Anyone else’s calendar officially out of room for the next few months? Do you have concerts, art shows, poetry celebrations, running club, a marathon, First Communion, and swim lessons too? I’m going to go ahead and assume the answer is probably yes. Want something quick to read, perhaps while you sit poolside for those endless swim lessons? I present to you A Separation, Today Will be Different, and for the shorter set (also sitting and waiting for someone else’s event to be over), The Great Wall of Lucy Wu.
There are plenty of books I read and forget about a year later, but great literature sears itself into your very soul. These two books did that for me, and I’m so excited to recommend Lincoln in the Bardo and History of Wolves. Both revolve around the death of a child, which will usually lead me to skip over a book, but here are the exceptions to my rule. Please, treat yourself to either of these books.
(Apologies to the great Lin Manuel Miranda for stealing his line there. If only Hamilton wasn’t so darn quotable!)
In my unending pursuit of books written by foreign authors, I stumbled across Katherine Pancol, and was dazzled. A French writer who is very well known outside of the US, she writes in a captivating and easily read, addictive style. Although the French is ably translated here, the world always feels foreign and slightly surreal. I read, in English, The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles and its sequel, The Slow Waltz of Turtles. She has written many others, and I’ll be on the lookout for translations of those, or maybe I’ll dust off my French skills this summer. Her work is worth it. Continue reading
There is nothing better than discovering a new-to-you author and realizing that they have several books available for your immediate perusal. So let me present you with a mini author study on my newest literary crush, Viet Thanh Nguyen. What genre would you prefer? He’s so multitalented that I have here for you a Pulitzer-winning novel, a short story collection that will surely garner awards in the near future, and an academic work of nonfiction dealing with the very idea of memory and the Vietnam war. I feel like I see his work everywhere nowadays, but just in case you have not encountered him, allow me to introduce you to Viet Thanh Nguyen! Enjoy.