Monday, December 24, 2007

New Yorker

I may not be a big fan of Xmas, but I do look forward to the New Yorker's fiction issue every December. This year I plan on keeping it close by to dip into during any spare solitary moments I manage to snatch between Xmas and New Year's.

I just finished reading Charming Billy by Alice McDermott and I have to say I was impressed. It was the first thing I've read by her and I'll be (hopefully) picking up more during the Boxing Week sales. (I may not like Xmas, but I do like Boxing Day for the sales!) I'd love to tell you all about Billy and the girl he loved and lost, but I have to get back into the kitchen. I've already baked two batches of cookies and a pie today but I'm not finished yet. I hope everyone has a great holiday and finds something wonderful to read!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Another Book Sale!

For anyone in St. Catharines or within driving distance, just wanted you to know about Book Depot's fabulous Boxing Week sale. Book Depot is a huge warehouse selling remaindered books already deeply discounted, but for a few days after Xmas they slash their already amazing prices a further 50% off! Trust me it's worth the drive!

Book Depot
340 Welland Ave.,
St. Catharines, Ontario


Dec 26 9-9

Dec 27 9-6

Dec 28 9-6

Dec 29 9-5

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Pages Sale

If you live here in Toronto Pages bookstore is having a sale!


Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Best Kind of Mail

The books I ordered from AbeBooks arrived today! Yeah! I love it when there are books in the mailbox. I ordered This Real Night and Cousin Rosamund by Rebecca West after finishing The Fountain Overflows. The only thing is they are both withdrawn library books which was not specified in their descriptions. I'm not sure I would have ordered them had I known, but they are both in good condition and since they were only a dollar each I really can't complain. After I strip them of their weird library plastic wrappings I'll feel more kindly towards them, I'm sure.

I was excited to read last week in the tv listings that a local station (TVO for anyone here in Ontario) was going to be playing three Jane Austen dramas over the holidays. They started off with Northanger Abbey last Sunday night which I dutifully taped. Except I didn't get the ending which kind of ruins a movie experience, I find. I don't know whether the times in the listing were wrong or what. I know I set up my VCR properly because I double checked it, so it wasn't my fault (this time). All I know is this doesn't bode well for TVO and me. I'm still mad at them for cancelling Imprint - a great book show that ran for years. Come on TVO make me love you again - replay Northanger Abbey.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Book vs Movie

I just read that the movie Atonement has received a pile of Golden Globe nominations. I'm always a bit leery of movie adaptations of books I love. I know Atonement (the movie) has been getting good reviews and I'll probably rent it on DVD at some point, although it might take awhile. I finally rented Possession a few weeks ago. I let it sit on the shelf at my local video store for years before finally taking it home simply because I loved A.S Byatt's novel so much. I think short stories make better sense for film adaptations than novels do. A short story can be lingered over whereas a novel always ends up feeling so whirlwind and rushed on the big screen. Two recent examples of short stories that made good films were Brokeback Mountain and Away From Her. Hopefully we'll see more of that. It would be wonderful for both short story writers and film makers.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Quote of the Day

"To acquire the habit of reading is to constuct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life."

~ W. Somerset Maugham

Ain't that the truth.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Decisions, decisions

Well, I'm down to the last few pages of The Wives of Henry VIII by Antonia Fraser. (Am I ever glad I didn't marry that man, find myself related to him or in any way know him - and I can't imagine how horrible his daughter must have been to get the moniker Bloody Mary after all he did.) I recommend the book if you are interested in any or all of Henry's six wives. But now I am faced with that tough but delightful decision - what to read next? I've been casting my eye over the shelves and piles but haven't made my selection yet. You'd think I'd have more important things to dwell on, wouldn't you? In my life with books this is one of my favourite moments - almost finished one good book and dreaming of starting the next.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Anne Boleyn

I'm still reading The Wives Of Henry VIII by Antonia Fraser and I have to say, Anne Boleyn got screwed! She was no angel, but I think I may have liked knowing the feisty, sharp-tongued Anne. I'm really enjoying this book. I'm currently on page 290, Henry is looking for wife number four.

The final episode of The Tudors aired on Tuesday night here in Canada. I haven't watched it yet, I've got it on tape. I'm looking forward to watching it Saturday night. I read somewhere they are filming the second season of the Tudors now. Can't wait.

I've already mentioned my fondness for costume dramas, so I was excited to read on someone's blog the other day PBS is planning to air six Jane Austen mini series next year. WNED is the PBS station that broadcasts to this neck of the woods so I really, really hope they are planning on sending Jane to Canada. I'm already dreaming of Colin Firth as Mr Darcy. Wasn't he divine?

Tuesday, December 4, 2007


Suddenly it is December and I am scrambling to finish my Christmas shopping. Yes, finish - I started shopping weeks ago. I don't like shopping and I hate crowds so I always start early. Sometimes people think this makes life easier, but it is still the same amount of shopping, the same amount of worry (will Dad like this?!?) just without the lineups and out of stock disappointments.
I confess I buy people books as often as I can. I'm comfortable in bookstores, I know how to navigate them, unlike music stores. I must wander around HMV with a look of confused panic on my face judging by the way the hip salespeople descend on me, call me Ma'am, fetch everything on my list, then send me on my way as quickly as possible. Perhaps I scare all the young customers. I am, after all, the future.
Occasionally, when I am book buying for others, I wonder why it is that I am so seldom given books as gifts? I know other book lovers who have this same complaint. Do you get books as gifts? Or do you make a mad dash to your favourite bookstore on Boxing Day with the cash your mother gave you gripped firmly in hand and a maniacal grin on your face the same way I do?