Wednesday, 25 November 2009

New Arrivals

Two treats waiting for me when I got home today:













A 1965 first UK edition of Patricia Highsmith's A Suspension of Mercy, and a first UK paperback edition of her debut novel, Strangers on a Train. Both nabbed on eBay for a very reasonable price. And in other Patricia Highsmith news, I should soon have a full set of Ripley first editions (with the exception of Talented, which I have a nice 1960 Pan edition of), with both The Boy Who Followed Ripley and Ripley Under Water hopefully winging their way towards me soon.

And at this point I should probably stop buying books for a while. I've got quite enough to be getting on with, and really the only book I'm currently keen to get is Kingsley Amis's The James Bond Dossier. I've got my eye on a copy of that on eBay, twinned with his Book of Bond. But then that's it. Really.

Well...

For a while anyway.

Maybe.

Ahem.

Oh sod it. I'm an inveterate collector. If it's not books it's comics; if it's not comics it's records; and if it's not records it's DVDs. At least with books I'm bettering myself slightly, expanding my horizons through fiction. Yes, I do actually read the books I buy, not just stick 'em on a shelf. Although they do look good on the shelf...

But yes. There are no local book fairs until next year, so it's time to regroup, take stock, and try and make headway with the books I do have. I'm nearly done on Stephen King's Under the Dome, and am also partway through Live and Let Die (James Bond has just had his first encounter with Mr. Big). Under the Dome has been great, although a strange thing: as with Cell, King hasn't really imparted a description of the ostensible hero, Dale Barbara. I've got a mental image of him as a black man, even though I'm almost positive he's not. It just feels right to me that he is, and King hasn't described him at all, so far as I can recall. Which is odd, as I'm pretty sure King's at least sketched the appearances of all the other characters in the book.

And after these two, I think I'll try Kingsley Amis's The Green Man and Highsmith's afore-mentioned Strangers on a Train next. And dip back into the Highsmith biography I started. Ah, sweet anticipation.

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