Tuesday, May 9, 2017

What I've added to my TBR lately

It's that time again. Time to compile a list of what I'm excited about adding to my reading list. This one is fiction-heavy as I've been reading more fiction this year than any year previous. In fact, my fiction to nonfiction ratio has been almost even. So, if you have any fiction recommendations for me, please leave a comment!


I ran across America's First Daughter the other day. It's apparently well-read, but I'd never heard of it. It seems like something I'd really enjoy. It's the story of Thomas Jefferson's eldest daughter, and a big chunkster of a novel. I might try this on audio.

I've been trying to read some books this year that are hugely popular but don't really appeal to me. It seems important to do this, though I'm not convinced it's the best way to read. At any rate, I've decided to read Yaa Gyazi's Homegoing since it was such a huge book last year.

And I've caved and added Lilac Girls to my TBR. Because I need another huge WWII novel on my shelves.

After hearing so many good things about Louise Penny's Chief Gamache novels, I've decided to give the first in the series, Still Life, a try. I'm told the fictional town in which the novels take place is idyllic, and I won't want to leave.

I'm interested in The Devil and Webster because I've spent the last 20-some years of my life in a university setting and am interested in the trends on American university campuses. In this novel, the students protest when a favorite professor doesn't get tenure.

I've been interested in Stephen King's 11/22/63 for awhile now, but I just don't think novels have any business being 850 pages long. Maybe I'll get to it someday. Perhaps I'll set aside a couple months of my life to listen to it on audio.

After listening to Julian Fellowes' Belgravia recently, I'm on the search for another novel by him for light reading. I've chose Snobs.

Until I can read an excerpt of Miss Burma, I'm not positive I'll buy a copy, but I'm interested in learning about Burma, and I like sweeping novels of identity and survival.

I couldn't bring myself to be interested in Fiona Davis's The Dollhouse, but The Address sounds more interesting. It's the story of a young English woman who comes to America to manage a fancy new apartment building New York. It's not out until August.

I was interested in Jane Hamilton's The Excellent Lombards when it came out, but I kept putting off making a decision about it until it came out in paper recently. It's about a girl who is in love with her family's apple orchards, but in growing up must decide to stay or go. I think. I've been looking for a novel with a strong sense of place, and this one might fit the bill.

The Madwoman Upstairs is a novel about a young woman related to the Bronte sisters who gets involved in a literary mystery involving family legacy. Sounds fun.

And I recently bought a copy of The Women in the Castle about the wives and children of the actors of the famed plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler before his rise to power. Fearing for their lives, they hole up in a castle.


The corner of the book world I inhabit has been abuzz about Tsh Oxenreider's At Home in the World. Within days of its release, the Kindle version went on sale, so I bought it. I love travel memoirs, so I'm excited to try it. I haven't read her previous work, but I believe faith plays a part in her books.

Speaking of travel memoirs, I've finally bought a copy of Anthony Doerr's Four Seasons in Rome which I've been intending to read since long before his All the Light We Cannot See made such a big splash.

And I'm excited that Mike Perry has another book coming out this year: Montaigne in Barn Boots: An Amateur Ambles through Philosophy. I'd read Perry opine on any topic, frankly. 


I've been hungry for a good narrative nonfiction book I could sink my teeth into lately, but nothing has appealed until Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann. It's the story of over two dozen murders of wealthy Osage Indians in Oklahoma in the 1920s--and the birth of the FBI.

In May I'll be reading Floret Farm's Cut Flower Garden to knock off a mini reading challenge to read a book about gardening. I can't wait for the pictures!

And the book I've been waiting for since A. J. Jacobs released his last book: It's All Relative. Jacobs is one of my all-time favorites. He's quirky and hilarious and is the master of "stunt journalism." In this book, he looks at what it means to be a "family of mankind." It's not out until November, so you have plenty of time to read his other books (esp. The Know-It-All and The Year of Living Biblical) and become familiar with the genius that is A. J. Jacobs.


It's funny, I've recently become quite interested in the presidential retreat Camp David--it comes up all the time in the president books I read--and then a book shows up about just that. Inside Camp David will be out this fall.

I have a lot of respect for Condoleezza Rice and have wondered what she's been doing since leaving politics nearly 10 years ago. One thing is writing a big book about America called Democracy. While I fear it might be a bit dry for my tastes, I still intend to read it...someday.

Speaking of reading it someday, I have yet to read Eric Metaxas's Bonhoeffer, the huge biography of the Lutheran pastor who resisted Hitler and was martyred. I've no doubt it's fabulous, but there are so many barriers to reading it. Metaxas is coming out with a biography of Martin Luther soon, which will stand in line just behind Bonhoeffer on my TBR. I have the patience for only so many mammoth biographies, I guess.

And if you know Anne Bogel's wonderful podcast What Should I Read Next, you'll know she has a book coming out this year called Reading People about personality types. I don't naturally go in for things that type people, so I'm not positive I'll read this as soon as it comes out, but I'll likely read it someday.

I've discovered two more books in the series of art books I've been working my way through: 50 Modern Artists You Should Know and 50 Art Movements You Should Know. This series is a relatively painless way to learn about art if that's a knowledge gap for you like it is for me.
And lastly, POETRY

I've run across many poems lately that I've enjoyed by Laura Kasischke, so when I discovered that she has a New and Selected Poems (Where Now) coming out in July, I quickly added it to my poetry TBR list.

I've also added a book of poems by Russian poet Vera Pavlova which looks wonderful: If There Is Something To Desire.

And I've purchased a copy of How Did This Happen?, an anthology of poems by women.

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