i read several books in August that won’t be published until mid-2012, if not later than that. there’s this weird unmooring in time and space that happens when you work in books and have access to stuff way before it’s actually published and on the shelves. on the one hand, it’s a totally sweet and fundamentally necessary occupational hazard that can make you feel like A Person In The Know. on the other hand, it makes it really awkward when a customer asks you “what have you read lately?”. you stand there stuttering, trying frantically to think of something that is Actually In The Store Right Now. you would think, after six years in bookselling, i would get better at this. you would be wrong.