Here’s an update from one of our favorite eclectic readers. Jeffrey’s choices never fail to provoke, delight, or both.
The Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe’s Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War, by Lynn Nicholas
Fascinating story. A compelling read. A page-turner like a thriller, although we all know who done it. There’s a terrific film version well worth seeing.
Air Guitar: Essays on Art & Democracy, by Dave Hickey
Why isn’t Dave Hickey a household name? His prose is original, muscular, funny, and surprising. He connects dots in vectors unexplored. I read certain paragraphs over again just to revel in his voice.
Photo Icons: The Story Behind the Pictures, by Hans-Michael Koetzle
As a photography buff, I’m buried deep in books and ephemera (auction catalogs, monographs, and back issues of Aperture Magazine) to educate myself about the art and craft of making pictures. I love learning about the real stories behind famous shots. This book reveals so much of how magic, art, craft, and luck all dovetailed to produce famous images. A good follow-up to my reading of the brilliant Looking at Photographs, the survey of the photography’s evolution by John Szarkowski, featuring 100 photographs from the collection of The Museum of Modern Art in NYC.
New book by the bed:
The Anthologist, by Nicholas Baker
I like to ask people what they’re reading. The owner of a small art gallery in San Francisco enthused about this book so I picked up a copy. What a hoot. A novel about a hapless fellow who is tasked with writing an introduction to a new anthology of rhyming poetry, but he’s procrastinating with great verve and inventiveness. Very funny on every page. Baker clearly loves poetry (and knows his stuff) and he drops more names than you could pick up at a Writers Workshop post-reading cocktail party.
What’s at the top of your TBR stack?