Monday, December 15, 2014

For Holidays: Sarah Bird, Lily King, Larry McMurtry and Other Good Books from 2014

The holidays are a great time to read when our schedules loosen up a bit, hopefully after Christmas and the days are dark and cooler if not cold and icy, snowy like our Northern neighbors. What could be more peaceful than a fireplace and a book? Over the years I've enjoyed looking at a special New Yorker edition just for holidays and packed full of book ideas for gifts, advertisements along with stories. But, I don't subscribe anymore.

I was excited to see the Seattle Times list and see my friend on it. Sarah Bird and I are facebook friends through another Texas friend, Tracey that I share a lot of poetry writing and ideas with. We have so much in common like Southern Sisters meant to be in spirit. I have voted on preferred book cover selections for The Gap Year  and have seen her photographs, which are beautiful. I admit, I have not gotten to reading her just yet.

In her most ambitious, moving, and provocative novel to date, Sarah Bird makes a stunning departure. Above the East China Sea tells the entwined stories of two teenaged girls, an American and an Okinawan, whose lives are connected across seventy years by the shared experience of profound loss, the enduring strength of an ancient culture, and the redeeming power of family love.

The New York Times Review on Above the East China Sea

I have read Euphoria  by Lily King which was a wonderful tale of anthropologists working out in the field with native cultures. It is based loosely on the life of Margaret Mead.

A Review from the New York Times on Euphoria

There are many good books on this list both fiction and otherwise that I have seen come to the libraries. I enjoy reading these lists and seeing perhaps that I have not read it all, but a little bit of what is considered good by many reviewers. I see that I am perhaps on a fair path. Reading is thinking of books, perhaps not reading them now, listening to others' ideas or loves and planning for the future and browsing at bookstores or libraries, sharing that book with others or ordering online and waiting for it to arrive either electronically or otherwise. I am just now reading Tom Robbin's biography after a good friend suggested a couple days ago but published much earlier this year!

Have lovely Holidays, Christmas, Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, Joyeux Noël, Feliz Navidad, (I am sure I'm leaving something out I have seen that atheists are protesting this year in a handful of cities by billboard about what everyone else calls it) but I am hoping to include all even those having a Non-Holiday!!!!

--from Michelle at FRL

Seattle Times List of Good Books from 2014

Place a Hold on Sarah Bird's Above the East China Sea

Place a Hold on Lily King's Euphoria

Place a Hold on Larry McMurtry's The Last Kind Words Saloon

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