There's a romantic notion that summer should be filled with lightweight, 'beach' books. Ha! Not for me. For some reason I always spend the summer plowing through one very long book. This year my book club chose Wally Lamb's I Know This Much is True as our summer read for exactly that reason - it is so long and we'd need the whole summer to get through it. I'm almost there, and look forward to reading something much lighter next. That said, I agree with the blurb on the back cover that describes the book as, "A work of astonishing craftsmanship, structural symmetry, and literary self-awareness." So true. The book is truly a masterpiece of fine writing.
Last summer I read John Irving's hefty Until I Find You. It too was a brilliant saga, told in that warped voice that only Irving can pull off. Highly recommended. (But then I love anything Irving writes.)
I also love anything Jodi Picoult writes and in the past year I have read My Sister's Keeper, Vanishing Acts, Plain Truth. I intend to read everything else she has written too, as soon as I can wrestle the books out of my daughters' hands.
Other stand-out books I've read this past year:
Before I Wake ( Robert J. Wiersema)
Ms Zephyr's Notebook (KC Dyer)
Marley and Me (John Grogan)
Escaping Into the Open: The Art of Writing True (Elizabeth Berg)
Looking at this list I'm surprised to see so few teen novels there. Other years I've read only teen fiction. Rejoining an adult book club has clearly changed my reading habits.
On the to-read-very-soon list:
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (a classic I've somehow missed)
The trilogy: Uglies, Pretties, Specials by Scott Westerfield (recommended by my 15-yr.-old daughter)
Dear Catastrophe Waitress by Brendan Halpin (I enjoyed his first book, Donorboy)
The Book Club by Mary Alice Monroe
Between Interruptions: Thirty Women Tell the Truth About Motherhood I believe all the women are Canadian (?) My friend Alison Kelly (actress from Mom's the Word) has a piece in this book. I've seen the cover, it's gorgeous!
These and more I need to squeeze in between the monthly book group selections.
Would love to hear what others think should be on my MUST READ list!
Yours in books,