Saturday, April 26, 2008

Spring Reading

Although the semester is starting to come to a close, I have an absurd amount of reading and research to do for school. Even after I am done grading papers and finals, I should (at least in theory) work on reading books for my dissertation. However, I've also noticed an influx of books that I really want to read for fun, so my dissertation work may just have to share time with some light reading.

The first one that I am excited about is Touch Me, I'm Sick: The 52 Creepiest Love Songs You've Ever Heard by Tom Reynolds. As a fan of Reynolds's first book about bad songs (I Hate Myself and Want to Die), I am looking forward to reading this one. Since it just came out, it is currently on my nightstand, and I have started reading it. So far, I've read about songs like "Every Breath You Take" by the Police and "Invisible" by Clay Aiken (both of which are in the "stalker song" category). While it isn't as great as Reynolds's first book, I'm hoping that it picks up in the second section. I will try to post a review in the next week or so.

Also on my "To Be Read" pile is a book I just bought today called Secret Lives of Great Authors. As the title suggests, this book is about little-known. facts of classic authors such as the Brontes, Walt Whitman, and Richard Wright. The English teacher in me is looking forward to reading this book. Even though I probably wouldn't want to share some of these facts with high school students, it is nice to have the option. I haven't started it yet, but the fact that the cover says "Lord Byron: Real-Life Don Juan or Man-Slut?" pretty much guarantees that it will be an interesting read. I know that I shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but come on - that's a pretty cool cover (and the term "man-slut" amuses more than I can say).

Finally, I am eagerly awaiting David Sedaris's fantastically titled When You're Engulfed in Flames. Although I don't love every single essay Sedaris has ever done, I do like the majority of them. His "SantaLand Diaries" got me through many a Christmas when I worked various retail jobs during the holidays (the worst was when I sold makeup at the mall). Also, the theatre nerd in me adores "Front Row Center with Thaddeus Bristol," which offers some very harsh (but funny) critiques of Christmas plays presented by fictional schools. All in all, I hope that When You're Engulfed in Flames is as great as the title suggests. An added bonus for this book is that the cover will probably dissuade people from bothering me on the subway.