Thursday, January 04, 2007

Books...

and the mild obsession I have with them since I first discovered I could read. ( very early on actually, while following the pictures of the 'four Marys' in Mandy comics)
Ever since I was a child I have been a complete hopeless bibliophile. I love books, I covet books, they are my friends. I reread constantly, I like collecting first editions, I like organising my books, I like the look of their spines on my shelves, the feel of them as I run my fingers along them. I like discovering books I had a a child and could not keep, it is like welcoming home a prodical child when I come across them mouldering away in some second hand books shop or market. I must have nearly 1000 books here now, most in shelves but some stacked thither and yon.
By my bed right this second there are,
The Zahir- Paulo Coelho- not yet read.
Theft-Peter Carey- not yet read.
The killing kind-John Connolly- finished.
For one More Day- Mitch Albom- not yet read.
Pegasus Descending- James Lee Burke- half way through.
Talk to the Hand- Lynne Truss- finished.
The LIttle Book of Scientific Principles, Theories and Things- Surendra Verma- finished, but deserves to be re-read on a regular basis.
The Book of General Ignorance-John Lloyd and John MItchinston- perused through.
Hannibal Rising- Thomas Harris-gasped at and sniggered over, but read.
And last but by very no means least-A book Addict's Treasury- by Julia Rugg and Lynda Murphy.

It is the last book that tickles me rosy pink. The paramour bought it for me for Christmas and I am absolutely head over heels with it.
It is a delightful timely book for people who love books. With snippets and paragraphs from other book lovers all collected between its covers- the sections on 'booknesting' had me wincing with laughter as I recognised my own foiblles.
"Some friend of theirs had rented the house for several months to an interior decorator. When they returned, they discovered that their entire library had been reorganised by colour and size. Shortly thereafter, the decorator met with a fatal automobile accidnet. I confess that when this story was told, everone around the table concurred that justice had been served.' (Anne Fadiman, ex libris: Confessions of a Common Reader, 1998)
Can you imagine!

'Bookish Behaviour' -Leigh Hunt (1832)-- 'When I speak of being in contact with my books, I mean it literally. I like to lean my head against them.'
Mee too, I like to spend most of my day surrounded by them. I can find a book with the greatest of ease, despite their number. I am happiest sprawled out on my bed, with Puddy or the bigger of the cats, with whatever tome I am reading inches from my nose.

Eeeee, there are descriptions of studies, best reading positions, best light, burning your hand as a child while reading under the covers after lights out, the best time of day to read, whether to curl up or lie flat...it's all there. It's a masterpiece. It's for book lovers. If you are one, run, go buy it, open it, breathe it in, recognise our species, be proud, we are not alone, we are legion!

15 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have more books than I'll be ever able to read. Also, I tend to get three pages in and say, "I could do better than this!" and then get into another mad novel-writing funk.

Suite Francais is on my bedside table at the moment, along with an old Pratchett for comfort reading.

And... are you sure the Four Marys weren't in Bunty?

1:26 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Mandy I think, Ah comfort reading, I have a few of those, I read Fear of Flying when I was thirteen and didn't really get most of it, I read it again at twenty and got more of it, and again at twenty-right and laughed uproariously throughout.

2:02 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

again at twenty-right and laughed uproariously throughout.

I like the bit where [character name] dies. That's cool.

5:14 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Nice try gibblet. No bait line.

5:27 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

a house isn't home unless it's filled with books, IMO, but i acknowledge there're those who Think Different.

one of those is Inscrutable Chinese Man, with whom i have a bet on which will pass first: the book in its corporeal form (vs. e-books), or my boss. loyally, i went with the boss, and if he ends up outliving books i'll be out a C-note.

do you have a Favorites shelf? does it have odd & whimsical juxtapositions?

5:54 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and what do you have against honda drivers??

5:56 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Over here flyboys, culchies and skangers buy Hondas on the cheap and Nissan Micras too. They soup them up a bit- complete with Night Rider lights and then speed about crashing and causing mayhem, like racing past a whole lane of cars so that they can beat us all to the next set of traffic lights.
I do have a favoured shelf as it happens, its got Waugh on one end and Henry Kames on the other, but Stephen King and Robert Crais, John Banville and James Ellroy and a whole slew of other in between.
It's a good shelf.

6:23 p.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

robert crais wrote a Favorite??

do you know patrick neate? i'm reading city of tiny lights, and it's FUN. took me 50 pages to figure out what Bennies and Turk were tho.

oh why am i here at work when i should be home on the sofer with patrick.

ratses.

7:59 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

LA Requim, one of my favourite Rober Crais books. I like the speed of it a whole lot and I like the style of the books, the slightly loonyness of the plots and the ever gruff gruntiness that is Pike. I'm delighted that Elvis has split with that southern belle Lucy and let the mayhem continue with the next book.
I don't know Patrick Neate, do you know Joesph Wambaugh? Writes super gritty books usually based on his own experiences of being in the LAPD. Choirboys and the Glitter Ball being the most famous. The Choirboys has Roscoe Rules who makes people 'do the chicken' and is the meanest bad assed intolerable muthafucka in print. I love those books!

8:26 p.m.  
Anonymous Annie said...

While I was in the process of moving from Maryland to Connecticut last year most of my belongings, including all my books, were in storage for about six months. I was fine without most things, but not having my books was unbearable.

I am currently recovering from surgery and I have been soooo happy reading the days away. Sadly, I shall soon be recovered enough that I'll have to get up off my bum and get back to normal activities. Damn. Maybe I can break a leg or something...

9:00 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

It is one of the great pleasures in life. Annie, to be a little bit ill. Not too much, but enough that you can lay down. guilt free. and plough your way through a stack of books.
Glad to hear you are on the mend.

9:12 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Sigh, Finn, it's Glitter Dome, not Glitter Ball, so sorry, tired you see, tired and stupid.

10:42 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

have put wambaugh on the List. banville (something about the sea??) is on the To Read shelf.

i read crais's The Forgetten Man and found it, well, forgettable. if you tout the requiem, though, i shall try it.

to speak of super gritty borne from experience, do you know andrew vachss? depressing, but good and most def gritty.

6:31 p.m.  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

The forgotten Man was definitely not one of his best. I'm on his mailing list and I got a mail today to say the new Pike novel is released in February. Squeee, I do love me some Pike.
Get Wambuagh's the Choirboys, sit back and let fat Whalan, Roscoe and all the other scuzz buckets take you for a wild ride. Some of the scene in the park had me laughing out loud on a metro in Barcelona, seriously I was sitting there with tears streaming down my cheeks while the old po-faced Catalans edged further away.

7:32 p.m.  
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9:13 a.m.  

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