My last recommendations (for now) are two books by Frank Lentricchia, The Accidental Pallbearer and The Dog Killer of Utica. Both feature Eliot Conte, a large, very strong, opera loving Melville scholar with impulse control problems. His father is local political fixer while his best friend Antonio, who is more like a brother and favored by his father, is Uttica's Chief of Police. Around this triangle revolve the two books. We first meet Eliot and Antonio as they sit in a... Full Post >
I’m looking so forward to our event on Friday, June 27th at 2pm with Earl Swift and his book Auto Biography: A Classic Car, An Outlaw Motorhead, and 57 Years of the American Dream. Why am I so excited, you may be asking, well, it’s because this is in my opinion this is the perfect storm of good narrative non-fiction. It’s a perfect slice of Americana as seen through the life of one car and its 12 owners, most notably its last, a large, profane, self-educated entrepreneur... Full Post >
As I was chatting with Zach Wagman, the editor for both of Chris Pavone's books The Expats and The Accident, over an event dinner we got on the topic of Chris Pavone and he wanted to know which I liked better. He leaned towards The Expats while I preferred The Accident. While I enjoyed The Expats I found the story a bit convoluted with a couple of holes that left me with questions which were cleared up in The Accident. Now I want to re-read... Full Post >
The suspense is finally over! You've been waiting for a recommendation and here is it: The first is an author, Paul Sussman, and ALL his books but especially his trilogy, The Lost Army of Cambyses, The Last Secret of the Temple, and The Labyrinth of Osiris, featuring Yusuf Khalifa, a detective in Luxor, Egypt. Each book begins with some historical event deep in Egypt's past that the sands of time cover up until now. As an amateur Egyptologist as well as a detective it's up... Full Post >
Looking for new Book Club ideas? Here are my best book club bets: The Floor of Heaven by Howard Blum One of my favorite books of narrative non-fiction ever. Set in Alaska during the Yukon gold rush and seen through the lives of three characters, a Denver crime boss, a Pinkerton detective, and the American who started the whole thing. Think Krakauer and Larson for comparisons. The Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne A debut from a Durham author that is utterly original and... Full Post >
It's been awhile, but while I haven't been writing I have been reading and reading and reading some more. Some good, lots bad but that's the nature of the beast when you read as much as I do. I'm learning to distrust international bestsellers that are finally making it here (especially from France it seems like). I'm also becoming increasingly leery of 600 page opuses (except for one called I Am Pilgrim by Terry Hayes coming out at the end of May which you will be hearing much more... Full Post >
What a tale of friendship! Told in a stark yet beautiful style this novel perfectly evokes the moldering steel towns of the Northeast as it tells the tale of two friends and the decisions they are forced to make after a terrible accident. American Rust is the latest addition to my growing list of great American novels. Buy the book Full Post >
Why get away when everyone else does? Enjoy the Inn’s award-winning service and cuisine and stunning gardens, Mon-Thurs. Includes overnight stay, afternoon tea and full breakfast, and a $50 credit per person for dinner at The Fearrington Granary. Starts at $375.