Wow, it’s suddenly the end of November! Is it just me, or does this time of year feel like working people’s summer break (with worse weather and more food)? Like you mean I actually get TWO vacations TWO months in a row?? Yes, please, thank you.
I absolutely LOVE traveling, and reading an amazing book makes the bus/train/plane/car trip go by wayyy faster. Have a happy & safe Thanksgiving!
This book caught my attention when a publishing friend posted an amazing recommendation of it on Facebook (which she rarely does so this is serious shiz) and I then realized it was a National Book Award finalist.
Powers enlisted in the Army at 17 and served in Iraq for two years. He then received an MFA in poetry from UT. Powers uses his talent with words to depict the journey of 21-year-old John Bartle and his platoon to Al Tafar and home again. I don’t think a person’s experience at war can be accurately described by anyone but them, especially in a book summary, although here is the NY Times review if you’re intrigued.
This book needs no help getting buzz or garnering praise (it was already a National Book Award finalist). As the much-anticipated follow up to Pulitzer-Prize-winning Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Diaz has already established himself as a modern day literary powerhouse. This is How You Lose Her actually interested me because of the way it’s written- 9 stories all revolving around one main character,Yunior, who moves from Santo Domingo to New Jersey with his family. (I have a new-found obsession with short stories.)
According to the NY Times, Lose Her focuses on stories of love-the majority on love fraught with heartache, unfaithfulness, and at the center, “the endless difficulty of loving oneself.”
As you can probably tell from the cover, this book is told from the viewpoint of a dog. It also apparently has various references to race car driving. Now I think dogs are cool, but I’m not a crazy animal lover. And I think the last time I saw a race car race (um, probably not correct terminology there) was on TV in the 90’s when we had no cable. But someone very trustworthy and dear to me recommended this book and just from reading the quote below, I can tell it has an amazing message.
“To live every day as if it had been stolen from death, that is how I would like to live. To separate oneself from the burden, the angst, the anguish that we all encounter every day. To say I am alive, I am wonderful, I am. I am. That is something to aspire to.” -Garth Stein, Art of Racing in the Rain
I’m currently in the middle of Carried Away, a Munro collection of short stories that the author compiled from all her various collections. I can only assume that because she picked them, they stood out to her for some reason-whether it was a challenging story to write or something that she’s particularly proud of, or maybe even a story that relates extremely closely to her own life coughFriendofMyYouthcough. Needless to say, I’m obsessed with her at the moment, and I’ve really come to appreciate collections of short stories. It’s almost like getting that feeling of satisfaction at reading a full book every 50 pages.
Munro is renowned in the literary world for her short stories about life, love, and family, the ordinary things. But she somehow crafts her language to say so much more. She’s able to catch those elusive feelings that most people would never have the ability to describe. This is what makes her work so beautiful. Plus I love the title. Legitimately a MUST READ.
This novel caught my attention simply because of a blurb on the cover: “The Catch-22 of the Iraq War.” Bonus: another NBA finalist.