Every Thanksgiving my mom takes advantage of the family being all in one place and forces us to write our Christmas lists. This year — like every year — a few books made it onto my list . . . even though I should really be asking for a bookcase to store all of the piles of books I already own! I’m eager to get to the stacks I already have, but who can resist adding a few more? So I got to wondering what books are on your wish list this year. How did you hear about them? Recommendation? Review? Just the latest from your favorite author?
Here’s what’s on the BookEnds lists this year:
The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield — This book has been calling to me ever since I first saw it hit the stores. The cover screams “Booklovers! Over here!” and the copy makes it sound like my idea of the perfect book. I’m kind of shocked that I don’t already own it. I think I always succumb to the guilt of those huge unread piles sitting back at home. But this is definitely at the very top of my wish list.
Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo — I loved Empire Falls. While I never got around to going back and reading his previous works, I’ve been hearing a lot of good things about Bridge of Sighs. I’m looking forward to sinking my teeth into this one.
The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox by Maggie O’Farrell — I have to admit that I added this to the list on a whim. I saw it recently in stores and decided to research it as a possible future pick for my book club. The starred Publishers Weekly review sealed it for me. (I bank heavily on those PW reviews!) And it’s a book all about family secrets. What’s better than that?
Ana’s Story: A Journey of Hope by Jenna Bush and Mia Baxter — This is my book club’s next selection. I kind of like that we’re mixing things up with a young adult book, and the story intrigues me. Should make for a great discussion.
Putting together my list for Santa was always so much easier when I had the JC Penney toy catalog in front of me. I could pore over it for days and come up with quite an impressive list. And normally I have the same feelings about coming up with books I want for Christmas, but this year I’m truly stumped. I’m a cookbook fiend so it’s baffling that I can’t even come up with one cookbook I need. As for fiction, one would think I’m always ready to add to my list, but the growing stack of books I already own and haven’t yet read is too intimidating for me to ask for more. So my version of the Christmas list is that I’m going to ask for time to read the books I already have. I’d really like to get to The Kite Runner, as well as one of the three J. R. Ward titles that have been sitting here. Of course I’m dying to catch up on some of my own clients’ books and Karin Slaughter’s latest is also in my pile. And since it’s winter I’d like something heartwarming, women’s fiction that makes me cry a little and feel good about life in the end. It should also have a bit of a romance, I suppose. Elizabeth Berg is usually good for that, but I’m open to suggestions since I’m just not sure what that book is.
I recommend The Road by Cormac McCarthy, which was my favorite nonclient book of the year. Cormac McCarthy is an amazing, provocative writer and The Road stayed with me long after I put it down. I also recommend I Am American and So Can You! by Stephen Colbert. I listened to the audio book and laughed myself silly. He’s so clever, Nation.
On my list to read (after I read all my clients’ books, of course):
The Birds in My Life by The Supreme Master Ching Hai
The Almost Moon by Alice Sebold
The Abstinence Teacher by Tom Perrotta
The Carb Conscious Vegetarian by Robin Robertson
Now it’s your turn! What books are on your list and why?