Saturday, May 05, 2012

There’s a seeker born every minute

A quick post on what I have planned for the upcoming months, with input always welcome on authors, etc. Also, I wanted to float a Fortunata and Jacinta read-along at the end of the post. Also, I can't decide on non-fiction books to listen to (several on my wish list but nothing appeals at the moment), so any recommendations are appreciated.

I have been reading some works by central and eastern European writers and I will be drawing that exclusive focus to a close after a few more books:

·         Job by Joseph Roth and the semi-related 1936 movie Sins of Man

·         The Doll by Bolesław Prus—if anyone knows how to get a copy of the 1968 movie Lalka directed by Wojciech Has, please let me know (I’m tempted to get the 5-disc 1978 Polish TV miniseries, even with no subtitles, but the price is a deterrent)

·         Sanatorium under the Sign of the Hourglass by Bruno Schulz and the 1973 movie The Hour-Glass Sanatorium directed by Wojciech Has (yeah, there’s a theme here)

·         Portraits of a Marriage by Sándor Márai

·         Stone Upon Stone, by Wieslaw Mysliwski

·         Behind the Lines: Bugulma and Other Tales by Jaroslav Hašek (preordered, scheduled for release in June)

·         Harlequin's Millions by Bohumil Hrabal (preordered, scheduled for release in September)

I may add another short book or two along the same lines (another book by Schulz happens to be in the local library) but I’m anxious to move on to other areas, especially returning to works of ancient Greece. I have been eyeing The Landmark Xenophon's Hellenika for a while and I’m determined to start it after these books. While I’m tempted to revisit Xenophon’s Anabasis, that is lined up as an upcoming release in the Landmark series so I’ll probably wait for that version instead. I definitely plan on covering his Oeconomicus and a couple of Plato’s dialogues. I have also wanted to post on Werner Jaeger’s wonderful Paideia: The Ideals of Greek Culture but I’ll probably save that for the end of the year.

More standard western European fare should follow, with La Regenta by Leopoldo Alas and the massive The Thibaults by Roger Martin du Gard mocking me from my bookcase. I’m uncertain of the timing of The Thibaults since I may be massive-booked-out already. I'm sure there's a technical term for that.

I joked about hosting a read-along of Benito Pérez Galdós’ Fortunata and Jacinta after I finished his Torquemada series but I think it would be a fun idea—is there enough interest in the book for an October event? 

If I get to everything in this list this year I’ll be a happy reader. Strike that…I’m a happy reader already.

Note: I'm receiving notice of comments but nothing is appearing. Having seen several of my comments spiked or not approved  at other websites I'm very sensitive to this situation. If your comment does not appear automatically I will manually add it 24 hours after I've received the notice--I do not delete comments unless they are blatantly spam.


obooki said...

You couldn't tell me how many books there are in The Thibaults, could you, and what they're called? I've been collecting it in French. I think I have five volumes, but I'm not sure if that's all of it.

Dwight said...

The English translation I have is only divided into “parts” without titles (other than the final one subtitled “Epilogue”). The Thibaults(1939 Viking Press) has six parts, Summer 1914 (1941 Viking Press) has four parts. In the boxed set I have (1,890 pages as advertised) there is a nice biographical note on the author and his work by Howard C. Rice.

Here are the French titles I’ve seen included in the series:
I. La Cahir gris (1922)
II. Le Pénitencier (1922)
III. La Belle Saison (2 volumes, 1923)
IV. La Consultation (1928)
V. La Sorellina (1928)
VI. La Mort du pére (1929)
VII. L’Eté 1914 (3 volumes, 1936)
VIII. Epilogue (1940)

I don’t know if that is complete and accurate, but it’s something I will research and post on when I get to it. Hopefully this gives a good starting point.

obooki said...

OK, thanks. I think I probably do have all of it then in my 5 volumes. It's always hard to tell with these things.

I've got his unfinished novel Lieutenant-General Maumort too - in English this time, which looks fascinating (another 700-800 pages); and have read The Postman, which I really enjoyed (a mere snip at 150 pages).

Dwight said...

Here's the missing comment:

seraillon has left a new comment:

Quite an auspicious and appealing set of projects. I look forward to your posts about them. Curiously, I'm reading Portraits right now along with a friend, and just yesterday checked Bruno Schulz out of the library (on my list for a very long time). The Myslewski has been on the night table since the beginning of the year, but keeps getting bumped out of the way by other things. Give a heads-up when you get to it; I'd love to read along. Oh, and sorry - I don't think I can help with the Polish film...

Dwight said...

I'm surprised the English version of The Thibaults is not better noted (and I may be mistaken--I've only glanced through it)...but then it seems to have fallen completely out of favor here. I was fortunate to run across a copy in very good shape (the box has seen better days). Unfinished at 700-800 pages? I think I'm beginning to understand a comment I read about him: "What has Proust wrought?"

Amateur Reader (Tom) said...

October is far enough away that reading a gigantic Pérez Galdós novel seems perfectly reasonable.

Dwight said...

Great--I was hoping you'd be able to join on Galdós (I realize things may change). I'll probably post a reminder in August so people can line up a version.

seraillon said...

Yes, please, count me in on the Fortunata and Jacinta read-along.

Dwight said...

Great! Keep an eye out around August and I'll remind everyone. (Trying not to build up expectations here...)

Richard said...

Dwight, I think I'd also be up for a Fortunata y Jacinta readalong in Rocktober if I haven't dipped into it by then. However, I haven't been able to deliver on many of my readalong commitments for a while for some reason + I believe the Spanish version I'll be reading is somewhere around 1,200 pages. Does that sound right? (I assume most of the others will be reading the Penguin translation, so that page count should be easy enough to verify, I guess.)

Dwight said...

Would love to have you along... the one I've read is a used Penguin (1988 edition) with 818 pages in four volumes.

And dip away before then...all the help I can get will be appreciated. There are very few books I've lined up for a third read such as this, and yet I'm still looking forward to it.