Thursday, August 6, 2009

Book Reading List

Liz Rosenberg, author of many books including last months book, "Home Repair" was so kind to take the time out of her busy schedule to make a list for us of some of her favorite reads.

Here is the note from Liz:

Dear Fa La La's,

Thanks for bringing me into your lives. It sounds like the kind of book club I'd want to join.

I've been thinking about what books you might possibly like, and came up with a few ideas:

1) IN DEFENSE OF FOOD by Michael Pollan (a possible alternate choice is his book THE OMNIVORE'S DILEMMA.) In Defense of Food is just a great, funny, well-written social history of food and our own ideas about nutrition. I bet it would provoke some lively discussions. It's non-fiction of course, but as well written and engaging as any novel.

2) THE HOUSE ON BEARTOWN ROAD by Elizabeth Cohen--- admittedly another book about my region of the country, also shows up as THE FAMILY ON BEARTOWN ROAD but it's the same book with a different title. It's also memoir, the story of one woman's year when her husband walked out on her, leaving her to contend with her aging dad who had Alzheimer's and her one year old daughter. It's a book about acquiring and forgetting memories, and also about family and responsibility. It's a very honest book about being a mother. which brings me to:

3) THE GLASS CASTLE by Jeanette Wallis, absolutely gripping memoir about this woman's childhood with two highly dysfunctional parents who end up homeless. Despite how grim this sounds, there is a lot of humor in this as well as pathos. I could not put it down, and when I've taught it, people just adore it.

4) Elizabeth Berg's OPEN HOUSE. I know this is not one of her new books, but this one to me had just the right blend of humor and pathos,. so if you enjoyed Home Repair and the Guernsey book you guys might just like this one--I'm also fond of Anne Tyler's Digging to America, and I like it that the heroine is a young grandmother. It also deals with some issues of adoption, of family connections, old world vs new world.

Can you guess I am not an enormous fan of new fiction? Given my druthers I'll re-read The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty or The Movie Goer. Of course--if you ever decide to read poetry I'll have LOTS of suggestions, starting with a posthumous book by my beloved friend Jason Sjinder, called STUPID HOPE., But it is a very dark journey--beautiful, beautiful but heartbreaking book about illness.

I send you all my fondest regards, and please, if any of you don't mind writing your thoughts about Home Repair, on places like Goodreads and Amazon and B & reader reviews really DO make a difference!

You inspire me to want to keep writing, and to keep trying to writer better novels.

Liz Rosenberg

Thank you Liz, from the Fa La La's!

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