Bookin' and pickin', the way a good "blogger" should.

The act of joining a crowd of thousands at the tail end of a pilgrimage seldom produces an obvious path to enlightenment. But that's exactly what I'm doing in early June when I dive into the receding tide of this year's Book Expo America (BEA - named in honor of Bea least that's what I'm telling people). So even though I've been advised it can be an endless swarm of people with no particular utility, I'm all in. Woo. Hoo. I also mention it here to bolster my registration as an official "book blogger" - a job I've taken very seriously (wink, wink) for a very long time. To prove my bona fides, I'll even add in a few recent thoughts as a consumer of bookish products. Or is it book-y? Hard to decide - such is the richness of language-ing.

1. As someone who spends what most people consider a sick amount of time out running, I've graduated from podcasts to audio books. Less annoyance, more substance. At least that's occasionally so. Case in point - Stephen Greenblatt's The Swerve is a deep pool of awesome road fodder. I'm about a long run and a cool down away from a full review. Greenblatt's book deservedly won last year's Pulitzer and National Book Award for non-fiction. Plus he's repped by my literary agency. All very good things. In whatever form, The Swerve moves along smartly and with real purpose.
2. The novel I desperately need to find a few hours to sit down and finish (in old-timey, dead-tree form) is Kevin Barry's City of Bohane. Irvine Welsh (who will never do anything better than Trainspotting, nor does he need to) gave him a front cover blurb - that and Pete Hamill's review in the NYTimes Book Review caught my eye. But once I dipped into it myself, Barry's melodic, mashed-up, bleak-future Irish brogue got all up inside my brain and turned things a wee bit off kilter. In a good way. Bohane dances a fast and brutal jig, while Barry writes like a house and barn and the surrounding grassy hills on fire. I give this book huge conversational props. It may even be great. I'll let you know when I'm through.

I could go on. Us "book bloggers" so often do. Maybe later.