The glamour of old Hollywood and the glitter of the Italian Riviera form the backdrop of this lush novel where fact and fiction converge. Truman Capote, Tennessee Williams, and others of the literati spring to life through the eyes of narrator Frank Merlo. Frank reflects on a lifetime of being in the shadow of greatness, pondering over the years through a haze of nostalgia whether it is more noble to have loved deeply, or to have been loved deeply. The author's meditations on art, inspiration, genius, and love provide psychological depth and human insight in this beautifully crafted novel.
Set on an unnamed island not long after the downfall of a brutal regime, this taut novel hums with restrained energy. When Lena suspects foul play in the death of a young woman working for the junior senator, she is reminded of her younger days and the assault she survived at the hands of the same man. This novel's revolutionary sensibility is a powerful reminder of the ways we shape our world through both our actions and our silence. It explores the juxtaposition of power and brutality but also the myriad mays we can uncover and reinvent ourselves. The lyrically beautiful prose makes this an unforgettable novel.
This genre-bending story collection completely blew me away. Whether he's tackling a virtual reality game where players up the violence ante each time, or hardcore Black Friday commercialism where shoppers' lives are at stake, these stories pack a punch! These raw stories command the reader's respect, all while playing with a cross section of racial identity in America not found often enough in fiction. Adjei-Brenyah is the real deal, a young writer who wields words with lethal precision.
What a fun romp! Heiresses, con men, millionaires, and the most famous artists and literati of 1920s Paris converge in one delightful novel. B A Shapiro takes for her subject the real-life Albert Barnes of Philadelphia whose peerless art collection became controversial for its modern sensibilities, and drapes layers of scandal and mystery over the historical scaffolding. Readers will rub shoulders with luminaries such as Gertrude Stein and Henri Matisse, all while learning the most fascinating tidbits of early 20th century art history. It’s the perfect novel for readers of Tracy Chevalier, Paula McClain, and Kristin Hannah.
A science teacher, a naturalist, and an out- of-work journalist walk into a novel...and so begins Kingsolver’s most engaging and cogent work to date. When Willa, a contemporary freelance writer, delves into the local history of the nineteenth century iconoclasts Mary Treat and Thatcher Greenwood who may have once lived in her neighborhood, she is surprised to realize that their long-ago struggle with the bombastic demagogue running the town may be able to inform the current political factions in the US. Filled with fascinating tidbits from the historical scientific record, Unsheltered celebrates the visionary humanists of both the past and today who have the boldness of heart to embrace new ways of being in our world. It is a novel for our time by one of our most gifted storytellers.
The subdued, not-quite-monochromatic palette is the perfect counterpoint to this graphic memoir featuring a young boy who has to learn at an early age the difficulty of loving a mother whose addiction prevents her from loving him back in a safe way. I finished reading it in one breathless sitting, marveling at how an author known for making readers laugh could now bring me to tears with his own personal story. Full of depth, complexities, hard truths, but also hope, this graphic memoir definitely fills a void. It’s no wonder that Hey Kiddo is now on the longlist for the National Book Award.
What happens when a Meet Cute becomes a Missed Connection? Arthur is spending one glorious summer in New York City when he runs into Ben (literally), who is on his way to mail a box of stuff back to his ex-boyfriend. They reluctantly go their separate ways, but the interest that sparks between them soon compels them to seek a second meeting, despite the odds and not even knowing each other’s name. With the help of a fabulous supporting cast of friends, Arthur and Ben figure out in funny and delightfully awkward ways whether the universe is trying to bring them together...or keep them apart. This novel is a fun and frothy romance with just the right amount of substance that also serves as a love letter to NYC itself.
This posthumous novel moved me deeply. What could have turned into a thriller or a political manifesto instead developed into an exploration of mother-daughter relationships and a meditation on forgiveness.
This road trip novel with its rag-tag bad of misfits becomes so much more. It's a journey of self-discovery as well as a multicultural education. I devoured each page and was eager for more!
The first half of this coming-of-age novel made me roar -- with laughter, yes, but also with the shared indignations of Dolly Wilde and women everywhere. But what I loved is that beneath the humorous and raunchy veneer, the heart of this novel beats time with the age of feminism.
At once earnest and ironic, over-the-top AND understated, this novel boldly defends the adsurdities of 21st Century "Realism" with one hand and tears them down with the other. I couldn't always understand where the author was going, but the narrative's dreamlike qualities continue to haunt me.
The most captivating character from The Odyssey finally gets her story! Miller must surely posess the Midas touch to burnish these ancient tales to such a shine that they cast light upon our contemporary lives, longings, and loves. The classics are not dead with Miller at the helm. BRAVA!