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Recently Finished

White lies by stephen leather. His latest in the Dan Shepherd series and one of the better ones. I was glued to it from start to finish.
I recently finished 'Kiss & Blog' by Alyson Noel. It was a fun and interesting read about a girl starting her sophomore year of high school. Since my own novel is about a ninth grade girl, I found many of the themes similar, which made the book more intriguing. The mean girls in the book were so perfectly written that I could feel anger at them so often throughout (most notably in one of the main character's former friends). Winter, the main character, truly had some life-defining moments happen to her as sophomore year began, and the reality of being a teenager really rang true as a result.
Redeployment - Phil Klay :star3:1/2

2014 U.S. national book award winner. A collection of short stories involving the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, each told from the perspectives of different U.S. soldiers.
I liked it but did not think it was as good as Anthony Doer's novel which it ultimately beat out for the award.
The Narrow Road To The Far North - Richard Flanagan :star3:
An inappropriate love affair + death and dismemberment on the infamous Burma Death Railway of WWII. Won this years Booker prize.
I've just finished 'before I go to sleep' by SJ Watson. Wow! What a book! Kept me in suspenders right the way through
Galveston - Nic Pizzolatto :star4:

The guy that created True Detective writes almost as well as he makes TV shows. Wow!
Just finished Gray Mountain by John Grisham. What can i say, he is a literary God. Cracking read as one would expect from him.
Will You Miss Me When I'm Gone: The Carter Family & Their Legacy in American Music
by Mark Zwonitzer and Charles Hirshberg

A must read if you are into old time music, roots of country music, and Carter Family. Great bio, great nonfiction.
Pigeon English, by Stephen Kelman

This was one of the most engaging novels I have read in the last ten years. It is told in first person narrative by Harrison Okupu, an eleven year old immigrant to England from Ghana, who lives in the public housing tenements of London. Though living amid the dangers and squalor of his environment Harrison has a positive outlook on life and his eyes see only the beauty and promise of life. His dialect is beautifully rendered and his limited worldview is both comical and profound.

I can heartily recommend this book, a book in which even tragedy is rendered, through Harrison's voice, with harmonies and in rainbow colored hues.
^ that sounds really good DATo. I may have to pick that one up...

753C It is fairly short and an easy read though the main character uses some slang which is a bit hard at first to make sense of. I swear to God you can hear this kid actually talking when you read it. It's an amazingly creative effort and in my opinion quite original in its storyline.

Just finished (book, and then movie): The Maze Runner by James Dashner. Vaguely similar to The Hunger Games but not nearly as good. I don't regret reading it but I will not continue with the series.
Wolf Hall - Hillary Mantel :star4:
Different then I expected, Mantel's style is "gently addictive". Her depiction of Cromwell is all the more pleasing for what it doesn't tell us. Even after 672 pages his deepest motivations are still a mystery. I will be reading all of these. And then I will probably try to track down the tv show and watch that as well.
Hopefully someone else will read this and we will have a discussion in June.
Bloodbrothers - Richard Price :star3:1/2

Story of a vigorously dysfunctional Italian family living in the Bronx in the early 70's. The story centers around Stony De Coco, the oldest son of a violent and philandering union electrician father, an unbalanced mother, and big brother to an anorexic and introverted boy named Albert. His influential uncle "Chubby" is also in the union and as Stony comes of age, he has to take a long honest look at his family and make some difficult decisions about the direction of his life.

Sensational dialogue, straight up 70's ethnic New York. Gritty, funny in places, and jarring. I had been wanting to read something by Richard Price for a while, and though I don't think this one was amazing, it definitely was good enough to make me want to read more from him.
Yrsa Sigurðardóttir - Last Rituals
Yrsa Sigurðardóttir - My Soul to Take
Yrsa Sigurðardóttir - Ashes to Dust
Jussi Adler-Olsen - Mercy
Arne Dahl - The Blinded Man
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and other short stories

I've been on a little Nordic noir binge in between the academic stuff. :D