Sunday, October 31, 2010

In the Lamplight

Unusual in my often laid back life here at the beach, but this Saturday has been a non-stop day, leaving me little time to muse upon those things I most love. No thought for ocean scenery, for local color or fountain pens; no spare seconds for book browsing or dabbling in ink.

The usual pattern of my days more often than not allows me to read throughout the morning, corral some thoughts, and give most of the afternoon to writing or researching a topic relevant to a story or other writing project on my work table. That wasn’t in the cards today, and too much of the day has been taken up with issues that even now in this quiet solitary corner dominate my thoughts and scare off the quiet contemplation I am used to.

With a minimum of planning and too little to color in the details, here is a list of books that I have enjoyed, books that have not been previously reviewed or commented on at any length in past pages of this blog. In most cases the books listed below are titles I have either read more than once, or would happily do so.

Some exceptional books that have enlivened my love of reading.


1. The Voyage by Philip Caputo

2. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon

3. The Missing by Tim Gautreaux


1. The Botany of Desire by Michael Pollan

2. The Gifts of the Jews by Thomas Cahill

3. The Elements of Style by William Strunk & E.B. White


1. Flannery O’Connor, The Complete Stories by Flannery O’Connor

2. Things You Should Know, a Collection by A.M. Homes

3. “All Boy” by Lori Ostlund in Best American Short Stories 2010


1. Bone Palace Ballet: New Poems by Charles Bukowski

2. ten poems to change your life, compilation and commentary by Roger Housden

3. Bashô, The Complete Haiku by Matsuo Bashô, translated by Jane Reichhold


1. Farewell My Lovely by Raymond Chandler

2. Burning Angel by James Lee Burke

3. The Power of the Dog by Don Winslow

To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you and to hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations—such is a pleasure beyond compare. —Yoshida Kenkô, Essays in Idleness (1340)


  1. After the unsettling and unnerving day, I wonder what you would find to write about in your blog that you usually write in the late afternoon. One good thing about the day was our visit, the hamburger at the Breakers and the enjoyment of the beautiful ocean on a weather-wise perfect day. Beverly

  2. Elements of Style... yes, oh yes!


About Me

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Oak Hill, Florida, United States
A longtime expat relearning the footwork of life in America