Just when we needed new reading material a big box of books came in the mail today. Our favorite bookseller is Ziesings, a mom-&-pop on-line and print catalog shop. When I say mom-&-pop, I mean it literally. When you call to make an order you get either Cindy (mom) or Mark (pop).
They run their store out of their home in Shingletown, an alpine hamlet in Shasta County, east of Redding and on the way to Lassen Park. They still print and mail out a voluminous catalog, and used to do all their business that way, but they now of course have a full-fledged website and on-line business. I usually call in or email my orders.
This latest batch is not complete—Kim Stanley Robinson’s Ministry for the Future is backordered—but it’s chock full of goodies.
Starting at the bottom of the pile is Dopeworld by Niko Vorobyov. It is subtitled “Adventures in the Global Drug Trade.” I usually like fiction but this non-fiction story appealed to me. You can’t get much better than Don Winslow’s fictional takes on the U.S.-Mexico drug trade (like The Cartel and The Border), but sometimes you have to read a book with footnotes in it!
Lame Fate/Ugly Swans by Boris and Arkady Strugatsky is a reprint of a two novels from the 1960s Soviet Union. The brothers wrote in their native Russian and their work did not reach a Western audience until the 1980s. Roadside Picnic is their most famous work and deals with the aftermath of an extraterrestrial visitation, a theme they often returned to.
Stark House Press in Eureka, California, consistently publishes interesting reprints from the 1950s and 1960s paperback mystery and suspense market. Much of the great post-WWII American fiction writing emerged from the popular press, especially in crime and detective stories. We just finished the superb duo (“Beat Back the Tide” and “Footsteps in the Night”) from Dolores Hitchens, a largely unknown writer today but an accomplished and successful one during that time. The new duo is from Ruth Sawtell Wallis, another of the many women who wrote in these typically male-dominated genres.
That’s quite a pile! Should be plenty of good reading ahead—crucial during this Isolation Apocalypse.
What’s on your bookshelf?