The pile of books on my bedside table got so large and unbalanced, a disaster was imminent. Working from the top down, this is what I found:
The Tale of Raw Head & Bloody Bones by Jack Wolf.
The Eagle and the Raven and House of Dreams, both by Pauline Gedge.
Great Cat Stories by Roxanne Willems Snopek.
Gardens Aflame by Maleea Acker.
Titus Groan and Gormenghast both by Mervyn Peake.
Dexter in the Dark by Jeff Lindsay.
That’s the top layer. Holding them up were the following:
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories by H.P. Lovecraft.
Canadian Garden Words by Bill Casselman.
Henry Mitchell On Gardening.
The Fallacy of Wildlife Conservation by John A. Livingston.
The Cat Lover’s Companion.
Ariel by Sylvia Plath.
Holy Bible : authorized King James version.
Explanation: I started reading the KJV of the Bible a couple of years ago, intending to make a Slow Reading project of it (even wrote a blog post about it). Well, it’s very slow. I’ve had a long-standing interest in H.P. Lovecraft, especially his character Herbert West, whom I adopted and enhanced into a trilogy. Because of the type of person Herbert is, I’m always on the lookout for books with dubious protagonists, hence Raw Head…, which is about a psychotic medical student in the 18th century. Recently I’ve been writing a blog post about evil protagonists, hence Dexter and the Gormenghast books (which I think I’ll re-read, yet again).
Pauline Gedge’s historical novels are detailed and vivid, great for losing oneself in when that’s what one needs to do.
I like cats and two live in the house, so I sometimes read about cats.
I’m a keen gardener and keep Henry Mitchell’s writings on that subject close at hand. This interest has created an awareness of the relationship between human beings and the earth, which is why the books by John Livingston and Maleea Acker are there. I recently heard Acker speak about her book, which is about Garry Oak ecosystems. Since I garden on a despoiled part of such an ecosystem, it seems to be required reading.
I bought Plath’s Ariel after I found myself copying out some of the poems by hand from a copy borrowed from the library.
So I’m not actually reading all these books, but I assembled them for a variety of reasons. Some of them will be returned to the library or their permanent spots on my bookshelves, but I suspect quite a few will stay on the bedside table. I’ll rebuild the pile, making sure that collapse is unlikely.