Thursday, February 23, 2012

Great reads you might have missed

I was thinking, after posting on Tuesday about a new (to me) author, Carol O'Connell, about how many titles and authors we might miss out on.  Titles you never saw, or forgot to go back and read, series you were saving for someday...I'm guilty of all of these.  The good thing about books (one of many) is that it's never too late to go back and read something you might have missed!  Here are a few you might want to go back and read if you missed them the first time around.

The Dive from Clausen's Pier, by Anne Packer.  Twenty-three year old Carrie Bell has spent her whole life in the same small town in Wisconsin.  Same best friend, same home, same high-school sweetheart.  All that was once comforting and familiar to Carrie are now suffocating, and leaving seems to be her only option.  When boyfriend Mike is in a terrible accident, leaving becomes that much more necessary for Carrie, and that much more unforgivable.  A book of finding oneself despite the odds, told in detailed, rich prose.  If you like this title, consider trying another of Packer's novel's, Songs Without Words.

Abide With Me, by Elizabeth Strout.  Sometimes, everything in life can be changed by a single incident.  For minister Tyler Caskey, family tragedy has shaken him to the core.  His beloved Maine seems foreign, his faith is fundamentally shaken, his child is a stranger.  His congregation and community, once patient and supportive in the early days of Tyler's grief, now have become gossipy and frustrated, questioning Tyler's place among them.  In his darkest hour, Tyler makes a startling discovery that will be the ultimate test for him, and his community.  Told in Strout's quiet, luminous style, this is really one to go back and read.  If you like Strout's style (and I do), I'd also recommend Olive Kitteridge and Amy and Isabelle.

Do you have any favorites that you think other readers might like?  Leave a suggestion in the comments!  I'll be back next Tuesday with a wrap-up of my February reads, and a check-in on my reading challenges.  See you then!

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