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The latest from my to-be-read pile

I love my library’s online catalog.  I ransack it from my own home, request books, and pick them up when I’m notified via email that they’ve come in.  I’m like a kid in a candy store, but the candy is free.  And I have little self-control.

Some of the titles from my latest haul: Infinite Jest (David Foster Wallace), Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand (Helen Simonson), Daphne (Justine Picardie), The Bridegrooms (Allison Pittman) and Ecology of a Cracker Childhood (Janisse Ray).

Then there are yard sales.  A recent expedition yielded Bel Canto (Ann Patchett), Where the Heart Is (Billie Letts), a history of California, a “Get Fuzzy” anthology, and a 1961 Methodist hymnal.  Why do I need a hymnal?  Because it’s a treasure trove of interesting phrases that might make good titles for my own novels.

[EDITED TO ADD: Okay, I just realized that makes me sound like a flamin' heathen who doesn't value hymns in their own right.  But I do.  Matter of fact, I left the hymnal open all day yesterday to "Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing" just because I wanted to brood over the lyrics.  "Let thy goodness, like a fetter, bind my wandering heart to thee...."   It's one of my all-time favorite hymns.]

And I need “Get Fuzzy” just because.

I’m better than halfway finished reading Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand, and I’ll be sorry when it’s over.  It’s about an aging British widower who falls in love with a Pakistani widow, provoking trouble in both families.  The book is a delight, starting with the cover art.  It portrays a coat stand that holds their coats and hats, snuggled up close.  At first glance, it looks like a couple of people kissing, but it’s only their outer garments hanging there.  Very clever, even to the play on words: a coat stand, the major’s last stand . . . .

<contented sigh> I just love good novels, good cover art, and good titles.

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