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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Any book recommendations?

After seeing Argo last week, I was inspired to reread the fantastic graphic novel Persepolis, which tells the story of the author's childhood in Iran during the Islamic revolution. Her neighbors' homes are bombed, and her relatives are imprisoned. Her father considers fleeing to America, but then asks his wife, "I can become a taxi driver and you a cleaning lady?" As she grows up, the girl's rebellious streak endangers her life. Her personal story is gripping, heartbreaking and surprisingly funny. I devoured it in three days, and now I'm really looking forward to reading the authors' other two books, Persepolis 2 (the sequel) and Embroideries (about her female relatives' sex lives!).

Have you read any good books recently? I'd love to get your recommendations...

P.S. Four other great graphic novels.

301 comments:

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monica mulhern said...

Recently I read the Postmistress which i loved even though quite sad and also just finished Open House by Elizabeth Berg which was easy and great book

Meg said...

Karen Thompson Walker's The Age of Miracles. So good! I've been recommending it to everyone :)

margaretmit said...

Open - Andre Agassi's Autobiography

Unknown said...

I really enjoyed "Blankets" by Craig Thompson. A coming of age about a boy growing up in the Midwest.

Carly G said...

'The Fault In Our Stars', John Green. It's young adult, but I loved it so much!

a said...

The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbury is beautiful.

WWGwyneth Do said...

Halfway through The End of Your Life Bookclub and it's been great thus far.

mckenzie said...

The Wednesday Wars. It's a sweet coming of age novel.

Margaret Ruskin said...

Where'd You Go Bernadette. So good.

bernadette darling-ville.com said...

I just finished Tina Fey's "Bossypants". So hilarious even my boyfriend wanted to read it when I was done (he kept sneaking peeks over my shoulder on the airplane).

Unknown said...

Where'd You Go, Bernadette? was a fast and fun read. I'm about to finish Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo and think it'll be THE book I recommend to all in 2013.

eileen ragan | leanerbythelake.com said...

I flew through all of Gillian Flynn's novels last fall and have moved on to Tana French for even more crime and mystery. I highly recommend Flynn's Gone Girl if you're up for a bit of a thriller!

www.leanerbythelake.com

Mariam said...

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn is a great thriller, and I am not usually a fan of them!

Hip-baby Mama said...

"In One Person" by John Irving. It's his best novel in ages.

Amanda Joy said...

Gone Girl was a great book. I always recommend the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series if you haven't already read those!
xx
Amanda

Catie said...

I'm really excited to read Opposed Positions by Gwendoline Riley.

eileen ragan | leanerbythelake.com said...

This is on my list! It was a Good Reads recommendation after I read Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, which I highly suggest checking out!

Megan M-R said...

I just finished My Year With Eleanor about a woman living by Eleanor Roosevelt's thought to do one thing a day that scares you. It's an easy, funny read.

Kelly Rae said...

<3 Persepolis. I'm going to have to check out The Sequel and Embroideries. As for recommendations I really liked A Short Life of Trouble: Forty Years in the New York Art World.

Claire G said...

Persepolis is amazing! It's also been made into a great movie that was illustrated by hand (black and white, of course!). If you rent the DVD, be sure to check out the special features to learn about how it was made. I was fascinated!

sarahelizwalter said...

Sarah Silverman's "The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee" is funnier than Tina Fey's "Bossypants," Minday Kaling's "Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?," and "Girls Walks into a Bar" (Rachel Dratch)-COMBINED.

Kirsten.Sogaard said...

Hi Joanna! I am currently reading The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach. Not often can I say that "I cannot put this book down", but, I cannot put this book down. < http://www.amazon.com/The-Art-Fielding-A-Novel/dp/0316126691 >

http://kirstensogaard.blogspot.com/

Unknown said...

Maybe more for Alex, the dog lover but also for you. A stunning story, a bit heart wrenching as well, about love, family and life.

The art of racing in the rain by Garth Stein.

“In Mongolia, when a dog dies, he is buried high in the hills so people cannot walk on his grave. The dog's master whispers into the dog's ear his wishes that the dog will return as a man in his next life. Then his tail is cut off and put beneath his head, and a piece of meat or fat is placed in his mouth to sustain his soul on its journey; before he is reincarnated, the dog's soul is freed to travel the land, to run across the high desert plains for as long as it would like.

