Book Recommendations and Reading

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  • oscarandjeeves said:
    Right now, I'm working on these:
    • Guards! Guards! (Terry Prachett)
    Funnily enough, I've never finished Guards! Guards! I've read it almost to the end twice, but never actually finish it for some reason. Its not even that I don't like it; I really do! I want an Errol all of my own

  • I LOVE the books by Pip Granger, starting with Not All Tarts are Apple which are not memoir but based on the author's upbringing in a "bohemian" part of post-war London by loving extended family.  


    @formerlyAnon ; You recommended this book to someone else back on March 6. It sounded interesting to me so I put it on my reading list. Well, I just finished reading it and wanted to tell you that I loved it! Thanks...
  • @PastryGoddess ; I seem to remember you and I had a discussion about Elizabeth George. I don't know if that was on this thread or another.
  • oscarandjeeves said:
    Right now, I'm working on these:
    • Guards! Guards! (Terry Prachett)
    Funnily enough, I've never finished Guards! Guards! I've read it almost to the end twice, but never actually finish it for some reason. Its not even that I don't like it; I really do! I want an Errol all of my own
    I'm re-reading it at the moment.
  • Lilithcat said:
    glenda said:
    The scenes where a character is horribly violated, repeatedly, were incredibly brutal for me to read. I realize that's a YMMV kind of thing, but it sure impacted how I felt about the book :/.
    Then never read Never Come Morning by Nelson Algren.  It's an absolutely brilliant book, Algren had a deep understanding of the people he wrote about, but there's a very difficult scene of a gang rape.  One of my book club members stopped reading it at that point, which was a shame as she missed some gorgeous writing later on.  But I could see why it would be tough.
    Thank you for the heads up, @Lilithcat -- very much appreciated =).
  • For my non-fiction-loving friends: Matthew Algeo is one of my all-time favorite authors (and, full disclosure, an acquaintance) -- his books are addictive if you're into historical minutiae. He has a new book out. I just ordered it myself tonight, but based on his previous works, I whole-heartedly recommend it even though I haven't received it yet. :-)

    To peruse his works, check out his Amazon page. Seriously, if you love historical trivia, check him out. 
  • I'm reading Emma:  A Modern Retelling by Alexander McCall Smith. Smith is the author of many books, most notably the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series.

    It's great fun, set in the 21st century, but with the same kind of upper class, horsey, environment of modern day Britain
  • I'm on the third book in Penny Vincenzi's Lytton family trilogy, called Into Temptation. I absolutely love this series. I was looking for an Aga Saga, a la Maeve Binchy or Rosemund Pilcher, and while this isn't the same at all, it's still very good. (And no snide remarks about my Binchy/Pilcher love. They're my eiderdown quilt books, authors I read when I'm down in the dumps and just need a nice, comfy read.)
  • I'm on the third book in Penny Vincenzi's Lytton family trilogy, called Into Temptation. I absolutely love this series. I was looking for an Aga Saga, a la Maeve Binchy or Rosemund Pilcher, and while this isn't the same at all, it's still very good. (And no snide remarks about my Binchy/Pilcher love. They're my eiderdown quilt books, authors I read when I'm down in the dumps and just need a nice, comfy read.)
    I agree. Sometimes you just need a book that has enough plot to keep you interested, with nice people for whom everything works out in the end. Rosemund Pilcher is one of my favorites in that category. Also the few books her son Robin Pilcher wrote; he pretty much copied her style and they're good too. I've read one Maeve Binchy book and enjoyed it. I never heard of the Penny Vincenzi books but I'll put that on my list for the next time my life is in turmoil and I need a comfy read.
  • I'm on the third book in Penny Vincenzi's Lytton family trilogy, called Into Temptation. I absolutely love this series. I was looking for an Aga Saga, a la Maeve Binchy or Rosemund Pilcher, and while this isn't the same at all, it's still very good. (And no snide remarks about my Binchy/Pilcher love. They're my eiderdown quilt books, authors I read when I'm down in the dumps and just need a nice, comfy read.)
    You will get nothing but love from me for Rosamund Pilcher.  I'll have to pick up this new author.  It's so hard to find good comforting reads like that.  
  • Here's a fun article in a recent Washington Post Opinion section, from one of my favorite authors, Ann Patchett.

    She also owns a bookstore and loves giving people reading recommendations.
  • I just finished Anne Tyler's A Spool of Blue Thread.  Not my fav book from this author but very satisfying.  Now I'm working on Jane Smiley's Some Luck.
  • Kate Atkinson's new book A God In Ruins, its the sequel to Life after Life.  Which I loved
  • Kate Atkinson's new book A God In Ruins, its the sequel to Life after Life.  Which I loved
    It hasn't even been released in the UK yet! 
  • I'm reading Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie now and it is brilliant. I'm completely in love with her. I've also got The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer on the go and it's good as well, although in a different way. I'd recommend both, with no reservations.
  • I love Kate Atkinson. Life After Life was such a good book. I didn't even know she had a new book out. Thanks!
  • I'm reading Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie now and it is brilliant. I'm completely in love with her. I've also got The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer on the go and it's good as well, although in a different way. I'd recommend both, with no reservations.
    I really enjoyed The Interestings!
  • It's a few years old but  Burial Rites by Hannah Kent was so good.

