10 Most Recent Books Read: IX

Last 10 Books Read: IX
(More or Less in Order of Completion: Most Recent Last)
1. “The Year I Lost My Mind.” “Story by Casanova Frankenstein, art, in his stye, by Glenn Pierce. I admire all of CF’s work, and, while I don’t remember much about this, that is no reflection on its merit. I finished it, which, in itself, says something.
2. John O’Hara’s “The New York Stories.” Found this among the Free Books in the café – and replaced it with O’Hara’s “Hell Box.” Nobody writes much like O’Hara any more, but when he was good at what he was doing, he was really good.
3. John Berryman’s “77 Dream Songs.” Clearly my failing, but I got about zero out of this, and I’m done with poetry for a while.
4. Tom Farber’s “Acting My Age.” Tom’s a café pal, extremely erudite and a fine, serious writer. This one’s about aging and man’s spoliation of the planet, so up my alley, though his anti-
depressants don’t seem to be working well as mine.
5. “Seattle Laughs,” Shary Flenniken, ed. Shary’s a pal, though we’ve never met, and Seattle’s a city I’ve only spent a weekend in; but it and its residents’ foibles seem universal enough to make different cartoonists’ takes on it a kick.
6. Tove Ditlevsen’s “Youth,” the middle third of her “Copenhagen Trilogy.” Usually don’t read memoirs – or novels that are them – but am glad I picked this up after a couple reviews caught my eye.
7. Marilynne Robinson’s “Jack.” What’s this, the fourth in her “Gilead” series? All fine stuff.. Can be read out of order, I guess, but the best approach, I’d say, is in order.
8. “Just Enough Liebling.” Found in a box on the sidewalk. I’d never read this particular collection, but I’d probably read everything in it, some of it more than once. Liebling? You can never have “enough.”
9. Sterling Lawrence’s “Legacies.” Recommended by a café guy. I could have done without it.
10. Hilary Mantel’s “The Mirror and the Light.” Amazing! Open it up and you’re back in the 16th century. (Or was it the 15th. You’re dealing with a guy who failed to correctlyidentify 1066 on his Soc. Sci. I exam, freshman year.) Anyway, this makes at least seven novels I’ve read by Mantel, everyone of them excellent.