Math News — Reading & Re-Reading
I have about a dozen books I want to read right now; not just read but re-read. Like, forget about all the great books I haven’t read yet; there are a ton of books I’ve already read that I want to read. Here they are:
- Wind-Up Bird Chronicles, by Haruki Murakami
- Kafka on the Shore, by Haruki Murakami
Murakami writes realistic fantasy; I have heard the genre described as magical realism; it is mostly just realistic, but then there will be fantasy in one key detail. Oftentimes, the key detail involves a shape-shifting identity in some characters; they are possessed and then un-possessed, or they slip into different worlds. Sort of like Charlie Kaufman screenplays. Anyway, I am particularly interested in re-reading the Wind-up Bird Chronicles, because in that story the hero sets out to find his missing wife; actually in the first chapter he is seeking his missing cat, but the wife has already gone missing in a sense; that this is shown by the cat being missing is part and parcel of the type of writing that Murakami does. The whole story kind of appeals to me because the character is crossing dimensional boundaries in search of a soul mate, sort of. It’s really well-done.
- Based On A True Story, by Norm Macdonald.
I just pulled this off the shelf; I just read it a couple years ago, but I enjoy Norm’s comedy so much it might be fun to re-read his book. He’s a freaking genius.
- Lila, by Robert Pirsig
- The Other Side, by Joseph Heller
Okay, I cheated — I haven’t read either of those above two books. But I have read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Pirsig, for which Lila is the sequel. Like Pirsig, Heller was a one-hit wonder; and The Other Side is not the one hit. What the two above have in common is that I purchased each of them new, at the bookstore, last month. We’ll see if I ever get to them. As long as I’m mentioning books I haven’t read that I just bought, I should add Walden, by Thoreau. But honestly, I don’t think I’m going to read that any time soon. So, back to books I’ve already read:
- Catch-22, by Joseph Heller
- Pale Fire, by Vladimir Nabokov
- The Brothers Karamazov, by Fyodor Dostoevsky
I just mentioned the last one to my cousin on the phone; I think he brought it up and I said, oh, maybe we should read that together instead of the Bible, which is what we’ve been reading. But then I thought, well if we take a break from the Bible then we’ll never pick it up again. Still, our conversation awakened that enthusiasm for that book. On the other hand, I don’t currently own a copy. I do own a copy of Pale Fire, however — just grabbed that one last week. Freakin’ hysterical!
I might be out of books I want to re-read. Maybe I lied when I said 12.
Honestly, I’ll be lucky if I read even a single book between now and May. I’m supposed to be studying for this big math test. Ahh, well.