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If you ask me, I really can’t tell the difference between my summer reading and that of the other seasons. But, in terms of timing, I’d say the annual Book Sale at the Crossroads Market marks the kickoff… and not the summer solstice. It’s a charity book sale in support of the Servants Anonymous Society. I’ve posted my boxes of loot in the past couple of years. Here’s Arti’s annual book haul, 2011.

Again, as a picky screener, I spent hours looking through tons of books under that giant tent and picked out only those that were in mint condition… some I suspect have not even been opened. They were all $1.50 each. That’s the price if you buy in multiples of 10. Short of 10, $2 each. Best of all, it’s for a good cause… great excuse for hoarding. Well, at least I wasn’t tugging a rolling tote or luggage like some did.

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Here’s a list of my haul, in no particular order:

  1. Unruly Times: Wordsworth and Coleridge in Their Time by A. S. Byatt
  2. As We Are Now by May Sarton (love her Journal of a Solitude)
  3. Chocolat by Joanne Harris (film is interesting, curious about the book)
  4. Enduring Love by Ian McEwan (after Atonement, like to try more of McEwan’s works)
  5. Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami (for JLC 5)
  6. The Samurai’s Garden by Gail Tsukiyama (another one for JLC 5)
  7. Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer (great find, book is brand new)
  8. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson (the movie is delightful)
  9. The Winter Vault by Anne Michaels (13 years after her Fugitive Pieces, I’m curious)
  10. Up In The Air by Walter Kirn (always like to read the source material of a good movie)
  11. The Bishop’s Man by Linden MacIntyre (winner of 2009 Giller Prize)
  12. The Golden Mean by Annabel Lyon (finalist, 2009 Giller Prize)
  13. The Colony of Unrequited Dreams by Wayne Johnston (numerous Canadian literary prize winner, just can’t resist a title like that)
  14. The Emperor’s Children by Claire Messud (NYT Book Review Best Book of the Year 2006. I’ve wanted to read it since it first came out)
  15. Let The Great World Spin by Colum McCann (my own copy finally)
  16. Everything in This Country Must: A Novella and Two Stories by Colum McCann
  17. The Peppered Moth by Margaret Drabble
  18. Larry’s Party by Carol Shields
  19. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini (Following The Kite Runner, a movie version is coming out)
  20. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe (still haven’t read this classic)
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Went back another day and more multiples of 10:
  1. Heat And Dust by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala (1975 Booker Prize Winner, RPJ is the screenwriter of many Merchant Ivory productions, including “Heat And Dust” starring Julie Christie)
  2. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides (Pulitzer Prize winner, 2003)
  3. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood (First the book, then the movie, and then the opera, yes, opera)
  4. The Hours by Michael Cunningham (Pulitzer Prize winner, 1999. After the film, I’ve wanted to read this for years. Glad I found a trade paperback edition without Streep/Moore/Kidman on the cover)
  5. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz (Pulitzer Prize winner, 2008)
  6. Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens (I’m partial to The Modern Library Classics, so this is a good find)
  7. The City of Yes by Peter Oliva (Found out from the cover that the author is owner of one of the still surviving indie bookstore in our city… a novel on Japan… interesting connections!)
  8. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett (Other shoppers at the Book Sale urged me to get it, or else I wouldn’t have picked it up… about 2 lbs and 973 pages. But for $1.50… alright.)
  9. The Illuminator by Brenda Rickman Vantrease
  10. The Sunday Philosophy Club by Alexander McCall Smith
  11. The Lost Art of Gratitude by Alexander McCall Smith
  12. Little Earthquakes by Jennifer Weiner (Author of In Her Shoes, looks like a breezy summer read)
  13. The Shack by Wm. Paul Young (Have been avoiding this, but my $1.50 curiosity took over)
  14. Limitations by Scott Turow (I used to be a fan of legal thrillers, so let me indulge again… it’s summer)
  15. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Finally, after the dust has settled. The Swedish movie is good, but not sure about the Hollywood version coming out)
  16. The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson (That’s all, couldn’t find the third one)
  17. False Impression by Jeffrey Archer (Have enjoyed some of his previous books)
  18. The Constant Gardener by John Le Carré
  19. A Most Wanted Man by John Le Carré
  20. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy by John Le Carré (The film version is coming out this year with Colin Firth. But this little old paperback is the black sheep of the lot. I found the first 18 pages missing after I came home. But hey, I’m not complaining)

How do I alleviate the burden of so many books? Well, this is how I figure. I don’t see them as a TBR list, but new inventory of my personal library. They’re at a fraction of the cost if I were to buy them new.  Besides, how many people read all the books in a library?

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What’s your summer reading plan?

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(If you’re interested, here are my finds from the Book Sale of 2010 and 2009.

You may also like to explore the list of “Upcoming books into films”)

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