Sunday, November 30, 2008


December 2008
How the Mind Works - Steven Pinker
Henry and Cato - Iris Murdoch
Lunar Park - Bret Easton Ellis
The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
The Death of Artemio Cruz - Carlos Fuentes
Love - Toni Morrison
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie - Muriel Spark
The Tenderness of Wolves - Stef Penney
The Diving Pool - Yoko Ogawa
The Debt to Pleasure - John Lanchester
Daphne - Justine Picardie
Offbeat bride - Ariel Meadow Stallings
The Story of a Marriage - Andrew Sean Greer
Born Standing Up - Steve Martin
Scoop - Evelyn Waugh

November 2008
The Swallows of Kabul - Yasmina Khadra
The zookeeper's wife - Diane Ackerman
Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates
The Echo Maker - Richard Powers
Come to me - Amy Bloom
The war of the roses - Warren Adler
Snow flower and the secret fan - Lisa See
Lipstick Jungle - Candace Bushnell
The darkness of Wallis Simpson - Rose Tremain
Living to tell the tale - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

October 2008
The tenant of Wildfelll Hall - Anne Bronte
The Siege of Krishnapur - JG Farrell
Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
One perfect day - Rachel Mead
The clothes on their backs - Linda Grant
My mother's wedding dress - Justine Picardie
Master class: lessons from leading writers - Nancy Bunge
A joss stick for my mother - Lienfung Li
Global religions: An introduction - Mark Juergensmeyer
Idea of Perfection - Kate Grenville
20 Fragments of a Ravenous Youth - Xiaolu Guo
The Well-Educated Mind: A Guide to the Classical Education You Never Had - Susan Bauer Wise

September 2008
the library at night - Alberto Manguel
In the Country of Men - Hisham Matar
Changing Places - David Lodge
When you are engulfed in flames - David Sedaris

Carry Me Down - M J Hyland
A Good Year - Peter Mayle
A Long Long Way - Sebastian Barry
Gabriel's Gift - Hanif Kureishi
Three cups of tea: One Man's mission to promote peace - Greg Mortenson
At Large and At Small, Confessions of a Literary Hedonist - Anne Fadiman
Sea of Poppies - Amitav Ghosh

August 2008
The City of Falling Angels - John Berendt
The Raw Shark Texts - Steven Hall
Music and Silence - Rose Tremain
Paris Stories - Mavis Gallant
Housekeeping - Marilynne Robinson
Infidel - Ayaan Hirsi Ali
The Geographer's Library - Jon Fasman
Under the Banner of Heaven - Jon Krakauer
Gilgamesh - Joan London
The Maytrees - Anne Dillard
The ministry of special Cases - Nathan Englander

July 2008

The Blue Flower - Penelope Fitzgerald
The Once and Future King - T.H. White
Magical Thinking - Augusten Burroughs
The Moviegoer - Walker Percy
The Sea - John Banville
The Queen of Attolia - Megan Whalen Turner
The Lottery and other stories - Shirley Jackson
When the Emperor was Divine - Julie Otsuka
The Abstinence Teacher - Tom Perrotta
Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant - Anne Tyler
Mister Pip - Lloyd Jones
Signed, mata Hari - Yannick Murphy
The Story of My Face - Kathy Page
Like you'd understand anyway - Jim Shephard
Eva Trout - Elizabeth Bowen

June 2008 (19)
The Wood Wife - Terri Windling
Bitter Sweets - Roopa Farooki
A Winter Book - Tove Jansson
Close Range: Wyoming Stories- Annie Proulx
Special Topics in Calamity Physics - Marisha Pessl
The Gangster we are all looking for - Le Thi Diem Thuy
Civilwarland in Bad Decline - George Saunders
Hope and other dangerous pursuits - Laila Lalami
Loving - Henry Green
The Color Purple - Alice Walker
Night - Elie Wiesel
The Maltese Falcon - Dashiell Hammett
84, Charing Cross Road - Helene Hanff
Farenheit 541 - Ray Bradbury
Autobiography of a face - Lucy Grealy
Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
Brave New World Revisited - Aldous Huxley
The Colour - Rose Tremain
Amy and Isabelle - Elizabeth Strout

