Jan 2, 2013

Irish Bookshelf: Start the year as you mean to go on!


I never walk past a penny. I wave at solo magpies until they fly away. I dive to clear new shoes from a table with scalded-cat speed. When I find eggs in a corner of a field, I heed fairy warnings and clear the cattle to another pasture. Okay, I don't have cattle in Brooklyn. I don't have fields either. I do have eggs, and if I find them anywhere other than the carton, my superstitions rear themselves. For the past few days, I've been anxiously—and superstitiously—muttering "Start the year as you mean to go on," like a nun quietly rattling off decades of the rosary as she circles a holy well. 
Yes, a new year brings out the nun in me (albeit a nun who misses her mouth with a plastic champagne glass). I'm suddenly disciplined and regimented, religiously cleaning house and head, sorting plans and pans, changing sheets, writing lists, and making sure my knickers and bras match. 

My devoted efforts to get the new year off to a good start are an exhausting exercise in mind over matter. I didn't want to exercise this morning but I did because I want to exercise all year. Actually, I wanted to want to exercise so I wouldn't have to deal with not wanting to all year, but it was cold and seemed earlier than it usually is at that time of the morning, so I settled for just doing. I had no problem whatsoever sitting down to read this morning. I kicked off my new year with Colm Toibin's The Testament of Mary, and today started on New Ways to Kill Your Mother. I would gladly read Colm Toibin for the entire year but I won't need to with all the Irish writing I need to catch up on after a busy, and bookless, last few months of 2012.

My reading list to kickstart 2013:


Emma Donoghue's Astray, John Banville's Ancient Light, Mary Costello's The China Factory.



Kevin Barry's Dark Lies the Island, Nuala Ni Chonchuir's Mother America, Roddy Doyle's Two Pints.


Joseph O'Connor's Where Have You Been?, Dermot Bolger's The Venice Suite: A Voyage Through Loss, Donal Ryan's Spinning Heart.

I'll have no problem stocking my bookshelf in early 2013 it seems. Less fun is my post-holiday-cheer/rear food-shopping list:


Happy New Rear Year!


2 comments:

WOMEN RULE WRITER said...

Wheee!! Some great titles there ;) I just finished The Spinning Heart - will be curious to see how you like it. Happy New Year - wishing you a great 2013!

Jacinta said...

Thanks Nuala! and happy New Year to you, too! I hope it's a productive writing year for you so that I can plan another productive reading year ;-)
xxj

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