Sometimes the most amazing problem comes my way: I read too many good books.
Gone are the days (for the most part) when I find myself downloading Fifty Shades of Gray, simply because “it’s a New York Times Bestseller!” Gone are the days (again, for the most part) when it takes me months to read a book, because I’m getting selective with the books I read.
I’m choosing books based on the recommendations of other book nerds I trust, or because it’s written by an author whose words I’ve come to know and trust.
It’s kind of like the literary geek within is starting to grow up.
Well, praise be, praise be.
That being said, here are four fabulous fiction finds I’ve read in the last month or two that I think you’ll love. Of course, you’re free not to love them, but if you find yourself in want of a good weekend read, try one of these:
For the young adult within:
I’ll Give You the Sun (Nelson) – I don’t know if you’ve ever been around a young teenager, but a lot of times they’ll say, “I know the answer, but I can’t find the words for it…” That response is developmentally spot-on for the middle school population, and likewise with metaphors, similes and figurative language in general. Nelson encompasses the young teenage voice in all its gritty, beautiful glory so very well. A fair warning to some readers, though: contains overt themes of sexuality, death and dying.
We Were Liars (Lockhart) – I had to read this with my Pretend Hat on, pretending that I didn’t know what was to come, pretending that I was reading this as my sixteen-year-old self. And it worked, for the most part. Both of these YA books are similar in a time-jumping narrative (as seems to be the fashion in contemporary fiction today), but as one critic said, the book is as beautiful as it is tragic.
For the fan of historical fiction:
Brideshead Revisited (Waugh) – Contrary to earlier statements, this book did take me a couple of months to rally through, mostly because I couldn’t get past the first chapter. (War openers do that to me – sorry, military mindsets). But once I started it over and got through said war scene, I was hooked. The dialogue is quick and witty, hilarious and driven. The plot is rich and full and captivating throughout. AND it’s a classic. I’m eager to now check out the mini-series, circa 1981.
For the one with religious leanings:
Lila (Robinson) – East of Eden fans, meet a modern-day Hosea. Marilynne Robinson introduces us to a new set of characters in the cozy and familiar setting of Gilead. And whether you have religious (namely, Christian) leanings or not, you’ll find yourself engulfed by Lila’s story. As for me, I mostly just want to sit down and chat with the author, and ask her how she effortlessly weaves scripture and narrative together.
There you have it: four fabulous fiction finds. So, do yourself a favor – head to your local independent bookstore and pull these off the shelves. You can thank me later.
So, what about you? What must-read fiction have you found yourself engulfed within lately? What would you recommend to me, and to the rest of the be, mama. be community?
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