Summer is winding down. I can't believe it. I have been on the reading roll. For a while I was hooked up on finishing a book for my book club but unfortunately it went into the pile called "life is too short". I'm not one for old novels. We are reading Middlemarch by George Eliot and I can't get into it.

Here is what I have read so far this summer. The Master Butcher's Singing Club by Louise Eldrich. She is a fantastic writer. I had never read any of her books before but she has won a variety of awards, owns a book shop out west and is continuing to churn out highly acclaimed books. The characters are interesting. The setting is out west after WW2. Really enjoyed it.

The Kite Runner is one of those books that everyone is talking about this summer. Last summer, it was the Da Vinci Code which I did not like but the Kite Runner is great. Quick read. A bit trite but interesting perspective. A story of an Afghanistan family, their roots and then coming to America. I literally read it in an afternoon.

Life of Pi, another quick read and hot book. It was ok. It would not be a recommendation from me.

The Solace of Leaving Early by Haven Kimmel was next. I really liked this. Very well written. Interesting look into life in rural areas. Interesting characters. I'll read another one of Kimmel's books.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night was really good. This book has also gotten a lot of press. It is written through the eyes of an autistic boy. Very clever. Very insightful. Quick read. Really liked it.

The Known World which won the Pulitzer Prize this year is an interesting read. I admit that I whizzed through certain sections but it is an interesting book. Insightful look into the world of slavery. The story focuses on a slave who buys himself freedom and then what happens having the position. I did not love this book. It is not easy to get through but I did because the content is very interesting.

Plainsong is about a small city outside of Denver and how characters come together. I really liked this book. It is one of those books u start and are not sure but just continue to turn the pages. Real life stories.

I enjoyed Shirley Hazard's The Great Fire, so I read Greene on Capri, A Memoir by her. Enjoyable. I'm going to read Transit of Venus next. She's a great writer.

I am right now reading A Ship Made of Paper that takes place in the suburbs of New Jersey. Race relations, affairs, etc. Well written. I like it.

None of these are as good as Middlesex which was my favorite last summer. Also, it is tough to come across a novel so well written and complex as that book. But, hey, my summer hasn't ended and there is still a big pile next to my bed for summer reading.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Joanne Wilson Joanne Wilson loves food, books, and music. She lives in New York City. Her husband Fred and children Jessica, Emily, and Josh are bloggers too. More »

gotham gal updates

RSS    Email updates    Gotham Gal Twitter updates

ask gotham gal

Powered by Formspring.

books of the moment

  • Helen Oyeyemi: Boy, Snow, Bird: A Novel

    Helen Oyeyemi: Boy, Snow, Bird: A Novel
    I wanted to love this book. There are 3 sections. The first one pulled me in but I found that the second and third were not as interesting. A topic worth writing race issues is interesting but the book rambled. Alas.

  • Andrea Portes: Bury This

    Andrea Portes: Bury This
    A 25 year old unsolved town murder inspires a group of college kids to make a documentary around it with the belief that with the tools we have today that it can be solved. The writing is unique. Rapid short sentences that keeps the reader engaged. Super sad story.

  • Susan Minot: Thirty Girls

    Susan Minot: Thirty Girls
    This is based on a true story of a group of young women who were taken by the Kony LRA rebels in Africa while living and studying at a church. We follow a journalist and her experience on reporting about the girls who have survived by escaping. Learning about their traumatic experiences is heartbreaking. How and why this continues to go on in Africa is mind-boggling. I would have preferred Minot to spend more time with those girls than getting inside the journalists head. Regardless I really am glad I read this book. It is an absolutely worthy read.

  • Anna Quindlen: Still Life with Bread Crumbs: A Novel

    Anna Quindlen: Still Life with Bread Crumbs: A Novel
    A simple story about life, love and art. A 60 year old woman still evolving and finding herself. Really enjoyed it.

  • Jean Hanff Korelitz: You Should Have Known

    Jean Hanff Korelitz: You Should Have Known
    This book comes out on March 18th. The book moves fast with lots of twists and turns. A psychiatrist who has just written about how you should have known you were in a bad relationship finds her husband to not be who she thought he was. The perfect beach read.

  • Bill Bryson: One Summer: America, 1927

    Bill Bryson: One Summer: America, 1927
    My sister recommended this book. What happened that summer from baseball to Lindbergh and aviation to Henry Ford, Calvin Coolidge, Hoover, prohibition, Mt Rushmore, talking movies, theater, Al Capone and the first ponzi scheme. A great historic read.

  • Kim Malone Scott: Virtual Love

    Kim Malone Scott: Virtual Love
    Not sure how I stumbled on this book but I am glad that I did. The book is about a woman trying to figure out her life. She was an entrepreneur and closed her company. She moved to SF to work at Google and run the Ad Sense division. She is in bad male relationships and needs to figure out why so she can get in a good one. There are a lot of thoughts bouncing around her head in regards to her personal struggles. Truly enjoyable well written insightful book.

  • Jhumpa Lahiri: The Lowland

    Jhumpa Lahiri: The Lowland
    I had read both the Namesake and Lahiri's short stories and I felt both of those books were so much better than the Lowland. There was not on character I liked. None of them lived in the future or the present they all lived in the past. Their lives were just utterly depressing. Also the book was way too long. It is certainly a saga about the turmoil in Calcutta in the 60's and the havoc it wreaked on one family in the post. Perhaps if they all had sought therapy then their lives would have been happier. Would not recommend.

  • Liane Moriarty: The Husband's Secret

    Liane Moriarty: The Husband's Secret
    This is a great book for vacation reading. I read it in a day. Engaging characters who are living real lives and each come with their own baggage. I won't give away the premise of the book but I really enjoyed it.

  • Kate Atkinson: Life After Life: A Novel

    Kate Atkinson: Life After Life: A Novel
    I have read most of Atkinson's books. This was an interesting concept. The book mostly takes place during the world wars yet a bit of a challenge to read. It took me a long time to get into the book and then I decided to soldier through. Many of the chapters are essentially redo's of the characters life so that in one chapter they end up dying where in another chapter they continue to live due to a few shifts that take place. Each small decision you make has to do with the life you end lead. Interesting but did not love the book as much as I wanted to.