I learned that from a program on the National Geographic channel, so I believe it is true. Not all dogs return as men, they say; only those who are ready.

I am ready.”

http://www.garthstein.com/arr/

Katie Klenkel said...

I'm actually rereading The Great Gatsby for the first time since high school - the writing is fantastic! And it's a great afternoon read.

Loving your posts this week! :)

http://www.itskatiedarling.blogspot.com

eileen ragan | leanerbythelake.com said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Danielle said...

I second The Elegance of a Hedgehog! Not so much a light read (the author,Muriel Barbury, is a philosophy professor), but a book you can learn so much from! Highly Recommend!

tiffany said...

You need to read 'The Flying Troutmans' by Miriam Toews.

Mami said...

Have you read How to Be a Woman yet? Amazing. Simply amazing.

eileen ragan | leanerbythelake.com said...

Joanna, not sure if you're already using this, but Good Reads is a fantastic site for keeping track of what you've read and reviewed as well as for suggestions and connecting with like-minded readers.

http://www.goodreads.com

Kirsten said...

It is a fascinating story. I read it for a class in college. We then watched the movie, which was done in the same style. We, as females, don't know inequality like women in Muslim countries know inequality.

I was able to speak with a family friend who grew up in Iran and experienced certain aspects of that life, too.

I'm glad you read it and enjoyed it, too!

-Kirsten
mylifetintedpink.blogspot.com

Sarah said...

Have you read Julia Child's 'My Life in France'? I HIGHLY, HIGHLY recommend. She writes with such excitement, passion, and humor, you will find yourself smiling. I laughed out loud several times. Also, the love between her husband, Paul Child, is like no other. You will swoon!

ps, I also enjoyed Persepholes as well as 2 others that you've mentioned, The History of Love (ADORED!) and The Glass Castle. Happy reading!

layne said...

I saw this movie in a university film class and it reminded me of a friend I met in Italy. Later that summer I went back to Italy and visited this friend; she too commented on how the movie was an eerie similarity to her own story. Interesting, right? New book recommendations are the best, thanks again!

asiajane said...

John Green's The Fault in Our Stars will SLAY you. In a good way.

Megan M-R said...

Oh! Also! How To Be A Woman by Caitlin Moran was fantastic. Smart, hilarious, and completely enjoyable. Next up is Travels With Myself and Another, about the life of Martha Gellhorn, Hemingway's third wife, and a fearless wit it seems. I mostly like memoirs.

Kj719 said...

Hi Joanna! I'm half Persian so I was excited to read that you liked Persepolis. If you're interested in Iran, can I also recommend Lipstick Jihad or Honeymoon in Tehran?
As for non-Persian related book recommendations, I just read "Breasts: A Natural and Unnatural History." It's interesting and bizarre! Here is the review of the book on NPR:

http://www.npr.org/2012/05/16/152818798/breasts-bigger-and-more-vulnerable-to-toxins

Sisterino said...

My absolute favorite book of all time is "I Know This Much is True" by Wally Lamb. Amazing. I couldn't put it down.

iamchasingbaby said...

I'm in the middle of Nurtureshock by PO Bronson...fascinating!

http://www.amazon.com/NurtureShock-New-Thinking-About-Children/dp/0446504130

pernambuco said...

Another fascinating comic book is Maus by Art Spiegelmann. Not a very cheerful story, but it is simply amazing. I couldn't stop reading. Now I just started letters of JRR Tolkien, and I am loving it. And I agree with Sarah above, My Life in France by Julia Child is absolutely lovely!

alovelystateofmind said...

Just finished "Gone Girl" and it was fantastic - finished in days with a 19-month old and working full-time - it's THAT good. Hope you enjoy it!

heather said...

Just read "little bee" by chris cleave - could not put it down. check it out...

Claire Kiefer said...

Junot Diaz's latest, This is How You Lose Her, is brilliant. I loved it.

Also just finished A Map of the World by Jane Hamilton, which was devastating but so good.

52crafts52weeks said...

I'm reading Call the Midwife at the moment. I'm enjoying the insights into life in 1950s London and the history of childbirth. It's been adapted for TV - it was on PBS recently I think and there's a new season on the BBC in the UK at the moment.

Anna said...

