The Price of Salt by Patricia Highsmith
Highsmith became one of my favorite writers after I read her original trilogy of Tom Ripley books a year or two ago. So far, they remain the only books of hers that I have read. But eventually I intend to read them all. There is something so utterly refreshing about her writing style, her lightness of touch, that makes her books not only a pleasure to read, but a complete breeze too. The Price of Salt is one of her few (or perhaps her only) books not to deal with sociopaths or serial killers, and has recently been turned into the movie Carol starring Cate Blanchet and Rooney Mara which has received a lot of attention at festivals with the awards season looming. I really want to read the book before I see the film version.
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
To my eternal shame, I have never read The Lord of the Rings. Or The Hobbit. Or anything by Tolkien. I’ve tried to, but something about the writing style just seemed incredibly inaccessible to me. But I really want to read The Lord of the Rings. I absolutely love the movies and ne’er a winter goes by without me watching at least one of them. The 9+ hours of special features on the extended edition DVDs are also fascinating, and really entice me to read the books. They might be an easy read, but I’m going to do it damn it. I’m going to do it.
Rant by Chuck Palahniuk
I’ve only ever read one book by Palahniuk: Fight Club. Obviously. I don’t know why I’ve never read another. Fight Club was an easy read. It was compelling, engrossing, and written with a unique voice at once irreverent and dexterous. I recently listened to a podcast Q&A with Palahniuk about his upcoming graphic novel, Fight Club 2, and I caught myself wondering once again why I’d never bother to read any of his other works and subsequently vowed to do so. Rant was the book most often namechecked in the interview I listened to and is currently being developed into a movie by James Franco, so it seems like a logical next step.