Aquisitions: February 23

February 24, 2007

I used to think it was a little silly to post about books you just bought on your blog. But then I noticed I was always reading posts of this nature by others, and realized I was the one being silly. Here goes!

Last night I went to the bookstore with the intention of looking for some titles I needed for the Chunkster Challenge, and of course decided to browse for other things as well. My favorite used bookstore goes through stock pretty quickly; it’s a smaller shop and the owners are discriminating about what they purchase. So every time I visit I check to see if there’s any Bellow, Nabokov, and Sebald, or if there’s finally a copy of Blood Meridian (I’ve been looking in used bookstores for well over a year, and it’s mysteriously elusive — a Mideastern bias, perhaps?) Last night I found a new Saul Bellow title — one I didn’t know existed! It All Adds Up is a collection of Bellow’s occasional nonfiction published in 1994; most of the pieces are quite short, and were originally published in magazines and weeklies towards the end of Bellow’s life. I’m looking forward to learning more about the man, since he never wrote an autobiography and the only biography of Bellow was published before his death last year. The logical next step would be said biography and the Conversations With Saul Bellow collection. We’ll see how things go with It All Adds Up.

The Corrections is the book I plan on reading last to complete the Chunkster Challenge. It’s rare that I read a book written after 2000 — it has to really grab my attention, both in reviews and my interest in its subject matter. This book meets both those criteria, especially the first. For the paperback edition I have, Picador decided to devote half of the back cover to the rapturous praise heaped upon this book (in paragraph form, even). It seems unlikely that I’ll be disappointed.



  1. I’ve been looking for Blood Meridian myself. If I can’t find a used book I always assume it’s too good to part with. Makes me want it more.

  2. Tell me about it. I’ve even had trouble finding it new!

  3. Hi! Sorry for not responding sooner. I do read your blog, as you mentioned, but apparently I don’t read the comments on my own frequently enough.

    Yes, I’m in graduate school now, in my second and final year of a master’s in English at the University of Virginia. I’ve enjoyed the program a great deal; the department here is really strong and moreover they’re really just nice people, which you don’t find everywhere. I’m studying Victorian lit; right now I’m doing a lot of work with imperial adventure stories from Marryat to Kipling an Conrad. I’m also interested in the book as a physical object and in cartography as cultural text–the maps in particular come in pretty handy for some of the adventure tales.

    I’d be happy to share more experiences of applying to and being in grad school, if you’d like. There are a number of things I wish I had known when applying, and it’d be nice to pass them on. Just let me know! (I’ll try to actually keep an eye out on my blog this time.)

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