Bounty of the Season

Christmas means many things to people, for some it’s about being with family, for others it has religious significance, often for the children it’s a time of receiving gifts. I enjoy and celebrate all of those things at Christmastime, I enjoy the baking my wife and I do for family and friends, enjoy the annual Christmas open house, the music, decorating, all of it – except wrapping at which I am all thumbs. For me, one of the best things is opening gifts on Christmas morning, and I always hope to find books under the tree. In that regard, this year was wildly successful.

Here’s the run-down on what Santa (and the various elves here at home – and in bookshops near and far – delivered. Some of these were on a wish list, which my wife and family insist I make each year, some were intuitive guesses, some came completely out of the blue. All are welcome.

science fiction (10) – Ben Bova: MarsReturn to Mars, Mars Life; Kristine Kathryn Rusch: the Retrieval Artist series books I didn’t have: ExtremesDuplicate Effort, Buried Deep, Consequences, Paloma, Recovery Man, as well as her newest, a non-series (or new series?) Diving into the Wreck , Glen Cook: Passage At Arms,

mystery (6) – Alexander McCall Smith: The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by , Robert Leslie Bellem: The Case Files of Dan Turner, Hollywood Detective Volume 1, The Spicy YearsThe Case Files of Dan Turner, Hollywood Detective Volume 2, The Middle Years, The Case Files of Dan Turner, Hollywood Detective Volume 3, The Tamer Years, Robert Crais: The Watchman, Don Winslow: The Dawn Patrol

fantasy (1) – Jay Lake: Trial of Flowers

cook book (1) Alton Brown: Good Eats, the Early Years

art – David Saunders: Norman Saunders life and work, coffee table book

general fiction (1) Garrison Keillor: A Christmas Blizzard

Also there was a soundtrack CD in the stocking, watch for it in a coming Saturday Soundtrack post.

All this bounty has precipitated a crisis of sorts. The stacks, piles and shelves of books To Be Read are full and there is no space to put the new books. That’s right, every inch of shelf space is crammed full, including double-shelving for the paperbacks. I’ve been trying to cut back on book buying, and then this. I’ll not need any more books for a while, but what do I do with the ones I just added to the catalog?

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
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17 Responses to Bounty of the Season

  1. Richard says:

    Indeed. Christmas isn’t about getting, but it’s nice to have a stack of new (to me) books!

  2. Storage is always a problem, Rick. Maybe you should have asked Santa for more shelving.

  3. Patti Abbott says:

    Lots of new titles for me. Happy reading is right. George handled his storage problems in a wonderful way.

  4. Although a terrible suggestion for the book collector, I am gradually going through my books and giving those I’m not likely to reread to the public library.

  5. Richard says:

    William – I have been doing that as well, some going to the library, some to used book stores and some to PaperBackSwap.

  6. Art Scott says:

    This post was electrifying here, with the news — new to me — that someone was doing a comprehensive reprint project of the Dan Turner stories, something I’d long wished for. It took some poking around to discover that the Case Files books come from Lulu Press, who also offer six volumes of Turner reprints from Hollywood Detective. Ordered tham all. Can’t wait for the books to get here! Reading Bellem’s stories is like eating peanuts, or listening to Scarlatti sonatas, you always want one more!

    And BTW, Santa (aka George & Diane Kelley) brought me Good Eats: The Early Years also. Have you discovered that the dust jacket unfolds into a Good Eats faux movie poster on the inside?

  7. Richard says:

    Art – I found out about the Turner books from Dave Lewis in Portland, whose blog, Davy Crocketts Almanack (see my blog roll) is a regular stop for me. I got just those three Dan Turner volumes because it seemed the contents of the others began to overlap. I’ll probably get the rest in time, but the 56 stories in the three I got will suffice for the present. I think you’ll be happy with them, they are handsome volumes. You may want to take a look at this site:, it has a pretty complete bibliography.

    As for the Good Eats poster, I saw it, but I immediately put back on the book. Whether it will stay – being a cookbook, it’s not subject to the same rules as the rest of the books.

  8. Nice pile of reading matter. I’d read Bova’s first two Mars books and just recently picked up Mars Life. It’s waiting it’s turn in the TBR pile, getting dangerously large, along with a couple of the Dan Turners volumes.

  9. Richard says:

    Randy – I’m looking forward to reading the Bova, I have read quite a bit of his stuff, but it’s been a while. I believe the Mars books (the first 2) got mixed reviews, but it seems these days SF reviewers on many blogs enjoy being critical of just about everything except a few favorite authors.

  10. Evan Lewis says:

    An amazing haul, Rick. Time to clean out those kitchen cupboards and turn them into bookshelves.

    Happy New Year, Art Scott. And that goes for your alter ego Shot, too.

  11. Richard says:

    Say, that’s a GREAT idea! Perhaps I’ll do it while the wife is away at quilt class in two weeks.

  12. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Excellent list, Rick. I’ve been picked up the Rusch books since your review (I’ve liked her mysteries) but I’m waiting for the first one to start the series.

  13. Richard says:

    That would be THE DISAPPEARED, right? It’s where the series starts. I loved it, obviously by my review. I now have the rest but am in the middle of reading other stuff (Keillor, Winslow, Saunders) and will begin the next one in a week or so.

  14. Jeff Meyerson says:

    Looks like you’re going to need a bigger house… or more storage space.

  15. frances wang says:

    I know what you mean about no space for new books! I have piles everywhere in front of my book cases, yes, but on tables and in front of the tree, too.

    Ah, well, what can a lady of 62 do?
    I won’t be building any bookcases so must find a way to add welcomed new additions to my ever growing collection.

    Happy New Year!

  16. Richard says:

    Thanks, Frances, same to you!

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