Just a few years ago, it would have been inconceivable to imagine a world without paper books. Not only were paper books superior to their electronic counterparts in terms of resolution and brightness, but there was also an intangible quality to paper that many people preferred on a subconscious level.
“The Luminaries” is a Booker-Prize winning book by Eleanor Catton. This intriguing book is described as a “fiendishly clever ghost story and gripping page turner and a thrilling novelistic achievement.” The New York Times praised it saying the author had created a “parody of a 19th-century novel, and in so doing created a novel for the 21st, something utterly new.” This week, I wanted to select a book that would offer an engaging modern story with escapism, adventure and an entertaining look at human complexity. The Luminaries fits this description perfectly.
“Love in the Time of Cholera” is a book by Gabriel García Márquez, a Colombian novelist, screenwriter and journalist. His writing style has been referred to as “magical realism,” because he uses elements of fantasy to explain and enhance real life experiences. Most of his books express a theme of human solitude.
He won the Nobel Prize in 1982 for a book called “One Hundred Years of Solitude,” which enchanted and intrigued me. Marquez is a stunning writer who pulls readers into his stories in a sensory way. He understands relationships. Sometimes you feel as though you walking alongside the characters, experiencing their lives with intensity and realism.
“The Paris Architect” is the debut novel of American author Charles Belfoure. His own personal interest with historical preservation inspired a fascinating fictional book about World War II. It is full of characters who demonstrate the spectrum of human emotion that is revealed times of political conflict.
The book is set in Nazi occupied France and tells the story of Lucien, a struggling architect, who, like many people in Paris, was not all that sympathetic to the Jews. He was
“The Valley of Amazement” is a novel by Amy Tan, a New York Times bestselling author with magical writing skills. Ms Tan was born in the United States to immigrant Chinese parents and her writing often tries to penetrate the unique cultural impact of her parents’ homeland.
Still Life with Bread Crumbs: A Novel is a new book by Anna Quindlen, a bestselling author and journalist that I have admired for years. Her collective works show her to be a woman of great depth and compassion.
“Your Life Calling: Reimagining the Rest of Your Life,” by Jane Pauley is a book that encourages anyone approaching mid-life with hesitation to be motivated to take action. Pauley tells the stories of people who reached a turning point in their lives, connected with their personal passions, and created opportunities for change. They found ways to overcome challenges and confront their fears. Embracing their passions, they made positive decisions to live more purposeful lives.
I was in my twenties when I first read Margaret Laurence’s The Stone Angel. It made an enormous impression on me. This is one of those must read books for women, told through Hagar Shipley’s ninety-year-old eyes. Throughout the book, small nostalgic events trigger flashbacks that reveal the story of her life and her strong and often irrational personality. I remember a scene where she imagines herself as a beautiful young woman, swirling, laughing and dancing with her husband. Then, in real life, she finds herself falling down the stairs in her 65-year-old son’s home.