Despite its unimaginative name, UNSW Bookshop is swell. It’s an excellent place if you just feel like browsing. Interesting titles. Limited selection, but I like that for browsing because it isn’t overwhelming. Pleasant music. Uncrowded for most of the semester.
I found these to add to my ridiculously long and somewhat neglected To Read list. I may actually write that list out later, so I am more inclined to work reading for pleasure around my reading for uni.
Death at Intervals by José Saramoga
On the first day of the New Year, no one dies.
This understandably causes great consternation amongst religious leaders – if there’s no death, there can be no resurrection and therefore no reason for religion – and what will be the effect on pensions, the social services, hospitals? Amid the general public, on the other hand, there is initially celebration: flags are hung out on balconies and people dance in the streets. They have achieved the great goal of humanity – eternal life.
But will death’s disappearance benefit the human race, or will this sudden abeyance backfire? How long can families cope with malingering elderly relatives who scratch at death’s door while the portal remains firmly shut?
Then, seven months later, death returns, heralded by purple envelopes informing the recipients that their time is up. Death herself is now writing personal notes giving one week’s notice. However, when an envelope is unexpectedly returned to her, death begins to experience strange, almost human emotions.
A History of the World for Rebels and Somnambulists by Jesús del Campo
From the beginning of the world, when God created Audrey Hepburn, the guilt complex and worker ants, to the end, broadcast live on a TV chat show, “A History” whips through our tortuous past with the deftness of a surgeon’s scalpel. Jonah confronts a ship of Norwegian whalers; a medieval pilgrim points out the London Eye to his bored son on their way to Canterbury; Little Red Riding Hood gets drunk on cherry brandy with the wolf, and Bob Dylan loses his shadow. Death and destruction, cruelty to animals, boredom, overpopulation: enough is enough. A crowd gathers at the Vatican to protest against mortality, only to be distracted by the latest football scores …A history unlike any other - at once sinister, alarming and breathlessly funny.
Things I enjoy, in no particular order:
The smell of libraries
Clubs without cover charges
The suffering of my enemies
Looking at Raza Jaffrey
The colour blue
Convenient abbreviations like etc
Things I do not enjoy, in a very particular order: