Sunday, January 6, 2013

New Year, New 30 Day Book Challenge, Day 4

All Three Novels 
Day 4: Favorite Book of Your Favorite Series


All the Pretty Horses
I realized today that I totally blew yesterday's question. When someone says series, my mind always goes to either teen books or fantasy books, neither of which I read. However, I really do have a couple of  favorite series. First, The Border Trilogy by Cormac McCarthy.

The  McCarthy trilogy consists of All the Pretty Horses, The Crossing, and Cities of the Plain. My favorite is the first, maybe because it's the first McCarthy book I had ever read, and I was just blown away. I remember reading this book pretty clearly. I was living in Florida (maybe 1996 or 1997), and I was looking for a book to bring to the beach, saw this sitting on a paperback table and picked it up because....the cover was gorgeous. I know, but let's not start judging now. [Too late.] I went back to the bookstore (Books & Books in Miami) and bought The Crossing (I also picked up Blood Meridian which may actually be my favorite McCarthy book - I can't decide). I think I was making about $10 an hour back in '96, so where I got the money to buy so many books in a week is beyond me. [Petty theft? Prostitution? Blackmail?]

Cities of the Plain 
The Crossing

Of course as I am finishing writing this, it's occurred to me that I also love William Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha County novels (though he set many short stories here as well). Perhaps this is a blog post for another time. Actually, I think both Liz and I love Faulkner so that might be a road trip in the making. Absalom, Absalom! is my favorite by the way. It has a map.

map inside!

Ooh, handcuffs!
If we were playing by the rules and going with the favorite book from the series we picked yesterday, I'd be stuck picking Fifty Shades Freed.  Why? Two reasons: the handcuffs on the cover, and that it's the last book (until EL James writes another one).  Ooh!  Reason number three: naughtier sex toys!  (I know this because, while I haven't read the books, I did download the manuscripts at one point so that I could torture people with dramatic passages found through keyword searches, and "anal plug" appears in book three.  You're welcome.)

Since Gianna is breaking the rules, though, I am too.  I'm going with Mary Karr's memoir trilogy, The Liars' Club, Cherry, and Lit.  We've written about Mary Karr quite a bit, and particularly The Liars' Club, which holds a special place for me because it's set in the rural patch of hell where I also grew up.  That said, though, at the moment I think I appreciate the introspection and adult struggles confronted in Lit more. Having read her first two books, I needed to know how the scrapping little East Texas kid became a literature professor and renowned poet.  I needed to know how she survived, and I needed to know that her journey hasn't ended. Lit is equal parts book lover's dream and redemptive addiction story, and Mary Karr's use of language is brilliant.

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