Monday, March 19, 2012

The San Francisco Chronicle's Top Shelf - March 18, 2012

I'm unsure when I became a curmudgeon - I only hope I can maintain that status for a while before developing into a crank.  No one loves a crank. 

It's the crank inside me, though, that wants to carp - Listen here, you little whippersnapper.  When I was a boy, the New York Times Book Review boasted more than 80 pages on any given Sunday.  Now what is it?  Twenty-five?  Thirty?  The injustice, I tell you, the injustice!

Still, we in the Bay Area should find solace in the fact that while Book Reviews across the nation have vanished, the San Francisco Chronicle has managed to hold onto its (undeniably thin!) version.  But it exists, and for that we should rejoice.

And - within its Book Review every week, the Chronicle includes a column called Top Shelf.  Top Shelf lists books of note selected by one of the many Bay Area bookstores that still exist.  And that's something else we should delight in - the subsistence of bookstores in this, the Age of the Death of the Book.

This week, the choices in Top Shelf were selected by Books Inc. in Alameda.  Does that mean I selected the books?

In fact - it does.  That's the job of a crank, isn't it?

So really, go there, have I said that yet?  And with any luck, you'll find a book that keeps your inner-crank at bay.

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