08 December 2011

Fatal Attraction

Earlier this year I ducked into a second-hand bookstore near my office.  ("Just to browse.")  45 minutes later I was placing money on the counter and walking out with books that smelled as if they'd been in someone's cellar for the past 100 years. I came across this stash the other day and decided they need to be on my WINTER READING pile:

"Topper" by Thorne Smith
This was one of my favorite television shows as a child. A socialite couple is killed in an avalanche along with the Saint Bernard who attempts to save them. Their ghosts (including the dog) return to haunt and irritate a stuffy aristocrat, Cosmo Topper, who now lives in their former home.  I remember that everyone (not including the dog) wore evening gowns and tuxedos and sipped champagne at all hours of the day and night.

"The Romance of Tristan and Iseult"
As retold by Joseph Bedier, translated by Hilaire Belloc, c. 1945


"Manon Lescaut" by Abbe Prevost. 
I love this opera and have always wanted to read the original story. Although I've never understood how anyone could actually die of thirst in Louisiana, which is 6 feet below sea level. Romantic license..?

"The Story of an African Farm" by Olive Schreiner. 
I'm fascinated by tales of Colonial Africa and India and this particular book—written in 1883—comes with a Dutch glossary in the back.

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