New favorites for winter reading
“Sight Hound” by Pam Houston. From the author of “Cowboys Are My Weakness” comes an unusual love story between a woman and her dog, an Irish wolfhound, who teaches “his human” that love is the strongest thing we know. Told in many voices, including Rae, an impulsive playwright; Dante, her dying dog; their friends; and even Stanley, a jaded cat, this is a fabulous read. Yes, I cried, but I laughed, too. Highly recommended!
“The News From Paraguay” by Lily Tuck. Winner of the 2004 National Book Award, this is an extraordinary novel, based on fact, of a young Irish courtesan who in 1854 became the mistress of the future dictator of Paraguay. Ella Lynch followed her lover from Paris to Paraguay where she joined his ill-fated imperial dream that ultimately doomed his country.
“Now You May Weep” by Deborah Crombie. Scotland Yard Inspector Gemma Jones and her friend Hazel Cavendish go on holiday, only to have Hazel arrested for the murder of her former lover. This is a tale of sinister secrets, blackmail and whiskey, all wrapped up in an intoxicating read.
“Leonardo da Vinci” by Sherwin B. Nuland. One of the greatest artists in history was also the first modern scientific genius. He was a compulsive investigator of everything around him. He was a man obsessed and left behind journals and drawings from which modern science can see that da Vinci was centuries ahead of his time.
“The Lady and the Unicorn” by Tracy Chevalier. The author of “Girl With Pearl Earring” weaves fact into fiction in a timeless tale set in the world of art. Anyone who has ever seen the world famous Unicorn Tapestries has fallen under their magical spell. Chevalier tells the story of how the lady’s seduction of the unicorn became one of the world’s great art treasures.
“The Ancestor’s Tale” by Richard Dawkins. Dawkins, a renowned biologist, presents an expansive look at evolution. Loosely based on Chaucer’s “Canterbury Tales,” Dawkins takes an inventive approach to science, history and mankind in this scientific but highly readable volume.
“Baker Towers” by Jennifer Haigh. Bakerton is a small Pennsylvania coal-mining town where its children remain to raise their own children for generations on end. WWII presents new opportunities, and the five Novak children are determined to seize them. Haigh follows up her “Mrs. Kimble” with a compelling family saga about the vast changes facing the “greatest generation.”
“Forest Lover” by Susan Vreeland. Vreeland’s previous novels have centered on the world of art. Here she tells the story of real-life painter Emily Carr, who set off on her own to paint the rugged landscapes and people of British Columbia. This is the story of how she overcame the constraints of her Victorian culture to become the leading female Western artist of her day.
“Younger Next Year” by Chris Crowley and Henry S. Lodge. We all want to look and feel younger. Dr. Lodge and his star patient, Crowley, draw on the latest science of aging to show how men over 50 can become functionally younger and continue to live like 50-year-olds well into their 80s.
“10 Little Rubber Ducks” by Eric Carle. Carle’s bright collage art has been a favorite ever since “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” debuted more than 25 years ago. Here he tells the true story of a shipment of rubber bathtub ducks that fell overboard from a ship. They encounter many of Carle’s favorite characters as they sail on for a great adventure. Of course, there is a surprise at the end!
Compiled by manager Alison Jones-Pomatto at The Book Seller, 107 Mill St., Grass Valley, 272-2131. The Book Seller is open 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sundays.
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