Have you read "Gifts From the Sea" by Anne Morrow Lindbergh? It's a short read, and timeless.

Shruti Kapoor said...

Persepolis is such an interesting read. I really liked it too..If you haven't read do read "Interpreter of Maladies" by Jhumpa Lahiri. It's short stories and brilliant!

Kate @ Savour Fare said...

I just read The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton and I loved it.

lauren said...

Reading Lolita in Tehran

ziazia said...

I just read Persepolis for the first time, last week and i love it. Very inspiring and interesting how true she talks about the black and white point of view that kids see and repeat and how slowly they start to get it.
I´ve been on a reading frenzy, i´ve forgotten how much i love reading. I finished Contact by Carl Sagan and it´s such a beautiful poetic novel.
Also read Wild, lost and found in the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed which was a good read about when the author was about 26 and hiked the PCT alone after her mother died.

I´d love to hear recommendation from you, Joanna, i want to read a book by week (this year's resolution, one of them :) and would love to add some that aren't the classics and such.

Bookgirlbklyn said...

How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran (like Tina Fey and Monty Python annotated Our Bodies, Ourselves)
My Berlin Kitchen by blogger Luisa Weiss
The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman
The Typewriter Girl by Alison Atlee (It's like Mad Med meets Downton Abbey)
*Anything* written by Jo Nesbo

Emily said...

I'm currently reading In Between Days by Andrew Porter and cannot put it down! I'm awaiting 5:00 p.m. so I can run home from work, put on my sweats, pour a glass of red and start reading again. :)

http://www.andrewporterwriter.com/ANDREW_PORTER/in_between_days.html

Robyn said...

I recently finished Tiny Sunbirds Far Away-a story based in Ngeria-fabulous

Karaugh said...

I'm currently reading The Countess-a historical fiction account of Erzsébet Báthory who is touted as history's first/worst female serial killer. Eek!

I recently joined goodreads.com to share books and receive recommendations. I haven't reviewed all the books I have read in my lifetime like some people do, but I have included most of the books I have read since I joined. The site will recommend books based on your personal ratings of what you have read and you can see what my friends are reading, too. :)

Kristin Sofia said...

Meg, same here! Love, love, loved it!

Annie Masingale said...

I just finished These is my Words by Nancy Turner. It's a fictional diary account of this fierce female, Sarah, struggling her way through the Arizona Territories in the late 1800's. Super inspiring, and it's based on real diary entries from the author's great-grandmother. Finished it in 3 days :)

Chloe Moon said...

I saw Persepolis and it's such an eye opener to a different culture in such a creative way! It's really enjoyable!! I didn't realize it was also a graphic novel!! I have to check it out!

People in my book club are reading, "Cinderallla ate my daughter" and so far I've heard great reviews!! =)

Ergo - Blog

Mai said...

Eeep!! I was going to recommend this as well! Just love coming of age novels :)
http://newyorkremix.blogspot.com/

Jenna Faude said...

I just read the Paris Wife, it's a new book based on Hadley Richardson (the first wife of Ernest Hemingway) and her experience as his wife. It's a beautifully written story of love and heartbreak in marriage. Highly recommend it!

Megan M-R said...

Since you just read Persepolis, you may enjoy a book my friend wrote while hitchhiking through present day Iran-- Iranian Rappers and Persian Porn. It's really fantastic.

http://www.amazon.com/Iranian-Rappers-Persian-Porn-Hitchhikers/dp/1616086874/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1359569764&sr=1-1&keywords=iranian+rappers

Allison said...

The best book I've read lately is Bob Spitz's Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child. If you are interested in following Persepolis up with more Persian-themed books, try Azar Nafisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran and her memoir, Things I've Been Silent About.

Tiffany said...

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, couldn't put it down.

Mai said...

Loved it but I laughed even more reading Mindy Kaling's book!
http://newyorkremix.blogspot.com/

Ileana said...

Wild by Cheryl Strayed, followed up by her anthology of Dear Sugar advice columns, which is called Tiny Beautiful Things.

Fraulein Katie said...

Third vote for "Elegance of the Hedgehog". Her other book, "Gourmet Rhapsody" is also quite good.

helen@handmaidtales said...

I'm so far enjoying John Saturnall's feast by Lawrence Norfolk - it's a bit haunting, but his prose is very elegant.

