Saturday, November 11, 2017

November (second week) 2017 Reads

A fine week of reading which included a super novel, excellent poetry, and a fine collection of short fiction. All this whilst workmen were crashing about overhead installing plywood flooring in the attic. Then there is the story of the week...

“Deal Me In 2017!”

Story: The Vacant Lot (in The Wind in the Rose-bush and Other Stories of the Supernatural, by Mary Eleanor Wilkins Freeman, first published in 1903)

This story goes nicely with strange sounds in the attic. A family gives up small town life and buys a bargain house in a good Boston neighborhood. They find out why it was so cheap when strange things happen in the empty lot next door and then right in their house itself. A good ghost story, I will certainly read more in this collection. A Gutenberg gem.

Card: Four of Diamonds
I couldn't find a sufficiently creepy four of diamonds, but I did find this book on Amazon. It shows diamonds as signifying money. Money was the motive for the purchase of the house next to The Vacant Lot so I'll go with it. Looks like a fun book, if you're into that sort of thing. (It averages 4.5 stars from the 37 Amazon reviews)

from my shelves...

Kensington Gardens by

Miami Century Fox by Legna Rodríguez Iglesias; translated from the Spanish by Eduardo Aparicio
Bilingual editions of poetry translated from languages I have some familiarity with always fascinate me. They teach me so much about what I don't know. If I were to sit down with this collection of poems,  my minimal knowledge of Spanish and a good dictionary or two I could probably decipher some meaning of the text but the result would hardly be poetic and certainly not fifty-one Petarchan sonnets. I would totally miss the point and give up early on. A collection to make one appreciate the Cuban-American experience, poetry, and the art of fine translation.
Free review copy from publisher through LibraryThing giveaway.

I Am the Brother of XX  by Fleur Jaeggy; translated from the Italian by Gini Alhadeff
These strange short stories seemed to go perfectly with the strange noises coming from the attic. I almost expected the workmen to come downstairs and tell me they had found some weird artifacts from the 178 year history of the house. No such luck so I had to be startled by the odd goings on in this Gothic collection. The cover, by the way, is deceptively calm for the the sharp, sometimes brutal, world view in the stories.

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