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Book Notes from Susan


The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles
Be prepared for an unpredictable plot with four young adult characters who just cannot get away from their pasts. The “good guys” do “bad things” and the “bad guys” do “good things” to the point that you cannot tell the difference. While their escapades may seem far-fetched and improbable Towles uses mythical heroes to place his characters in a context. Much of the plot takes place on the road, hence the name, and the reason some reviewers have labeled this a real “joy ride” to read.

The Memoirs of Stockholm Sven by Nathaniel Miller
In 1916, disfigured after an avalanche, Sven Ormson leads a solitary life, testing himself against the elements in Svalbard, until an unlikely visitor salves his loneliness, drawing him into a family of fellow castoffs that determines the rest of his life. The author’s prose is lit by sparks of Sven’s somber humor and descriptive elegance — the characterization is exceptional and thoroughly engaging. Stockholm Sven was a historical person about whom almost nothing is known. Miller gives him an imagined life told in his own words in this engrossing fictional memoir. A definite must read!

Honor by Thrity Umrigar
This is the story of two Indian women, one a victim of a brutal crime and the other an Americanized journalist returning to India to cover the story, and the courage they inspire in each other. This is a sometimes gut-wrenching picture of rigidly held caste and religious hatreds, male privilege, and corruption that spill into violence. Umrigar juxtaposes the contrasts of the tech hub image of contemporary India and the deep religious divisions that wrack rural regions. Honor is a powerful and moving book about love, sacrifice, and loss and how honor is reclaimed from people who have abused and shorn the word of its true meaning.

One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle
A moving and unforgettable exploration of the powerful bond between mother and daughter set on the breathtaking Amalfi Coast. Katy has lost her mother just before a mother/daughter trip to Italy was to occur. She decides to go anyway and meets her mother’s spirit there. You’ll want to keep reading to figure out what is happening, and you’ll have to suspend belief to enjoy the story, but it’s nice to surrender to magic every now and then. You’ll definitely want to put Positano on your travel list! A New York Times bestseller.

The Long Call by Ann Cleeves
Detective Matthew Venn has returned to the area of North Devon where he grew up, and he’s ready to take on his first big case in the region. A man with an albatross tattoo on his neck has been found murdered; stabbed to death on a beach near Matthew's home. The Two Rivers region isn’t as idyllic as tourists might think, and his investigations will lead him back into the strict evangelical community he once left behind. This is the first in a new series by Cleeves and is a series on BritBox and ITV. Another winner from Cleeves.

Bloodlands: Europe between Hitler and Stalin by Timothy Snyder
Timothy Snyder, a professor of history at Yale, compels us to look squarely at the full range of destruction committed first by Stalin’s regime and then by Hitler’s Reich in the area of Europe he calls the Bloodlands — Ukraine, Belarus, and Poland. Originally published in 2010, the author has updated this new edition. Bloodlands is a new kind of European history, presenting the mass murders committed by the Nazi and Stalinist regimes as two aspects of a single history. Not only a timely read, but well-written and a page turner. There is much to learn and contemplate.





The Lincoln Highway: A Novel By Amor Towles Cover Image
ISBN: 9780735222359
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Viking - October 5th, 2021

One Italian Summer: A Novel By Rebecca Serle Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982166793
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - March 1st, 2022

Honor By Thrity Umrigar Cover Image
This book is not available from our store.
ISBN: 9781616209957
Availability: Out of Print
Published: Algonquin Books - January 4th, 2022

The Memoirs of Stockholm Sven By Nathaniel Ian Miller Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316592550
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Little, Brown and Company - October 26th, 2021

Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin By Timothy Snyder Cover Image
ISBN: 9781541600065
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Basic Books - April 26th, 2022

The Long Call: A Detective Matthew Venn Novel (The Two Rivers Series #1) By Ann Cleeves Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250204455
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Minotaur Books - July 28th, 2020