Reminded none too subtly by the overworked Norm that it is our turn to post, we trotted over to the new book stand for the blogfodder we knew we would find because this is, after all, a library and because we do, after all, buy books. All the time.
Members’ note: The weird but irreplaceable new book stand that started out life in the 1850s as a magazine stand now stands on the nice rug that used to be upstairs but was too small for the Lecture Hall which now features a rug that used to be in the Blair House and which is perfectly proportioned for the Hall. The former 12th floor number replaces the scabrous and slightly dopey cinema lobby rug that was chucked in the Great Works. Rug fanciers should direct themselves also to the south mezzanine where a couple of runners and the one that was in the vanished Ladies Reading Room have found new homes where they look quite swell.
The last Robert B. Parker Split Image is here. Mr. Parker has died, so that’s it, unless G. P. Putnam’s decides to continue the franchise as was done for the undead Robert Ludlum whose ghost turned out to be not so bad. Maybe even better.
Caryl Phillips has appeared twice at the Mercantile. He’s a favorite here even though he was over the heads of the everybodyreadthesamebookatthesametime crowd when one of his books was selected. OK, we’re a little sensitive on that point since we pushed for the selection the year we were on the selection panel and we haven’t been asked back. His latest is In the Falling Snow which came out in December.
We’ve also recommended Craig Johnson who writes police procedurals set in Wyoming where the population of the state is less than the population of Hamilton County. Johnson’s recurring policeman is Sheriff Walt Longmire who has a huge and amusing Indian chum who gets him out of tight spots. We’re not sure we why we like this stuff, but we do. The scenery is astounding. That may have something to do with it.
Finally, The Infinities, the new John Banville, is in. We’ve been reading his pseudonymous police books because we have low tastes, but we’ve been meaning, we really have, to tackle the Man Bookerish stuff, but we love the Greek pantheon, and they show up to meddle in the modern British countryside which we also love, so we may elevate our sights and tackle this one.