So, my thought this week is to give you a little peek into my TBR. However, as I was picking up books to tell you about I realized how big my TBR is.... a common book problem right! So, I am going to do it in two batches, and leave out a good 30 books. But these are the ones that are jumping out to me at the moment. It may be that I don't read any of them next - you know how that goes.
My friend Jennifer was on a cruise to Alaska when she texted me about this novel. When she finished she placed it as "maybe my favorite book of all time." How do you walk away from that? Ann from Books on the Nightstand also highly recommended the audio book. So, onto the TBR it went.
"At first site, Ove is almost certainly the grumpiest man you will ever meet, a curmudgeon with staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People think him bitter, and he thinks himself surrounded by idiots.
Ove's well-ordered, solitary world gets a shake-up when one November morning with the appearance of new neighbors, a chatty young couple and their two boisterous daughters, who announce their arrival by accidentally flattening Ove's mailbox with their U-haul. What follows is a heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unlikely friendships, and a community's unexpected reassessment of the one person they all thought they had all figured out."
This novel won the Bailey's Women's prize for fiction this year, beating out A Little Life my favorite book of last year. Simon from Savidge Reads and Eric from The Lonesome Reader blogs both highly recommended it when the read the entire long list for the prize. Sold as a dark comedy - it seemed right in my sweet spot.
"When grandmother Maureen Phelan is surprised in her home by a stranger, she clubs the intruder with a Holy Stone. The consequences of this unplanned murder connect four misfits struggling against their meager circumstances. Ryan is a fifteen-year-old drug dealer, desperate not to turn out like his alcoholic father, Tony, whose feud with his next-door neighbor threatens to ruin his family. Georgie is a sex worker who half-heartedly joins a born-again movement to escape her profession and drug habit. And Jimmy Phelan, the most fearsome gangster in the city and Maureen's estranged son, finds that his mother's bizarre attempts at redemption threaten his entire organization."
This novel was short listed for the Booker last year - and focuses on the Indian immigration into England. Again, Simon from Savidge Reads says that this is a book that everyone needs to read - especially right now.
"In a dilapidated shared house in Sheffield, Tarlochan, a former rickshaw driver, will say nothing about his life in Bihar. Avatar and Randeep are middle-class boys whose family are slowly sinking into financial ruin, bound together by Avatar's secret. Sandeep, in turn, has a visa wife across town, whose cupboards are full of her husband's clothes in case the immigration agents surprise her with a visit.
She is Narinder, and her story is the most surprising of them all."
I have been hearing about this novel for months now. And then.... Oprah picked it as her next bookclub choice and it exploded. My friend Jana says the book is worth every word -- and I can tell you personally, Jana knows books!
"Cora is a slave on a cotton plantation in Georgia. Life is hell for all the slaves, but especially bad for Cora; an outcast even among her fellow Africans, she is coming into womanhood - where even greater pains awaits. When Ceasar, a recent arrival from Virginia , tells her about the Underground Railroad, they decide to take a terrifying risk and escape. Matters do not go as planned - Cora kills a young white boy who tries to capture her. Though they manage to find a station and head north, they are being hunted."
This novel has won just about every literary award that Australia has to offer. And was the Indie Book Awards Book of the year. I have heard from a number of different sources that it is a novel like no other - and will change you as a reader.
"Dressed in old-fashioned rags and fiending for a cigarette, Yolanda wakes up in an empty room with no memory of how she got there. Verla, a young woman who seems familiar, sits nearby. Down a hallway echoing loudly with voices, on a stark compound deep in the Australian outback, other captive women are just coming to. Sedated and disoriented, the girls can't be sure of anything - except the salacious episodes in their pasts that link them. For each woman is marked by her own public sex scandal and, as a result, is no the ward of a bizarre system of corporate control."
So, there you go. The first half... Have you heard of any of these or read any of them? What do you think? Let me know.