Wednesday, February 27, 2008

People of the Book in hibernation

Does everyone go into a post Xmas hibernation? This year it was especially intense, given the subzero days that seemed so long and arid. I read copiously, but strange things -- books that do not really exist. Fortunately, I also happened upon a few that do. People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks had a thriller plot and the most exquisite details about the restoration of ancient tomes. Also there was a masterwork published by our own Graywolf Press -- Out Stealing Horses. Again I went back to James Welch, one of the most gifted American writers, sadly missed. Fools Crow, The Death of Jim Loney, Winter in the Blood, The Heartsong of Charging Elk. Anything he wrote -- extraordinary.

I read Night Train, by my sister, Lise Erdrich. I know, she's my sister, but she's also brilliant and funny.

A few notes: contrary to an odd remark published I can't say where (referring to me as a sort of luddite) I DO know how to get online and I even post these blogs with my own fingers. I see them moving on the rectangular contraption I've heard called a keyboard, right now. It is true that I write first drafts by hand, but I also type efficiently and if I take my brain pills I can remember my own passwords in order to sign in at various sites in the cyberworld.

People of the book, when the pages in your hands cast a shadow from a warm sun, please let me know.

Faithfully yours, Louise


BET said...

Just returned home from a very enjoyable evening hearing you speak in Syracuse and thought I would check out BirchBark Books. I like your website and your blog. i hate that word. Blog. sounds like a swamp creature. Anyways..
I have been a fan for 20 years since The Beet Queen. Your books have seen me through many years of long, arid winters here in NNY. Thank you.
As the great grand daughter of an "indian fighter" learning from your writing about Native Americans seems like a small act of atonement for the "sins of the fathers". I hope your efforts to preserve the language continue to grow.

Zooey/Cam said...

I've read and much appreciated Brooks last couple of novels (March, Year of Wonders). I recently read a non-fiction piece by her in The New Yorker covering the basic real story of the principal characters the life of the Sarajevo Haggadah. I highly recommend this piece and I'm looking forward to reading People of the Book - right after Plague of Doves - advance copies of both are on my nightstand.

Reg - Michigan

Oscar said...

I love books. I love to read. I read everyday. Today I picked up the 3rd edition of The Bedford Introduction to Literature by Michael Meyer, and simply by accident I opened it on page 132. I have never heard of the name Louise Erdrich, but the title of the short story, I am a dog biting myself fro sympathy, caught my attention right away. I have read it twice already and most likely, I will read it again before the day is over. The story is so vivid and real I feel like it is me going through this predicament. This story is going on my list of best short stories ever. I wish I could put down on paper masterpieces of such magnitude. Maybe on my next life I will be blessed with that great of talent. One thing is for sure, I will be reading more Louise Erdrich in the near future. Thank you!

Zooey/Cam said...

Oscar, you have some wonderful reading ahead of you. Master Butcher's Singing Club is one of my favorites.

Like you I also like to keep lists,etc of what I've read. Some years ago I started keeping a book journal. I do one page on each book I read. It is great to go back and survey what has been read each year. It is also a great to go back, sometimes several years, and reread a page. Somehow the one page of notes brings back so much of the book.



Oscar said...

Tank you for the suggestion. I will try to find a copy this week end.

Xtreme English said...

thank you for posting all those good books and writers! since i quit watching TV, i've had lots of time to read. so wonderful to know there's more of your writing, too.