What the hell is a loose baggy monster?

I’ve decided that it’s about time I join this crazy world of blogging and create a chronicle of the books I buy/read/admire on the shelf (or the floor, or the pile by the sofa, or the stack by the bed). Besides, as I’ve enjoyed many hours of procrastination reading other people’s blogs, why not make the leap to a whole new level of avoiding my work? At least I can try to rationalize it to myself by emphasizing the creative nature of this enterprise.

So to start, I recently discovered the Chunkster Challenge. Although I’m too late to officially join, it got me thinking… This is a challenge that seems right up my alley, after all. I love the “loose baggy monsters” (i.e. Tolstoy’s War and Peace) that Henry James so disparaged. If the book is fat, has a “pretty” cover, nice paper, and can be mistaken for a doorstop (or a weapon if you’re so inclined)* then there’s a good chance I will contemplate reading it. Unfortunately, my good intentions often clash with the realities of work, school, and my unreasonably-expanding list of hobbies. So, seeing as it’s a new year, a new blog, and I am always looking for an excuse to buy more fat books (much to my husband’s dismay and aching back–he’s the one who carries the boxes when we move), I am going to give it a shot. Here’s a very early list of books I want to tackle:

1. Dostoevsky’s Demons

2. Vikram Seth’s A Suitable Boy

3. Cervantes’ Don Quixote

As it’s well into winter here in central New York, I think Dostoevsky is a good place to start. I don’t know about you, but snow, frosty windows, and words like “windchill” always bring Russian novels and hot chocolate to mind. (As a Russian major in my undergraduate years at a small liberal arts college in Wisconsin, this relationship has stood me in good stead). So wish me luck, while I try to find something else to prop open the doors….

*note: I would NEVER use a book as a weapon–it might hurt the book!


2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by David on January 31, 2007 at 5:10 pm

    It’s interesting that when you think of snow and winter Russian novels and hot chocolate come to mind. I would hope that you leave room for some vodka if you want a true Russian “experience”.

    I also want to read Don Q. It would be one of those proud moments, like when I skipped classes at the University of Glasgow to read Moby Dick. I should have gone to class, it probably would have been more interesting.

    Nice first post, now let’s see if you can keep it up.


  2. Posted by Janine on January 31, 2007 at 6:23 pm

    I can’t even pronounce those authors’ names.


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