Three-fifths of this is Bill Crider’s fault. He recently reread and reviewed Spoon River Anthology and that got me started thinking about, then looking for and finally buying the last three books here. I’ve had them all at one time or another, but they slipped away over the years so now I have new copies. The other two books speak for themselves.
The Duel of Shadows – The Extraordinary Cases of Barnabas Hildreth by Vincent Cornier – edited and with an introduction by Mike Ashley [Crippen & Landru, Lost Classics Series, 2011 hardcover, new] – mystery short story collection – usually I’m familiar with, if not well read of, the authors Crippen & Landru publishes in both their regular collections and their Lost Classics Series but this time I haven’t a clue. I’ve never even heard of Cornier, or if I have I’ve completely forgotten. So something new. I expect it to be good, as all C&L collections are.
Northwest Angle by William Kent Kruger [Atria 2011 hardcover, new] – mystery – this is the 12th in the Cork O’Connor series – By one of my favorite mystery authors, this is just out and on the top of my mystery TBR list.
Our Town by Thorton Wilder [Harper Collins 2003 hardcover, new] – play – originally published in 1938 this play has been produced countless times in countless venues, has been on Broadway, in film, on television, stages small and large, in high school and college productions of varying cost and quality, an enduring classic. I’ve seen the play several times – there was a stage version I saw that was especially excellent, perhaps featuring Hal Holbrook as the narrator – but I haven’t read it in 35 or more years. High time.
Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters [New American Library, Signet Classics, 2007 paperback, new] – poetry – this set of short narrative poems, free form, combine to tell the story of a midwestern town. The voices are of those buried in the town’s cemetery, and present such a variety of viewpoints and opinions it takes reading the whole thing to get the picture of the town the author has contrived. These are glimpses; sad, intelligent, angry, wistful, telling bits of personal history. Wondrous and wonderful.
Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson [New American Library, Signet Classics, 2005 paperback, new] – short story collection – I’m not sure why, but I associate this book with Our Town and Spoon River Anthology. So when I got one of them, I just had to get all three. What’s perhaps most odd about that is that this is a book I’ve not read, or if I have it was in the dim past of high school or early college days and long forgotten. So I’m counting it as a new to me author, and new to me book. Seems like perfect Summer reading, if I hurry before Summer is gone.