Arts Desk

Five Books I’d Read

in which the author discusses five books he'd read, if time permitted.

1. The Sextine Chapel, by Herve Le Tellier.
This novel about sexual encounters between 20-plus people seems sexy, but it might be sexy in the literary sense that, say, The Witches of Eastwick or Pride and Prejudice is sexy—not in the mouth-breathing horny teenager sense that, say, Naked Lunch or the naughty bits of The Dead Zone are sexy. So, buyer beware, especially if any potentially buyers are 13-year-olds looking for some fun while mom and dad are out at the Olive Garden.

2. The Complete Peanuts Boxed Set 1979-1982 (Vol. 15-16), by Charles M. Schulz.
I have a theory that if I hype this book enough, St. Peter will let me into heaven. Peter: "Moyer, you really led a decadent life. You smoked cigarettes. You downloaded pornography from the Internet without paying for it. And you thrust your crotch at young ladies while playing the bass guitar." Moyer: "Yes, but I'm a huge Peanuts fan." Peter: "Oh, why didn't you say so? Charlie Schulz is right over here..."

3. A Sunlit Absence: Silence, Awareness, and Contemplation, by Martin Laird.
This book's about Christian meditation, but I don't think there's a chapter on how to hide your boner when you get called to the blackboard in CCD to list the 12 stations of the cross, so it's basically useless.

4. The Submission, by Amy Waldman.
This novel's about a contest to design a monument to the 9/11 attacks in New York that's won by a Muslim architect. Kind of like that time that really smart computer beat those humans on Jeopardy! and Alex Trebek was like, "G-ddamn!"

5. The Adjustment, by Scott Phillips.
I think this is a mystery. At least, there's a gun on the cover. I think it also takes place in Kansas, so maybe there's a worthwhile In Cold Blood comparison to be made. Then again, most true crime gets compared to In Cold Blood. But this isn't non-fiction—it's fiction. Like The Band said, "Take what you will and leave the rest/But they never should have taken the very best."

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