The always captivating Eve Tushnet has been listing great titles, of books mainly. She comes up with so many, though, that the list quickly becomes a little bit numbing, the titles a little indistinct from each other. I’m curious what she’d say are her top five. Challenge!
Here are a few that I didn’t see on her list or those of her readers: Two Girls, Fat and Thin. I Lost It at the Movies (or should I say Kiss Kiss Bang Bang?). The Man without Qualities. The Gastronomical Me. And, what the hell, Consider the Oyster. And of course my all-purpose favorite, The Dud Avocado.
Speaking of Mary Gaitskill, while scanning my bookshelves last night I noticed that her Bad Behavior sits beside Donald Westlake’s Good Behavior. I have no memory of having consciously placed them so; perhaps they just sort of gravitated toward each other smittenly when I wasn’t looking. Hard to think of two more different books, but the spines do complement each other nicely.
Another title I love, but that is simply puzzling if you don’t know anything about the book, is Anthony Burgess’s novel about Keats, ABBA ABBA. Also in the context-counts category is the memoir of (Sir) Frank Kermode, Not Entitled, although on second thought, perhaps it’s a bit too cutely elliptical.