All Hail the Public Library!

Though I was mistaken, ours is not air-conditioned. It was still cooler than the apartment, and I came home with a stack of books. I don’t know why. We live four houses away from our library, it’s open Mondays & Wednesdays 1-8pm and Saturdays 11am-3pm, so I don’t need to stock up so drastically. Especially considering the size of the books I brought home:

  • The Passage, by Justin Cronin — I’ve already begun this, and I’m totally absorbed. I read The Summer Guest, and he’s a fine writer. I have noted, however, that he’s fond of the word “thrum.”
  • Her Fearful Symmetry, by Audrey Niffenegger — The Time Traveler’s Wife is one of my favorite novels, this has been on my to-read list since before it was published.
  • Pilgrim at Tinker Creek, by Annie Dillard — Her writing, its exquisite details, is simply necessary to me. I like to imagine reading this on the porch of a cabin with a lakeside view.
  • Not here yet, but I’ve also requested The More I Owe You, the novel about Elizabeth Bishop’s time in Brazil by Michael Sledge.

My husband came home from the library with a surprise of his own. Not having ever read her himself, he thought the DVDs of Catherine Cookson’s novels something akin to the PBS Masterpiece Theater movies we used to watch when we had TV, something we could watch together and enjoy during these hot nights.

And they were enjoyable, and addictive in their soap opera quality. Deciphering the dialogue through the thick accents was fun, too, a delight to the ears.

Not to slight Ms. Cookson in any way, but I would describe her books as Jane Eyre Lite. Class friction and romance, the plight of the poor. You know which man will be rewarded with the love of the woman & a happy ending by whether he’s been disfigured, à la Rochester, by the movie’s end. Seriously. Out of four movies, three featured male protagonists who were disfigured. One in a fire.

Not a bad way to while away some summer hours, by any means.