it's been nearly a year and a half since i last asked you to guess what folks on the new york city subway are reading based on what i tell you of their fripperies, and that makes me sad; there are few things i like as well as sweeping generalizations based on clothing and books. the world has changed since some gal on the B train abandoned her paul auster for an oriental trading company catalog and the marriage plot probably disappointed a male backup dancer on a different B train: hilary mantel won the booker prize again, michelle williams announced she was growing out her pixie cut, natasha trethewey became our poet laureate, and visible bras became socially acceptable. it's time to reconsider the mystery train.
who's giving foxy knoxy her day in court? should i, in turn, give one to hemingway?** how would one benefit from a zipper which opened across but not around one's knee? is the male reader going extinct? how does the way we talk change the way we work? book titles are linked to descriptions and cover images, if additional research is your bag. if you correctly pair a book with its reader, i'll update the lists; if you understand the bra thing, that makes one of us. guess early, guess often, and good luck!
02 F, late 30s, red polarfleece hat, nordic blonde hair, moss-colored floral scarf, black quilted barn coat, long grey sweater, dark jeans, brown pebbled leather slip-ons with orthopedic soles, black hobo bag with gold zippers, pregnant, B train
04 M, late 20s, shaved head, heavy stubble (proto-beard?), blue-gray striped oxford rolled up to the elbows and worn open over a white tee, loose blue boot-cut jeans, extremely clean black hiking boots, B train
06 F, early 20s, long brown hair tucked behind ears, beauty mark under right eye, nails bitten to the quick, grey heather tank, shrunken khaki band jacket, mint and navy blue keds, black skinny jeans, multicolored tote bag at feet, F train
07 F, early 20s, white-blonde hair in high, tight ponytail, grey cocoon cardigan over black tank, marigold-yellow nails, blue skinny jeans, black loafers, cover bent behind book, flipping back and forth between pages, B train
08 F, late 20s, wild streaky ringlets, black button-down with white polka dots, eight multicolored friendship bracelets, happy face with dimple in black marker on back of right hand, pegged patchwork jeans, black platform supergas, mustard-colored jansport on both shoulders, F train
09 F, early 20s, high black folded-over bun, sheer white lace top under small black cardigan, black skinny jeans, louis vuitton damier print tote, black watch plaid wellingtons, D train
11 F, late 40s, heavy, square-framed black glasses, wavy hair swept back with wide band, big black cardigan over rumpled blue and white shirt, black slacks with heavy silver zipper across left knee, huge spring-green bag in lap, black airwalk sneakers with tan laces, white plastic shopping bag hooked over left wrist, five silver rings, F train
12 F, 30s, shoulder-length, wavy brown hair, cornflower blue long-sleeved spandex top, dark grey yoga pants, black windbreaker, black-and-white pumas, tall fuchsia umbrella between knees, victoria's secret shopping bag at feet, large black leather purse with silver hardware in lap, coffee in right hand, B train
la vérité sur l'affaire harry quebert, joël dicker
waiting to be heard, amanda knox
how the way we talk can change the way we work, kegan lahey
a storm of swords, george r.r. martin
the river why, david james duncan
robopocalypse, daniel h. wilson
en el tiempo de las mariposas, julia alvarez
a light to the gentiles: reflections on the gospel of luke, william c. mills
*tip of the hat, as always, to coverspy.
**i know i ask every year or two. reader, that's how hard it is.