Thursday, June 07, 2007

Booking through Thursday

Almost everyone can name at least one author that you would love just ONE more book from. Either because they’re dead, not being published any more, not writing more, not producing new work for whatever reason . . . or they’ve aged and aren’t writing to their old standards any more . . . For whatever reason, there just hasn’t been anything new (or worth reading) of theirs and isn’t likely to be.

If you could have just ONE more book from an author you love . . . a book that would be as good any of their best (while we’re dreaming) . . . something that would round out a series, or finish their last work, or just be something NEW . . . Who would the author be, and why? Jane Austen? Shakespeare? Laurie Colwin? Kurt Vonnegut?

Barbara Pym, absolutely. I never tire of her Austen-like, cool vision of people who usually get no press. She writes about distressed gentlewomen - the women who organize jumble sales, fantasize about their pastors or utterly unworthy academics, read Coventry Patmore while they drink tea, and take pleasure in lives that are, usually, unnoticed or unappreciated.

I've written before about Jane and Prudence - if I can't reread that book, I can't read anything, because it's in my pantheon of books that I need along with air (and tea). If you are new to Pym, start with Excellent Women, Jane and Prudence, or Quartet in Autumn - and if you do begin to read her, I'd love to know!

melanie

4 comments:

Alice Teh said...

I've always wanted to read Jane Austen, and almost bought her box set last two weeks. When I went to the bookstore again the last few days, it was gone! I'm going to place an order soon... Thanks for sharing. Happy BTT!

Imani said...

Hmm. You make Pym's books sound really good. Plus I've never heard of her before. I'll have to see what books by her at the library.

Carrie K said...

I'd thought I'd read her, but those titles don't strike a chord.

Nyssaneala said...

I've read two (as you saw on my blog) of Pym's books. I have a whole stack given to me by my MIL, so I will definitely be reading more in the future. It's a way of life that I can hardly relate to...which makes it an excellent escape!