“Friendship … is born at the moment when one man says to another
“What! You too? I thought that no one but myself . . .”
― The Four Loves
I’ve walked, I’ve read, I’ve cooked and I’ve brought out the vacuum cleaner and rapidly replaced it. Now, what to do? My sister Christine has the word “noodling’ which she uses to describe moving around on the internet, just looking and maybe learning something new.
So noodling was what I have been doing this afternoon. Merriam Webster is, of course, a favourite site as I am a Word Junkie (the description my DYS gave me so many years ago). Today I found this on the site. Go and see what the staff are reading under the heading
M-W Picks: Books for When
You’re Hunkered Down
You too can read like a dictionary staffer.
There’s a good selection and I am sure you will find something to your liking. A new author or protagonist perhaps?
My first pick is from Serenity Carr, Assistant Editor. She chooses – Her Every Fear by Peter Swanson
“This is a psychological thriller about a young woman from London who decides to trade apartments with a distant cousin in Boston. When she arrives at her cousin’s apartment building, she discovers his neighbor has been murdered. There are some huge and unexpected plot twists that kept me completely hooked until the end. Without giving away anything, I’ll just say this book is super murdery, and if that’s your thing, I can’t recommend it enough.”
I can’t get to a bookstore and deliveries of books are on hold, so I went to the local library online, and joy, it’s available in both hard copy and ebook. The library is, of course, closed so the ebook is now downloaded and on my TBR list.
She also recommends The Stillwater Girls by Minka Kent and The Deep, Deep Snow by Brian Freeman. Both are added to my want to read list.
I am sure I will go back again during this locked-down time to refresh and just to see what others are reading.
Neil Serven, Associate Editor offers The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai.
‘This novel was a finalist for the National Book Award in 2018, and feels relevant at time when the specter of contagion casts a shadow over us and fear and uncertainty inflame our discourse. The disease in this book is AIDS, and the story concerns its impact on Chicago’s gay community in the 1980s, as well as its lasting impact on the survivors of that community thirty years later.
At the center of the story is Yale Tishman, a young gallery worker who is close to making a major advance in his career by acquiring a valuable collection of art from an elderly, eccentric prospective donor. Yale’s friend Nico has just died of AIDS-related illness, and other friends within their circle are becoming infected. Yale’s strongest support comes from Nico’s younger sister, Fiona; in an interwoven narrative, we follow Fiona thirty years later as she tracks down her estranged daughter in Paris.”
And On the Beach by Nevil Shute. Of this book, he says “When I read this book for the first time, I was a high schooler laid up with my own serious illness, so perhaps I have always associated it with infirmity. I decided to read it again last year, before the thought of being confined against a scourge became reality.
What is striking about this book is how the characters strive to live as though things are normal. Even as fate comes knocking, there are attempts to cultivate relationships, and efforts to live in the hopes of seeing lost loved ones who are almost certainly dead. The story reaches a mood of strange and patient optimism even in the face of annihilation.”
So when you find yourself with nothing left on your To-Do list, take a look at this site. I hope you find something to amuse you while we all stay home and safe
“I have to be alone very often.
I’d be quite happy if I spent from Saturday night until Monday morning
alone in my apartment.
That’s how I refuel.”
Audrey Hepburn: Many-Sided Charmer, LIFE Magazine, December 7, 1953.