May 2008 (14)
First Snow on Fuji - Yasunari Kawabata
Ex Libris - Anne Fadiman
The Picador book of Contemporary Chinese Fiction- David Su
Lust/Caution - Eileen Chang
A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian - Marina Lewycka
Saving Agnes - Rachel Cusk
The Complete Borrowers - Mary Norton
Schindler's Ark - Thomas Keneally
La Cucina - Lily Prior
The Migrant Painter of Birds - Lidia Jorge
Morvern Callar - Alan Warner
The Commissariat of Enlightenment - Ken Kalfus
Martin Dressler: The Tale of an American Dreamer - Steven Millhauser
Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman - Haruki Murakami

April 2008 (12)
The Falls - Joyce Carol Oates
This Side of Brightness - Colum McCann
Purple Hibiscus - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
So I am Glad - A.L.Kennedy
Comfort Woman - Nora Okja
Reading like a Writer - Francine Prose
The Translator - Leila Aboulela
A Family Daughter - Maile Meloy
Like Life - Lorrie Moore
Travels of Jamie McPheeters - Robert Taylor
Water For Elephants - Sara Gruen
The keepers of the house - Shirley Ann Grau

March 2008 (13)
Oh the glory of it all - Sean Wiley
The Last Unicorn - Peter S. Beagle
Gossip Girl - Cecily von Ziegesar
Edwin Mullhouse: The Life and Death of an American Writer, 1943-1954 by Jeffrey Cartwright - Steven Millhauser
Quicksand and Passing - Nella Larsen
The Passion - Jeanette Winterson
The Thief - Megan Whalen Turner
Breakfast of Champions - Kurt Vonnegut
Hexwood - Diana Wynne Jones
The Ladies of Grace Adieu and Other Stories - Susanna Clarke
All Aunt Hagar's Children - Edward P Jones
The Mistress's Daughter - A.M. Homes
As Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised as a Girl - John Colapinto

February 2008 (6)
Louise Erdich - The Master Butchers Singing Club
Barbara Kingsolver - Animal, Vegetable, Miracle
Karen Joy Fowler - The Jane Austen Book Club
Jim Crace - The Pesthouse
Anthony Kiedis - Scar Tissue
Marjane Satrapi - The Complete Persepolis

January 2008 (11)
The Glass Castle - Jeannette Walls
Reluctant Fundamentalist - Mohsin Hamid
The Gathering - Anne Enright
Enduring Love - Ian McEwan
Gateway - Frederik Pohl
The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
The Stolen Child - Keith Donohue
Good in Bed - Jennifer Weiner
The Indian Clerk - David Leavitt
Into the Wild - Jon Krakauer
The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao - Junot Diaz

Six Billion People by Tom Chandler

And all of you so beautiful
I want to bring you home with me
to sit close on the couch.

My invitation inserted in six billion bottles,
corked with bark from the final forest
and dropped in the ocean of my longing.

We would speak the language of no words,
pass the jug of our drunken joy
at being babies growing into death.

Sometimes, I know, life is stupid, pointless,
beside the point, but here's the point —
maybe we would fall

in love, settle down together,
share the wine, the bills,
the last of the oxygen and the remote.

"Six Billion People" by Tom Chandler, from Toy Firing Squad

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


Packing up. The nagging worry of departure. Lost keys, unwritten labels, tissue paper lying on the floor. I hate it all. Even now, when I have done so much of it, when I live, as the saying goes, in my boxes. Even today, when shutting drawers and flinging wide an hotel wardrobe, or the impersonal shelves of a furnished villa, is a methodical matter of routine, I am aware of sadness, of a sense of loss. Here, I say, we have lived, we have been happy. This has been ours, however brief the time. Though two nights only have been spent beneath a roof, yet we leave something of ourselves behind. Nothing material, not a hair-pin on a dressing-table, not an empty bottle of Aspirin tablets, not a hankerchief beneath a pillow, but something indefinable, a moment of our lives, a thought, a mood.
This house sheltered us, we spoke, we loved within those walls. That was yesterday. Today we pass on, we see it no more, and we are different, changed in some infinitesimal way. We can never be quite the same again. Even stopping for luncheon at a wayside inn, and going to a dark, unfamiliar room to wash my hands, the handle of the door unknown to me, the wallpaper peeling in strips, a funny little cracked mirror above the basin; for this moment, it is mine, it belongs to me. We know one another. This is the present. There is no past and no future. Here I am washing my hands, and the cracked mirror shows me to myself, suspended as it were, in time; this is me, this moment will not pass.

- Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier