Monday, August 9

Whatcha Readin' ?

I'm looking for some great suggestions for a few books to take along on vacation. I've seen some books on your blog sidebars from time to time and now I can't think of a single thing to buy.
Just to let you know: I read non-fiction and biographies most of the school year. Isn't it funny how we still divide our year that way. So, none of those, please.
My favorite authors are: Alice Hoffman, John Cheever, Kurt Vonnegut and John Updike. I've read everything they've ever written.
I think I'm looking for contemporary engaging fiction. If you want to tell me why you are choosing a particular book, I'd love to know.
Thanks, and kiss the ones you love,


Kathy said...

I don't have a thing for you Sherry...I am also looking for some new reading material. I'll be interested in hearing what everyone suggests. :)

jblack designs said...

Hi Sherry-- a fun book I read earlier this year is _The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society_ (a mouthful, huh? Sorry--bad pun) by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. It's epistolary--set right after WWII in England on the island of Guernsey. You'll love the people, the information about the island and the war is interesting, and you might even try to make the pie (my reading group did--yummy, actually).

Here's a link to an excerpt:

Another fun summer espitolary novel is Train to Estelline, by Jane Roberts Wood--a light, entertaining look at West Texas in the early part of the 20th century.

Anything by Barbara Kingsolver is great, but I especially love her Bean Trees books.

Also, I list the books I read in the sidebar of my blog with links, and you're welcome to ask about any of them (some are just quick trash books, like the Sparks book, found in a B&B I stayed in for a week and needed something before I went to sleep--I don't recommend it, though).

Have fun!


P.S. When you're back to non-fiction I recommend The Wild Trees if you haven't read it.

Anonymous said...

I loved The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society! :) During the same time, I also read The Help by Kathryn Stockett - another good one. Hated Wolf Hall, though, which was recommended to me back then as well.

My reading taste is eclectic. Here are some books and authors that I turn back to at all times.

Non-kitschy fantasy with a twist: Terry Pratchett & Jasper Fforde. Not necessarily everyone's cup of tea, but I love the way they handle language and somehow draw parallels to the real world.

James Michener pulls me in every time; his books combine history with touching human stories - fiction, but not all. My favorites are Drifters, The Source, and Hawaii.

I really liked the Stieg Larsson books, though they are different from my usual crime choices - I usally go for Simon Beckett, Faye & Jonathan Kellerman, or Elizabeth George.

Nick Hornby & Ben Elton if I am looking for contemporary easy reading with a brain; especially High Society, Chart Throb, and A Long Way Down.

And if you have some abstract religious interest - I think My Year of Living Biblically is highly entertaining, sometimes thought-provoking and fun while being non-fiction.

Oh, and I think everyone should read A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaleid Hosseini. :)

So, quite a lot of suggestions... but I have no clue whatsoever if any of them are to your taste.

Hugs from Hamburg,

Sherry said...

Great suggestions so far, thanks.
You both remined me how much I like Barbara Kingsolver and James Michnener.

Looks like I'll have enough reading for a very long time!

Keep 'em coming.

Waterrose said...

I'm reading two books right now and have just begun both:

Postcards, by Annie Proulx
Drood, by Dan Simmons

If you want a huge read, QuickSilver by Neal Stepenson.

The first two are really good so far, but I can't give you a complete review...since I just started them.

The third is a book that I don't want to end...but then I'm a geek and love science.

Orion Designs said...

I just finished reading Little Bee by Chris Cleave. It is a very intense novel about a Nigerian refugee and a British journalist. Maybe a little heavy for vacation reading, but I couldn't put it down.

Anonymous said...

Sherry, one of my favorite books is Firefly Lane, by Kristin Hannah.

It's a story about two teen aged girls who are complete opposites, but become neighbors and best friends. They story goes on as their lives unfold, and how they each follow their true path in life... It will make you laugh, make you cry, make you kiss the ones you love, and cherish. ♥

Anonymous said...

p.s. love your new blog background! I was playing with that one as well, loved the dandelions. ♥

Pretty Things said...

I'm reading The Angel's Game (by a Spanish author) and it. is. divine. You would probably love it.

JennTRC said...

I'm currently reading a book titled "Heaven's Coast", it's non-fiction and is a emotional read dealing with a relationship and AIDs.

Sherry said...

You guys are awesome, thank you. Perhaps I need a full month vacation to read all these great choices.

Could you imagine, a month by the ocean?

Catherine Ivins said...

Oh boy, I don't know alot of these people have suggested so am copying them down!

I agree anything Barbara Kingsolver, I also love Alice Munro (shorts), John Irving, Haruki Murakami (hopefully I am not destroying his name)- especially the Wind Up Bird Chronicles, not so sure these are great beach reads though-maybe anything by Anita Shreve, Elizabeth Berg, Carol Shields, Anne Tyler, Sheri Reynolds, Kaye Gibbons, Elizabeth Strout- lately I have been reading detective stories- good enough to look forward to, but not so good that I stay up all night reading them- liked the Stieg Larsson books, too.

xo- Cat :)

Katie Gates said...

Hey Sherry,

Stopped by to read your SPAM piece. Woodrow Wilson??? That's too much! (And the spam that was in his cupboard has probably not hit its expiration date, BTW.)

As for books, wow. Have you read Wally Lamb? I recommend "She's Come Undone" (his first). I also loved his second novel ("I Know This Much Is True"), but was disappointed in his third. John Irving's "A Prayer for Owen Meany" is one of my all-time favorites. "Bel Canto" by Anne Patchett is awesome. What about "Life of Pi"? Read it? Kate Atkinson's "Case Histories" is really fun, and Diane Leslie's "Fleur de Leigh's Life of Crime" is charming. I also love Kundera's "The Unbearable Lightness of Being," as well as his "Immortality." Check out some online blurbs re those and see if any strike your fancy. I'll be interested to hear about your summer picks!

P.S. Oh hell, I might as well suggest it: my own novel... "The Somebody Who." I realize the topic (dementia) may seem too heavy, but it's a great family story. And there's lots of humor (as you might expect from me!).

Mary said...

I'm reading about 6 books right now and am gathering books to take on my own vacation. I have no recommendations since I find reading totally personal. Do you like short stories? I always find the year's collection they put out every fall to be a good thing to carry on a trip. Have fun!

Pretty Things said...

Sherry, I just finished "The Angel's Game" last night (Ruiz is the writer) and it was astonishingly good. Gothic Barcelona, romance, intrigue, fright, suspense, lots of books in a place called The Library of Forgotten Books -- it was a fabulous read.