Thursday, December 23, 2010

Waiting in the wings redux (Jude the Obscure, To the End of the Land, Freedom, The Tenth Parallel, The Balfour Declaration)

Since I'm not quite done with David Albahari's Leeches and I'm not quite ready for my list madness to begin, I think I'll do a second post on reading I have to look forward to in the coming months:

I think Thomas Hardy's Jude the Obscure may have made one of my TBR lists before but it really is near the top of one of my piles by the bed. I have wanted to re-read this tragic novel by one of the great non-conformists for some time. It patiently waits in the wings. I don't remember much about reading it the first time round and I'm sure that the 30+ years between the first reading and the second will make for a very different perspective.

David Grossman's recent novel about war and peace in Israel is a work of contemporary tragedy. A number of readers I trust have raved about this one enthusiastically. I'm looking forward to it, but it doesn't look like an easy read.

I thought Jonathan Franzen's The Corrections an ascerbic, observant, and funny book so I'm not going to miss his new novel, Freedom. Although I'm going to have to read this one when I have a large swath of time ahead of me... perhaps over the summer.

These two recent works, The Tenth Parallel by Liza Griswold in the genre of contemporary politics, and The Balfour Declaration by Jonathan Schneer, a historical work, examine some of the forces that shape the old and disastrous rift between Christians and Muslims and how the poison of religious self righteousness, when combined with nationalism, shapes our modern world.


Anonymous said...

Thomas Hardy is a new love of mine. I'm currently reading The Mayor of Casterbridge - though I haven't read Jude yet, it's on my list as well.

Rebecca H. said...

I have a copy of the Grossman book (it came to me free), and I'm intrigued by it, although not quite sure I'm up for tackling it. We'll see if the mood strikes. I also have Freedom and hope to get to that one definitely. I love Jude, dark as it is!