School's Out

Summer reading! I'm very excited. I'm thinking about whole days devoted to nothing but eating fresh fruit and reading.  Of course, there is still life to deal with, but I'll have at least a few hours each day to transport myself to some other world, riding the waves of words that great writers have spent lonely hours laboring over just for me. 

E.L. Doctorow is first on my list. I was going to pick up something light and easy, and just breeze through its pages this first week out of school, but I thought, I'll finish in three hours and be sad that it's ended.  So I found City of God and wondered how I haven't read this book in the past fourteen years.  Easy enough to rectify that.

If you've never read Doctorow, all I can say is, Start! He has a unique voice; he is at once a novelist and an historian, however, his narrative sucks you in so thoroughly you forget that he is either, and he becomes someone you know, just talking, telling you about his thoughts and life.

The scope of his knowledge astounds me. If I could meet him the first thing I would ask is how on earth do you know so much about everything? I've been around a while. I read with a bottomless-pit sort of appetite, I'm often tapped for information by friends and colleagues, I'm a researcher by nature, so I feel like I know a lot. But Doctorow? Puts me to shame. I would look at the toes of my shoes and draw circles in the dirt like an eight-year-old if I were in this man's presence. And that's why I love his work - he teaches me.

I think Andrew's Brain is next on my list.


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