I feel completely incapable of making a decision about what novel to read next. I’ve thought about it ever since I finished Elizabeth Bowen’s The Death of the Heart two days ago, but have come to no conclusions. It’s rare for me not to be in the middle of a novel, and usually I have one lined up to go the minute I finish the previous one. It’s the variety of possibilities that’s paralyzed me. Should I read a classic? If so, from what century? Something obvious like Balzac’s Cousin Bette or a little less so like James Hogg’s The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner? Or should I read Virginia Woolf? Or something contemporary? If something contemporary, should it be challenging or comfortingly familiar? By a man or a woman? American or British? Something written in English or translated?
One thing is certain — it’s good that I’ve finished Geoff Dyer’s book Out of Sheer Rage, because as much as I liked the book, his chronic indecision is rubbing off on me, I’m afraid.