Keeping Myself Alive By Reading

SInce I’ve been very depressed this spring and summer, I’ve been looking harder than ever to find reasons to keep from committing suicide.  (Not that I know a painless way to commit suicide, but that’s beside the point.  Anyway –) Behold — I have found a pretty damn good reason:

There’s books out there to read in them thar hills.

These are the books that everyone (or seemingly everyone) says that I should read and I never get around to them.  You know those bibliographies in the back of non-fiction books?  I read those bibliographies and sometimes I read the books listed in them, too.  But even in fiction books or short stories, some character will refer to a famous novel that I haven’t read yet.  Now I have to read this novel in order to understand the joke.

So earlier this month, I came up with a list of 100 Books I Need To Read Before I Die.  The beautiful thing about this list is that the 100 books never decreases.  Whenever I read one of the books on the list, I delete the title and replace it with another.  In this way, I will always need to read another 100 hundred books before I can die.  Hmm – perhaps I’ve discovered the secret to eternal life.

Here is a very incomplete list of the books I’ve read this spring and summer:

  • Lady Chatterley’s Lover (DH Lawrence)
  • The Sound and the Fury (William Faulkner)
  • An Invisible Sign of My Own (Aimee Bender)
  • The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
  • The Prayers of Agnes Sparrow (Joyce Magnin)
  • The Ritual Bath: Book 1 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Sacred and Profane: Book 2 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Milk and Honey: Book 3 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Day of Atonement: Book 4 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • False Prophet: Book 5 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Grievous Sin: Book 6 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Sanctuary: Book 7 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Justice: Book 8 of the Peter Decker/Rina Lazarus Mystery Series (Faye Kellerman)
  • Horse Heaven (Jane Smiley)
  • Picture Perfect (Jodi Picoult)
  • The Bonesetter’s Daughter (Amy Tan)
  • A Murder on the Appian Way (Steven Saylor)
  • A Mist of Prophecies (Steven Saylor)
  • Judgement of Caesar (Steven Saylor — yes, this was another series, but I’m not getting into it)
  • Parson and Jack Russell Terriers: A Complete Pet Owner’s Guide (D. Caroline Colie, PhD)
  • A Clockwork Orange (Anthony Burgess)
  • Lady Macbeth: A Novel (Susan Fraser King)
  • The Cleft (Doris Lessing)
  • The Great Match Race: When North Met South in America’s First Sports Spectacle (John Eisenberg)

And this just scratches the surface of what I’ve read this spring/ summer.  Off to read now.

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