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
Guthrie Theater Light in August Ice Too Loud A Solitude The Game of Silence buffalo pilgrims friends The Birchbark House photography NACDI:All My Relations Anishinabemowin germany boarding school Louise Michael Jackson Patrick O'Brian language revitalization Keeping Heart on Pine Ridge The Royal Prussian Library Anishinabe Wolf Hall birchbark house series Tree Houses Kenwood Gardens green Up Late Again city of books The Transition Handbook British Navy Collective Denial Too Much Happiness Philip Roth thank you friends Anton Treuer Jim Harrison japan The Wealth of Nature Hilary Mantel Kate DiCamillo fresh water Peak Oil Wastepaper knowledge Catalyst The Resilient Gardener More Remarkable Trees solstice, Thomas King devoted customers E.L. Doctorow anniversary Video President Obama Bill Moyers Journal ireland Canada ependent World on the Edge Remarkable Trees Tar Sands Master Butchers Singing Club Nemesis National Book Award Emily Johnson Fireworks Roberto Bolano Aubrey/Maturin Gail Caldwell china School Gardens sweden Easter Island coyote Pembina Crushing Books The Porcupine Year Unnatural Disasters Birchbark Books Love Dogs Mankato Powwow Minnesota Ojibwe Wendy Makoons Geniusz Ojibwemowin twins Interview The Blue Sky Small Bookstores as Commons The Ojibwe Peak Water The Farmer's Daughter Greenland Keepers of the Trees Bleak House Rare Books Zombies bill mckibben monkey in a dryer Nero Milkweed Press Minneapolis Gary Clement Chitra Divakaruni Book Review incarnation Gryphon Press show your love joy book and dinner club Mohamed's Ghosts spring favorite tree Alice Munro 350.org leaves and snow Chickadee cafe closing france Magers and Quinn Let's Take the Long Way Home gardens State Troopers 2666 tree books William Trevor plants Native Arts Native People Victory Gardens H2Oil Beth Dooley support the most romantic city in the world neighborhood Bohumil Hrabal Keystone XL Climate Change Stephen Salisbury adventure S.C. Gwynne post holiday reads ependent Women and Trees favorite book Botany favorite dog cafe Czech Writer Vic Glover Ha Jin italy Our Knowledge Is Not Primitive peculiar touches of green and gold local economy post holiday thanks Green Team This Green World Makoons Empire of the Summer Moon The Round House Dartmouth aquifer health care reform north dakota mississippi how good looking you are customers graphix Aza Brown Dog Poetry