I truly love being a freelance book editor, but it does have one
drawback. Each year as winter wanes, my workload becomes close to
insane, which means I don't have the time or desire to devour books for
pleasure. But that's okay because my reward come April is to immerse
myself in all the great books. Here are six (in alphabetical order by
title) at the very top of my must-read list.
• The Arrangement by Ashley Warlick is a novel based on the life of one of my favorite (food) authors, M.F.K. Fisher. In particular the story focuses on Fisher's deepening relationship with artist Tim Parrish, while she was still married to her first husband, Al. The background is Europe in the 1930s, and rumors of war are still a few years away. (Viking Books, Feb. 2016) • I credit Christine Heppermann with renewing my interest in poetry. Her Ask Me How I Got Here is a novel in verse about a young girl who has to make a difficult decision that will affect her future and her psyche. (Greenwillow, May 2016) • One of my favorite fantasy series (read and listened to in my prebogging days) is Lian Hearn's Tales of the Otori. I nearly squealed aloud when I heard she has another book coming out. Emperor of the Eight Islands is the first in a new fantasy / adventure series set in medieval Japan. (FSG, April 2016)
• I'm so curious about Jhumpa Lahiri's memoir, In Other Words, not just because I admire her work but because I'm interested in what she has to say about language itself and her decision to write only in Italian. How does an author make such a transition and how does it affect her craft? (Knopf, Feb. 2016) • When I first read Edna O'Brien, many years ago, I instantly connected to her writing style and her Ireland. The Little Red Chairs, her new novel, looks at love and desire in a small Irish village juxtaposed with contemporary violence and hatred. (Little, Brown, March 2016) • Just because Peter Geye's Wintering comes last in the list doesn't mean it's last in my mind. This is pretty much my absolutely most anticipated novel of the season. I'll be reading it on my first free afternoon. Can't wait to lose myself in the story: What happens after the elderly Harry Eide disappears from his sickbed, hightailing it for the northern Minnesota woods? (Knopf, June 2016)