42 Minutes Spring Book

'The Sheltering Sky'

The Sheltering Sky is a 1949 novel of alienation and existential despair by American writer and composer Paul Bowles.


The story centers on Port Moresby and his wife Kit, a married couple originally from New York who travel to the North African desert accompanied by their friend Tunner. The journey, initially an attempt by Port and Kit to resolve their marital difficulties, is quickly fraught by the travelers' ignorance of the dangers that surround them.


Time magazine included the novel in its TIME 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005.[1]The Modern Library also included it on their 100 best of the century, ranked at number 97.

Dramatic adaptations

The novel was adapted by Bernardo Bertolucci into a 1990 film with the same title starring Debra Winger and John Malkovich, and with a screenplay by Mark Peploe. The movie was filmed in MoroccoAlgeria, and Niger and features powerful landscapes. ~Wiki

—we’ll probably meet in early June—bloomsdayish! Or just before.

It’s funny though. I am reading this above book, but what I’m really taken with right now IS Bloom . . .

At the National Library, Stephen explains to some scholars his biographical theory of the works of Shakespeare, especially Hamlet, which he argues are based largely on the posited adultery of Shakespeare's wife. Bloom enters the National Library to look up an old copy of the ad he has been trying to place. He encounters Stephen briefly and unknowingly at the end of the episode.


Ulysses is a modernist novel by Irish writerJames Joyce. It was first serialized in parts in the American journal The Little Review from March 1918 to December 1920 and then published in its entirety in Paris by Sylvia Beach on 2 February 1922, Joyce's 40th birthday. It is considered one of the most important works of modernist literature[1].

Ulysses chronicles the appointments and encounters of the itinerant Leopold Bloom in Dublin in the course of an ordinary day, 16 June 1904.[4][5] Ulysses is the Latinised name of Odysseus, the hero of Homer's epic poem the Odyssey, and the novel establishes a series of parallels between the poem and the novel, with structural correspondences between the characters and experiences of Bloom and Odysseus, Molly Bloom and Penelope, and Stephen Dedalus and Telemachus. The novel is highly allusive and also imitates the styles of different periods of English literature.

The Book Club did Ulysses back in 2017 :

06.21.17 Episode 278: Spring Book Club
Bloomsday or Doomsday? Today on this 16th day of June for this our Spring installment of the seasonal Book Club, we celebrate the "Good Book to the Hibruws", Ulysses. The panel consists of Bill Klaus, Znore, and Dennis Koch.

Topics Include: James Joyce, Bloomsday, The Odyssey, Return Home, Literature, Intellectual, Annotations, The Recognitions, Infinite Jest, Hamlet, Psychology Geography, Frank Delaney, Re:Joice, Coincidence, Human Bloom, High Brow, Everyday Heroes, 1904, Hermeticism, Hyperlocal, Kubrick, Oxen Of The Sun, Wasteland, Fertility, Narration, History.

So it wasn’t my intention to read this. It just happened. I’ve been trying to read Joyce’s Portrait actually, but I haven’t been able to get into it. The curiosity is how little I remember from 2017 . . .

Ulysses is divided into the three books (marked I, II, and III) and 18 episodes. The episodes do not have chapter headings or titles, and are numbered only in Gabler's edition.

At first glance, much of the book may appear unstructured and chaotic; Joyce once said that he had "put in so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep the professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant", which would earn the novel immortality.[16] The schemata Stuart Gilbert and Herbert Gorman released after publication to help defend Joyce from obscenity accusations[clarification needed] made the links to The Odyssey clearer, and also helped explain the work's structure.

Joyce divides Ulysses into 18 episodes that "roughly correspond to the episodes in Homer's Odyssey".[17]

I just read episode 9 and it is fabulous. It’s all about the life and works of Shakespeare with Hamlet being a special portal toward understanding. I think the reason this giant, difficult book is going down so easy is because I’m listening to it in a version with a full cast. This sorts out the stream of consciousness thoughts from that spoken aloud. It also delineates clearly all the different characters. Here is a link to this version: (it’s free) https://archive.org/details/Ulysses-Audiobook-Merged/

I’ve tried different audiobook versions before and haven’t had much luck. They get murky with one reader. This full cast recording is pretty amazing. Opens the thing right up!

Oh yeah. Probably part of my inspiration for taking this thing on was our winter book club, which has been the default subject here since our inception . . .

03.28.21 Episode 360: Winter Book Club
The Recognitions
To get to the heart of the matter--the Stabat Mater--the seasonal book club returns to re-cognize William Gaddis's 1955 masterpiece 'The Recognitions' for the winter edition.

Topics Include: William Gaddis, Bridge, Modernism, Beats, Post Modernism, DFW, Christian Mystery Novel, Clementines, First Christian Novel, Last Christian Novel, Robert Graves, The White Goddess, Golden Baugh, Battle of the Trees, Poetry, TS Eliot, Palimsest, Anamnesis, The Vanity of Time, Sheri Martinelli, Faust, Sympathetic Magic, 1949, Communion, Holy Fragments.

Anyway, check out these shows. There are more on the way in the vein of the book club as well as some other things. Happy Spring!