Library Loot, August 10-16

It’s been one of those weeks. One of those weeks where you feel dissatisfied with everything in your life, including every single book you try to read. I abandoned many books this week, even those I had made a good start in or was really looking forward to. I tossed Franny and Zooey by the wayside after I got bored with Zooey’s horrible treatment of his mom, sent The Lantern on to the next reader when I realized I was not in the mood for flowery writing, and brutally rejected countless other unworthy novels. The only thing that has seemed to hold my interest this week is the biography of the Kennedy White House I am currently racing through.

So, my library loot only contains three books this week. These are the three that made it home and have stayed home with me and that I hope to start soon.

1. The Best American Short Stories of 2010 edited by Richard Russo. I always like reading at least a few selections from this collection every year. This edition contains stories from Pulitzer Prize winner Jennifer Egan, one of my personal favorites Lauren Groff and Orange Prize winner Tea Obreht.

2. Ship of Fools by Katherine Anne Porter. I really don’t know much about this epic novel, but it was on the best seller list in 1962 and so qualifies to be read due to my current obsession with this era.

3. The Siege by Helen Dunmore. I’ve read so many positive reviews of this novel that is set during the siege of Leningrad and of Helen Dunmore’s other novels that I thought I’d try it. After reading Snowdrops, in which a major character briefly talks of her experiences during the siege I’ve had an interest in reading more about this horrible tragedy.

What have you taken out of the library this week? What do you do when you have a reading slump?

8 thoughts on “Library Loot, August 10-16

  1. I have a copy of The Seige too and, like you, have heard many great things about it so I’ll be interested to read your review of it.

    I seem to have had a few reading slumps this year where nothing else but crime fiction will do – that genre seems to be my fall back / comfort read.

    Hope you enjoy your books 🙂


  2. I checked out a bunch of novellas for the Melville House Art of the Novella reading challenge — I’d like to read at least three if I can manage it. I also checked out Anne of Green Gables on audio for one of my book groups; The Castle of Otranto and The Sorrows of Young Werther for my other book groups, and an NYRB classic called Rogue Male that I found in the library stacks yesterday. Working in a library is just dangerous, I’m drowning in books.


  3. Oh I do know that feeling! All I can do is keep trying different books, until finally something clicks again – though sometimes reading something old familiar helps, like The Wind in the Willows or A Little Princess.


  4. When all else fails I turn to vintage crime. I borrowed Muriel Spark’s Ballad of Peckham Rye this week and I’m nearly finished it. Oh Anbolyn, I think you might have chucked it aside too, it isn’t one of my favourites. I wonder if you get around to it what you’ll think of it!


    1. Oh no! I was hoping it would be a good one. I do have a copy of it from the library sitting on a stack to be read and I think I will try it out. We’ll see how it goes!


  5. I’m sorry to hear you gave up on Franny and Zooey. I haven’t read it, but it is another book that has been sitting on my shelf for years, so I was looking forward to reading your review and seeing if I should give it a try. Perhaps this means I shouldn’t. I recall reading another book by Salinger in which they were minor characters; it might have been about their older brothers.


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