Only for Maria

I've seen this book meme floating around and I've been trying to avoid doing it, but since Marie of Alembic passed it on to me I'll have to go ahead and spend some time figuring it out.

You're stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be?

I'm assuming this means which book do we want to memorize in order to preserve it after all the books are burned. It would have to be a very, very short book since I'm awful at memorizing anything. Still, if I were capable of it, I think I'd choose Yeats' Complete Poems.

Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?

No, no, and still no. Wouldn't that be like falling in love with yourself? I really admire Atticus in To Kill a Mockingbird, but I wouldn't call it a "crush" by any stretch of the imagination.

The last book you bought is?

I bought three the last time I was at Barnes and Noble: Photoshop Masking & Compositing by Katrin Eismann, The Art of Photoshop by Daniel Giordin, and Selected Poems by John Ashberrry. I usually buy books in multiples, one reason I try to avoid bookstores when shopping.

What are you currently reading?

Normally I only read ONE book at a time, but right now I happen to be reading two books: Photoshop Masking and Compositing and Paul Hoover's Norton Anthology, Postmodern American Poetry.

Five books you would take to a deserted island:

I agree with Marie that I'd want a survival manual, specifically, US Army Survival Manual: FM 21-76. Again, like Marie I'd take a book of fairy tales, probably Grimm's Fairy Tales. It becomes a little harder after that. If I'm going to become Yeats' Complete Poems, I'd have to take that. I don't think I could do without Roethke's Complete Poems, either. I guess my final choice would be Louis Untermeyer's Modern American Poetry, because there's a lot in there I haven't re-read for quite awhile, and I very seldom re-read any book, unless it's a how-to book.

Quite a few of the sites I read regularly have already done this, but I'd love to know what Shelley, Jonathon, and Andru's favorite books are .

5 thoughts on “Only for Maria

  1. You’re asking me to think Loren. I’m not sure I can do that. And then I’d have to be honest, say what I really think rather than what will impress people. That leaves out “Tammy and the Doctor”.

  2. Loren: Thanks so much for picking this meme moment up — even before I had a chance to email you to alert you about it.

    I think I will have to drop over to your deserted island if I want to read or , better yet, hear, poetry. It seems that, aside from Shakespeare, there is not much in the way of poetry on my list…

  3. Gee, Loren, you’ve put me on the spot. I have so many unfinished posts already that I’m not sure I can commit to writing another. So I’ll try to answer as well as I can in this comment…

    Which book do you want to be/memorize?
    Austerlitz by W.G. Sebald

    Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?
    Yukiko in Tanizaki’s The Makioka Sisters

    The last books you bought are?
    * The Midnight Eye Guide to New Japanese Film by Tom Mes and Jasper Sharp
    * The Best American Essays 1994 (edited by Louis Menand)
    * Still Life and Other Stories by Shono Junzo
    * The End: Hamburg 1943 by Hans Erich Nossack
    * Purusaido shokei (A Poolside Scene) by Shono Junzo

    What are you currently reading?
    * Modern Girls, Shining Stars, The Skies of Tokyo: Five Japanese Women by Phyllis Birnbaum
    * Understanding W.G. Sebald by Mark R. McCulloh
    * Agitator, The Cinema of Takashi Miike by Tom Mes

    Five books you would take to a deserted island?
    Since a desert island would offer the perfect environment for improving my Japanese reading skills, I’d choose two reference books and three works of fiction:

    * Dictionary of Intermediate Japanese Grammar (Makino Seiichi and Tsutsui Michio)
    * The Kanji Dictionary (Spahn and Hadamitzky)
    * Yube no kumo (Evening Clouds), Shono Junzo
    * Bokuto kidan (A Strange Tale from East of the River), Nagai Kafu
    * Sasame yuki (The Makioka Sisters), Tanizaki Jun’ichiro

    But, if I could sneak another five into my knapsack (Japanese books are tiny, compared to Western books), I’d take:

    * Kokoro, Natsume Soseki
    * An’ya koro (A Dark Night’s Passing), Shiga Naoya
    * Yoji kari / Kani (Toddler Hunting / Crabs), Kono Taeko
    * Onnazakari (A Mature Woman), Maruya Saiichi
    * Noruwei no mori (Norwegian Wood), Murakami Haruki

  4. I think I’ll limit myself to Japanese literature, Jonathon, but I’ll put Sebald’s Austerlitz on my wishlist.

What do you think?