Last week, someone asked me what I’d been reading lately.
As I combed through a mental catalogue of literature I’d recently enjoyed, I realized that I’d actually listened to, rather than sight-read, the works I’d consumed over the past few weeks. This is a marked change from, say, ten years ago when I sight-read everything. I explain how this happened in my essay in TNQ 148 so I’ll just stick to my latest audio picks here.
I listened to Curtis Sittenfeld’s brilliant and biting short story collection ‘You think it, I’ll say it,’ read by Mark Deakins and Emily Rankin. Interspersed with these stories, I listened to essays from Calypso, written and read by David Sedaris. He’s an author who reads all of his work out loud in the editing process and this shines in the way he performs the pieces in this collection, which were darker than his previous essays, but just as funny. I listened to A.M. Homes read Margaret Atwood’s wicked and wonderful short story, The Stone Mattress, on The New Yorker: Fiction podcast and it inspired me to buy the book it was excerpted from (also called The Stone Mattress) with my September Audible credit. Finally, I recently re-read The Five Children and It by Edith Nesbit. I didn’t listen to this one. Instead, I read it aloud to someone else—my seven-year-old daughter. It was just as bizarre and delightful as I remember and we both loved it.
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