July 30th, 2009

toff reading

Fifteen books that made me what I am

15 books that I’ve reread most often, have stuck with me the longest, and/or were formative of my person and worldview. For one author and one artist there isn’t any single work but more of their oeuvre. There aren’t a lot of recent additions. With so many other media choices as well as a fuller and busier personal life, I’m reading a lot less than I did when I was young.

Go, Dog. Go!
P. D. Eastman

Mother West Wind’s When Stories
Thornton W. Burgess

A. A. Milne

Charlotte’s Web
E. B. White

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Roald Dahl

Alice in Wonderland
Lewis Carroll

The Wizard of Oz
Frank Baum

The Egg and I
Betty McDonald

Edwin Mullhouse
by Steven Millhauser

the works of
S. J. Perelman

The Leatherman’s Handbook
Larry Townsend

Dancer from the Dance
Andrew Holleran

a, a novel, The Philosophy of Andy Warhol from A to B and Back Again, Exposures,
Index Book, Diaries
, and Sotheby’s catalogs
Andy Warhol

Tales of the City
Armistead Maupin

I’ve a Feeling We’re Not in Kansas Anymore
Ethan Mordden

Leather Blues
Jack Fritscher

All of the gay lit “classics” (Dancer, Tales, I’ve a Feeling) are now of a period, but I would still recommend them unequivocably to anybody. Ditto Edwin Mullhouse, a brilliant novel about childhood as well as a send-up of the “tortured artist” biography by the Pulitzer Prize-winning Millhauser.

What are yours? Any recommendations?

Tip o' the NYPL card to badfaggot.