Books by Eric Olsen’s Bed

The War of the World, Niall Ferguson; Berlin Noir, Philip Kerr; a biography of Albert Einstein by Walter Isaacson; Name of the Rose, Umberto Eco; Cider House Rules, John Irving; Polonaise and North of the Port, both by Anthony Bukoski; Bangkok 8, John Burdett; and Army at Dawn, Rick Atkinson, the first volume in a three-volume account of the campaign in North Africa and Italy that comes complete with a photo of my old man as a young man—quelle surprise!—among a group of fellow Army cryptanalysts on a ship just prior to landing in Morocco.

I also keep a collection of essays by Isaiah Berlin handy, The Proper Study of Mankind. Of an evening, I’ll usually start with some Berlin, because I think it’s good for the soul to read Berlin. But I can handle that for about five minutes at that hour, so I’ll pick up one of the other books or one of the several stale issues of The New Yorker or Atlantic and try to finish one of the several articles I started weeks ago but never quite got through because I’d always fall asleep. And then I’ll fall asleep….

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