I always have a stack teetering beside my bed, dipping into it depending on mood and what’s reachable. Just now I’m most deeply into The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore. This stunning bit of nonfiction, which chronicles the lives of two boys growing up in Baltimore whose lives take different directions (one a Rhodes Scholar, the other convicted of murder and sentenced to life) has been required reading for some incoming college classes this year. I’m deeply touched by both of these lives and the book resonates just as loudly in Berkeley as it does in Baltimore.
I’m alternating that with the delightful new book The Swan, a small fresh-voiced and highly imaginative novel by my friend Jim Cohee.
Some nights I pick up the heaviest book in the pile: Where on Earth is Heaven? by BBC producer and filmmaker Jonathan Stedall. Stedall ponders all the big questions, through explorations of the thoughts of Tolstoy, Rudolph Steiner, Teilhard de Chardin, and anyone else he encountered who has also probed the meaning of life.
As I dip through the pile to see what else is lying in wait for my evening hours, I unearthed one book that could have made a difference, and still might, if I can keep it from getting reburied: Karen Kingston’s Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui.