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This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel

Posted by on 8:00 am in Literary Fiction, Stacey's Recs | 1 comment

This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel

This is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel I read Laurie Frankel’s This Is How it Always Is without knowing anything about the story. I absolutely love it when this happens. Somehow books are always better in my mind when I have no expectations. I would love for readers to approach this story in the same way so I am going to do my best to review this book without giving away too much. This Is How it Always Is is a family story. A love story. A story of secrets. And a fairy tale. As the story opens we fall immediately in love with Penn and...

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Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Posted by on 8:00 am in Memoir, Nina's Recs | 12 comments

Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal, written by, none other than Amy Krouse Rosenthal, is the kind of book most readers could complete in one sitting. Instead, I only allowed myself a few pages a day. I enjoyed Rosenthal’s voice and world-view so much that I didn’t want it to end. I began reading Rosenthal’s unusual memoir weeks before her New York Times Modern Love essay, “You May Want to Marry My Husband,” went viral. In that piece, Rosenthal, 51, revealed she was battling ovarian cancer. I...

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Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen

Posted by on 8:00 am in Memoir, Non-Fiction, Pamela's Recs | 2 comments

Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen

Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen I’ve only seen Bruce Springsteen live, in concert once, during the 1988 Amnesty Internatonal Human Rights Now! Tour. Four friends and I took a three-hour bus ride into Philadelphia on September 19th and climbed the crumbling steps of JFK Stadium to the nosebleed section. But the seats didn’t matter. All you needed that night were your ears and your heart. Tracy Chapman lifted us up and then crushed us, Peter Gabriel raised our fists to Biko, and Joan Baez surprised us all simply by being there. But all of them...

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A Country Between by Stephanie Saldana

Posted by on 8:00 am in Lindsey's Recs, Memoir | 4 comments

A Country Between by Stephanie Saldana

A Country Between Stephanie Saldana’s A COUNTRY BETWEEN is a love letter to her first son, Joseph, and a chronicle of the years she and her growing family spent living on Nablus Road in Jerusalem. Nablus Road, the “seam” between Palestinian Jerusalem and Israeli Jerusalem, is full of characters and personality, and Saldana beautifully evokes their years living there. She describes a “one-street village with thousands of visitors who pass[ed] through daily,” and brings this cast to life.  In one street, there is the world. Nablus Road is even...

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Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

Posted by on 8:00 am in Jessica F's Recs, Literary Fiction | 1 comment

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett A bottle of gin. A gun. A tablet of Benadryl. A book. In Ann Patchett’s Commonwealth, these everyday objects take on resonant meanings for the blended family that is born in the wake of an adulterous kiss at a gin-and-orange soaked party. Fix and Beverley Keating are picture perfect, for a few pages, at least. He is a police detective in LA and she is a beautiful housewife. They are raising two children in the 1960’s when, out of nowhere, a handsome lawyer avoiding his own family decides to pay his respects and...

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Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

Posted by on 8:00 am in Book Club Fiction, Historical Fiction, Jennifer's Recs | 1 comment

Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly I am always on the lookout for a great new book – whether it’s at the bookstore, through a Goodreads email, or when friends talk about books they love. This time around for my recommendation here at GNB, I have gone back and forth on several books, especially one that is an important recent book, which I read, but honestly did not love. For weeks I have scoured shelves and lists to find a book to recommend, and then I landed on Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly, a first-time author. I bought it and devoured all...

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Pull Me Under by Kelly Luce

Posted by on 8:00 am in Julia's Recs, Thriller | 4 comments

Pull Me Under by Kelly Luce

Pull Me Under Pull Me Under starts with a premise we can all imagine in today’s world. A 12-year-old Japanese-American girl, bullied relentlessly by a classmate “releases her inner black organ” and kills her tormenter with a letter opener. (I haven’t given anything away—we are told this on the first page of the book.) I noticed at a young age—four years old, five—a dark presence in my chest, a blackness, clinging to the back of my heart. Mostly the thing lay dormant and I could put it out of my mind. But occasionally it swelled like an...

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Favorite Childhood Books: GreatNewBooks Team Post

Posted by on 8:00 am in Book Recommendations, Childhood Books | 3 comments

Favorite Childhood Books: GreatNewBooks Team Post

For fun, the ten of us on the GNB team — Lindsey Mead, Nina Badzin, Jess Vealitzek, Hallie Sawyer, Stacey Loscalzo, Katie Noah Gibson, Julia Munroe Martin, Jessica Flaxman, Pamela Hunt Cloyd, and Jennifer King — thought we would enjoy opening up the conversation of Favorite Childhood Books to share here at GreatNewBooks.org with you! We worked hard to each try and pick our favorite book from growing up. Between the ten of us, these are our Favorite Childhood Books …   FAVORITE CHILDHOOD BOOKS Lindsey’s pick:  A...

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Upstream by Mary Oliver

Posted by on 8:00 am in Memoir, Non-Fiction, Pamela's Recs | 8 comments

Upstream by Mary Oliver

Upstream by Mary Oliver As I read Mary Oliver’s latest essay collection, Upstream, I wondered what this brilliant poet thinks of the latest election, inauguration, and state of the world. Is she staying deep in her beloved woods, ignoring it all, or would she like to be marching with us (and what on earth would her sign say)? After finishing the last essay, I decided that if Mary Oliver had to spend a few days in DC, it wouldn’t be long before she became preoccupied with the tightly budded winter trees and the ice along the tidal basin. Maybe...

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The Ancient Minstrel by Jim Harrison

Posted by on 8:00 am in Book Recommendations, Jess's Recs, Literary Fiction | 2 comments

The Ancient Minstrel by Jim Harrison

The Ancient Minstrel by Jim Harrison My stepdad turned me onto Jim Harrison, who is best known for writing Legends of the Fall, which I’ve never read, incidentally. (I loved the movie, though.) Harrison, who died last year, reminds me of a cross between John Steinbeck and Ernest Hemingway. In fact, he reminds me of a well-known Steinbeck character, Doc. He was an avid outdoorsman, a sensitive poet, a nature and animal lover, but also a womanizer, alcoholic, and over-eater. He consumed life, by all accounts. The Ancient Minstrel is his last...

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