Monday, November 10, 2008

Book Week: Day 1, BFB


Thanks for all the happy birthday wishes:-) After a week of celebrations and at least 3 cakes, I'm relieved it's all done...and happy to welcome in Anne's Book Week. In keeping with the gratitude month theme, I'm focusing on my favorite BFB (books from Brian) today.


A while back (looks like 1997 to be exact), Bri started giving me The Best American Short Stories anthology every year at Christmas. Now I expect it, which is the problem with traditions...but I love finding out who this year's editor is, and every Christmas, after all the giving is done and the wrapping paper has been corralled, I read the opening essay (which is sometimes better than any of the stories within). Short stories mystify me with the power they contain in such a sparce space. Some are hit and miss, some become favorites (it was within these pages that I first read People Like That Are The Only People Here).


When we were *young* and living in Arizona, Brian left to fight a wildfire in New Mexico and returned home with this small gift, The Three Little Javelinas. At the time I loved that it alluded to the children I hoped we'd have some day. Now it is one of our kids' favorites, mainly because of the illustrations, beautifully detailed, and its southwestern twist on the three little pigs (the big bad wolf is now a coyote).


I can't remember the occasion for which he gave me this, but I remember being so happy. I'd been searching for a hardcover copy of Out of Africa, probably my all-time favorite book. It needed to not include Shadows on the Grass, which it almost always does now, and not feature a picture of Isak Dinesen on the cover (something she was adamant about when it was first published). The movie is a beautiful romance, but it has very little in common with Dinesen's poetic memoir. If you haven't read it, go get it. I envy your ability to read it for the first time.


And this weekend he gave me this, which I had completely forgotten about after making the passing remark, while we watched the John Adams miniseries, that I'd love to read a collection of their letters. I didn't have it on any wishlist, so he must have made a mental note of it at the time. And knowing how difficult it is to remember anything once you reach the advanced age of 40, it is now my favorite BFB of all time.

Next Up: Favorite Children's Books

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