Friday, July 14, 2006

Climbing Through the Undergrowth

In case you were wondering, I'm not dead.

We've been finalising our programme here in Cheltenham, and that generally results in having no time.

But I have been reading, and weeding, and having a good rummage in the literary undergrowth second hand bookshop I pass every night on my way home.

My current reads are The Ministry of Pain by Dubravka Ugresic and translated by Michael Heim, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer and Benang by Australian writer Kim Scott, who isn't published in the UK but should be, and you can find details about his books at the Fremantle Arts Centre Press site. Another writer who is somewhat ignored in the UK is American Short Story writer Richard Bausch.

I've just finished Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro and Constitutional Stories by Helen Simpson, both good reads, and if you are going away somewhere peaceful where you can read all day these books are well worth packing. Unfortunatley I am not going away to anywhere warm and peaceful where I can sit reading all day (the irony of being surrounded by books all day is that you struggle to read more than one a week), instead I am going to make do with rooting about all the bookshops scattered around the South West and the Cotswolds (not too sure how I am going get to these places with the chronic lack of public transport round here -you have to get a train to Birmingham to get to Oxford which is half an hour or so up the road! - and my personal lack of car means I have to rely upon such transport). I'm going to start in Bath this weekend at the newly opened Mr B's Emporium of Reading Delights.

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