How many times have you read about a new book in a newspaper or magazine, heard an author interviewed on the radio or watched a book discussion on the Web or TV and you just had to read that book? You run to the Library and find there is a long waiting list for this item because everyone else is also trying to get this ‘next great book’. And, you just don’t want to cough up the $32.95 at the Bookstore. What do you do now? You ask your friendly Librarian for advice, of course. Hopefully, he or she will send you home with a book that will temporarily fill the void and lessen your disappointment.
If you haven’t read it, it’s new to you.
There are so many wonderful books that pass through our lives, some are put on the back burner to read in the future and others are just plain forgotten. I’d like to recommend a few oldies but goodies that you may have missed over the years. And, don’t worry. If none of these titles appeal to you there will be many more choices in the future!
The Giant’s House: A Romance by Elizabeth McCracken is set in a small town on Cape Cod and features a spinster librarian who offers friendship, knowledge and eventually love to a young boy who suffers from a disease of stature known as giantism. Much to the shock and dismay of the town’s inhabitants, she becomes the young man’s close confidante as he continues to suffer from this ravaging disease that causes runaway physical growth. She offers him the opportunity to share in some of life’s most simple and intimate moments. This debut novel, picked as a National Book Award finalist, is an unusual and empathetic story that clearly and quietly shows the lasting effects that love, understanding and compassion can have on the soul.
A Spanish Lover by Joanna Trollope. Tables turn for twin sisters when Lizzie, the sister with the perfect marriage, children and career suddenly sees her life collapsing around her while at the same time her long time single sister, Frances has her own love life recharged by a debonair but married Spanish gentleman. Each sister faces unpredictable changes in her own life while dealing with the reactions of her family. This is a quick read with vivid descriptions of Southern Spain interspersed throughout the action.
For readers who enjoyed Brad Meltzer’s The Tenth Justice, pick up Numbered Account by Christopher Reich. When Nicholas Neumann moves from New York to Zurich to work for the private United Swiss Bank, he is doing more than leaving his fiancee behind and furthering his career in the international banking industry. His primary goal is to discover who or what caused his Zurich banker father’s death seventeen years earlier. The action is fast paced as Neumann meets a slew of unsavory characters including a ruthless Middle East arms dealer, a beautiful, talented bank Vice-President and a variety of corrupt bankers (IMAGINE THAT!). Neumann’s U.S. Marine background comes in handy when he deals with an international crime syndicate. For those intrigued by the secrecy of the Swiss banking industry, where the adapted adage is ‘everything is legal until you get caught‘, this is an entertaining read.
Marian Coe’s Appalachian setting in Eve’s Mountain is heaven on earth to its inhabitants and that’s how they would like to keep it, free from the intrusion of the summer people and new construction. When the owner of the mountain suffers a stroke, his children gather around in hope of a recovery. Daughter Tory has her own agenda, however, and perhaps having Daddy get well isn’t part of it. Son Zack, a major disappointment to his father over the years, comes home to rediscover his roots while visiting Nurse Selena may be hiding from her Colorado past. Various mountain characters, a cool breezy mountain setting and enough subplots, mysteries and a possible murder make this a quick vacation read.