When I settle in to start reading a new book in bed, one of three things is likely to happen.
1. I hate the book within the first five pages and hurl it across the room.
2. I like the writing and/or the subject matter, but book doesn’t “grab” me, so it goes to the nightstand for later consideration.
3. I am swept away and read until the book hits my face, then pick it up in the morning and keep reading. The last book to do that was Tana French’s “The Witch Elm.” You can’t see it because it’s inside the iPad.
The books in the picture are mostly “twos” — books I liked enough to intend to finish, but haven’t quite gotten back to. “Hawksmoor” has been living next to my bed for more than a decade. There are a few “threes” — books I actually finished but haven’t shelved yet: “Tomb,” “Blakely’s Ark,” “Kid Gloves,” and, of course, all the mushroom books [Hautman is a forager]. You can’t see it in the photo, but there are half a dozen mushroom books in that pile.
Pete Hautman is a writer in Minneapolis. He won a National Book Award for “Godless.”
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