Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What I'm Reading

The only benefit of frequent insomnia and hours in hospital waiting rooms is that you get to catch up on reading. Some recent reads:

1. The Best American Essays 2008: Kind of a snore. My last writing teacher suggested I read more essays since that seems to be my genre of choice, but I didn't particularly enjoy the whole collection. I found the one on end-of-life healthcare fascinating and loved the one on lesbian weddings. The fact that I can't remember many of the other ones leads me to question the "best" title.

2. Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem: LOVED it. I read Motherless Brooklyn a few years ago when everyone was Lethem crazy, and I just didn't get it. I found it boring. I approached this one thinking I'd feel the same way, but it feels so different. It's gorgeous and passionate and heartbreaking at the same time.

3. Waiting for Daisy: A Tale of Two Continents, Three Religions, Five Infertility Doctors, an Oscar, an Atomic Bomb, a Romantic Night, and One Woman's Quest to Become a Mother by Peggy Orenstein: I have devoured everything Peggy Orenstein has ever written and look forward to essays that she writes. Interestingly enough, she was researchingFlux, one of my favorite non-fiction books in recent years, while going through the infertility treatments detailed in this book. It's very personal, but also offers insight into the infertility business. Quick read too. I've had it on my shelf for years -- bought it at City Lights the first time I went to San Francisco a few years ago.

4. Opting In: Having A Child Without Losing Yourself by Amy Richards: Appropriate timing, I guess. It wasn't an academic read and covers a lot of ground, but I don't feel like I learned much new. I did enjoy the chapters on the work/stay-at-home debate and how that needs to be larger, and also liked that she covered the changing nature of female relationships after baby comes. I'm hoping to still have a life post-baby and also hoping to maintain my relationships with people who have chosen not to have kids. I know how fucking boring it is to listen to endless kid stories when you have none of your own, or even when you do -- I don't want to subject anyone to that. Again, she didn't cover too many tips, but I liked that it was a topic.

And now, I'm in the middle of Operating Instructions which is exactly as awesome as I expected it to be.

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