Happy Birthday, 'Merica! In an ideal world, we'd all be relaxing seaside with a great book today, am I right? In case you need inspiration, here's my list of recently-read and currently-reading books. I'm trying a new thing on the site: links for purchasing the books. Or you can always locate your closest independent bookstore at indiebound. (Later on, I should have full reviews of a few of these, plus some author interviews.) Enjoy!
Commonwealth by Ann Patchett (September 13th, 2016)
Patchett, the winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize, is the author of one of my favorite books, State of Wonder. She also wrote the acclaimed novel Bel Canto, and multiple other books. Fabulous writer. Commonwealth is the multigenerational story of two families--the Keatings and the Cousinses--who are inseparably intertwined when a chance kiss at a christening party results in two spouses leaving their families for each other.
Pre-order Commonwealth HERE
I Am No One by Patrick Flanery
Killer concept: Jeremy O'Keefe is a cerebral, fastidious, somewhat lonely history professor, recently returned from a decade at Oxford, when he realizes he is under intense surveillance from unknown agents. A literary thriller--this book does not shy away from page-length sentences--but a satisfying, spooky read.
Buy I Am No One HERE
Leave Me by Gayle Forman (September 13, 2016)
Hoo-wheeee. Gayle Forman--the author of the massively successful If I Stay-- evidently knows the subject matter here is a bit touchy. When I heard her speak about the book, she mentioned it's tough for many people to feel sympathy for a protagonist who flees her family--her little twins and her husband--after a heart attack refocuses her perspective. Why does she do it? Will she return? You'll have to read it to find out.
Pre-order Leave Me HERE
Truly, Madly, Guilty by Liane Moriarty (July 26, 2016)
Like Patchett's Commonwealth, this novel revolves around multiple couples---Sam & Clementine, Erika & Oliver, Vid & Tiffany--whose relationships are tested when a horrifying event occurs at a backyard barbecue. This one's the perfect book to buy for your best frenemy.
Buy Truly, Madly, Guilty HERE
The Fifth Avenue Artists Society by Joy Callaway
This is a good one for anyone who likes books blending historical settings and romance; the author turned family lore about her Gilded-era New York ancestors into a charming tale of tenacity in the face of betrayal and family secrets.
Buy The Fifth Avenue Artists Society HERE
Broken Eagle by James T. Crouse
I just started reading this one; it's a military thriller featuring dashing lawyer Jake Baird, an ex-Army "black unit" veteran who becomes entangled in a high-level cover-up regarding a dangerous experimental aircraft. Highly recommended for its insider perspective by many people knowledgable about aviation, litigation and various governmental/military institutions.
Buy Broken Eagle HERE
The Hopefuls by Jennifer Close
You gotta love our civil, logical political system. Wait, no! I have that exactly backwards. But here's an unanticipated benefit to our national dysfunction: it provides for some interesting behind-the-scenes reading. In the aftermath of Obama's first campaign, newlywed Beth is reluctantly uprooted to D.C., where her husband lands an administration job. But when Beth and Matt meet a charismatic Texan couple with intense political aspirations, everything is suddenly at risk: their marriage, their careers, their friendships. (I don't know why inter-couple tension seems to be such a thing in the books I'm reading this month, but it is.) I'm interviewing Jennifer Close, the author, later this month, and can't wait to hear about her experiences in writing this.
Buy The Hopefuls HERE
Click HERE to read Kimmery's interview with Jennifer Close