Summer reading for an endless summer

by wechslerh66

Below in no order are a few—more than a few—works that influenced me over the years, whether in terms of how I think, how I write, or (most terrifyingly) who I am, and that no matter how recently or often I may have read or re-read them—in many cases not for decades—are worth re-reading every few summers, or perhaps ever summer.

Note: I rarely read fiction, so it’s more noteworthy to me that a majority of these titles are in fact fiction, though obviously not all are.  Also noteworthy is the fact that not all of these titles are related to Los Angeles, though obviously some are.

I will update this list occasionally, as the Demerol wears off. I may also do a music one, which would take about ten-fifteen years.

The Wild Palms, William Faulkner
Light In August, William Faulkner
The Sea Came In At Midnight, Steve Erickson
Amnesiascope, Steve Erickson
Lipstick Traces, Greil Marcus
The Situationist International Anthology
The Jamesonian Unconscious, Clint Burnham
The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Tender is the Night, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Ask the Dust, John Fante
Ramona, Helen Hunt Jackson
McTeague, Frank Norris
Let Us Now Praise Famous Men, James Agee & Walker Evans
The Prophet Armed/The Prophet Unarmed/The Prophet Outcast, Isaac Deutscher
Manhattan Transfer, John Dos Passos
Jazz, Toni Morrison
The Motion of Light in Water, Samuel Delany
Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up To Me, Richard Fariña
The Crying of Lot 49, Thomas Pynchon
Zen & the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Robert M. Pirsig
The Los Angeles Diaries, James Brown
City of Quartz, Mike Davis
Coke Machine Glow, Gordon Downie
Bill James Baseball Abstracts 1982-1988
Les Guérillères, Monique Wittig
Numbers, John Rechy
I Love Dick, Chris Kraus
The Little Sister, Raymond Chandler
Moby-Dick, Herman Melville
The Moviegoer, Walker Percy
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain
Under the Sign of Saturn, Susan Sontag
The True Adventures of the Rolling Stones, Stanley Booth
The Life & Loves of Mr. Jiveass Nigger, Cecil Brown
Howl, Allen Ginsberg
Poems 1945-1975, Robert Creeley
Magic Circles: The Beatles in Dream & History, Devin McKinney
Psychotic Reactions & Carburetor Dung, Lester Bangs
Black Mountain: An Exploration in Community, Martin Duberman
Invisible Man, Ralph Ellison
13 Stories & 13 Epitaphs, William Vollmann
Notes from Underground, Fyodor Dostoevsky
Demons, Fyodor Dostoevsky
Martin Eden, Jack London
Moneyball, Michael Lewis
Ball Four, Jim Bouton
Corruptions of Empire, Alexander Cockburn
Frank Zappa: The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play, Ben Watson
Homage to Catalonia, George Orwell
Stone Butch Blues, Leslie Feinberg

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