The Notebooks Hardcover by Jean-Michel Basquiat is a reproduction of pieces from eight of his handwritten notebooks that Jean-Michael Basquiat kept filled with strings of words and phrases and doodles. The book recreates a simple composition notebook and Basquiat’s recognizably 80’s street-style all caps writing style in what looks like a felt tip or Sharpie marker. Are these overheard snippets, words that popped into his head, things he saw or a combination of all of these? It looks like a fascinating glimpse into what a notebook can be. Its not a perfect documentation of his life or his work or his motivation but things that may have inspired or fascinated Basquiat in those moments and leave us to wonder. If you are a fan of Basquiat’s art, there are not a lot of drawings included but if you are curious about notebooks and writing, this might be a fascinating glimpse into the power and potential of notebook-keeping.
(Tip o’ the hat to The Cramped for bringing this to my attention)
I recently read The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain which is a short novel about a man who finds a woman’s handbag and uses the contents, including an enticingly entertaining red Moleskine journal to find the owner. In the process, a bit of a fascination ensues. I found the book to be part Amelie and part While You Were Sleeping. It felt very cinematic in its writing and was a lovely, enjoyable read. If you want to whisked away on a Parisian getaway filled with quirky characters and a whimsical plot then I recommend spending an evening with The Red Notebook. I devoured it in about two evenings and it was just what I needed in these midst of the hectic, stressful holiday season.
Next on my “to read” pile is a book called The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George about a floating barge bookshop upon which the proprietor can recommend a book to mend a broken heart. Of course, the proprietor too suffers from a unmended broken heart which is what must be repaired in the course of the story with the help of friends and an adventure. Sounds like a charming and delightful tale.
I’ll probably tip into The Little Paris Bookshop as soon as I finish Letters to the Lost which I mentioned in my last post. I’m well into that already and I’m quite enjoying it. I look forward to the book club discussion next month!