What To Read, What To Read

So, I’m trying to pick out what books to take on our cruise next week. Because of course that’s the most important thing to pack; clothes can just be plucked from the basket and chucked into the suitcase willy nilly the day before we leave, but reading requires some actual planning.
(Now if this sounds like I have my priorities in the wrong place, let me point out to you that my lovely girlfriend is in the dining room perusing her library and doing the exact same thing right now, and neither of us has so much as cracked a suitcase.)
I have alot to choose from, and that’s taking some narrowing down. We’re only gone five days, so in all likelihood I will only need two books, but of course I’m taking three, because I need to have options. And I don’t want to lug around hardbacks, so that rules out lots of my books. I’ve read most all of the mass market paperbacks I own, so I’m looking through my trade paperbacks. I don’t want anything dark or grim or textbook-like, but I would be bored as hell by throw-away romance or dumb genre crap.
Here, so far, are the options I’ve narrowed down:
The Shadow of the Wind
by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
I bought this way back on another vacation – last year when we were in Chicago for the gay games. It has some great reviews and was a bestseller, which recommends it. It’s described as “scary” and a “thriller” which gives me pause, but it’s about authors and books, so it’s right up my alley. This one is definitely going.
The Power of Place
Winifred Gallagher
A non-fiction book “How our surroundings shape our thoughts, emotions and actions.” It’s an interesting subject, doesn’t sound brain-busting, and was reviewed well by several reliable reviewers, and described as “engrossing” and “richly textured and intriguing” so I think this going, too.
Hot-Wiring your Creative Process
by Curt Cloninger
I’ve been meaning to read a work-related book for sometime, and this one looks fun, stimulating and not brain-busting. I feel guilty that I’m only half-way through Transcending CSS Design, so I’m seriously thinking about taking this along, although the balance of two non-fiction books to only one fiction makes me think twice. I have a much easier time focusing and getting lost in fiction these days what with my recent ADD-like problem. (I blame the internets. And coffee.)
Birds of a Feather
Jacqueline Winspear
A mystery novel that’s received several awards and good reviews, so it’s exacly what I want. I picked it up at our workplace booksale (Penguin is one of our publishing companies). Unfortunately, it’s a sequel (the first was equally well reviewed). I really like the idea of a nice, non-pulpish mystery, and the cover and description are great, but I don’t know if this is one of those “They Must Be Read In Order” deals.
The Night Listener
by Armistead Maupin
Another bestseller, and I love Maupin. Even reading the cover, I’m not sure I understand the plot, but a reviewer mentioned “hitchcock” so it’s on the list. I’ll read more about it on Amazon before I decide.
The Geographer’s Library
by Jon Fasman
Another fiction, but it’s also about musty old books, which is lovely, but might be overkill. Probably not going.
So…. what do you think?

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One comment on “What To Read, What To Read
  1. MJ says:

    I’d skip taking the Power of Place. After all, I’m guessing that your place at the cruise is going to be much different than your place at home.
    Hot-Wiring your Creative Process sounds like it might be “sorta” work, but not enough to ruin your vacation.
    Have a fun trip!

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