Monday, March 24, 2014

Post-Chicago Monday Check-in

Hosted by Sheila of BookJourney!

We rolled back into town late last night after 15 hours on the road from Chicago. It was our first trip back to the Windy City since moving to Connecticut in December and we had a jam-packed week of visiting friends and taking care of some business. We also had an open house at my Mom's to celebrate our marriage last month. It was such great fun to see so many people from various parts of our lives converge to celebrate with us. We feel truly blessed to have so many loving people in our lives.

Now, on to the books!

While in Chicagoland I visited The Book Table in Oak Park. What a fabulous bookstore! Best of all, Patrick, one of my former coworkers from Borders, works there as a bookseller so it was great to see him and catch up. Not that we had much time to hang out and talk because the store was doing steady business the night I was there, which is always awesome to see in a bookstore.


At The Book Table I picked up a copy of MFA VS NYC: The Two Cultures of American Fiction
edited by Chad Harbach. The book caught my eye a couple weeks ago at Amherst Books, but I resisted it then. I'm reading it with a healthy dose of skepticism (MFA vs NYC seems like a false dichotomy to me), but thus far the few essays that I've read have offered good food for thought. I'm especially intrigued by Eric Bennett's essay, "Pyramid Scheme," which looks at the Iowa Writers' Workshop development in relation to the Cold War. One point of intrigue: the CIA supposedly contributed money to the Workshop to help fight Communism. Bennett has a full-length book on the subject, Workshops of Empire, coming out sometime this year.

On Friday night I meet fellow book blogger BiblioSue for a quick dinner in Naperville. She brought me her copy of Adam Gopnik's Paris to the Moon (thanks again, Suzanne!). Of course after dinner we had to walk over to Anderson's Bookshop to see what was going on.

What was going on was they actually had John Green's The Fault In Our Stars in stock! I've had a hard time finding that book in stock, so I bought one of the four copies they had left. While browsing around BiblioSue pulled a copy of Brigid Pasulka's A Long Long Time Ago & Essentially True off the shelf and said I had to read it. With her strong recommendation and given that it was on sale for $7.99 how could I resist?

I'm done with buying books again for a while, especially considering that I bought the stack below at various (mainly used) bookstores the week before we went to Chicago:


What's books are happening in your life this week?

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