Thursday, January 05, 2012

Read in 2011

I don't know how not to be afraid. - Shostakovich speaking to Stravinksy, possibly only about conducting.

Most of what I find these days is mediocre, if only by definition. Meh is okay, what would be the alternative? Pledges were made last January to read 15 Polish books whereas I only read four. I did top 100 books in 2011 for whatever that is worth. Was there disappointment? Certainly. I would fathom the following as

1Q84 Haruki Murakami
The Pale King David Foster Wallace
Reamde Neal Stephenson
Next James Hynes

This quartet share something obviously. One should be quick to consider that the Pale King was in no way nascent novel form.

The Shostakovich quote is from Wendy Lesser's Music For Silenced Voices, a study of the 15 quartets. This volume remains slim in itself, depending on padding and it becomes more a biography of the Beethoven Quartet which premiered most of the works by Shostakovich. I do thank Joel for the gift; if for nothing else, I listened again to all the quartets over a long holiday weekend.

Tihana bought me the new Houellebecq which I noted on the previous posting. This was wretched beauty which found ways to touch and move, even my blase ass in the depths of winter. This was a shrieking success.


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