Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thursday's Recommended Reading!

This week's Recommended Reading comes from Mollie M., an inspiration in all things reader-related and good book-oriented. These are her top picks, painfully narrowed down from a list of about one zillion, she says.

My #1 recommendation right now is Blackout by Connie Willis. It came out earlier this year and the second part, All Clear, was released a couple of weeks ago. I haven't gotten my hands on All Clear yet, but I'm absolutely dying to read it. Anyway, Blackout is your typical meticulously researched doorstop science fiction novel about time-traveling Oxford students who go back to the London Blitz to do research for their history papers. Ms. Willis took eight years to write and research it, and the level of detail is just phenomenal. Here's what I wrote about it a few months ago:
"Blackout by Connie Willis. Honestly I don't know if there's a book out there that is more up my alley than this one. I adore Ms. Willis, as well as books about time travel and books about WWII that focus on Dunkirk and/or the London Blitz. Put all those together and I'm in heaven-- although seriously I would have liked some warning that it was just the first half since the cliffhanger nearly gave me a heart attack. Definitely the book I've enjoyed most this year."
I'd also like to plug Jane Smiley's newest, Private Life. Quietly heartbreaking, it traces one woman's life from her St. Louis childhood in the late 19th century to her WWII experiences in San Francisco. Along the way she marries a man who turns out to be a good old-fashioned scientific crank in the mold of Ignatius Donnelly and her unhappy marriage becomes the book's emotional center.


Susanna Ives said...

I'm not into time travel, but a well researched blitz novel would be cool. Thanks.

Laura Valeri said...

I love, love, love Jane Smiley, and that sci-fi book sounds awesome too! Thanks girls for this week's terrific picks.