Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Library Books

I love my library. I really do. Just being able to go in, say hi to Laura the Librarian, and browse around, serendipitously finding fabulous, new, old, and in-between books to take home and enjoy. Last week I went in to pick up some books I'd ordered from another branch and found a John Irving book I'd never ever read "Prayer for Owen Meany". Wow, how did I miss this one, I think it is one of his best. And that's saying something, because I think he's written some of the best fiction in the last 100 years. Also found a teeny tiny book by Kurt Vonnegut "God Bless You, Dr. Kevorkian", which is a collection of radio essays he did in NYC on public radio, with the set up that Dr. Kevorkian is taking him almost to the edge of dying so that he can meet famous (or infamous) people who have died, so he can ask them questions. Comic, heart-breaking, thought-provoking as usual for Vonnegut. Both Vonnegut and Irving would be considered on the comic side of the literary fiction side, and I find a lot of good reading over on that side.
The upside of this Dr. Kevorkian book is that I got to explain who he is to my boys, and that was a VERY interesting discussion. And they brought it around to the Terri Schiavo media-circus a couple weeks ago, and the pope's dying. My boys read the paper now so I am always amazed when I get to discuss current events with them. Good to know that they are 1)PAying Attention, 2) Critically reading (ie not believing everything they read), and 3) Making connections on their own.
Ok, back to library books, I found this fascinating book on oil painting that Salvador Dali wrote called "50 Secrets of Magic Craftsmanship" it is totally bizarre (of course), written in a very egotistical voice, illustrated with sketches, and actually contains some great advice for artists.
One which I must share with you here: "Don't be afraid of perfection: you'll never attain it!"
Well PSHEW! The pressures' off now, thanks Dali!

That's the beauty of the library to me, having the opportunity to find these books that I NEVER would have found on amazon.com, because I might not have thought to look up Irving, Vonnegut and Dali. Yay for libraries!

3 comments:

Gerrie said...

I have read just about everything John Irving ever wrote. A Prayer for Owen Meany was wonderful. As an Episcopalian, it really hits home in the funny bone!! This was made in to a movie but was not that true to the book.

Lisa, Procrastinator Extraordinaire said...

Thanks for the book recommendations! I love my library, too, but more for all the books on tape.
How old are your boys? I wish my kids would read the paper so we could have those meaningful discussions...

Logan said...

Love your taste in literature! A Prayer for Owen Meany is definately one of his best, but The Hotel New Hampshire has to take first prize! And, when the movie for THNH was made, it stayed very true to the book (unlike the extremely disappointing waste of 90 minutes that was the Owen Meany movie). I'm toying with doing a series of small art quilts based on themes and favorite parts of THNH.