Thursday, August 13, 2009

Oldies but Goodies: Our Favorite Summer Reads

Looking for a good book to enjoy during the summer that's finally arrived? These books aren't fresh off the press, but they're some of our favorites.

Handling Sin by Michael Malone
By turns hysterical and touching, this novel follows Raleigh Hayes, who is torn from his comfortable life when his ailing father escapes from the hospital, leaving behind directions for Raleigh to gather specific items and then meet him in New Orleans on a particular date. A favorite of staff members and customers alike.

Julia Spencer-Fleming's Adirondack mystery series
These books are completely addictive! There are six in the series so far, all out in paperback, with a seventh on the way. The first is In the Bleak Midwinter, so be sure to pick it up first. And based on Julia Spencer-Fleming's recommendation, we started reading Craig Johnson's mysteries, and we love those as well! Start with #1, which is The Cold Dish.

Any novel by Sarah Waters, but especially The Fingersmith
Replete with twists and turns, this historical novel set in England will keep you guessing until the very last page. Don't start it late at night or you'll never go to bed! For people who are already fans of Sarah Waters' books, her newest novel, recently released in hardcover, is called The Little Stranger.

Ariana Franklin's Mistress of the Art of Death series
Think twelfth century CSI with a feisty female lead and you have a sense of what these wonderful historical novels are about. As physician Adelia sorts out mystery after mystery for the king of England, all the while hiding the fact that she, as a woman, is the real doctor, she'll keep you on the edge of your seat. There are three books in the series so far, and we are anxiously awaiting the fourth installment!

A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian by Marina Lewycka
This quirky, endearing story follows a pair of sisters as they try to wrest their father away from the grasp of the young and beautiful Valentina, the "fluffy pink grenade" who has taken over the aging gentleman's life. As they join forces against this common foe, Nadeshda and Vera repair a relationship that has been strained for years. (It doesn't have much to do with tractors!)

The Reluctant Tuscan by Phil Doran
This light, quick read is Doran's memoir of moving to Italy with his wife. As they battle everything from the archaic laws of the village's government to an elderly neighbor who seems to have it in for them, they settle little by little into their new life. You will laugh, sympathize, and find yourself with a craving for some authentic Italian pasta!

Stop in and talk to us about these and other "oldies but goodies"!