During winter and summer breaks, I can get around to the pile of books there’s no time to read during the class terms. I call these intersession free reads. Since my work schedule for the summer just changed, I finally compiled the new free read list. A few listed here are actually carryovers from winter break. And likely a few from this list will carry over into the next intersession free read.
Summer 02008 intersession free read list
I started reading Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass from the copy of my gracious host in SF. A stunning collection of poems. I admit, some of them made my eyes wet..
Mark Twain’s Letters from the Earth—I remain grossly overdue to read this fella. Couldn’t he be considered, I definitely believe he is, a USAmerican granddad of literary terroir..
Ruth Reichl’s Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table—No, it wasn’t Reichl, or David, or Fisher that inspired me to mine own place as a food writer. But a girlfriend from SF asked me to read this so we can chat about next time we meet..
The ever dilemma’d, Pollan’s In Defense of Food and A Place of My Own: The Education of an Amateur Builder—I received a free copy of the former at the Martha taping back in March. Along with Marion’s What to Eat (I think is a great reference versus cover to cover reading), have thus far resisted reading the latter. But they’re sort of required in my line. So, I will do it. I believe it’s a contemporary take on, and would make for a perfect comparative ecocritical dissertation with..
Thoreau’s Walden—I started this one over winter intersession, but only read about a hundred pages..
Another carry over but altogether fundamental in the environmental literature pantheon, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring..
Then there’s the entire collection of Gastronomica—I try to chink away at from time to time. I love this journal, but never seem to read through entire issues when they arrive in the mail. The spring edition just arrived yesterday and is sitting here, along with my pile for summer intersession, on top of the winter edition.
So, that’s it. I suppose tapping about my reading habits here gives you and you and you something of a glimpse into what I care about—food and the pebble we occupy. Creative nonfiction is, to me, the best genre in writing. It’s so vast and flexible. So many ways to play with it.
Where pure literature and novels are concerned, I consider myself illiterate. I suppose someday I could try a romance novel, certainly Jane Austin is on my radar. But my mind grandioses that mine own love life, and its sordid, at times sweet, enduring, and sincere bliss and aches, is worthy of its own volume. And yes, I have been thinking of a possible new series for Daily Prandium. But then once that bell jar is open, there’s no closing it.