If you are looking for a good read for a sunny day | TheUnion.com

If you are looking for a good read for a sunny day

“Blue Nude” by Elizabeth Rosner. “The Speed of Light” is on my list for my favorite books ever so I was thrilled to see Rosner finally had a new book out. And thrilled I was! Danzig, a German painter and art instructor, has lost his touch. When Margot, an Israeli model, poses for his San Francisco art class, he is mesmerized. Rosner’s spare but stunning novel speaks to the power of art to heal. Look for an appearance by Rosner this July.

“Promise Me” by Harlan Coben. Before Coben wrote his terrific stand-alone thrillers, he penned a mystery series about sports agent Myron Bolitar. It’s been six years since we’ve seen Myron, but he’s back and better than ever. Myron’s self-deprecating humor keeps this thriller about a college-bound missing teen just hopping. I for one am so glad to see Myron and his oh-so-odd sidekick Wyn back.

“Digging to America” by Anne Tyler. A former fan of Tyler’s, I found myself bored until this delightful novel won me back. Bitsy and Brad Donaldson and Sami and Zibi Yazdan meet at Baltimore airport while greeting their newly adopted Korean daughters. An uncomfortable, forced friendship begins that develops into so much more. But the story belongs to Sami’s mother, Maryam, a modern woman and Iranian immigrant often puzzled by the Donaldsons and her own family, as well.

“Guest of the Ayatollah” by Mark Bowden. The author of “Black Hawk Down” has a new book on history that resonates in today’s political world. In 1979, the radical Islam government of Iran took 66 American Embassy workers hostage and held them for 444 days. Bowden skillfully reports on that world-altering event from the political situation that allowed it to occur to the dramatic rescue attempt and the ultimate release upon the inauguration of President Reagan. There are lessons here for our situation today.

New In Paperback

“Zorro” by Isabel Allende. The acclaimed Bay Area author continues her historical fiction in this look at early California through the legend of the famous swashbuckler Zorro, who is dedicated to fighting oppression, especially of the native Californios. Along the way, Zorro crosses path with many historical figures of the time. This page-turner is great fun and also very interesting. Allende really brings the legend of Zorro to life.

“Dear, Zoe” by Philip Beard. Fifteen-year-old Tess DeNunzio struggles to cope with the death of her little sister from a car accident on Sept. 11 – one small death on a day of tragedy. This wonderful novel is written in the form of a letter from Tess to Zoe, examining her feelings and explaining what happens next. This is the story of how one family recovers and mourns a devastating loss. This lovely story is perfect for teens, as well as adults.

“Take Big Bites” by Linda Ellerbee. The TV newswoman traveled far and wide in her career, eating every step of the way. This is a memoir of her spirited adventures in food around the world and across the table. Ellerbee’s writing is personal and very funny, as when she describes canoeing with a man who refuses to picnic. And there are recipes too, my favorite being: “Buy a bag of oranges. Give them to children who don’t have oranges.”

“The Heart of the World” by Ian Baker. This is the story of an amazing journey to one of the wildest and most inaccessible places on earth – the hidden lands of Pemako, Tibet, where, Tibetans believe, the physical and spiritual worlds overlap. Explorer Baker delivers an exceptional memoir of his journey into the heart of the world’s deepest gorge and his discovery of a fabled waterfall – the gateway to the myth of Shangri-La.

“Oh, the Glory of It All” by Sean Wilsey. Oh, how I enjoyed this memoir of how the other half lived and loved in San Francisco. Wilsey’s father, Al, a blue-collar guy who rose to the ranks of the elite through the women he loved, was a distant and cold father. When Al left his drama-queen wife for her best friend Dede, the story really starts to cook. Dede is the epitome of the evil stepmother. This is a painfully honest yet startling fun read by a very talented young writer.

“A Long Way Down” by Nick Hornby. This black comedy is a look at four desperate people who, on New Year’s Eve in London, unexpectedly meet on a rooftop where each has come to end his or her life. Through this situation, they form a deep bond. Hornby takes an in-depth look at the life of the characters, their histories and what led them to this rooftop encounter. In other hands, this could have been a sappy story, but Hornby really pulls it off with irony and affection.


Compiled by manager Alison Jones-Pomatto at The Book Seller, 107 Mill Street, Grass Valley, 272-2131. Hours are Mon. through Fri. 9:30 a.m. Ð 7 p.m., Sat. 9:30 a.m. Ð 5:30 p.m., and 11 a.m. Ð 4 p.m. Sunday.

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