Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Bookshelf of Shame

Tribune columnist Mary Schmich was inspired by Oprah (don’t roll your eyes) to talk about a concept she called the “bookshelf of shame”:

“All of us, at least all of us who like to read, have a bookshelf of shame: that psychic space, or bedside table, crammed with Important Books and Important Authors that we think we should have read, but haven't.

The works of Samuel Beckett, Norman Mailer, Ayn Rand. "Exodus." "Animal Farm." "Middlemarch."

Oh, hell.

Just looking at my actual TBR bookcase, there are Ayn Rand and an awful lot of Mailer. There is Middlesex, the last book I bought not from the Clearance Section only to not read it. Truckload of Phillip Roth. I don’t think I have read a single Roth all year. And soooo many history books. The point of Mary’s article was to shut up and read, already. Good advice, except I have scarves to make now!

I have, at least, read Oprah’s two picks – Great Expectations and A Tale of Two Cities.

And Middlemarch.

1 comment:

Kristin said...

I thought "Animal Farm" was required in High School. A lot of my "shame" books are hs books. Maybe I should reread "A Tale of Two Cities" - it was one of my all time favorites. Also, I'll have to put "Middlemarch" on my list of "never read but should have read" books and actually read it.