Monday, October 12, 2009

What to Read

There are a lot of reasons why I love Portland, and one of them is Wordstock. This past weekend the Oregon Convension Center was taken over by a gient book fair, with ten stages and more than 200 authors giving readings. I wasn't able to make it on Saturday, but I did listen to 10 authors speak on Sunday. Simply being at an event that was so boustarously celebrating books was invigorating.

Oddly the event left me thinking about what I read, and how it relates to who I listened to speak. More than half of the authors who's talks I attended where people whose books I had already read. Some of them were even people that I personally know. Most of the authors who I haven't read yet, were writing in a genere that I read prolifically - so chances are high that I would make my way to their titles eventually.

But I only bought one book at Wordstock, and it was in a genre I never read. It was a graphic novel. It was also awsome! Masterpiece Comics is a compliation of classic literature parities told in the form of classic comics. Adam and Eve is told in a Blondy Comic Strip, Withering Hights is told as Tales of the Cript, Candeed is Ziggy, ect. The author was very personable, I found his presentation funny, and I enjoyed chatting with him afterward when I had him sign my book.

But if an author whose books I already know and love had been speaking on a different stage at the same time, I probably would have skipped Masterpiece Comics. This has made me wonder what else am I missing. What great gems of literature am I passing buy simply because they are housed on an isle of the bookstore I never walk down.

So I need your help. Please recomend 5 books in 5 different genres, so I can do a better job of rounding out my reading list.

Here are my 5 books for you:

Masterpiece Comics by R. Sikoryak - Graphic Novel

Look Me In The Eye by John Elder Robison - Memoir

Beneath the Marble Sky by John Shors - Historical Fiction

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time India by Sherman Alexie - Young Adult

Broken For You by Stephanie Kallos - Women's Fiction

Joke of the Day
A chicken walks into a library and goes up to the circulation desk. He says, "book, bok, bok, boook." The librarian hands the chicken a book. He tucks it under his wing and runs out. A while later, the chicken runs back in throws the first book into the return bin and again says, "book, bok, bok, book, bok." Again the librarian give the chicken a book, and the chicken runs out. Within a few minutes, the chicken is back and the librarian gives him a third book. But this time as the chicken is running out the door, she follows it. The chicken runs down teh street, through the park and down to the riverbank. There, sitting on a lily pad is a big, green frog. THe chicken holds up the book and shows it to the frog, saying "book, bok, bok, book." THe frong blinks and croaks, "read-it, read-it, read-it."


Jennifer Shirk said...

Thanks for the recommendations--and the joke! :)

I can recommend a few books...

Women's Fiction: "A Little Ray of Sunshine" by Lani Diane Smith

Memoir: "The Middle Place" by Kelly Corrigan

Young Adult: "I'd Tell You I love You but then I'd have to Kill You" by Ally Carter

Lakshmi Jagannathan said...

A graphic novel impressed me also at Wordstock(I went Sat and didn't go on Sun which is why I probably didn't run into you) An Impostor's daughter by Laurie Sandell. I also attended her workshop on freelance writing which was really good. I got Richard Dawkin's book free when I attended his lecture, this one is more of a science book on evolution.