Pam Webb

a writer's journey as a reader

#8: TBRs Awaiting In The Wings

I have three books by the nightstand, I just finished two audio novels, and two books are patiently tucked wating their turn in my library bag.  As the saying goes:


I can’t imagine not having a book ready and waiting for me.  And as the clock suggests, I feel time is fleeting in terms of getting around to all my TBR books.  I have had to stop writing down book suggestions from other bloggers since my list has grown longer than my left leg.  Contending with my prior list of must-get-tos is causing me to wonder what would happen if I stopped everything that wasn’t absolutely pertinent and simply read.  Rod Serling asked the same question back in 1959.

Witness Mr. Henry Bemis, a charter member in the fraternity of dreamers. A bookish little man whose passion is the printed page, but who is conspired against by a bank president and a wife and a world full of tongue-cluckers and the unrelenting hands of a clock. But in just a moment, Mr. Bemis will enter a world without bank presidents or wives or clocks or anything else. He’ll have a world all to himself…without anyone.

“Time Enough at Last” is  episode that deals with Henry Bemis who would much prefer reading to working as a bank teller or spending time with his wife. He gets his wish, only with a dark twist.  The episode has been much parodied over the years and it makes me ever so glad that I am near-sighted after all.

As for my TBR list, it’s daunting; I’ve divided it up into categories to help sort it out.  Maybe if I take one read from each category and move through the list I can get to the top of the list by the year’s end.  Sounds like I’m either trying to make a resolution or a concession.  Maybe I should get back to my reading.  Any of these on your TBR list?  How many are awaiting in the wings for you?

Classical Works:
The Iliad, Tartuffe, The Misanthrope

Realistic Works:
Crime and Punishment, Anna Karenian, A Doll’s House

Romanatic Works:
Don Quixote, Les Miserables, Faust

Impressionistic Works:
Heart of Darkness, The Awakening

Naturalistic Works:
Metamorphosis, Dubliners

This list comes courtesy from one of my AP resource books.  Looking it over I have decided I am fairly illiterate and must get busy.  To make myself feel a bit better I have read many of the suggested work, but I am still way behind.

Getting to these TBRs doesn’t give me too much opportunity to read the likes of a Hunger Game when it comes about.  Those count too, right?

Fortunately, I am not derided for being a “reader” as was Henry Bemis.  And I hope I won’t get my wish for more time in the manner of Henry.  Until then there is summer vacation, my hammock, and my understanding family.

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8 thoughts on “#8: TBRs Awaiting In The Wings

  1. wcs53 on said:

    I remember seeing a rerun of that episode of The Twilight Zone when I was younger. Unfortunately, I need my glasses to read, so I make sure I have a spare pair not too far away.

    That’s quite the daunting TBR list you have there. I think there’s only 3 of those that I have read. Maybe I need to look at some of the others, especially the ones I have on my shelf from this list that I haven’t read!

    • These books are the remainders off my list. Kind of like the last chocolates in the sampler box. Probably tasty, but I’m unsure so I’m leaving them sit for know.

  2. I use that episode to teach irony, but it breaks my heart every time. You might need a Prozac chaser after that reading list! Right I’ve got Dr. Zhivago and The Raphael Affair by Iain Pears to read.

  3. I promised myself I would reread the Iliad after my university professor discussed it at the speed of light in order to get to the next book on his list (and therefore we all had to read it at the speed of light and I retained, well, very very little) but I just can’t get myself to do it for some reason. So it sits there on my shelf. Looking at me. With a sideways glance. Let us know when/if you get to it… maybe you’ll be my inspiration 🙂

    • I hope to get to it before school starts–we’ll see. We do The Odyessey, so it makes sense to be familiar with The Illiad as well. I’ll let you know how it goes. I have a feeling I’ll be Shmooping it. 🙂

  4. Oh my blessed, I’m quite illiterate indeed based on the usual AP book list. Heart of Darkness is on my list. I’m interested in what you think of the Awakening. I know it’s a classic and all, but darn it . . . I found it a bit dull. 🙂

    • Actually I am to be spared of the Awakening since the Junior AP class read that one, but I will dutifully read it since it is mentioned often in Senior AP prompts. I’m currently reading Henry James’ The Portrait of a Lady. I like it so far; however, since it was published as a serial it tends to have lots of padding. I discovered there is a Viggo Moretenson version floating about as a film version. Hope to find it. Heart of Darkness is depressing. For fun, look up the Sparknotes video version.

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