Archive for November 23rd, 2020

38 books I bet you didn’t read during COVID! Steve Wasserman’s reading list will shame us all…

Monday, November 23rd, 2020
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So what have you been doing during COVID, you bunch of wastrels? Huh? Huh?? Huh??? Eating a lot, drinking too much, complaining of ennui, watching TV, not working on the neglected novel you intended to finish, posting cat pictures and videos, oversleeping, baiting and snarling at each other on Twitter? At least that’s what I gather from my visits online.

The Hero of Heyday, Steve Wasserman

Behold and weep! Heyday publisher Steve Wasserman has given us his list of COVID reading (in no particular order) since the shelter-in-place edict was issued eight months ago, way back in mid-March 2020. It will shame us all. Here what he’s been reading as he hunkers down in Berkeley:

The War for Gaul by Julius Caesar, translated by James J. O’Donnell
The Ruins Lessons: Meaning and Material in Western Culture by Susan Stewart
The Last Assassin: The Hunt for the Killers of Julius Caesar by Peter Stothard
God’s Shadow: Sultan Selim, His Ottoman Empire, and the Making of the Modern World by Alan Mikhail
Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson
A Fistful of Shells: West Africa from the Rise of the Slave Trade to the Age of Revolution by Toby Green
The Man in the Red Coat by Julian Barnes
Inside Story by Martin Amis
Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas by Machado de Assis
Rambling On: An Apprentice’s Guide to the Gift of Gab by Bohumil Hrabal
Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter; The Prime of Life; Force of Circumstance; All Said and Done; Adieux: A Farewell to Sartre – all by Simone de Beauvoir
The Words by Jean-Paul Sartre
Tête-à-tête: Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre by Hazel Rowley
Left Bank: Art, Passion, and the Rebirth of Paris, 1940-50 by Agnès Poirier
Wagnerism: Art and Politics in the Shadow of Music by Alex Ross
The Great Black Way: L.A. in the 1940s and the Last African American Renaissance by RJ Smith
Set the Night on Fire: LA in the Sixties by Mike Davis and Jon Wiener
Music: A Subversive History by Ted Gioia.
The Big Goodbye: Chinatown and the Last Years of Hollywood by Sam Wasson
Murder in the Movies by David Thomson
Epidemics and Society by Frank M. Snowden
The Decameron by Boccaccio
A Journal of the Plague Year by Daniel Defoe
Inky Fingers: The Making of Books in Early Modern Europe by Anthony Grafton
Abe: Abraham Lincoln in His Times by David S. Reynolds
Tacky’s Revolt: The Story of an Atlantic Slave War by Vincent Brown
Black Spartacus: The Epic Life of Toussaint Louverture by Sudhir Hazareesingh
My Life in 100 Objects by Margaret Randall
Gambling with Armageddon: Nuclear Roulette from Hiroshima to the Cuban Missile Crisis by Martin J. Sherwin
Mayday 1971: A White House at War, a Revolt in the Streets, and the Untold History of America’s Biggest Mass Arrest by Lawrence Roberts
Garner’s Quotations by Dwight Garner
Notebooks: 1936-1947 by Victor Serge
The Habsburgs: To Rule the World by Martyn Rady
Men on Horseback: The Power of Charisma in the Age of Revolution by David A. Bell

(Original watercolor by Wendy Ruebman)