September 7, 2015

August 2015 Reads

Aug 43 Cold Shot To The Heart Wallace Stroby
44 Songs Only You Know Sean Madigan Hoen
45 The Perfect Comeback of Caroline Jacobs Matthew Dicks
46 The Truth According to Us Annie Barrows
47 The Gap of Time Jeanette Winterson
48 The Last Bus to Wisdom Ivan Doig

I have two favorites on this list, so I'll start with them.  The first is The Last Bus to Wisdom, it's Ivan Doig's final novel.  I'm a huge fan of his and this story did not disappoint.  The central character is Donal, no final d!  He's being raised by his grandmother, a cook on a ranch in Montana.  Gram is facing surgery and ships him to her sister in Wisconsin.  Sister Kate is the opposite of Gram and soon ships Donal back to Montana, with no one there for him.  But her much-abused husband gets on the bus, too, and a great 1950's road trip ensues.  This is such a terrific story,  Doig passed away in April.  If you haven't read his work, just get started.  They are all wonderful.

My other favorite is The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows.  Truthfully, I didn't expect much from this book.  Barrows mainly writes for kids.  When her Aunt Mary Ann was dying she pitched in and helped her finish her novel The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.  I wasn't sure what I was getting into when I bought the book.  I'm happy to report that I was mistaken; this is a terrific novel.  It's warm-hearted, Southern, smart and delightful.  Layla is a young woman in exile after refusing to marry the man chosen by her father, a U.S. Senator.  Dad isn't heartless, just furious.  He sets her up with a job writing the history of a small town in West Virginia, for the Federal Writers’ Project, a New Deal jobs program.  Quite a come-down for a Washington socialite!  This is a wonderful story and I'm sure you'll love it.

BTW, I and several other booksellers were lucky enough to have lunch with Annie Barrows, in August of '08.  Here's a snapshot I took of her.

What are you reading?

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