my public library has a fantastic little bookstore, and today's finds were exceptional and diverse
  1. Leaves of Grass - Walt Whitman
    been wanting to get my hands on this for a while now. "I bequeath myself to the dirt to grow from the grass I love, / If you want me again look for me under your boot-soles."
  2. Birds of America - Lorrie Moore
    I've heard good things about this and was excited to find it. "It was a fear greater than death, according to the magazines."
  3. Can't Find My Way Home - Martin Torgoff
    looks fascinating. "I learned in writing this book that as a society we face enormously difficult and complex problems concerning the use of elicit drugs."
  4. Seeing Things - Seamus Heaney
    read him for a class last semester and fell in love. "A nine-to-five man who had seen poetry"
  5. The Farming of Bones - Edwidge Danticat
    I read Brother, I'm Dying last year and was drawn to Danticat's voice. Her prose is full of feeling without being sentimental, powerful but not forced. "Two new children came into the world while you have to put your son in the ground."
  6. In the Bedroom - Andre Dubus
    "Sometimes, when I see people like Rose, I imagine them as babies, as young children."
  7. Player Piano - Kurt Vonnegut
    Vonnegut isn't easy to track down. "Ten years after the war — after men and women had come home, after the riots had been put down, after thousands had been jailed under the antisabotage laws — Doctor Paul Proteus was petting a cat in his office."
  8. A Jury of Her Peers - Elaine Showalter
    a comprehensive history of American female writers. "From the beginning, women were creating the new words of the New World."
  9. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao - Junot Díaz
    "No matter what its name or provenance, it is believed that the arrival of Europeans in Hispaniola unleashed the fukú on the world, and we've all been in the shit ever since."
  10. Staying Put - Scott Russell Sanders
    a local essayist I've read and loved. "Even with an entire dictionary in one's head, one eventually comes to the end of words. Then what? Then drink deep like the baby, swim like the salmon, burn like any brief star." I want to kiss this.