Pitts Summer Recommendations: The Best of Quarantine

To kick off the 2021 Pitts Summer Reading Blog, Pitts took to the hallways of the library and Candler building to find out “the best resource you discovered during quarantine.” This week spoke to Myron McGhee, the one of Pitts’ circulation specialists. If you are a Candler student, Myron is a familiar face, as his work ranges from assisting patrons and coordinating with Pitts’ librarians and student staff members, to managing the circulation and cataloging of library materials.  

Myron’s recommendation is Calypso by David Sedaris, a collection of 21 semi-autobiographical essays. The collection of essays was combined into one volume and published as Calypso in 2018.  After its release, NPR published a review of Calypso, attesting to Sedaris’ writing, describing his “remarkable ability to combine the personal with the political, the mundane with the profane, slime with the sublime, and hilarity with heart.” Calypso unpacks family life during the 60s and 70s, providing complex perspectives on matters of life, death, and family dynamics. This item is available as an ebook and in print at the Woodruff Library.

Calypso was named Amazon’s Best Book of June 2018, where it was described as “reading ruminations on middle age and mortality is not typically a cheery exercise, unless David Sedaris is doing the writing.”  The author, David Sedaris worked as a housecleaner and even a part-time elf at Macy’s, before becoming a best-selling author, having several plays produced, and winning the Thurber Prize for American Humor. As his tenth book, Sedaris proves his excellence in American humorist writing.  He is a regular contributor at Esquire and Public Radio International’s “This American Life,” which can be streamed on most podcast apps, including Apple Podcasts and Spotifyhttps://www.thisamericanlife.org/listen.

Next week we look forward to hearing from Dr. Jehu Hanciles, the D.W. and Ruth Brooks Professor of World Christianity and Director of the World Christianity Program at Candler. Looking for more recommendations? All summer reading blog posts are archived at pitts.emory.edu/summerreading.