Friday, 19 March 2010

Some Books I'm Lusting After. . .

Ah, this beautiful spring weather we're having - I'm just aching to wander the streets of Toronto, go out and buy books, and find a park bench in the sunlight. Here are some recent ones I've earmarked as must-reads.

The Letters of Sylvia Beach edited by Keri Walsh
Bookseller extraordinaire, founder of Shakespeare & Company - how can I resist? Plus, if you can't get to Paris. . .

A Crisis of Brilliance: Five Young British Artists and the Great War by David Boyd Haycock
I'm a fan of all of the artists profiled in this book - Dora Carrington, Mark Gertler, CRW Nevinson, Paul Nash and Stanley Spencer - and have read bits of each of their lives. This collective biography sounds fascinating. Many thanks to Hannah Stoneham and her blog review for alerting me to this book.

I love book history and this tracing of the popularity of Austen's work over the last two centuries has gotten very good reviews. Certainly is my kind of book.


Virginia Woolf's Bloomsbury Volume 1: Aesthetic Theory and Literary Practice
Virginia Woolf's Bloomsbury Volume 2: International Influence and Politics
Edited by Gina Potts and Lisa Shahriari
News of this new anthology of scholarly essays went out on the Woolf listserv and the two volumes look terrific but I will probably have to wait until they come out in paperback before adding them to the Woolf shelf - bit pricey in hardcover.


What Becomes by A.L. Kennedy
A new collection of short stories from one of my favourite contempory writers. I love her edgy prose, always on the knife-edge between despair, danger and delight.
A Short History of Cahiers du Cinema by Emilie Bickerton
I subscribe to this magazine to improve my French even though I know it's not as cutting edge as it used to be. Which is why I want to read this book.

7 comments:

Vintage Reading said...

I would highly recommend Jane's Fame. As an Austen devotee it made me quite uncomfortable at times though - are we the very people Austen would have satirised? Or are we presumptive to even raise the question. Harman provides some wonderful commentary.

Blithe Spirit said...

Thanks for the recommendation - I've now got a copy and will start reading it shortly. Looking forward to it.

Hannah Stoneham said...

What a great list. I hope that you enjoy "A Crisis of Brilliance".

Hannah

Anna said...

May I add Pat Barker's novel Life Class to your list? It covers the same period as the artists of A Crisis of Brilliance. There's a fabulous exhibition of Paul Nash paintings on currently in London, which I reviewed at http://dulwichonview.org.uk/2010/02/19/a-fresh-look-at-the-landscape-paul-nash-at-dulwich/.

Blithe Spirit said...

Anna - Thanks for the link to the exhibition - It looks terrific and wish I could be there to see it. I read Life Class when it first came out but found it curiously cold after Barker's wonderful Ghost Road Trilogy. However once I've read a bit more about the artists, I may go back to that novel with a new perspective.

David Boyd Haycock said...

Hi Julia - If you've not managed to get hold of a copy of "A Crisis of Brilliance", I'm pleased to say that it comes out in paperback on the 1st of June! I do hope that you enjoy it ...

Blithe Spirit said...

Yes, I ordered a copy from the U.K. and have just finished reading it - I hope to blog some thoughts on it soon. But I very much enjoyed it - congratulations!