Friday, January 1, 2016

My Reading Year 2015 et. al. Thoughts...

As I sat listening to the celebratory gunfire in my neighborhood on New Year's Eve I couldn't help but think this is but a trifle compared to what many in war-torn nations around the world listen to & cower in fear over on a daily basis. I spent my New Years Eve alone reading after attending a vigil Mass of The Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God. It was a mostly quiet evening, at least until the gunfire started around 11:15 or so…

One of the things I resolved to do at the end of last year was to read more books, and by golly, that resolution seemed to stick! I managed to read from cover to cover 48 books! If not for wasting a lot of time skimming/reading things on the internet it could have been more, although I have to say because of the internet, I've learned about many books I otherwise wouldn't have known about much less bothered to read. 

Some of the books I tackled were "classics" or famous books I've known about or meant to read for years such as:
-Moby Dick* by Herman Melville 
-To Kill A Mockingbird* by Harper Lee
-Alice In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll 
-Foucault's Pendulum by Umberto Eco

A couple were re-reads:
-Heart Of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
-Illuminatus! by Robert Shea & Robert Anton Wilson 

I wanted to read more fiction this year:
-Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy* (The entire Douglass Adams series)
-Tuf Voyaging by George RR Martin
-Mumbo Jumbo by Ishmael Reed
-Crying Of Lot 49 & Vineland by Thomas Pynchon

Many of the aforementioned books as well as others I read on my phone* with the Kindle app. (For a post Christmas gift to myself I bought a Kindle which I'm slowly getting used to but still kind of prefer the app on my tiny phone for some reason!)
Other books read on my phone along with the ones noted above by the * are:

-My Business Is To Create by Eric Wilson
-The Gnostic Jung & The Seven Sermons Of The Dead by Stephan Hoeller
-War Is The Health Of The State by Randolph Bourne
-Pause, Play A Higher Consciousness Handbook by Klaas Pieter Van Der Tempel
-Demian: The Story Of Emil Sinclair's Youth by Hermann Hesse
-Pure Act: The Uncommon Life Of Robert Lax by Michael N McGregor

Finally a few more random works of note that I managed to finish (with a bit of commentary):

-The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth (this is a book I received as a birthday gift--it's written in what the author describes as a 'shadow tongue'--a combination of modern & old English which takes a bit of getting used to but I thought it was a really cool idea!)

-Historia Discordia compiled by Adam Gorightly (A huge compilation of paperwork about a religion called Discordianism--founded in a California bowling alley in the late 1950's. That's all I dare speak about this.)

-Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy (Some of the most beautiful prose about some of the most disgusting people I've ever read about.)

-The Passionate Journey by Irving Stone (About the evolution & the decline of an artist)

-The Unholy Bible by June Singer (The Jungian Analyst helps us make some sense out of the Gnostic William Blake.)

-You Can't Win by Jack Black (A book I've seen mentioned by one of my favorite authors, William S. Burroughs on numerous occasions...)

All these and more! As long as it's taken me to sort all this out I can see why I'd rather scribble with pen & ink and make comics. Damn this took awhile… 

While Rome burns I'll continue to read & make stupid drawings!

Happy New Year everyone!

(ps, I'm not correcting any more typos, any left are staying!)


Mark said...

Awesome compilation! I envy you. I'm lucky to get through 3 or 4 books per year. 48 is amazing! Good work! That's some interesting material, indeed.

Btw, we thought we heard gunfire too around midnight, but it may have been fireworks, I suppose.

Manic The Doodler said...

Thanks man! Happy New Year!