Friday, August 10, 2012

Best Book Bets - 6/26/12

I Love Summer Reads!
Required school books are full tilt and more essential summer reads are being released. Let’s start with THE read of the summer, sure to be on a slew of Best of lists at year’s end.
The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker
New York Times describes the premise of this debut novel as normalcy grinding to a halt. Perfect! This is a coming of age story with an 11 year old Julia, told in the voice of an adolescent child ala Lovely Bones. She hails from an ordinary California family, who suddenly discovers one morning that the earth is suddenly rotating at a slower pace affecting the day and night, the gravity, and the environment.  As bizarre as this event is Julia’s family life and her first love proves just as disrupting. This is an inspired combination of science fiction and coming of age story that is sure to wow!
Gone, Girl by Gillian Flynn
If you have already read her bracing novels Sharp Objects and Dark Places you already know that Flynn has a knack at getting into the minds of the twisted and making you care about the outcome. Here she trumps herself taking the missing spouse formula thriller and turning it inside out. As literary vertigo sets in you will have a nervous grin on your face. Finally a mystery thriller you can’t figure out that have a thoroughly satisfying payoff. I dare you to try to put this book done!
Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
What your summer dose of Hollywood scandal while still maintaining your literary cred? Walter takes us into the gritty Hollywood state of mind where everything is a pitch and a hollow promise. Equal parts romance and pithy commentary on the decline of popular culture, this novel delivers. A wry walk amongst the supposed beautiful people as the façade of their prosperity crumbles all around them.  A blockbuster read!
Wild  by Cheryl Strayed
Want good nonfiction that will shake you emotional cage? There is none better this summer than Cheryl Strayed’s (seriously, what a perfect name for the author of this particular memoir) account of her trek across the Pacific Crest during the summer of ’95. This is not a tale of do or die, a fight for survival in the tradition of Jon Krakauer, it’s the wilderness walkabout as a metaphor for finding meaning on the walk of life.  Join Maggie as she embraces life and thrills living in the moment.
Young Adult Release

Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult 
& Samantha Van Leer 
The bestselling author Picoult, whose tales have dampened many a hankie, puts her hat in the ring of teen lit. Like Nicholas Sparks, Picoult has a natural ability for engaging storytelling and she puts it to good service in this new genre. It’s a clever little tale that combines the escapism of reading with teen angst. Delilah spends most of her time with her head in a book. Her favorite may just be a fairy tale, but it feels real. Prince Oliver is brave, adventurous, and loving. One day the prince speaks to her. He too is a restless teen who feels trapped by his literary existence. Delilah might just be his key to freedom and she works to free him from the preordained fate of the book. As they work together a romance blooms.

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