After all that noble stuff in my last post about my great weeding habits (I sound like Elmer Fudd) I must now report that it is all bunk. Don't believe that guy who wrote here on Thursday. On Friday I acquired 3 new treasures and I'm darn pleased about it.
Having reading Irish novelist Deirdre Madden's latest, Molly Fox's Birthday, this summer and raved about it, and then having read an earlier work of her's - One by One in the Darkness - and confirmed my admiration of the humanity of her vision and the sophistication of her voice, I decided I wanted to see from whence it all came. I ordered her first novel - Hidden Symptoms (1986) - from a second hand bookseller and it arrived yesterday. Theresa, a university student, experiences her faith come up against the cruelty of the violent death of her brother. Her The Birds of the Innocent Wood, Authenticity, and Remembering Light and Stone also sound like thoughtful and complex works that are going to be worth reading. Much to look forward to!
Last night, before meeting an old friend for dinner, I was near a bookstore - a rare occurrence these days - and dropped in for a browse. A few dollars later I was the proud owner of two new novels - Ward Just's recent Exiles in the Garden. He is an often praised novelist I have yet to read. This work sounds an interesting mix of politics and moral choices from an American as well as a European perspective. The other is Joseph Kertes new epic novel set in Hungary under Nazi occupation. Gratitude involves fictional characters interacting with Raoul Wallenberg, an actual figure from recent history - a Swedish humanitarian who worked to rescue Jews from murder by the Nazis. The novel is compared to The Garden of the Finzi-Continis, that's a jacket blurb to live up to. I'm excited to see how it holds up!