Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Warm smell of colitas

Maybe it's my time in Oaktown, Oaktown or maybe it's reading too many James Ellroy books, but I find California endlessly fascinating. Just walking around San Francisco on a sunny day makes you want to move there. I am interested in Kevin Starr's mammoth seven volume history of the state so that I can immerse myself in it. Check out the some of these cool covers. Given that not many of us have time to read quite that much, it is nice to see that he has a single volume history in the Modern Library Chronicles series. If you are REALLY pressed for time take a look at this Taschen volume called California Here I Come. This is an art book with promotional images of the state. The website has a lot of examples.

If you don't know the Chronicles, they are quite good introductions to a given subject. The books are short, usually under 300 pages in paperback sized hardcovers. They are also appealingly intellectually diverse, with both conservative and liberal writers. If you see one of these on a subjec you are interested in exploring, you will most likely not be disappointed.

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