In My Mailbox, No. 2

Welcome to my second In My Mailbox, a Story Siren meme where I list all the books in my immediate vicinity, so even if I don't blog about them you know they're there, patiently waiting near the top of my TBR pile, about to leap into (or out of) my hand. 

Bit of an eclectic one this month:

Wilkie Collins' 'The Woman In White': I mentioned this in my last IMM and have, since then, picked it up again as planned. It's a library book, renewed 3 times to date, so I think I'm near the point of them letting me keep it (here's hoping!). I hope to finish this sometime in the next week, so Book Quote Friday post to come on it soon.


Charles Dickens' 'The Pickwick Papers': the inaugural book of Dickens from the Start. And so it begins. Bit nervous now. This is the Vintage Classics edition. Love the cover.


Naomi Klein's 'The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism'; I went to a friend's birthday night out thing last Saturday, and as I was wending my way to sleep on her carpet at around 4:45am, I caught sight of this on her dresser and managed to get 20 pages in - eyes bleary, birds tweeting - before I fell asleep and woke up with a page stuck to my cheek.

I imagine the book comes off better than I do in that story, but that's the right way round at least. I was completely hooked, and am now determined to find time to read a copy of this myself.

Im Reich der Poesie: Fünfzig Gedichte englisch - deutsch; a friend of mine is considering raising her imminent baby bilingually, which made me wonder about the state of my own German, as I'd love to help. I returned from my 15 or so months in Germany just over two years ago now, and haven't had much chance to use it since then, but prancing around the house, reading aloud to myself, since then, has done much to increase my confidence. It seems I still possess the traces of a reasonable German accent.

This is a lovely book, full of classical English poems, from Morris to Rosetti, Tennyson to Burns, translated into German, with the two versions next to each other on opposing pages, making it a great comparison-making and learning tool. I also love how there's red telephone boxes on the front to represent England. Beware of the Burns though: beyond trippy, and weirdly more intelligible when not in Scots, but only on the surrealist of levels.  A 'wee beastie' indeed.

I think  Marvell's 'To his Coy Mistress' is probably my favourite translation, perhaps because I love and know the poem so well, but here's the first stanza of what is perhaps my second favourite:

Sie geht in Schoenheit                                    She Walks in Beauty           (Lord Byron)

Sie geht in Schoenheit wie die Nacht    -    She walks in beauty, like the night
Am Himmel wolkenlos and klar;                 Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
Des Lichten und des Dunklen Pracht          And all that's best of dark and bright
Stellt sich in ihren Augen dar                       Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
So zart gemischt, so mild und sacht,          Thus mellowed to that tender light
Wie nie das grelle Taglicht war...                Which heaven to gaudy day denies...

Til next month!

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