A pathetic showing when you consider how much I normally read (2008, 2007, 2006, 2005), but whatever, I did what I could. I did not read a book, not one word, from about March to August. Or, that’s probably wrong – I am already remembering 2009 wrong. I know I didn’t read at all from January until about March. Then I had a small burst, which abruptly fell off in around June and then months passed before I read again. It is very strange to not be reading. But here is my paltry tally for 2009.
2. Twenty-eight Artists and Two Saints: Essays (Vintage), by Joan Acocella. Loved every word. NOT TO BE MISSED. She brought me to Nureyev, and for that I am truly thankful. Excerpt here, here and here.
3. Vanity Fair’s Tales of Hollywood: Rebels, Reds, and Graduates and the Wild Stories Behind the Making of 13 IconicFilms. Great stuff. And thank you, James Wolcott, for your continued support.
4. Cults in Our Midst: The Continuing Fight Against Their Hidden Menace, by Margaret Singer. I believe Siobhan gave this to me for Christmas. It’s a brilliant and important book.
5. Public Enemies: America’s Greatest Crime Wave and the Birth of the FBI, 1933-34, by Bryan Burroughs. Wonderful.
6. The Complete Persepolis, by Marjane Satrapi. I know I’m behind the curve on this one, but this is definitely the best book I’ve read this year. Tears, guffawing out loud, outrage … the book has it all. It’s brilliant.
8. Important Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris, Including Books, Street Fashion, and Jewelry, by Leanne Shapton. Sent to me by dear cousin Mike to get me reading again … it ended up being THE CONTEXT through which I went through the ridiculous white-hot-rage romantic situation I found myself in this year. EFF YOU, DOUCHE. Happy New Year. Post here. Thanks Mike for knowing just what I needed to hear.
10. Life with My Sister Madonna, by Christopher Ciccone. I read this while I was in LA. It is stupid and petty. Could not put it down.
11. 700 Sundays, by Billy Crystal. My dear friend Kate sent this to me. I have the best friends. A really emotional piece of work from Crystal, a true tribute to his parents. beautiful.
12. The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil, by Philip Zambardo. I am now obsessed with the Stanford Prison Experiment for all time. Great book.
13. Nureyev: The Life, by Julie Kavanagh. READ IT. I DEMAND that you read it. A magnificent piece of work.
14. Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us, by Robert Hare. A must-read for anyone interested in criminal psychology. MUST READ.
I was hoping to finish (or re-finish) Crime and Punishment this year, one of my favorite books, and a perfect jumping off point from Robert Hare’s groundbreaking work. I have 40 pages to go and I just couldn’t get it done. I’ve lost my mojo.