My mother and I are having a good-natured competition to see which one of us will read the greatest number of books in this calendar year. So far we are neck and neck. She reads more consistently than I do, but I read faster. I am also keeping track of my total number of pages, but I don't think that she does. Right now I'm trying to read through things that I've been half done with for a long time. I figure that I can't really transport the next-to-my-bed stack of books. As a result, my reading list has been particularly schizophrenic recently. Here are the things that I've read in the past two weeks:
1. A best seller that mixes the Dracula legend and academic mystery/thriller.
2. A popular history of GIN.
3. A book of negative reviews of "classic" albums.
4. A collection of short stories about psychotherapy, based on actual cases from the therapy career of the author.
5. A "comic" novel about a British royal couple who try to reclaim the U.S. for the Crown.
6. A parenting book. (Don't ask.)
7. A terrible book of short stories about a 20-something chick who moves to Austin with her cousin. Most of the stories are about trying to get into Tom Waits shows. I hated it.
8. A thriller by Eric Ambler--the "father" of the modern political thriller. He's awesome.
I'm halfway through (and will finish tonight) a novel about an Indian (from India) myth about a princess with five husbands. It's actually pretty good. Normally I have a rule against reading anything that takes place in India (long story) but this one is making me rethink the rule a little. (Have I mentioned before that I also have rules against a) books that begin on a boat b) leisure activities that require renting shoes and c) films that star Angelina Jolie--except for Hackers, but that is because the presence of the fabulous Johnnie Lee Miller trumps all other rules. I'd also bowl or ice skate with him.)
I've also been watching a lot of rented movies while I pack. They include:
3. Charlie Bartlett. (Liked it a lot. It felt like an old-fashioned teen flick. AND I couldn't love Robert Downey Jr. more. More on this film later.)
4. The Hammer. (Adorable, actually.)
5. Sleuth. (Not as good as the original, but Harold Pinter wrote the screenplay, and gets interviewed in the extras. I love Harold Pinter.)
I have the first season of Hill Street Blues to keep me company for the rest of my packing. More on that coming.