This week the wonderful women at The Broke and The Bookish want to know all about the books that I am glad came to me as recommendations. I thought this was going to be a hard one for me, since I am usually the one who is recommending books, but once I got going, it was much easier than I thought to come up with some books I might not have read without a little nudge. I didn’t quite make it to ten though.
Five Books I’m Thrilled Were Recommended to Me
- The Cypress House by Michael Koryta – I read So Cold The River (my review) last year by the same author, and while it started it off in a promising manner, it had fizzled out for me by the end. A friend recommended that I try The Cypress House, and almost guaranteed that I would love it, and boy was she right. Probably one of my favorite books this year – so I am really looking forward The Ridge, coming out in June. I am loving Koryta’s brand of supernatural historical mystery.
- The Taker by Alma Katsu – After finishing and loving A Discovery of Witches (my review), I was casting about for my next big read and in a paranormal sort of mood. Alma Katsu stepped in to suggest her yet to be released historical novel, a dark and juicy tale of immortality and unrequited love. As you can imagine the two don’t necessarily mix, and it was so intense that I wrote a list of dos and don’t for who should read The Taker. It’s not out until September here in the States, but enterprising types can snag a copy on The Book Depository since it’s already out in the UK.
- The Fountainhead, by Ayn Rand – The other day when I posted the movie trailer for part one of Atlas Shrugged, I commented that most people read Rand either in college or shortly thereafter. It’s about the time in life when the philosophies of objectivism seem feasible and, I dare say, even attractive. One of my friends recommended I read this shortly after we graduated college, so no, I did not escape that cliché. I did find that this didn’t hold up quite as well a few years later on reread. Still I am glad not to have missed this post collegial rite of passage.
- Kindred by Octavia Butler- One of my favorite and most recommended books of all time, Kindred (my review), was actually passed along to me by my mother, whose friend had lent her a copy, raving about it. I have since bought my own copy, though my mom might still have the other one (oops!), and it is one of the few books that I have actually taken the time to read more than once since I reached adulthood. This is one of the books that I love to see others review, or tell me that they have read.
- Dracula In Love by Karen Essex – I actually had this one on the shelves and might have gotten to it eventually, with the proper alignment of the stars. The problem was I had already just read a Dracula re-telling with Mina as the lead character. I didn’t want to read the books back to back, nor did I really want to read a story I had just read in the face of all my other reading options. Allie (Hist-Fic Chic) insisted that not only would I really like this one, but I would like it better than the other book I had read. I was skeptical, but she told me this for months, every chance she got – over brunch and dinner and phone conversations. But she was right (my review of Dracula in Love). The book is a very smart and sexy take on the vampire legend, and I loved it. As it turns out we went on to meet and LOVE Karen, who is so very smart and fun. We always try to see her when she comes to NYC. Karen, come back!