Tuesday, August 30, 2011

August Books of the Month

This was a great month. I loved every book I read, even those picked out by someone else, aka book club members. So here they are, and I highly recommend all of them.

The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak. A beautiful, haunting book about a young German girl growing up in a foster home in Nazi Germany. Along with Death, the narrator, we watch her learn to read and experience the power of words. Far more sophistocated than the average young adult book, it will appeal to readers of any age. Both my granddaughter and I loved it. A keeper.

Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, the winner of this year's Booker Prize, England's highest literary award, it follows the life of Thomas Cromwell, who was one of Henry VIII's closest advisors. I've always thought of Cromwell as "evil" but this book makes you like him, despite his Machiavellian ways. And Thomas More, the "man for all sesaons," is an extremely unlikeable guy. There's bound to be a sequel; we don't see the death of Anne Boleyn. Long but highly enjoyable.

The Circle of Fire by Justina Page. This is the memoir of a woman who lost everything--her 22-month old son, her home and everything in it--in a tragic fire. After six weeks in a coma, she must deal with pain, the loss of her son, another son's severe burns, the amputation of parts of the fingers of one hand--yet she survives to turn a tragedy into triumph. As a burn survivor myself, I was eager to read this book. I wasn't disappointed. It's an inspiring story of a woman we can all admire. Read my interview with Justina in tomorrow's post.

Horoscopes for the Dead by Billy Collins. A former U.S. poet laureate, Collins' latest poetry collection is witty and engaging. Here's my favorite poem, one you writers out there will relate to:
The woman who wrote from Phoenix
after my reading there

to tell me they were all still talking about it

just wrote again
to tell me that they had stopped.

Do you have any books to recommend?


Carol Apple said... [Reply to comment]

Thanks Thelma for the recommendations. I really enjoyed your reviews. All of them sound interesting - especially The Book Thief.

Alana said... [Reply to comment]

Thanks so much for this post! I haven't fallen in love, to be honest, with any of the books I've read this summer, but I'll be sure to think back on a couple pre-summer reads and visit again with a list!

Anonymous said... [Reply to comment]

I've heard so many wonderful things about Billy Collins, I'm embarrassed I haven't read her yet.

Helen Smith said... [Reply to comment]

Hello, I'm here via She Writes. All those books look good. I have a copy of Wolf Hall but I haven't read it yet - it's always good to read a recommendation for it; it reminds me I need to read my copy.

Hope you enjoyed the long weekend.


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