun than reading history, although I do like to read other bloggers' history posts. Waving at Lisa.
In September, my new book purchases ceased except for a few audiobooks. A resolution to use the library and stop buying newly published books has meant less focus on contemporary, non-American fiction. My local library carries very little new fiction in translation. Older titles already on my shelves will dominate next year's fiction reading, especially mysteries and thrillers, genres I often breeze through without comment here on the blog. More reading of poetry has been rewarding, but not tracked here. I have been considering a read-through of Sir Walter Scott's Waverly novels, probably not a crowd pleaser in terms of blog stats.
So . . . to continue blogging in 2013, or not? Yes, I think, but with some changes in approach, still to be worked out. My reading taste now involves more nonfiction than in recent years. Probable reading next year: Art history and criticism. Emerson's essays. Edith Wharton on interior design. Film biographies. Cookbooks. I am already reading some classic Italian cookbooks cover to cover. Photography. Old travel narratives. International affairs, especially the Middle East. Online articles from The New Yorker of the 1920s and '30s. Ethnomusicology. Tales and legends. The trend I see here, while jotting down these categories, is a more factual or practical focus--reading to learn--but also more nonfiction books to read for pure entertainment value. The Audrey Hepburn bio that has been sitting around for too long. Dickens's scribblings about a trip to the USA. The Brothers Grimm.
Whether these scattered interests can make a blog, we shall see. The odd Victorian or 18th C. novel will surely enter the mix, women's history, Western American fiction and history, Native American fiction and poetry, loads of short stories, and selected new fiction the library provides.
Currently I am reading Laurie Colwin's 1986 short story collection, Another Marvelous Thing. In this book, she links stand-alone stories about an extramarital affair. Her sense of humor and warmth sound just the right tone for my reading mood this week. Here, to close, is a favorite sentence from the story "Frank and Billie." Colwin's stories are full of these gems.
"Their first actual kiss was a one-celled organism which, after they had been standing on the stairway kissing for some time, evolved into something rather grander--a bird of paradise, for example."