June 24th, 2019

Before You Die

A bookseller has sent me a list of 55 books I ought to read before I die.

And the question is why?

Not why did they send me the list but why are these particular books so essential?

I gave it a quick once over and my heart sank. Nothing quirky, non-obvious, outside the canon. The first title was To Kill A Mockingbird.

I was watching an interview with Patrick DeWitt yesterday and he was saying you've got to find the books that speak to you. He was largely self-educated, he says, which meant he dodged the canon.

It doesn't seem to have hobbled his writing skills.

I'm on his team, totally...