Amanda said...

How about Reading Lolita in Teheran, by Azar Nafisi? To continue on the Iran theme.

Here are the books I read last year (with short reviews). There are some good recommendations in the comments:

http://poppiesandicecream.blogspot.nl/2013/01/january-joy-25-read-new-book.html

Or you could go to Florence Finds, there were lots of good recommendations over there too:

http://www.florencefinds.com/january-joy-try-a-new-book/

Adelina Wong said...

Just finished reading "Running Away to Home" by Jennifer Wilson. Its tells the tale of a family's journey to their ancestral homeland of Croatia and the people they find there. Great read and fascinating look into a little known area of the world, beyond just the islands and coast of Croatia.

Mai said...

I flew through them as well! I actually liked Dark Places best.
http://newyorkremix.blogspot.com/

jane said...

i saw the movie based on the book and it was excellent! highly recommend it!

just started reading the happiness project, and it's so interesting! i've only finished the first chapter, but am so inspired, i've already started my own happiness project. it's definitely a must read!

Bridey Heing said...

Just finished Embroideries -- it was a fast and wonderful read! Keeping with the Iran theme, Hooman Majd's book The Ayatollah Begs to Differ is a fascinating and enjoyable look at Iranian culture and politics. Majd splits his time between the US and Iran, so his perspective is really interesting.

helloMichaela said...

I'm always surprised that no one mentions "The Bronze Horseman" by Paulina Simons - or "Tully", or "Girl in Times Square", also by the same author. They are epic, beautiful stories and I have never met a girl who didn't LOVE "The Bronze Horseman". I first read it when I was 17 and it has been my favourite book since then.

Pegah said...

the sam auther wrote Chicken and Plum, which is a pretty good one, it is about a musician who's favorite instrument breaks, so he decides to just die. The motion picture is coming out soon.

Kelli said...

Where'd You Go, Bernadette? and Beautiful Ruins

circlecitytwentysix said...

my book club just read Brooklyn by Colm Toibin and I thoroughly enjoyed it! this month we are reading The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman. I haven't started yet but I am really looking forward to it!

Mary

Ashely said...

Seating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead, The Year Of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion, Blood Bones and Butter by Gabrielle Hamilton (owner of Prune in NYC!)

SashaK said...

The Miniature Wife by Manuel Gonzalez if you like short stories with a sense of humor.

Jennie said...

This book is fantastic!!!

Sarah Carlson said...

Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel is wonderful! I read it for a literature class and it's one of my favorite books now! If you're not looking for a graphic novel, I would highly recommend An Object of Beauty by Steve Martin; beautiful writing, brilliant characters, and amazing NY art scene.

lindsey lee photography said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Slow Pace said...

I can't get enough off Bill Bryson books, specially the travel guides. They are hilarious!!! Life is quite difficult so I'm always happy to read nice, funny books. And these books have the two things in life that I love the most: travels and laughter!

www.theslowpace.wordpress.com

Laura said...

Susan Cooper's Over Sea Under Stone and Dark is Rising - they're young adult novels and similar to Harry Potter - but even better!

collette said...

need some tips on how to read with small children! only read time is 1/2 hour before bed, if that! usually, I take the books back to the library without reading them a month later!

Paulina Maselli said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julia said...

this is the perfect post for today. i am currently looking for a book to read.

Kristian said...

Love both of this author's two other books as well as Persepolis!

I've been on a nonfiction fixation, listening to the audiobooks by Joseph E. Ellis about the revolution and founding fathers. ("American Creation" and "Founding Brothers"). They are surprisingly engaging and accessible, especially in audio book format.

Dana Jean-Baptiste said...

If you're looking for something different hen I would suggest "Daughter of Smoke and Bone" by Laini Taylor. Its a great fantasy novel!

Arielle said...

Oh that's a great book! I HIHGLY recommend The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta. It's wonderful! I've also heard that HBO is going to be making a miniseries of it, which makes me so excited!

Kate said...

If you want some funny, heart-warming reading try Chickens, Mules, and Two Old Fools by Victoria Tweed. Victoria has a way of writing that is unpretentious and rare. Really welcoming you into her home and heart.

Amina Elahi said...

