Tuesday, August 03, 2004


Well, I've fended it off as long as possible--too much hype, I'm not into the very jokey kind of fantasy--but finally the time came: I've just finished The Color of Magic, Terry Pratchett's first Discworld novel. (The teaser earlier in the summer was reading the lovely Good Omens, coauthored by Pratchett and Neil Gaiman.) Now I'm hooked and I've taken drastic measures. I remember being like this when I finally read Patrick O'Brien's Master and Commander. It's not so much that you say "this is the best book ever" and go and get the whole series. (Which I did, from the library at Yale--CCL--and read the whole damn thing in about four days. I'm not exaggerating. I'm addicted to novels.) It's more that you say "well, that was pretty fun, and since I need a huge supply of novels in order to get my fix, I'm getting all the rest of these, as soon as possible and preferably at no expense to myself." So as the Columbia library doesn't have more than 3--which I will go and get tomorrow--I have requested thirteen more (and I think at least one of those volumes is a three-in-one deal) from my favorite thing in the world, BorrowDirect, a service that gives certain university library borrowers access to the holdings of all the other libraries in the consortium (which includes Yale, Columbia, Penn, Princeton, Dartmouth, Cornell, etc.). You could say it affects sales in a negative way, this obsessive library use. But there are many reasons it's necessary and indeed a good thing. I will recommend these books to lots of people, and maybe even buy copies to give away. And also I would drown in a sea of books if I really bought all the books I read. Easily get through ten to fifteen novels a week. More, some weeks. Can't wait to motor through these Discworld books, anyway.

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