Louise Erdrich - Sunday, July 12, 2009
I have trouble writing this blog post because I take it all so seriously. I still write by hand in art paper notebooks, and am thinking of getting out my old typewriter because I miss typed manuscripts. Then again . . . I am also thinking of writing a whole book on birchbark with my teeth. I do have news of a terrific read. If you like Borges, Saramago, Kafka, Angela Carter, or writers born in Brno in 1914, who died in Prague in 1987, if you liked Bohumil Hrabal's Closely Watched Trains, or if you have never heard of Hrabal and you love books -- this is your book.
Too Loud a Solitude, by Bohumil Hrabal. I read it a month ago. Then I read it again last night. Maybe I'll read it again today. The book is about a man whose job is crushing books. It is a book about loving books and destroying books, about love and destruction, the crushing of ideas, the drinking of beer. It is not a long book, but you will read it again and again. It is a perfect book, I think.
Besides reading this one book again and again, I've been reading newspapers. I have been reading lots of newspapers with the awful feeling that the wonderful feel of print under my fingers, the dry snap as you unfold a newspaper, the paging back and forth, the tactile reality of the newspaper, is going to vanish. So I've suddenly subscribed to several newspapers that I casually picked up every other day at the grocery store. And all I give people for birthdays now is newspaper subscriptions. I am doing this not only for the integrity of the news and the selfish feeling of joy I get when unfolding a newspaper, but for the many people I know who rely on completing the puzzles on newspaper pages -- for the lovely Finnish-American-Upper Peninsula Geology Professor I met on the airplane. He was in his late eighties and had a folded crossword puzzle in his hand. He was stuck but did not want me to brainstorm on an answer. He enjoyed looking at his puzzle last thing before he went to sleep, and waking with the answer. His was too loud a solitude, and puzzles are a friendly noise.
Buy a newspaper today. Or Too Loud A Solitude.
- Throbbing Fangs, Tattoos, Unbearable Relief
- Texamachismo: The Son and The Boy Kings of Texas
- Birthday Post & Daylight Savings Recommended Reading
- Happy Winter
- Back to Real
- National Book Awards
- Congratulations, Louise! Winner of the 2012 National Book Award in Fiction for The Round House
- The Round House (and Book Tour)
- Nero: A Preview
Nemesis Aza neighborhood The Wealth of Nature Magers and Quinn 350.org italy Tree Houses solstice, Thomas King green National Book Award Master Butchers Singing Club School Gardens Ice Let's Take the Long Way Home Vic Glover Crushing Books Kate DiCamillo post holiday reads ependent Keepers of the Trees birchbark house series Wendy Makoons Geniusz photography British Navy Wastepaper health care reform Nero Bleak House NACDI:All My Relations incarnation Unnatural Disasters The Ojibwe Emily Johnson Philip Roth book and dinner club Jim Harrison State Troopers Women and Trees Rare Books Pembina H2Oil devoted customers mississippi japan Small Bookstores as Commons The Blue Sky friends Minneapolis ependent Birchbark Books twins coyote Victory Gardens Peak Oil Up Late Again china Tar Sands adventure thanks Guthrie Theater Roberto Bolano Catalyst cafe Easter Island Gryphon Press Empire of the Summer Moon Dogs President Obama favorite tree support Milkweed Press The Farmer's Daughter Hilary Mantel Native Arts boarding school Too Loud A Solitude aquifer Stephen Salisbury This Green World Video Brown Dog S.C. Gwynne Mohamed's Ghosts Poetry Makoons france Beth Dooley Bill Moyers Journal ireland Czech Writer Keystone XL Mankato Powwow The Transition Handbook Anishinabemowin leaves and snow Ojibwemowin anniversary Michael Jackson customers Gail Caldwell The Game of Silence Chitra Divakaruni More Remarkable Trees Light in August how good looking you are Peak Water favorite book 2666 The Birchbark House pilgrims Greenland Keeping Heart on Pine Ridge tree books Ha Jin Canada north dakota Chickadee Love Collective Denial joy The Resilient Gardener Anishinabe show your love Climate Change sweden monkey in a dryer Gary Clement Aubrey/Maturin Zombies Our Knowledge Is Not Primitive William Trevor Minnesota cafe closing Dartmouth Interview Ojibwe Book Review Green Team fresh water World on the Edge Fireworks local economy Patrick O'Brian The Porcupine Year Native People Anton Treuer post holiday Remarkable Trees bill mckibben E.L. Doctorow city of books Alice Munro Bohumil Hrabal thank you friends Kenwood Gardens gardens peculiar touches of green and gold plants Too Much Happiness buffalo favorite dog The Royal Prussian Library Wolf Hall graphix The Round House language revitalization germany the most romantic city in the world knowledge spring Louise Botany