I like exploring books in bookstores. I also enjoy reading about bookstores in books. Truth be told, fiction about bookstores is especially pleasing to me. Happily, when I’m in the mood to read another novel that centers on a bookstore, it’s easy to find one. Even setting aside mysteries, for no other reason than the sheer numbers of them set in bookstores, there remain plenty of bookstore novels – some shelved in historical fiction, others in general fiction, and even some in the romance section.
Ever get that feeling when you finish a book that you want to read something drastically different, something fresh? I know the feeling well. I remember feeling this at the end of October (a month when I only read creepy books). I was desperate for something – anything – different.
Kerri Rawson had internal alarms going off on that cold February day. Her father had taught her about stranger danger, not to open doors to unknown people, to always be overly cautious. Even in her adulthood, she often recalled the lessons taught to her by her father, Dennis. He was a strong, cautious man who was always looking out for those he loved. On this day, there was a definitely more than one alarm going off as Rawson spotted the man who had been watching her apartment on the other side of her peephole. She wanted to hide, pretend she wasn't home. He was persistently knocking. When
I remember where I was the day Columbine happened. Anyone in Colorado on that fateful day will know where they were when the massacre happened. I was struck by the thought of finding out what the perspective would be on the other side of the coin. I discovered I had never really given any thought to what the parents of a murderer might be feeling or what their perspective might be. My first thoughts would be along the lines of "What kind of parents raise someone like that?", assuming part of the responsibility must lie there. That's what makes some sense of the unthinkable. On som
"Over the years, my worst fears for my daughter have crystallized into a terrifying daydream, a daydream so frightful that I have never told it to a single human being until now. My daydream is this: I am receiving The Call. A voice is saying, 'I'm so sorry. It's about your daughter,' and I continue to hold the phone, but I can't hear anymore. It doesn't matter. I already know what the voice is going to say." – Clare Dunkle in Hope and Other Luxuries
Storytelling invites understanding. In particular, a real-life narrative, such as a memoir, asks for attention and comprehension. Recently, I enjoyed reading three disparate memoirs, appreciating their interesting information and separate points of view. Tig Notaro, Juan Thompson and Pat Summitt each tell different stories with distinct voices in memoirs published not long ago, and all three volumes are worth reading.
A House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout is a New York Times bestseller, winner of the 2014 CBC Bookie Award for Best Canadian Nonfiction, a 2014 Libris Award nominee, and has been optioned for the big screen. Most importantly, it is one of my favorite reads this year.
Mixed in with many fiction books on my reading list are non-fiction titles that draw my attention. I usually read several books at a time, interchanging them based on my interest that day. Over the course of the summer, I read several great non-fiction books and wanted to share my favorites.