• Some Recent Book Purchases: Radiohead to Silent Cinema

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    I buy both printed books and digital ebooks regularly. Every so often I'll share what books I've recently purchased with Booklad readers. I'll include links to each edition so you can find out more on any specific title and make a few comments on the book. I almost always read the introductions or first chapters of books I purchase. It's like sneaking a little bit of the frosting from a birthday cake.

    Most of these books were purchased at the used bookstore where I work during the day: the Iliad Bookshop. A couple titles I ordered off of the internet (primarily Amazon.com).

    The Assistant by Bernard Malamud, Farrar, Straus & Giroux,reprint 2003. Introduction by Jonathan Rosen. 

     I've been enchanted with Malamud ever since I read his first collection of stories last year, The Magic Barrel, but have never read one of his novels. I sneaked a read of the first chapter and, God, it's good. I can't wait to read this novel.

    My Struggle, Book One by Karl Ove Knausgaard. Archipeligo Books, 2012. Translated from the Norwegian by Don Bartlett. 

     Not sure where I came across this author, but I'm half-way through reading and it's a brilliant autobiography written as fiction (roman a clef?). The writing is so good and the scenes are so poetic and alive. I'll be doing a full review of this book when I'm done.

    Silent Cinema by Brian J. Robb. Kamera Books, 2007. DVD included. 

    Found this little gem in our silent film section. Enjoyed the introduction, so I'm going to add it to my growing library of silent cinema books. DVD has 193 minutes of extracts from classic silent films. Kamera Books, a UK publisher, has got a lot of interesting titles they are publishing.

    The Music and Art of Radiohead, edited by Joseph Tate. Ashgate Publishing, UK. 2005. 

    I've become addicted to the music of Radiohead (again) having listened to OK Computer and Hail to the Thief a dozen times during the last month. I'm half-way through the 12 essays in the book and they range from overly academic to very insightful (Mark B.N. Hansen's "Deforming Rock: Radiohead's Plunge into the Sonic Continuum"). The introduction, by Joseph Tate, is quite good, too.

    A Writer's Companion, 4th Edition, by Richard Marius. McGraw-Hill College, 1995. 

    I read a few pages of this book every night before I go to sleep. Richard Marius is a very good teacher of effective writing. Not only does he teach the subject well, but he's an incredibly good writer himself. I'm not big on "how-to" books on writing, but this one is inspiring and very practical.

    Silent Cinema: An Introduction by Paolo Cherchi Usai. Palgrave Macmillan, Revised and expanded edition, 2010. 

    This is a classic work on Silent Cinema. Originally titled "Burning Passions", it originated in a lecture Mr. Usai gave regarding the importance of preserving and studying silent films. This edition (beautifully designed and produced) has an excellent preface by David Robinson, himself a noted silent film historian. I'll be writing up a full review of this book once I have finished reading it.