John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton

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Ten random things: April 7

Ten novels set at colleges:

  1. A Single Man by Christopher Isherwood
  2. Academia Nuts by Michael Wilding
  3. My Latest Grievance by Elinor Lipman
  4. Commencement by J. Courtney Sullivan
  5. 36 Arguments for the Existence of God by Rebecca Goldstein
  6. The Rule of Four by Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason
  7. Straight Man by Richard Russo
  8. The Secret History by Donna Tarrt
  9. Moo by Jane Smiley
  10. Admission by Jean Hanff Korelitz

I happen to be reading the third book on this list right now. It's a lot of fun, but then I am particularly interested in novels set in academia and almost always enjoy them. I didn't realize that it was set in academia when I started it, though; I had placed it on my list of books to read last October, after it was mentioned in the comment thread of a Female Science Professor blog post about Richard Russo's That Old Cape Magic in which FSP solicited other books set in academia. But six months later, when I finally picked it up, I had forgotten why I'd put it on the list.

Incidentally, if anyone cares, in addition to My Latest Grievance, I have also read the last five books on the list above. Moo and Straight Man are both excellent, classics of the genre. (And as I've mentioned before, Straight Man is my favorite book by one of my favorite novelists, for what that's worth.) The Secret History is also very good, though unlike most of these others in that it's about college students rather than college professors. The Rule of Four (also about students) was an adequate thriller, one of the more competent Da Vinci Code knock-offs I've read. Admission wasn't that great, though interesting in that it's the only non-satiric novel about the college admissions process I've ever read.

Tags: lists of ten things, reading: books

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