Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Oh the pressure!

My mother gave me a $50 gift certificate to Barnes & Noble for my Birthday.

I read a lot. More blogs lately, but still books. I always have a small stack on my nightstand and because I don't sleep much, it doesn't take me long to work my way through them. I almost never buy books new though.

I found a used bookstore near my home and as part of my efforts to spend less I refuse to purchase books anywhere else. I just love this place. It feels like a mix between my grandmother's basement and "The Shop Around the Corner" It's become a ritual I look forward to. Friday afternoons I putz around in this cramped store, with no kids, that has this wonderful musty old book smell, and I think only two employees.

Then I take my purchases out for a Latte. And once I have devoured them, or rejected them, I schlep them back to the store the next week for credit towards my next treasure hunt.

But now I have $50 to spend at Barnes & Noble. I can buy ANY BOOK I WANT! It took me a month of stalking the used bookstore to get Cormac McCarthy's The Road. Darn Oprah. (It was worth it though, that book was haunting and depressing and fabulous!) So the idea of just ordering something to be delivered to my home, it makes me giddy.

So what should I get? What book changed your life? Made you laugh? Kept you up all night? What's worth full price?

Oh and I would be lying if I told you the thought hadn't entered my mind to use half of it on the last Harry Potter.


karen said...

Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon. If you like it as much as I do (my husband calls it "literary crack"), there are five more in the series! I have read them all about four times - it's bliss.

Christine said...

there are lots! For my all time favs see my profile. Here are a couple extra:

middlesex by Jeffery Eugenudis

feast of love by charles baxter

alienist by caleb carr

raise high the roofbeams carpenters by jd salinger

confederacy of dunces john kennedy toole

I could go on, but I'll stop here!

Joy, of course! said...

Hey Karen! I actually got that book from my used book store. I think (although I might be dreaming) that Bethie recommended it to me many years ago. That's when I first realized all her kids had scottish names. I only read the first one though.

karen said...

The following Diana Gabaldons are good, too!

I agree with the ones Christine suggested, as well. I also like almost anything by Neal Stephenson, Connie Willis, Maeve Binchy, Morgan Llewellyn. Mythago Wood by Robert Holdstock; The Name of the Rose and Focault's pendulum are also on my constantly re-read shelf.

Spice Girl said...

Well, I'm totally into children's books right now and I've been devouring them, so I can recommend some there:
The Dark is Rising series by Susan Cooper (I'll get to meet her at my residency!)
Keturah and Lord Death by Martine Leavitt (ditto!)

Although, hmmm, to be quite frank, I don't buy books new either, so I would be tempted to buy good copies of books that I love: Madeleine L'Engle, C.S. Lewis, L.M. Montgomery, J.R.R. Tolkien, J.K. Rowling (are you seeing a pattern here???)rather than new stuff that I haven't read yet.

Joy, of course! said...

I read that Susan Cooper series over and over again in 5th or 6th grade. I loved it. I may need to get it for my children's library.

How jealous am I that you get to hang out with real authors, and not just uneducated wannabees like me. Guess what...I get to see you in 3 weeks!!!

slouching mom said...

oh, the dark is rising. ben is about to start that series, and i am so excited for him (and a little sad that i can't be discovering the series for the first time).

let's see:

house of sand and fog
the jane austen book club
the lovely bones

right now i'm reading "daniel isn't talking," about a family dealing with their youngest child's autism, and it's quite good.

warning, though -- many of my choices are sad. it's just what i like.

In the Trenches of Mommyhood said...

Any Jody Picoult book. She's my fave.