Thursday, December 1, 2011

1002 Books

People have this notion that I read a lot of books. If this is true or not, depends on your notion of what a lot is.

Growing up we didn’t have any video games or angry bird apps, and my sister would only play board games with me that she knew she could win. I never had any extracurricular activities except that one year of ballet at the Y and free swimming lessons at the community pool during the summer, until the year I broke my arm. Growing up in LA, sometimes it just wasn’t safe to play outside.  But our home was always filled with books, and for a little girl that spent most of her childhood lost in her own head, they were enough.  When I got old enough I started working at the local library branch shelving books. When I went to college I got an English degree so I could spend 4 years reading books, and good books, not like science books.  Then I graduated, and unsure of what else I could do, I went back to work at a library.

Now I work in a different kind of place. But there is a library, a wonderful and beautiful library next door, that I often walk to when I feel lonely at work.  I walk up and down the aisles of books gingering running my finger along the spines of the books connecting with the lives contained in those volumes.

I usually poo poo book lists that tell me what books I should be reading. Please.  But this list, 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die, I actually agree with, mostly.  All my favorites ones , the books that I clutch to my heart after reading, are on it.  I have heard of most of them, but tallying up the ones that I have actually read, my heart sank. 53. Out of 1001. 3 from the 2000s, 31 from the 1900s, 16 from the 1800s, 1 from the 1700 Candide!!, and 2 from the Pre-1700s, thanks to my Classical Civilization classes.

Should I be announcing this on the inner webs? Will “they” be taking my English Degree or cut up library card? I need to start reading. Quick.  Or just live forever. 

In other book news, a new movie, based on one of my most favorite books, ever, EVER is coming out this month-- Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer, JSF to the cool kids.  L emailed me the link to the trailer (below). I’m nervous. Why couldn’t they just let it be a good book? People still read. And you can eat popcorn when you read too, and when you leave for bathroom breaks, you don't miss a thing. Although I am not sold on the casting, I am glad the movie people at least they let Oskar keep his tambourine.  I’m really nervous.

(p.s. so no one is caught off guard, the story is about a boy whose father dies on 9/11)

1 comment :

  1. Interesting list. I own more of these than I've read (I counted 61 I definitely read, and at least 25 more I couldn't remember if I'd read or just though about reading). Funnily enough, the majority of them were from the 1800s. Not the results I was expecting....