I usually wait until the end of the year to make this kind of list, but it’s been a pretty good one so far, so here are 10 books I really enjoyed in the first half of 2018, listed in the order I read them:
Tape For The Turn of the Year
In 1963, Ammons got a roll of adding machine tape from the hardware store and decided to write poems on it every day until the tape was used up. I started the book on December 6 of last year, and followed along with each entry until January 10th.
Largesse of the Sea Maiden
A perfect swan song.
Takes a look at Bach’s work through the recordings of his works throughout the years. I especially liked reading about Glenn Gould and Pablo Casals.
A Natural History of the Senses
I originally thought my new book would have more about the senses in it, so I picked this up for research. Very dense, lush book.
Prince and The Purple Rain Sessions
A day-by-day play-by-play of Prince in the recording studio at the height of his powers. I did a lot of skimming and skipping around, but really enjoyed it.
You & A Bike & A Road
A comic diary of Davis’s bike across the south. I love her work so much. This might end up my book of the year.
Meet Me In The Bathroom
An oral history of NYC music from 2001-2011. How much you enjoy it will probably depend on your familiarity with the music — I was eighteen and a freshman in college when I saw The Strokes in Newport, KY, in 2001, so it made me pretty danged nostalgic.
I mean, what’s there to say? The dude makes me laugh out loud… and he keeps getting better and better.
Considering how much Ways of Seeing influenced me, I’m ashamed I haven’t read more Berger. This was the last book he published before he died.
A gorgeous, gigantic tome dedicated to the work of one of our great Midwestern artists.
This list originally appeared in my weekly newsletter.