Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Sailing on into Summer

Day 134 of the "What are you reading, and why?" project, and random people I talk to in the bookstore are sailing on into summer with their summer reading.

A lovely man with a British accent was in yesterday, buying a stack of Patrick O'Brian novels in the Aubrey/Maturin historical naval series, including The Commodore and The Mauritius Command.

His wife had a stack, too, and was hoping for a cheaper copy of the S. E. Hinton book, Hawkes Harbor. We have a signed first edition at Babbitt's, and I think she just wanted to sit in the sun somewhere and read it, and it's often best not to spill beverages and sunscreen on signed first editions. I didn't even know Hinton had written this horror novel for adults--I see we have it in general fiction at Babbitt's, not in horror, but hey. And I see that Elizabeth Hand, who reviewed it for the Washington Post, did not like it much and compares it to an Ed Wood movie.

But Hand admired Hinton's young adult novels, and I did love The Outsiders, Rumblefish, Tex, etc., which would all be good poolside reading.

And there is a mass of 5 or 6 handsome young men--hard to tell how many as they move, well, en masse--that come into the bookstore regularly, and chat in various aisles--lots of time in the literary fiction aisle, lots of time in the science aisle. Yesterday I noticed tans, black shorts, red shirts; they smiled, etc. I was not the one at the register when they bought their summer reading selections, so I can't tell you what they are reading, but it always quietly thrills me how much these guys like books.

I promise that reading is the source of the quiet thrill.

7 comments:

c.p.o. todd zeigler usn retired said...

nice pic of the constitution!

seana said...

I wonder if I'm ever going to get around to reading Patrick O'Brian sea novels. Ifeel pretty certain that I'd like them, I'm just scared off by the sheer number of them.

Maybe if I had that poolside chair...

nene said...

It's a welcome sound of admission when a woman that has become integral in the world of erudition and quite cerebral and most interestingly a participant of a traditional institution called 'marriage' will expose her humanness of still being a physical being. Usually, a characteristic associated with the male gene in their proclities of being 'visual' with the appreciation of the physical aesthetics in this mundane existence. Beautiful people in different colored shorts are like daisies and pansies sprawlling in a field. Oh yes, I forgot, the surrounding shelves of books.

Kathleen said...

Yes! The young men were very beautiful! And so are the books on their shelves and in stacks on the floor! Thanks, nene!

Wait! You think I'm erudite and cerebral? Wow! I think my brain is a maze, and I would love those guys in shorts to help me through it! In my vivid imagination.

nene said...

Your pretty 'cool' for a woman who lives amidst a forest of concrete edifices sometimes referred to as 'urban mist'. When you try to listen for the birds and the wind bristle through the leaves and you hear the 'coos' of the pigeons and feel the gusts of the wind in the 'windy city' and if you look skyward you may catch a slight sway from your urban trees. Do you then escape into your nest of vicarious existence, onto the pages of your books with an occasional pleasured interruption when you raise your eyes from that papyrus lined with strans of words and you capture a glimpse of the flowers in your 'field of dreams'dressed in multi-colored shorts?

Kathleen said...

I only visit the windy city now, having moved toward trees, fields, nature, and farms. Doing quiet prairie restoration in my own back yard!

nene said...

I knew it! I could sense in your words and smell in your breath the 'wild berries'and I saw that fallen leaf still in your hair.
That's 'cool'. C'est cool(french), es cool(spanish). Impressed, are you? I can also, count. "cool, huh?"