Classes are ending, vacations are being planned, and whether or not you can afford to get the Hell out of Dodge, a good book can always serve as a nice mental escape. Here are our top five books to read this summer -- preferably by a pool. With a margarita.
5. Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler Why it's on our reading list:
This book chronicling the life of Zelda Fitzgerald, wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald couldn't have come at a better time, especially for those anticipating the film adaptation of the Great Gatsby, those who enjoyed the film, A Midnight in Paris, or those who just finished reading the Paris Wife, a novel by Paula Mclain chronicling the early Paris years of Hemingway's life as told from the perspective of his first wife, Hadley. This fictional account details the romance, glamour and drama of a woman whose own life was a story worth telling.
4. Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls by David Sedaris Why it's on our reading list:
First off, it's David Sedaris. That guy could put his name on anything at this point and we'd probably buy it. But whether you Sedaris savant or a newbie to the humorist's work, Let's Explore Diabetes with Owls promises to be a winning book for both. In his new book of globetrotting essays Sedaris covers everything "from the perils of French dentistry to the eating habits of the Australian kookaburra, from the squat-style toilets of Beijing to the particular wilderness of a North Carolina Costco."
Incidentally, David Sedaris will be bringing his book tour to Gammage Auditorium this Thursday. More info here.
3. The Potty Mouth at the Table by Laurie Notaro Why it's on our reading list:
Laurie Notaro needs no introduction at this point. The bestselling author who's previous works have included The Idiot Girls' Action Adventure Club, We Thought You Would Be Prettier, and It Looked Different on the Model to name a few, has also contributed to Jackalope Ranch (see: "Six Words Laurie Notaro Demands People Stop Using Right Now" and "Laurie Notaro's Existential Showdown on Yelp").
Potty Mouth at the Table is Notaro's latest collection of essays detailing her misadventures into all forms of rudeness including: "I Hate Foodies," "Creepy Facebook Moments" and "Six Things I Never Want to Hear (Again) While Standing in Line at the Pharmacy."
Notaro will be bringing her book tour to Changing Hands Bookstore May 7. For more information visit Changing Hands' website.
2. Love, Dishonor, Marry, Die, Cherish, Perish: A Novel by David Rakoff
Why it's on our reading list:
David Rakoff was a New york Times Best Selling author and regular contributor to This American Life. Rakoff's final book Love, Dishonor, Marry, Die, Cherish, Perish, which is written entirely in rhyming prose, was finished shortly before his death last August.
In an interview with the National Post, Rakoff's long-time editor Bill Thomas described the upcoming book saying that "the story leaps cities and decades as David sings the song of an America whose freedoms can be intoxicating, or devastating. It is the clearest expression of David's insistence on beauty and the necessity of kindness in a selfish world." To hear an excerpted reading recorded by Ira Glass and read by Rakoff last fall, you can listen to it here. The book will be released July 16.
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1. And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini Why it's on our reading list:
Despite a somewhat vague plot summary, this book has our interest for two reasons. Firstly, it's from Khaled Hosseini, the #1 New York Times-bestselling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns.
Secondly what we do know about the book that was supposedly 6 years in the making, is that it deals with what may be Hosseini's best portrayed elements- human relationships, described as "a new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations." The book will be available May 21.