Oh no ... Rebecca is making us confess in this week's Book List. Which are the Three Books That Have Been On My TBR List the Longest? Let me see ...
Well, besides Doctor Zhivago, Ulysses, and Don Quixote which I have admitted to owning and not reading for far too long due to intimidation, I think it might be these four (synopses from Powell's website) --
The Pope's Rhinoceros -- Lawrence Norfolk
Norfolk's rollicking, picaresque novel is based on one of history's most bizarre chapters: the attempt in the sixteenth century to procure a rhinoceros as a bribe for Pope Leo X. With an epic cast of characters, The Pope's Rhinoceros is both a fabulous adventure tale and a portrait of an age rushing headlong into crisis.The Autumn of the Patriarch -- Gabriel Garcia Marquez
From charity to deceit, benevolence to violence, fear of God to extreme cruelty, the dictator of The Autumn of the Patriarch embodies the best and the worst of human nature. Gabriel García Márquez, the renowned master of magical realism, vividly portrays the dying tyrant caught in the prison of his own dictator-ship. Employing an innovative, dreamlike style, and overflowing with symbolic descriptions, the novel transports the reader to a world that is at once fanciful and real.Mason & Dixon -- Thomas Pynchon
Charles Mason (1928-1786) and Jeremiah Dixon (1733-1779) were the British surveyors best remembered for running the boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland that we know today as the Mason-Dixon Line. Here is their story as reimagined by Thomas Pynchon, in an updated 18th-century novel featuring Native Americans and frontier folk, ripped bodices, naval warfare, conspiracies erotic and political, and major caffeine abuse. Unreflectively entangled in crimes of demarcation, Mason and Dixon take us long on a grand tour of the Enlightenment's dark hemisphere, from their first journey together to the Cape of Good Hope, to pre-Revolutionary American and back to England, into the shadowy yet redemptive turns of their later lives, through incongruities in conscience, parallaxes of personality, tales of questionable altitude told and intimated by voices clamoring not to be lost. Along the way they encounter a plentiful cast of characters, including Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, and Samuel Johnson, as well as a Chinese feng shui master, a Swedish irredentist, a talking dog, and a robot duck. The quarrelsome, daring, mismatched pair - Mason as melancholy and Gothic as Dixon is cheerful and pre-Romantic - pursue a linear narrative of irregular lives, observing, and managing to participate in, the many occasions of madness presented them by the Age of Reason.The History of the Siege of Lisbon -- Jose Saramago
In this “ingenious” novel (New York Times) by “one of Europe’s most original and remarkable writers” (Los Angeles Times), a proofreader’s deliberate slip opens the door to romance-and confounds the facts of Portugal’s past. Translated by Giovanni Pontiero.I had to choose four books this time because these have been sitting around forever! I actually read maybe the first fifth of Mason & Dixon and the first couple chapters of The History of the Siege of Lisbon and now I don't remember why I didn't continue with either one. I think they were both timing issues. I really need to get through these books because they have possibly been on my nightstand for about twelve years. Everything else on my TBR stacks seems to be relatively recent -- added within the last two or three years.
Have you enjoyed any of these? If so, let me know and encourage me to read them soon!
Making a new goal that includes reading books in a timely manner,