The new LibraryReads list came out for November. There are 3 titles penned by pretty well known authors and the others are up and coming authors in their genre.
Leading the list is Isabel Allende's The Japanese Lover. Allende has long been a popular literary author. Here, she has crafted a multigeneraltional epic love story. Alma Belasco's parents send her to live with an aunt and uncle in San Francisco when the Nazis rose to power in Poland. Here she meets the son of the Japanese gardener, Ichimei Fukuda. They form a friendship and then love affair which is interrupted when all Japanese are sent to an internment camp. The two meet again but are always torn apart. Decades later, Alma is living with her grandson, Seth, when she hires Irina Bazili to help her put her life in order. Irina herself has a troubled past. Irina and Seth become fascinated with Alma's past life and the mysterious gifts that arrive. Really, more than a love story but move about how fate impacts our lives and how we really find ourselves.
Next on the list is The Improbability of Love by Hannah Rothschild. Annie McDee was a personal chef for art dealers when she purchases an old painting in a junk shop as a birthday gift for a boyfriend. When the boyfriend stands her up, the painting becomes hers. Much of the story is told through the eyes of the painting and since it is a missing, old, famous painting - it has seen a lot. Many are looking for this painting so intrigue and adventure ensues. This appears to be Rothschild first novel and reviewers have praised the writing.
Then, Little Victories: Perfect Rules for Imperfect Living by Jason Gay. Gay is a sports columnist for Wall Street Journal and he has come up with the self help book for today. Gay himself has said it is "a book that hopefully makes you think and laugh about family, work, travel, holidays, relationships, sports and pets." Reviewers universally call it laugh out loud funny and warm and winning.
Now the next well known author's offering, Crimson Shore. by Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child. I spoke about this one in my last post. Pendergast and Constance Greene investigate the theft of a wine collection when they discover a bricked in niche that has a few bones from a skeleton remaining. The 15th installment in the Pendergast series.
B.A. Shapiro has The Muralist on the list. This story is told in 2 time periods - during World War II and in the present day. Alizee Benoit is an artist employed by the WPA - friends with Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner and Mark Rothko and also Eleanor Roosevelt. Alizee is trying frantically to get the rest of her family still living in France into the US and away from the Nazis. During this time period she disappears. The other theme centers on Danielle Abrams, Alizee's great niece. While working at Christies auction house, she uncovers some paintings hidden behind famous Abstract Expressionist artist. They are similar to works of her aunt's. Now she becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to her aunt. All reviewers say they learned a lot about abstract art and the WPA.
M.H. Boroson also make the list with The Girl with Ghost Eyes. This title is a fantasy filled with Chinese folklore and mythology. It takes place during the 1800's in San Francisco. The main character is Li-lin, young widow with 'yin' eyes - she can see the spirit world. A sorcerer cripples her father and sets terrible plans in motion that will burn Chinatown to the ground. Li-lin is the only one who can stop them. All the reviewers loved this book and say it is hard to put down.
Next comes Beatriz Williams' Along the Infinite Sea. This will complete Williams' semi trilogy of the three Schuyler sisters. It focuses on Pepper Schuyler who ran away to a small coastal Georgia town because she was pregnant. She fixes up and vintage Mercedes and sells it at an auction. The new owner is Annabelle Dommerich - who had driven the car out of Nazi Germany during WWII. Again, a story in 2 time periods - Annabelle's and Pepper's flight - one in the 1940's and one in the 1960's. When the father of her unborn baby tracks Pepper down, the two women must bond together.
A mystery of the cozy variety, A Likely Story by Jenn McKinlay is the 6th in the Library Lover's Mystery series. In this one, library director Lindsey Norris is delivering books to Stewart and Peter Rosen, two elderly brothers who live on an island off the coast of Connecticut. One of them always greets her at the dock when she arrives on the water taxi but when they don't show up, Norris decides to go to their home and finds one of them dead and one missing. Of course, she has to investigate.
Now Dear Mr. You by Mary-Louise Parker, the award winning actress, is on the list. This is a type of memoir that Parker penned as a series of letters to important men in her life. She has written articles for Esquire so it should not be a surprise that this is deeply thought out and almost poetic.
Lastly, the last author you may recognize. Michael Cunningham has A Wild Swan and Other Tales illustrated by Yuko Shimizu. These are continuations of the old fairy tales - what happens after - made for adults. Some are set in the modern world. A quick read for sure by this Pulitzer winning author.
OK - there you go with this months LibraryReads - the titles recommended by library employees country wide. Hope there is something in here for you.