The Slow Books concept is an idea to embrace. Do if for your mind. Read long, slow, complicated stories heavy with history, allusion, imagery and human emotion.
I learned about the slow reading movement on a site that discussed Margaret Olley, the painter whose work I viewed during a recent sojourn in Australia.
Suggestions for books that qualify as slow reads?
North and South
The Red and the Black
Patti Smith wrote an honest account of how young artists struggle with the enormity of becoming outsiders by embracing the path of art. The memoir won the National Book Award and that’s no surprise. The prose is smooth and the concepts expressed are significant for individuals and society.
Anyone who was born during the years 1945-1965, the rock n’ roll protest generation, will see their hopes and heart reflected in this gentle book.
Pilgrimage to the End of the World
Conrad Rudolph, Univ. Chicago Press, 2004
Art history professor walks the Camino on the traditional path from Le Puy in South Central France, continuing to St. Jean Pied du Port and westward across northern Spain. During the thoughtfully written and mercifully brief narrative (given the length of the journey), the author reflects on significant characters and buildings encountered along the route. There’s a lyrical meditation on the intersection of physical exertion and spiritual growth. Useful list of resources and how-to information for those contemplating the journey.