Friday, May 13, 2005

Making New (Blogger) Friends

One of the fun parts of blogging is making the (online) acquaintance of other bloggers. Thus I meet Wendi Kaufman, aka The Happy Booker, who is almost relentlessly cheerful on her blog. She inspires me, as I haven’t mastered much past somber tone.

A few weeks ago, The Happy Booker started to rave about an author I was unfamiliar with, Richard McCann. She praised his new book, Mother of Sorrows, calling it one of her favorite books this year.

McCann’s website describes the book this way:

“With the breadth and cumulative force of a novel, Mother of Sorrows presents ten interwoven stories of an American family starting out in the post-World War II suburbs of Washington, D.C., a world of identical brick houses and sunstruck, treeless lawns.”

It’s a novel that took McCann 18 years to write. In 1990, he came down with serious liver disease; in 1996 he underwent a liver transplant. He talked to the Happy Booker about his experiences:

“So I was quite busy, for some years, with the work of dying and then being resurrected. When I finally rose from the sickbed, I wasn't struck first by the urge to pick up a pencil: I was struck first by the urge to go canoeing and to get a suntan.”

Mother of Sorrows is getting great reviews. The Washington Post, New York and LA Times liked it, using phrases like “exquisitely written,” and “elegant and unfussy prose.” Borders selected it for it Original Voices section for May.

Now Bay Area book fans can get a chance to hear McCann read. He’ll be at Stacey’s Books on Market Street on Monday, May 16 at 12:30 and at Books, Inc. on Market Street Tuesday night at 7:30.

Speaking of new friends, new blogs, there now is a bright orange and black logo in the sidebar of my blog. It’s from Web Del Sol, a great literary magazine. Web Del Sol was looking to partner with a few literary blogs as part of a feature for their House of Blogs. I volunteered. Check out the site. It’s set up as one-stop shopping for book blogs, with links to a lot of good sites and excerpts to give you a taste of various voices.


Richard McCann said...

Thanks for the nice words! If you're a reader of Ghost World and come to one of my San Francisco readings, I hope you'll introduce yourself. I've lived on the east coast so, so long!

the Happy Booker said...

FYI: Richard gives a wonderful reading, really you don't want to miss it. His event was standing room only in DC.

Wendi, the relentlessly cheerful