Cassandra Rose Clarke’s Picks
I’ll be honest: I don’t have a “nightstand” so much as a “haphazard scatter of books at various stages of completion.” I am absolutely terrible about reading multiple books at once, and I leave them randomly lying around my apartment as a constant reminder. Of what, I’m not exactly sure. The fact that I’m afraid of novelistic commitment, maybe.
Anyway, here’s the current scatter:
American Elsewhere, by Robert Jackson Bennett
The Darkangel, by Meredith Ann Pierce
Red Dragon, by Thomas Harris
The Warrior’s Apprentice, by Lois McMaster Bujold
Star Trek Into Darkness prequel comic
And that’s not even getting into the half-completed books on my Kindle. Should I list them too? Let’s do it:
Illumination Night, by Alice Hoffman
Emilie and the Hollow World, by Martha Wells
Okay, so there are only two on my Kindle. That’s something, I suppose.
To be fair, normally I don’t have this many books hanging around. The reason the tally is so high right now is because of American Elsewhere and The Darkangel, two library books I put on hold which, suspiciously, arrived on the same day. If you’re not familiar with American Elsewhere, it’s approximately 3,402 pages long, and since it has a waiting list, I’ve only got two weeks to read it. This meant I had to set aside Red Dragon, itself a distraction from the two novels I was reading on my Kindle and one I picked up after getting overly invested in the television show Hannibal. The Star Trek comic will theoretically reveal crucial information about the upcoming Star Trek movie, and is therefore important.
I should be clear that I’m enjoying every single one of these books. My reading or not reading one is more a matter of time and mood than anything else. If I had to pick a “main” book, I’d have to go with American Elsewhere not only because I have a built-in deadline, but also because it’s pretty immensely unputdownable. But that isn’t to say the other six books are lower down on my list. Illumination Night is one of my favorite books of all time. In an ideal world, I’d be reading Illumination Night constantly.
So maybe that’s the real reason I don’t stack my books on my night stand — scattering them around puts them all on the same level. As they should be.
Cassandra Rose Clarke is a speculative fiction writer of both YA and adult novels. She graduated in 2006 from The University of St. Thomas with a bachelor’s degree in English, and in 2008 she completed her master’s degree in creative writing at The University of Texas at Austin. Both of these degrees have served her surprisingly well. Currently she lives in Houston, Texas. Her latest young adult novel, The Pirate’s Wish, will be released on June 4th.
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