17 November 2010

Read This Next (<--!!!!!!)

That's what I see next to every book on my shelf.  And in my NOOK. 

< --!!!!!!!  Read that book next!

And I have a lot of books.  It doesn't matter if I've read the book before.  I seem to want to read everything.  All at once (that's probably some sort of psychological condition right there; we can call it read-me-now syndrome).

Mediazombie talked me into reading Read This Next by making me read this part of the introduction:
In the pages of this book, you will learn about many other books, every one of which is cuningly designed to be read and give pleasure at the same time.  As you read them, your mind will be nourished and your spirit refreshed.  Your body will be flooded with endorphins and serotonin, causing your hair to become glossy and your skn clear and firm.  Friends will be impressed with the depth of your intellect.  Dates will fall in love with the glossiness of your hair. (We cannot rule out the possibility that dates will fall in love with the depth of your intellect, but don't hold your breath.) - p 13
Yup, I was hooked; I have great hair and I read tons so why not more reading for better hair? (joke)  I didn't really need another book to help me find more books to read - I tend to do a decent job all on my own - but I loved the authors' tone.  For example, when recommending The Good Soldier Svejk by Jaroslav Hasek (a book I already have on my TBR thanks to Thursday Next):
[Svejk] sails cheerfully through the miseries of prison, asylums, and the front lines of World War I, while remaining the same incorrigible dog-stealing dunce of a genius he ever was.  The gallery of crooks, cowards, and villains who surround him are a pointedly unflattering mirror held up to the Czech society - or, really, to the silly, misbegotten human race. - p 216
Mittelmark and Newman give wittily biting summaries (like the above) and wonderfully good discussion questions for nearly 200 books.  Another approximately 300 books are mentioned as "read also" (I'm guessing on proportion, here) for 500 books "to read next."  Awesome.

The book has recommendations grouped losely by topic - love, memoir, politics, memoir, death, religion - and the recommendations are far reaching.  Classics, contemporary fiction, satire, both ends of the political spectrum, drama.  All are welcome.

This is a different kind of list so I hadn't read a large percentage of the books Mittelmark and Newman recommend - I just have to find the time to read several hundred new books!

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