Monday, September 10, 2012

End of Summer Reading List

Once upon a childhood "summer" meant countless hours to lay out in the backyard reading, to stay up late reading, to bask on the beach reading.  Fiction, mostly, as a child.  "Literature" as a teen.  Poetry and memoir in college.  Since academia I've tried to balance genres by always having three or four books I'm reading.  A typical stack would include poetry, something non-fiction, and a piece of well-written fiction.

This past month's reading pile reeks of a more serious, less artistic concoction.  When chemo began last October, I couldn't concentrate to read (or write) for weeks.  The few books I tried to read, I disliked.  Fiction felt shallow.  Poetry, ego-centric.  Nonfiction became my sole companion.  My racing mind could skim books about organizational methods or psychology.  Child-rearing books substituted for the mommy friends who were to germ-y for me to actually find and meet.  Mostly I read, no, memorized board books as I clung to one cherished activity I could share with my son.

These days I'm only reading non-fiction (and lots of board books).  I miss fiction and poetry.  I miss having a long list of books to read someday.  So much has been lost this last year.  The healing process is as bewildering as chemotherapy so I wonder if finding my next favorite novel or book of verse won't be part of it.

Any suggestions?

1 comment:

  1. I've been on a non-fiction kick recently as well, and, looking back at my book journal, it turns out that by "recently" I mean "for the past eight months". Yikes! Kazuo Ishiguro has been hanging out at the top of the list though; I haven't decided yet whether that will be Remains of the Day or Never Let Me Go. We've also started Wind in the Willows with Logan, so that's a nice dose of fiction every evening.