    I also love all things Tana French.

    I am looking forward to Hanna Kent's next historical fiction which will take place in Ireland.

  • jewelie said:

    It's a few years old but  Burial Rites by Hannah Kent was so good.

    I also love all things Tana French.

    I am looking forward to Hanna Kent's next historical fiction which will take place in Ireland.

    I hadn't heard about the new one. I found Burial Rites so haunting and atmospheric, can't wait for the next one!
  • Tana French is a mystery writer from Ireland and her stories are haunting in their own way. I will think of her stories days after I've read them.
  • jewelie said:

    It's a few years old but  Burial Rites by Hannah Kent was so good.

    I also love all things Tana French.

    I am looking forward to Hanna Kent's next historical fiction which will take place in Ireland.

    I hadn't heard about the new one. I found Burial Rites so haunting and atmospheric, can't wait for the next one!
    I  had read awhile ago that Hannah Kent had another book in the works. I hope it doesn't take 10 yrs to write like Burial Rites did. Burial rites is for sure on of my top 10 favorites. It's so beautifully written.
  • Zoeg said:
    I love Kate Atkinson. Life After Life was such a good book. I didn't even know she had a new book out. Thanks!
    Just came out yesterday.  Got a goodreads alert and zoomed to download it.  
  • Kate Atkinson's new book A God In Ruins, its the sequel to Life after Life.  Which I loved
    It hasn't even been released in the UK yet! 
    What!  No!  That's crazy talk.  Do you know when it's supposed to be released?  I've scheduled some time to start it tonight.  I'm so excited
  • I think it's being released today but the kindle price is excessive.
  • If you like dark-comic/grisly/psychological-suspense, try Three Graves Full by Jamie Mason. It reminded me of some of Patricia Highsmith's work, which is high praise from me, and I enjoyed it very much - even the cringe-inducing explicit-grue scenes!
  • I am enjoying some light and fun reading with a series of cozies by Juliet Blackwell. The first one is Secondhand Spirits. It's all witchcrafty and fun.  
  • edited June 2015
    Kate Atkinson's new book A God In Ruins, its the sequel to Life after Life.  Which I loved


    I just finished Behind the scenes at the museum and loved that too. Took me longer to settle into it though.
  • I finally finished Elena Ferrante's L'Amica Geniale series (My Brilliant Friend).  The first three (there are four) have been translated into English, and I highly recommend you rush right out and read them.

    The first is My Brilliant Friend, the second is The Story of a New Name, and the third is Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay.  The fourth, The Story of the Lost Child, will be released in the States this fall.

    They deal with the friendship from childhood of two women, one of whom stays in their childhood neighborhood in Naples while the other continues her education and becomes a noted writer.  Their competitiveness, their concern for each other, the different paths they take in life, are beautifully evoked.  Naples itself, its politics, its struggles against crime, its beauty,  is a character.

    Must reads.
  • No sure if this fits for this thread or not.  I love Erik Larson.  He writes novelistic history, taking historical facts and turning them into readable stories that flow like fiction.   Sometimes its easy to forget that they are real people and events. 

    "The Devil in the White City" is probably his best known work and is I believe being made into a movie. Its about the Chicago World's Fair in 1893 and the first known US serial killer.

    "In the Garden of the Beasts" deals with the first US Ambassador to Germany, William E. Dodd and the rise of Third Reich. I found this one to be emotional and frustrating to read since you know what happens and all that could have been done to prevent it.  

    Currently I'm reading "Thunderstruck" which intersects the lives of Marconi and an Hawley Crippen, and inventor and a murderer.  So far it's laying the backstories and both are intriguing. 

  • No sure if this fits for this thread or not.  I love Erik Larson.  He writes novelistic history, taking historical facts and turning them into readable stories that flow like fiction.   Sometimes its easy to forget that they are real people and events. 

    "The Devil in the White City" is probably his best known work and is I believe being made into a movie. Its about the Chicago World's Fair in 1893 and the first known US serial killer.

    "In the Garden of the Beasts" deals with the first US Ambassador to Germany, William E. Dodd and the rise of Third Reich. I found this one to be emotional and frustrating to read since you know what happens and all that could have been done to prevent it.  

    Currently I'm reading "Thunderstruck" which intersects the lives of Marconi and an Hawley Crippen, and inventor and a murderer.  So far it's laying the backstories and both are intriguing. 


    I had some problems with Devil in the White City.  I loved the sections about the Columbian Exposition, and thought the book worth reading for that alone.  But the parts about Holmes were badly told and unconvincing, as Larson relied on sensationalist books and what we would call tabloids, and failed to make clear, in the text, what was mere speculation.  The thread about Harrison's assassination was pointless; it had nothing to do with anything else in the book.
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