Right now, I'm reading Katherine Boo's "Behind the Beautiful Forevers," and it's fantastic. Her writing is so skilled that you forget you're reading narrative nonfiction – that's how rich the story is. I love reading great books and cooking meals inspired by them, and I blog about that at www.paperplatesblog.com. I'd be honored if you'd take a look!

GIULIA said...

i read persepolis with my mom, well, at the same time, when i was too little to understand it. she was busy so i got ahead (as it often happened) and was so disoriented and sad. so then my mom rented the movie and we watched it together. i remember how it changed me so much, somewhere inside, and how my vision of the world became so true and confusing.

ps- the movie is great, it's also made of drawings. have you seen it?

Lisa Lisa Lisa said...

I'll have to read this! It sounds fascinating.
Of course, I read Gone Girl and recommend it. Who hasn't yet? I also enjoyed Lunch in Paris and the No Angel trilogy (seriously, read this trilogy!).

Happy Wednesday!

Manda said...

MRS.KIMBLE by Jennifer Haigh
-- It's not gripping or challenging. Just a simple, interesting read :)

Love,
Manda from Eat Cake

Kate said...

That is Victoria Twead, not Tweed, sorry.

The Graduette said...

Wonder wonderful story! Have you seen the movie? It is done absolutely beautifully, I watch it over and over :)

Angry Asian said...

i am currently reading the Night Circus by erin morgenstern and it is blowing my mind.

Alison said...

Second this. It was my favorite book I read in 2012.

Michele Ryan said...

even if i am. by Chasity Glass

It's hard to describe it as it's so personal. It's both beautiful and heartbreaking. An extraordinary true story of blossoming love strengthening through a battle with cancer. It's really powerful and poetic. I highly suggest this one but have a box of tissues at the ready!

http://evenifiam.com/

Posie said...

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand, incredibly comforting (think Jan Karon's Mitford series) but also very well-written and not slow. If you haven't, you must, must read The Magicians

Katie Peterson said...

Since you've been reading graphic novels, it might be fun to follow it up with Radioactive by Lauren Redniss. It is an illustrated (and glo-in-the-dark!) biography of Marie Curie. After that, read Madam Curie by her daughter Eve Curie for a more detailed and heartfelt version. Those books are the 1, 2 punch of Marie Curie biographies! I loved reading them back to back.

Ekaterina Roshchina said...

Have you read Salman Roushdie's memoirs? The book is called "Joseph Anton" and it's stunning! I haven't read anything that strong in several years, I think (well, putting Julian Barnes aside, whom I also started reading recenly).

Funny enough, it will pick up on the Iran story, because Roushdie's book is pretty much about fighting for personal freedom and freedom of speech at times when Iran was threatening to kill him.

emily said...

The Help by Kathryn Stockette (if you haven't read it or saw the movie already). I read it last week and couldn't put it down!

Alison said...

If you love that book, you should try "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell" by Susanna Clarke! It's an even more nuanced, beautiful approach to a very similar story line. (And it came first :)

carolyn said...

I saw someone else mention Tana French, and I would highly recommend her book, 'In the Woods'. Also just started 'This is How You Lose Her' by Junot Diaz for book club. So far I've been completely hooked!

M said...

I LOVE Persepolis! Have you also read Chicken with plums by the same author?

What about Maus?

Stephanie Allen said...

Ditto! Where'd You Go Bernadette...so good.

Melissa said...

Me Before You, Jojo Moyes. Fabulous!

labuonaforchetta said...

I just read On Love by Alain de Botton and thought it was really funny, interesting and totally relatable. I feel like it's the kind of book you would blog about.

Alex said...

I have read so many things I've loved recently:
Shine, Shine, Shine - gorgeously weird
Dear Life - I stopped at the end of every story to really think about it
Rules of Civility - a fast read, but especially fun if you live in NY
This Is Where I Leave You - funny and sad

I also recently reread the first few books in the Anne of Green Gables series and was pleasantly surprised by how funny and readable they were.

And weirdly - my friend insisted I read the Hunger Games (I was SO opposed) and I found myself devouring them. Quick and engrossing!

Lost In Laneways said...

I second The Art of Racing in the Rain. Best book I've read in the last year. I'm not particularly a dog lover but I cried and laughed and wanted to read it again the second I was done.

Anela said...

I just love the Major! I'd tell my husband every night "I'm going to go hang out with the Major"

Janssen said...

