Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Holiday Recommendations: Reading Rainbow

I said I would mention some non-sartorial gift options, so let's pay homage to the written word for a second.  You can't go wrong giving a good book and here are a few I am particularly interested in reading or reading again.  I've listed just a couple options since I realize this is a style blog and whatnot and, no, you will not find any of that Twilight nonsense over here.  My apologies to any readers who happen to be fans, but I'm just not that into vampire abstinence propaganda.  On that note...

I Am the New Black by Tracy Morgan...$13.50

Before you scoff, listen to Tracy's interview with Terry Gross on Fresh Air.  While I was already a fan of Tracy's considering his impressive body of work, this interview really sold the book for me.  Mr. Morgan is an extremely intelligent and complex individual.  His past is fascinating, complicated and makes for some surprisingly emotional fodder.  While I can imagine this book, much like the above interview, is full of humorous outbursts from one of the funniest men alive, the most intriguing thing has to be the honesty and candor with which Tracy Morgan uses to sketch his continual development into manhood.

A Country of Vast Designs: James K. Polk, the Mexican War, and the Conquest of the American Continent...$16.97

I am by no means a history buff, but my fascination with President James K. Polk can be traced all the way back to my sophomore year of high school.  The legacy of Polk is often debated by scholars as they attempt to make sense of the first dark-horse candidate ever to be elected President of The United States of America.  His four years in office (he limited himself to one term) were pivotal to the development of our young country and the debate rages on regarding the tactics he used to expand our nation's territory.  Robert W. Merry's book "is a refreshing challenge" to academia's view that Polk was nothing more than a "cunning champion of slaveholding Manifest Destiny".  I don't normally jump at historical non-fiction, but this book sounds like an actual page turner (no sarcasm).

The Complete Stories by Flannery O'Connor...$12.24

It is my personal opinion that Flannery O'Connor stands alone as the greatest American writer to ever have lived.  I'm not sure how many people will even remotely agree with me, but that's not the point.  Her complete collection of stories, which I am lucky enough to already own, documents her works (excluding her two novels) from grad school up until her untimely death from lupus.  Her grotesque, Southern gothic style is unmatched and her portraits of American life are as stunning as they are enthralling.  It doesn't get much better than this and even if you have a severe case of attention-deficit these short stories can do more good than harm.



  1. where the f is lavar burton?? reading rainbow my ass haha

  2. Great recommendations. I'm especially interested in checking out the book on Polk. Nice to see another aspect of your great taste.

  3. I still quote "A Good Man Is Hard to Find". It took me until I got to college to realize that I was a literature nerd. I guess that's better than playing Magic: The Gathering.

  4. "Wise Blood" still haunts me on a regular basis. She's amazing. Cue up some 16 Horsepower in iTunes and read a few of her stories. Good times.

  5. I agree heartily about Flannery O'Connor.