Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Too Many Books

From The New York Times, Joe Queenan writes on the problem we share: we are the kind of readers that start on too many books.

I'm a promiscious reader, really. A philandering reader that flirts from book to book. Now if only my love life is just as excited and varied. But then again, better not. ;p

Currently I'm reading Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace, Marcel Proust's Swann's Way, Wilkie Collins' The Moonstone and a few other books. I do feel that it reflects badly on my sense of focus.

Still, I like the cashier at the end:
A few weeks ago I visited the superb postage-stamp-size bookstore in Grand Central Station, where I bought Andrea Barrett’s Voyage of the Narwhal. Since I had only just started Tacitus’ Annals of Imperial Rome the night before, this was hardly an essential purchase. But for whatever reason, I had to take a crack at that book. Some people go into bookstores and are seduced by classics they absolutely must own; I go into bookstores and am seduced by classics I absolutely must start.

"I’m already reading 25 other books, so why am I buying this one?" I asked a friend. "Do you think this is a disease?"

"Yes," interjected the cashier. "But it’s a good disease to have."

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