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Tuesday, December 27, 2022

My Christmas haul

 I often get books for Christmas (because I ask for them.) This Christmas, I got three titles by asking my wife and my son to give them to me. What fascinates me is that all three of the books are connected to this blog. 

John Higgs' book on the Beatles and James Bond has not yet been published in the U.S., so my wife ordered it from the Book Depository, which ships books worldwide from Britain. I am eager to read it. It turns out to be a pretty hefty book, about 500 pages. 

The back cover has endorsement quotes from Salena Godden,  Jeremy Deller and Stuart Maconie. I kind of know who Salena Godden is because she has been associated with John Higgs and the British Discordian crowd. I have no idea who Jeremy Deller or Stuart Maconie are. Presumably when a literate British person hears that Jeremy Deller or Stuart Maconie have endorsed a book, he or she will possibly feel an irresistible lust to read it. I wonder who will be quoted in next year's American edition?

I put up a blog post announcing Kumano Kodo: Pilgrimage to Powerspots by J. Christian Greer and Michelle K. Oing earlier this year, and now that I have it, I can finally read it. It is about "Japan's oldest pilgrimage route," and it includes many collages in color. It seems like an unusual book. More information about the book at the link. 

Speaking of Christian Greer, here is an announcement on Twitter from Berkeley Alembic: "We're extremely excited to announce a new 5-part seminar with @erik_davis and J. Christian Greer: 'Expanded Minds: Spiritual Wisdom from the Psychedelic Underground'." More information here. One more bit about Christian: "His forthcoming book, Angelheaded Hipsters (Oxford University Press), explores the expansion of psychedelic culture in the late Cold War era." 

Finally, I have a new copy of RAW Memes by Richard Rasa, which collects together many of the memes Rasa has produced. On the pages facing the memes are additional extracts of RAW prose. Apparently the reader is supposed to figure out the patterns Rasa used in assembling the book, so this should be a test of my RAW scholarship. 

Also, fortunately, by its nature this is a book that can be read in bits, and I have other distractions now. For one thing, I am trying to finish a biography of Claude Shannon, A Mind At Play, that I got interested in after listening to the Hilaritas Press podcast featuring the two authors, Jimmy Soni and Rob Goodman.

My main Christmas gift some years ago was a big hardcover, the Oxford Classical Dictionary. It had little connection to this blog. It was an expensive hardcover, and soon after I got it, they put out a new edition! 

1 comment:

Chad said...

Tom - pls let us know how you like Kumano Kodo! I still haven’t bought it as the TBR list is too long. But if something REALLY exciting gets released, I move it atop the list. KK seems to have that potential. I recently asked Erik Davis his thoughts on it (in the Substack comments) and he not only spoke highly of it, he said he’d mention it in his next post. I should probably just pull the trigger…