: I can’t get enough of Alexie’s work. War Dances is a collection of inter-connected short stories and poems, and while I am not usually a fan of either short stories or poems, I loved (almost) every page. Each time I read a Sherman Alexie book I feel like I’m unwrapping a very special gift. by Sherman Alexie
Emma by Jane Austen: 2010 was the year I finally gave Austen a chance, after years of avoiding her books because I was so annoyed that she was frequently the only woman acknowledged as a “great writer” in high school anthologies and on certain Barnes & Noble tote bags. I was surprised by how much I loved the characters: Emma, Mr. Knightley, Mrs. Weston, and, especially, Mrs. Elton. I don’t think I’ve ever giggled so much while reading a classic!
: I put this list in alphabetical order by author, but now I feel kind of odd jumping from Jane Austen to Josh Bazell. Their books are basically complete opposites, but since they are only on a list together because I loved them both, I suppose I should focus on that one commonality. Beat the Reaper appeals to that secret, odd side of my genre-loving self that enjoys books like The Godfather and most of Christopher Moore’s books. It is currently in development to be made into a movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio as the main character. It involves the MOB and the WITNESS PROTECTION PROGRAM and the main character is a doctor who is vaguely reminiscent of Dr. House. Need I say more? by Josh Bazell
Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn: Sometimes I read books I would never otherwise try because they are available on my library’s online catalog as audio downloads and I need something to listen to so my work day goes by more quickly. I’m pretty pleased with this arrangement, because Sharp Objects is a real treat for mystery lovers like myself. A tight plot, unforgettable characters, and a mystery that will keep you guessing.
Gods In Alabama by Joshilynn Jackson: Even though I’m basically as New England-y as an American can be, I have a soft spot for books set in the south. Maybe I just long for leisurely days, good manners, and tall cool glasses of iced tea? Gods In Alabama is KIND OF like that, only it shows what’s behind the scenes (and hidden in the closets) of otherwise picturesque families.
I’m pleased to say that Elinor Lipman attended my alma mater, Simmons College, and still lives in the Boston area, so I went into The Family Man a little biased and really hoping that I would like the book. I, in fact, loved the book, a literary-leaning cozy comedy about a gay man who reconnects with his former step daughter after the death of her father. by Elinor Lipman:
Pedro and Me by Judd Winick: I shouldn’t have liked this graphic novel–it’s written by a former Real World cast member! But it’s beautifully done, and portrays, with true feeling, the deep friendship between Judd and Pedro, who was the first HIV+ cast member on the Real World and a vocal advocate for HIV prevention and gay rights.