I read a lot of books. Okay, maybe not a lot by Husband’s standards—he goes through one every three or four days—but he’s got more time to read than I do. I just completely cherish that time of night when I can crawl into bed, exhausted and sleepy, and snuggle up to whatever I’m reading at the time. It’s my time. And I need it.
You do too. So I thought I’d share with you my favorite reads of this winter, complete with links to Amazon if you want to give ‘em a go.
Weird, oddly beautiful title. Weird, oddly beautiful book. Audrey Niffenegger (of Time Traveler’s Wife fame, which I didn’t love, but whatevs) weaves this haunting story of a pair of twins who go to live in their late Aunt’s London flat. The thing is, the aunt is still there…in ghost form. Throw in a hot downstairs neighbor, some family skeletons and a cemetery and you’ve got one heck of a plot. My favorite book of the winter, bar none.
Quentin Coldwater is a typical high school genius secretly obsessed with a series of fantasy novels (think C.S. Lewis), until one day he winds up in one (think Narnia). Sounds sort of like another geeky fictional character I know, but this book couldn’t be farther from Potter (okay, he also ends up being trained in magic school, but that’s where the similarities end). Quentin’s Narnia/Hogwarts is dark, somewhat evil, and nothing like the place he dreamed of visiting in the books. I don’t normally do fantasy, but this one is so well-written that I forgot that I was reading about magic spells.
With all the buzz surrounding the recently released film, I decided to go back and familiarize myself with Watson and Holmes. Crazy entertaining, funny and engaging. Doyle was before his time.
Bonus: since most Doyle works are old enough to be in the public domain, you can download them as a free e-book, or for $0.99 on Kindle.
The world’s greatest marriage cynic is given a choice: marry her beau or he gets deported. You can guess which one she chooses. I’m not all the way through this one yet, but it’s an interesting look at marriage, why we do it, how we live it, and what comes after you say “I do.” If you haven’t read Eat, Pray, Love I would recommend starting there—it gives Gilbert’s second dive into marriage all the more meaning if you know why she’s so afraid of it, plus you get to meet said beau in real time.
Imagine a Cold War memoir written entirely in interview form. Except replace the Cold War with a war on zombies. That’s how realistic this fictional account is—you’ll actually believe that you have your history wrong and China was swallowed by flesh-eating dead people. It begins with a small epidemic trying to be contained, escalates into a small catastrophe, and climaxes with a full-fledged world war. Totally original, compelling and believable down to the last detail.
A female author in the late 40′s wants to write about what really happened during the European German occupation. She starts receiving letters from some quirky folks from the Guernsey Channel Islands about how they survived the war, and the tales so draw her in that she ends up traveling to the islands to meet these characters. You’ve heard the plot before, and you can guess how it ends, but Barrows and the late Shaffer make it such a funny, crazy and lovable ride that you’ll want to take the trip anyway.
What have been your favorite reads lately?