The author of Mexican Gothic, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, gives us this lush and mysterious tale that is much more than a retelling of H. G. Wells' - and so needed! Moreno-Garcia sets the story in the Yucatan and its fraught racial-economic caste conflicts provide a real background to the intimate story she creates around Carlota, Dr. Moreau's daughter. The novel is relationship-driven, with empathy and kindness that brings incredible richness and nuance. I read Mexican Gothic and loved it, even though it's not a genre I typically read - but I loved this one even more!
I LOVED this story of Dick Conant, who spent the last years of his life living at the river’s edge making epic journeys via canoe. Ben McGrath is a writer for The New Yorker who met Conant once, and after his disappearance, read his idiosyncratic journals to meet the people Conant knew in order to understand the mythic presence Conant created around himself. Moving.
Cress Watercress adventures into Hunter's Wood with her mother, and her little brother Kip. Cress is frustrated and sometimes frightened by her new surroundings and the new creatures she encounters. There's humor, along with some menace, in this complex neighborhood and Cress is no simple bunny - she's taking risks and avoiding them too, wondering what to want and what's enough. Gregory Maguire's writing is energetic and surprising - every character has a distinctive voice: "Make a note of it!"The luminous, jewel-toned illustrations from David Litchfield saturate the pages and set this book entirely apart. I can't decide if this is a perfect solo-reading adventure or chapter-a-night read-aloud, but I loved Cress Watercress.
Essayist and poet Ni Ghriofa writes a loving autofiction of the sheer physicality of mothering and milk, along with an assay into the life of Eibhlin Dubh Ni Chonaill, AKA Eileen O'Connell, a well-born poet in 18th century Ireland who composed a traditional lament after her husband's murder. Ni Ghriofa pursues connection with this Eibhlin Dubh that goes beyond literary scholarship into something like love. Ni Ghriofa's prose is rich and layered, while magically direct and concrete.
Consider the audio version available from Libro.fm to hear the poem in Gaelic.
Allie Burns is a junior reporter at a Glasgow tabloid, investigating leads with her new pal Danny Sullivan and typing out copy at deadline. Well-paced and detailed, this journalistic mystery develops a great cast of characters and captures the era.
So many local Seattle details from the 1960s! A delicious, sweet story of food and friendship, told in letters. Includes recipes!
Longer-format non-fiction picture book – a favorite! About the amazing life of Sister Corita Kent, an amazing and tireless artist and teacher. Kent used many techniques, including screen printing, for her art that pursued themes of social justice and community.
Sykes is a paleolithic archeologist as well as a good science writer, giving context to findings and changing archeological methods. For example she relates Neanderthal body mechanics to their intake of calories and food choices. She asks, what if we discovered the first Neanderthal bones in 2010 when we had DNA and other tech along with more than a century of Darwin and evolution, as well as other hominid discoveries? Even if you keep up with Neanderthal discoveries in the news (like I do), this book is great for organizing those findings wholistically.
Bill Buford left publishing to pursue fine French cooking and to answer one historical question – is French cuisine, really in fact, Italian? This memoir is perfectly structured, fast and full of details of French life and food. Often funny, sometimes bittersweet, and occasionally showing the brutality that rages in the finest French restaurants, Buford shows us how method – from ingredients to presentation – is what makes French cooking unique.