catching up

I really have been reading a lot, or at least I was until we got cable and the Tour de France took over my waking, non-working hours. But I can see the end and the stack is piling up. I read Dominion by Calvin Baker, who will be appearing at the Key West Literary Seminar in January. It was a little outside my normal reading, which is the best kind (it's the reason I joined a book group years ago although that fell by the wayside when I was pursuing my master's). I read Women and Ghosts by Alison Lurie, a slim book of short stories that I think I might have read before, unless that was an effect of its eerieness. It reminded me how much I like her, and how much I need to read The Last Resort even though I have a strange fear of reading about places I know and love. (Haven't been able to make myself read Tracy Kidder's Hometown yet, either, about Northampton, Mass., where I was born.) I read Sacrifice by Eric Shanower, the second volume in his Age of Bronze series of graphic novels about the Trojan War -- it was as good as the first, though it does suffer from that effect of many of the guys looking the same; you can distinguish them by their headbands, though. Over the Fourth of July weekend, perhaps influenced by the reintroduction of cable television into my brain, I found myself craving brain candy so I read The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory (author of The Other Boleyn Girl and numerous other works of Tudor Trash). I gulped that down in a day and a half so maybe I'm not over my Tudor thing entirely; plus it was fun to hear from/about a couple of the lesser-known Henry VIII queens (Anne of Cleves and Katherine Howard, or Nos 4 and 5 if you're counting). And just today I finished Dreaming Up America by Russell Banks, which I'll be reviewing for Solares Hill shortly. Whew.