Thursday, August 8, 2013

Adriana's Playlist

Adriana is one of our most experienced booksellers (she's been here since 2006), with a love of all things ballet and English. Her reading habits cover the gamut, from society biographies to thought provoking literary fiction. Adriana is an astute reader and a resourceful bookseller sure to find the right book for you.
Here's what she is currently championing:

This is How by Augusten Burroughs
This is how to read this book: Open the first page and don’t stop reading! That’s exactly what I did. I shut
out everything else, pausing occasionally to read passages to my husband. This is the best “self-help” book you will ever need or want. In Burroughs’ own words, it will help you survive what you think you can’t.

Amy Falls Down by Jincy Willett
Amy falls down: literally. After accidentally knocking herself out on a birdbath in her yard, writing teacher Amy Gallop gives an erratic, yet fascinating interview to her local paper. This launches her back into the literary limelight, much to Amy’s chagrin. Funny and full of great aha moments. Fantastic!

TransAtlantic by Colum McCann
McCann wields a narrative so beautiful and so powerful it will leave you breathless. Every word is a pleasure to read. Every character, whether based on real historical figures such as Frederick Douglas or Senator George Mitchell, or those imagined by the author, are filled with such rich inner lives they somehow become a part of you long after you’ve turned the last page. One of my favorite books all year!

The Master’s Muse by Varley O’Connor
Fans of The Paris Wife will love this brilliant portrayal of Tanaquil LeClerc, prima ballerina and last wife of George Balanchine. Struck with polio at 26, LeClerc would never dance again. Extensively researched, O’Connor gives voice to a very private one and gives us a glimpse into a world most of us will never get to see. Beautifully written!

Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan
London 1972: Beautiful and intelligent Serena Frome, newly recruited by MI5, is in charge of finding writers whose views align with theirs under “Operation Sweet Tooth.” Serena gets in over her head when she falls in love with the young writer chosen. Part espionage tale, part love story, you will not be able to put this down. Full of gritty suspense and beautiful prose, McEwan’s done it again!

The Cranes Dance by Meg Howrey
Howrey has returned to her ballet roots with a dark & twisted tale of two sisters trying to make their own mark at a famous NYC ballet company. When younger sister Gwen suffers a nervous breakdown, older sister Kate is forced to confront her own emotions, many of which cause her to question her own sanity. Dark, funny, and a little dirty, you’ll never look at ballet the same way again.

Pain, Parties, Work by Elizabeth Winder
Most of what we know about Sylvia Plath’s time at Mademoiselle magazine comes from her only novel The Bell Jar. Winder has managed to interview several of Sylvia’s fellow editors to find out what really happened during that fateful summer of 1953. This is a fantastic read that really fleshes out who Plath was at that time and brings into focus the artist who would go on to become one of the seminal poets of her day. Fantastic and Juicy!

Dearie by Bob Spitz
What more could possibly be said about the woman who introduced french cooking to America? As it turns out, quite a bit more. Spitz includes it all, from her splendorous upbringing in Pasadena, finding love in the OSS, and her rise to fame on her very first show The French Chef. You will grow to love her even more after finishing this tour de force that captures all of Julia’s charm, wit, and raucous sense of humor. Fabulous!

The Usual Rules by Joyce Maynard
Wendy is only 13 years old when her mother is killed on 9/11. Suddenly she is torn between the child she was and the adult she must now become. Should she stay with her step-dad and younger brother in Brooklyn or live with a father she barely know in California? This is a beautiful and bittersweet story of hope, love, and forgiveness.

Nightwoods by Charles Frazier
North Carolina 1960: Luce's solitary life is interrupted by her murdered sisters' disturbed twins whom she has inherited by default. When the murderer comes looking for the children, Luce must put her life and the life of the children in the hands of a handsome stranger. Darkly riveting and beautifully written, you will not want to put this down.

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