15 November 2013

Eight Great Reads for November

Now that Daylight Savings Time has ended and the nights are long and cold, I'm getting ready to spend my evenings hunkered down with a pot of tea and a stack of good books. Here are some of my must-read titles from November's releases.

Dark Tales for Dark Nights

Although Watchers of the Dark by Joseph Nassie (Tor; ISBN-13: 9780765327208) may be a little scary for me, I don't think I'll be able to resist its intriguing genre mix of urban fantasy and thriller. In this third Jeremiah Hunt book, our hero finds himself at the gates of hell, hoping he can survive the cost of keeping them shut forever. A different kind of darkness is found in Ronald Frame's Havisham (St. Martin's Press / Picador; ISBN-13: 9781250037275), which imagines how young, wealthy Catherine Havisham was transformed into the mysterious Miss Havisham of Dickens's Great Expectations. I'm curious about what changed her from a carefree girl into a woman who haunted her own mansion. Keeping with the dark theme, I'm looking forward to Charles Palliser's new Gothic tale, Rustication (Norton; ISBN-13: 9780393088724). When seventeen-year-old Richard Shenstone is sent down from Cambridge, he relocates to a ramshackle mansion with his mother and sister. Soon after, the village experiences a number of disturbing incidents from petty crime to gruesome murder. All eyes turn to Richard, an opium addict who can barely control his sexual urges.

Family in All Its Guises

I don't know if I need to tell any of you how much I love Adriana Trigiani. She is one of the nicest, most generous people I've ever met. Her newest novel, The Supreme Macaroni Company (HarperCollins / Harper; ISBN-13 9780062136589), focuses on some of my favorite themes: family, love, and emigration. I can't wait to revisit Valentine and travel the world through Trigiani's words. I was thrilled to have had the chance to meet Wally Lamb at BEA this year, and his We Are Water (HarperCollins / Harper; ISBN-13: 9780061941023) is on the top of my reading list. This contemporary novel explores issues of sexuality, parenthood, class, and politics. I particularly love the fact that the story is told from multiple points of view, giving us a well-rounded perspective of a family in crisis. Inappropriate teacher–student relationships is a popular theme this year and is also at the core of Kristina Riggle's The Whole Golden World (HarperCollins / William Morrow; ISBN-13: 9780062206459). The story explores the consequences not only of the affair once it's discovered but also of seventeen-year-old Morgan's decision to stand up for her schoolteacher/lover.

A Nonfiction Duo

After reading the summary of Wendy Lawless's memoir, Chanel Bonfire (Simon & Schuster / Gallery Books; ISBN-13: 9781476745480), I was surprised she survived her childhood with enough groundedness to have had a successful acting career. Lawless shares the difficulties of dealing with a horribly disturbed mother while protecting her younger sister and of her ultimate, painful decision to find her own path. Fried Walleye and Cherry Pie, edited by Peggy Wolff (University of Nebraska Press; ISBN-13: 9780803236455) was another great BEA discovery. In this collection of essays a variety of Midwest authors share stories and thoughts on food, from small town to city to county fair. I can't wait to settle in with this slim volume and then share my thoughts with you in a Weekend Cooking post.


Beth F 11/15/13, 7:03 AM  

From Julie of BOOKING MAMA:

I've already read Adriana's book and I'm just about finished with the Wally Lamb one. And I have Kristina Riggle's book up soon! I guess I have to agree with those being super hot for November!

bermudaonion 11/15/13, 9:20 AM  

I hope to read Trigiani's book next. The nonfiction books look terrific too!

Anonymous,  11/15/13, 9:23 AM  

Great selections! Can't wait to read several of them. Thanks for pointing these out.

Leslie (Under My Apple Tree) 11/15/13, 9:46 AM  

Lots of good books coming out. I just received We Are Water in audio, so I'll be listening to that one soon.

The cold weather and early darkness will keep me out of the garden for the next few months. Now I'll have more time for print books but less audio time. What I really need is more hours in a day!

Heather 11/15/13, 10:08 AM  

I have Havisham and can't wait to read it. The rest all sound great too! I love reading in the fall!

Beth Hoffman 11/15/13, 11:27 AM  

There are so many terrific books slated for release!

Mary R. 11/15/13, 1:33 PM  

I came across the Walleye and Cherry Pie book a while ago and it sounded really interesting. I look forward to your post on it!

Daryl 11/15/13, 2:23 PM  

the first 3 sound like they are right up my alley... thanks!

Marie Cloutier 11/15/13, 7:09 PM  

Rustification sounds great. I've read and enjoyed Palliser before so I"ll have to make time for it.

(Diane) bookchickdi 11/15/13, 10:23 PM  

LOVED Supreme Macaroni Company, and I can't wait to read Havisham and We Are Water. You have some wonderful reading ahead of you!

rhonda 11/16/13, 12:54 PM  

Great list loved Channel Bonfire & Havisham

rhonda 11/16/13, 12:55 PM  

Great list loved Channel Bonfire & Havisham

April 11/16/13, 6:11 PM  

Havisham looks intriguing!! I'll have to check that one out!

Sue Jackson 11/17/13, 9:13 AM  

Oh, wow - what a fabulous month you have planned for yourself! I really need to set down the laptop, turn off the TV, and read more in the evenings.

All of these look good, though I am especially looking forward to Wally Lamb's latest. I have enjoyed all of his novels, though none has quite lived up to She's Come Undone for me.

Enjoy your cozy reading evenings!


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thecuecard 11/17/13, 8:31 PM  

I like your picks. The Havisham novel definitely interests me -- loved Great Expectations. I also did some November picks over at http://www.thecuecard.com/node/785


JoAnn 11/18/13, 8:13 PM  

Wally Lamb is near the top of my list!

Jenn's Bookshelves 11/21/13, 10:45 AM  

I just received Rustification. REALLY looking forward to this one!

Kailana 11/25/13, 10:26 AM  

Oh, lots of good looking books there. I always buy Wally Lamb, but I haven't read his last book yet... So, will likely wait on this one. I also have been curious about Havisham since I first heard of it. Have fun with your reading!

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