Archive for March, 2009

Books with buzz.

What avid readers are talking about

  • In the Kitchen by Monica Ali
  • Tainted by Ross Pennie
  • Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist by Michael J. Fox
  • The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  • Apologize, Apologize by Elizabeth Kelly
  • The Winter Vault by Anne Michaels
  • Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
  • The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley
  • Advice for Italian Boys by Anne Giardini
  • Old City Hall by Robert Rotenberg
  • Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson
  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave (sorry for the pun … buzz)
  • Paths of Glory By Jeffrey Archer

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To read or not to read … that is the question

Are you one of those people who, once you’ve started a book, feel compelled to finish it? Do you plod on irregardless of the fact that you really don’t like it? Do you feel guilty if you pack it in? (I bet some of  you who fall into this camp are those who were told to eat every bit of their meal when they were young.)  Or, are you one of those who abide by the unwritten rule of reading … give it 50 pages and if you haven’t been smitten by then give up.

I never finish books I don’t like. Too many books … too little time.

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A title you’ll never remember… or never forget

Every now and then a book comes out with a really strange name (remember The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime? If not, I’ll remind you another time ) This time it’s The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. With a name like that, how can you not pick it up off the shelf and have a look. This book, by co-authors Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows (published by The Dial Press, a division of Random House) is what I call a sleeper hit. While searching for her next book subject in 1946 writer Juliet Ashton receives a letter from a man from Guernsey, one of the Channel Islands between Britain and France that was once occupied by the Nazis. He has discovered her name in a second-hand book and strikes up a letter writing correspondence with Juliet. The whole book is set in letters between various well-written, extremely interesting characters. Intrigued by a host of wonderful people on the island she goes to Guernsey. She learns, among other things, about their unique book club, their island, and how they survived the German occupation.  It was a complete surprise to discover this great book that really deserves more attention than it’s getting.

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Any Known Blood

Whenever I find an author that I really like, I want to read everything they’ve written. Any Known Blood (published by HarperCollins) is another book by writer Lawrence Hill. It is the perfect book to read when you’ve just finished The Book of Negroes and can’t find anything else to satisfy your appetite. To be able to pick up another book with more of Hill’s wonderful writing is a real treat. It is the story of Langston Cane V and his search for his family’s roots. It is serious, witty, full of wonderful characters, and any book that can get you giggling to yourself in the bookstore on the first 2 pages of Chapter 1 is bound to be a keeper. A definite must for your reading list.

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The Book of Negroes

The Book Of Negroes by Lawrence Hill (published by HarperCollins) is perhaps the most ‘must-have’ book out there at the moment. It is a gem to read. Hill is a fantastic writer. Aminata Diallo is eleven when she is abducted from her African village and sent to America on a slave ship. This book is the story of her life in South Carolina, Canada, Africa and finally London. Hill has somehow taken the most dire of circumstances and made us feel uplifted and positive about her life.

If you don’t know about this book you must have been living under a rock, so get out there and buy it pronto… it has just won the Canada Reads competition sponsored by CBC radio, as well as many other awards, and there are 600 people waiting for this book at my local library. It’s not worth waiting for – read it now!

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Welcome to Linda Reads. I hope you find some of my recommendations helpful, my occasional rant tolerable and a few of my musings humourous.

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