I don't know if you like historical fiction, but Code Name Verity (about two female members of the Royal British Airforce during WWII) is ridiculously good.

Kels said...

I'm currently reading Alice Munro's Dear Life. Stunning!

Mocinder said...

I received Mindy Kaling's book for Christmas and have yet to find time to crack it open. I can't wait!

Kait said...

Art Spiegelman wrote "Maus" - a really great graphic novel about his father's experiences during the Holocaust. Pretty interesting and humbling if you are into that sort of thing!

Carla said...

I just finished Lost At Sea by Jon Ronson. It was a very good read, lots of interesting insights. Made me think differently about some things.

Moira said...

I totally agree! LOVE LOVE LOVE this book. I admired her before I read the book, but adored her after. Her writing is so engaging. I followed it up with "As Always, Julia" which is a collection of the letters she wrote her friend Avis in Boston. That one is a great read as well-by the time I finished both I felt as if she was my favorite aunt.

Alison Pearldiver said...

I feel like shouting to everyone how much I love the book Mr. Fox by Helen Oyeoemi. I asked a literature professor friend for her top book recommendations and she only gave me two but this was her #1. It is written as a series of short stories which is wonderful if you only have 15/30/60 minutes to spend at a time reading, although I can loose myself for an afternoon in this book.

Just For Today said...

Lethal by Sandra Brown... can't stop thinking about it.
Sooooooo good.

Hugs from My heart

Amanda said...

The Dude and the Zen Master - I think I've recommended this book to everyone I know. If you love The Big Lebowski, you'll appreciate this book - just a conversation between Jeff Bridges and his friend Bernie (the Zen Master) all about life and becoming a little more 'zen,' but not in the super cheesy way.

Hanna said...

Hi Joanna, greetings from Poland. I love your blog, especially parts on motherhood, though I am not a mother yet. As it comes to books, I'm kind of a reading freak, so a lot of things come to my mind. But if you into history of Iranian Revolution I would recommend the book "Shah of Shahs" by Ryszard Kapuscinski. I would also recommend all of his other books (his one of my favourites authors :) ), but this one is on the subject and it is one of his greatest.

the brunette said...

Where'd You Go Bernadette and Age of Miracles would be my top picks of 2012! Definitely books that keep you thinking and that you want to talk about with everyone you see!

Fenke said...

I just finished The Fault In Our Stars by John Green in two days. It is a story about a teenage girl and boy diagnosed with cancer who meet at a support group and fall in love with each other. Sounds corny, but it makes you laugh and cry at the same time. So good!

Sarah said...

Completely agree! This book is fantastic!

Lauren said...

I second the recommendation for Where'd You Go, Bernadette? Laughed out loud throughout but also made me think a lot.

Emily said...

Agreed, Persepolis was great! I would highly recommend The Perks of Being a Wallflower - it's such a poignant coming-of-age story, with an authentic point of view. (The movie was pretty good, too.) It's been quite a while since I've read it, but I also really liked The Sea by John Banville. His writing style is very lyrical, and reminded me a lot of Nabokov.

Vi Huynh said...

Definitely another vote for Gone Girl. Just finished it and it gave me chills at times to see my own self reflected in a sociopath...

courtney said...

I recently read Freedom by Jonathan Franzen, which was fantastic. I also enjoyed his book The Corrections. I'm looking forward to This is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz.

margaux said...

books? what are these books you speak of? what does one do with them? (said the exhausted mother of a 10-month old) ( ;

i love my girl, but i cannot wait to read an entire non-board book again!

notesandneurons said...

Persepolis is one of my absolute favorite books! Books in a similar vein (not a graphic novel, but similar themes) - Kitchen, by Banana Yoshimoto. absolutely gorgeous.

Aimee Fishman said...

I absolutely love this book. If you are interested in reading any other graphic novels or memoirs, I would recommend Fun Home and Are You My Mother by Alison Beschdel.

Linda Zimmerman said...

Such a great, quirky, poignant book!

cleartheway said...

I LOVE Persepolis!

Kate from Clear the Way

Alice said...

Oh gosh... thousands. Currently reading The History of Love which is good but really gets going in the middle and it all comes together. Next on the list are The Lighthouse and HHhH, both of which look fantastic, though very different.
Also just finished re-reading Atonement (always a favourite), The Paris Wife, and Suite Francaise. All incredible books!!!

feathermar said...

