Earlier this month I wrote a post called Seen on the Bus about books that I had seen in the course of my commute. It was based on a feature that Karen, of the now shuttered blog Bookish NYC, used to do on a weekly basis. Based on all the encouraging comments I got on that post, I thought I would give it a whirl.
Here are my ground rules:
- I probably will not post weekly. I am too busy reading on my commute to get a glimpse of what everyone is reading. As soon as I have at least three sightings worthy of a noting, I will post them.
- In general I won’t comment on anything to do with vampires, girl with the Steig Larsson books, or on blockbuster authors like Patterson or Koontz or other books too ubiquitous to be interesting.
- Even though I am calling this Seen on the Subway, I will post about books I see anywhere on my commute whether it is bus stop, bus, subway platform, or subway.
Since my Seen on the Bus post, I haven’t really seen anything that trips my trigger in the same way that the previous post did. In fact it was hard work coming up with three books over the past 12 days. Just hard to catch titles sometimes. I was probably trying too hard.
So here goes the first installment.
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Veghese
The Reader: Twenty-something blond woman with briefcase and Lulu Lemon bag travelling on the Red Line. I must admit I actually had to follow this reader for a while before I could catch a glimpse of the title. I finally managed to catch it on the escalator. (We were both making the same transfer to the Green Line, so it isn’t like I went out of my way. I am trying hard not to be a book reader-stalker here.)
The Book: Publishers Weekly summarizes: “Lauded for his sensitive memoir (My Own Country) about his time as a doctor in eastern Tennessee at the onset of the AIDS epidemic in the 80s, Verghese turns his formidable talents to fiction, mining his own life and experiences in a magnificent, sweeping novel that moves from India to Ethiopia to an inner-city hospital in New York City over decades and generations.”
The Verdict: It sounds interesting especially since I am feeling a bit more international these days. But I don’t think I will go out of my way to find this one.
All Other Nights by Dara Horn
The Reader: Rather nattily dressed man with round spectacles, tweed jacket, sweater, and a rep tie waiting for the Yellow Line at Gallery Place.
The Book: A novel about the U.S. Civil War from a Jewish perspective.
The Verdict: A fascinating topic (and one I had never before considered) but not one I am likely to want to read. I would however watch a documentary on the topic or see the film adaptation.
State of Fear by Michael Crichton
The Reader: Stocky guy with a Federal Highways Administration lanyard waiting for the Green Line.
The Book: This one appears to be a novel about how wrong the scientific community is about global warming.
The Verdict: I liked Crichton’s The Andromeda Strain, and long before the disappointing films I liked Jurassic Park, but this one seems to be an attempt to discredit the notion of global warming. Certainly helps explain why he was a “science” confidante of George W. Bush. I have no interest whatsoever in reading this one.