Saturday, September 11, 2004

Rushdie and Peter S. Beagle

A huge hurrah was given by a friend of mine to the works of Rushdie, so I am reading "Haroun and the Sea of Stories." I have read "East, West", a book of short stories he had written a few years ago, and I found them interesting and witty.

I think that I have allowed myself to Blog these many months without ranting about the writing of Peter S. Beagle. I fell over "Folk of the Air" while cataloging gift books into the library. I read it at once, then bought a copy in hardcover of the first edition, shockingly cheap and available only through the used book trade once again, and sent this to a reading friend. I was amazed and impressed by the book. while at once fantastic and weird, it was also so contemporary and so "California." I had never really given one moment's thought to the Society for Creative Anachronisms, Inc but having read "Folk of the Air" I looked them up on the web. Beagle pokes a lot of fun at the group, but in its way the novel glamorized them a bit. I enjoyed the story of the "old Hippie," Joe Farrell, and his wanderings through the mazes of magic, mayhem and mystery. The crowning glory of this novel is the powerful Athanasia Sioris, Mother Goddess extraordinaire. I did acquire my own copy of the book after a few months. My shelves would not be complete without it, although I try to keep my resident book collection to the bare minimum. Shelving is finite, and books are a movable commodity, so my permanent keepers are not allowed to flow to far afield from my available space. That's the ideal, that's the measure I try to work from anyway.

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