August 3, 2008

Cranford

Just finished Elizabeth Gaskell's Cranford. I fell under the spell of the PBS series earlier this year, and decided I should find out more about Mrs. G. The novel is no better than a minor work, but I was really disappointed that the novel had been so modified for television. The role of some characters had been altered, and some had been eliminated altogether. As I finished, I thought the book provided a nice reminder of the pleasures of domestic life--long conversations, letter writing, reading, and such.

What I'm reading seems less signficant than how I'm reading. I still have an Audible subscription and in fact listened to Prunella Scales read Cranford. But I've been visiting bookstores and buying used books online and have started using Adobe Digital Editions. I got copies of The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution to read for the Fourth of July, and I'm finding that this is an easy, satisfying, and generally inexpensive way to read. I'm just about done with Death Comes for the Archbishop. For now I plan to read the analog way and work through what seem like important editions that are not easily available in a digital format—Jill Taylor's book, Michael Chabon's The Yiddish Policeman's Union, Jane Mayer's The Dark Side, and Jack Goldsmith's The Terror Presidency. Analog books aside, I have been much taken by the idea of the Kindle and would really like to switch to actual reading instead of listening. Won't happen until Amazon offers at a more attractive price.