The First Day of the Rest of My Life by Cathy Lamb. I love all of her books, about women wising up to the amazing things about themselves and the people around them.

Melinda Stallings said...

I read Persepolis my freshman year of college. I really loved, it was way different than the books students are normally required to. I am personally a fantasy reader, though the books need to be gripping in order to keep me interested. Right now I'm loving A Song of Fire and Ice (the Game of Thrones book), and I've always loved His Dark Materials. I find all of my books with a website called Shelfari.com, you should check it out!

ab_e said...

The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak is likely the most amazing book I've ever read. The main character reminds me a lot of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird, which I also loved. The Book Thief is one of those books that was entertaining to read but also turned my stomach into knots at times and brought tears to my eyes. I recommend it to everyone I can.

embarcando said...

I agree! I was skeptical because I don't even enjoy watching baseball and that book was amazing!

taletrader said...

"When She Woke" by Hilary Jordan. It's more of a sci-fi thriller, but it goes a bit deep into human nature (sort of like most sci-fi works tend to do).

Also, Oliver Potzsch has a series out called "The Hangman's Daughter" which I've enjoyed and hope to continue enjoying when he writes more books!

Julie said...

This is a bit of a throw-back, but I'm reading The Handmaiden's Tale right now and loving it. Very dystopian, kind of like 1984 seen through a woman's eyes.

www.jbound.com

marieke said...

Personnaly i liked Chicken with plums better than embroideries and if you want to stay in the graphic novel department i can higly recommand the books by Guy Delisle: i just finished the one about his stay in Burma and the one about Jerusalem and realy enjoyed them. He writes in French but his books are translated to English.

There's also a biography about the Dalai Lama in graphic novel. It's called The 14th Dalai Lama: A Manga Biography by Tetsu Saiwai and it's a very fun and interesting read.

mindykay said...

Juliet by Anne Fortier. I am in the middle of it and it is phenomenal. It is a story about a young Juliet who discovers she is a descendant from the Juliet from Romeo & Juliet. The young Juliet must now uncover her family history and finds a great secret that is related to the curse in Shakespeare's story. Hard to explain hah, but it is great!! Definitely check it out- other descriptions will trump mine for sure.

Abby said...

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell is breathtaking. I haven't seen the movie, but I also can't imagine how filmmakers could translate such an innovative book to film.

SA said...

So many great suggestions! I'll have to add the Art of Fielding and Behind the Beautiful FOrevers to my list.

I just read an interesting non-fiction book by Steven Pinker (published 10 years ago-I'm late to the party)called The Blank Slate:The Modern Denial of Human Nature. I especially liked the chapter Children as it alleviated some of my mommy guilt about not doing everything perfectly when it comes to child rearing.
Nicole

http://stayhomestaychic.wordpress.com/

Miss.Adventure said...

I just finished "Escape from Camp 14". It's non-fiction, about a North Korean who escaped to China and eventually to the US. It's a pretty short book but fascinating. What goes on in North Korea is horrifying and most people don't seem to know much about it, other than making fun of Kim Jong Il. It was a real eye opener.

Sara said...

aah! i love love love persepolis! :)

Jamie said...

We just read this for book club and I LOVED it!! I highly recommend as well. It's about a girl coming of age in a time when the earths rotation suddenly starts to slow. So while she's going through the usual pangs of adolescence, the world around her is changing and slowly dying. It's so good!

We also read Persepolis, but I actually missed that month's book club and never got around to reading it... I still have it though, so I will have to try and squeeze it in with all the other books!

Flo~ said...

I'm going to second the Guy Delisle recommendation--I've read the Burma one and the Pyongyang one. They're on the subtler side, but very enjoyable--and they don't take very long at all.

Lauren Fraley said...

Try "Where'd you go, Bernadette?" With your and Alex's love of TV, you'll adore the former-tv-writer ventriloquism. Janet Maslin called it "sheer bliss", and it's even more entertaining than anything on my DVR. Rare to find fiction so fun and gripping that isn't "cheesey" or poorly written. Can't recommend highly enough! Check out Janet Maslin's review (on one of her "nice" days :) ):http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/21/books/janet-maslins-10-favorite-books-of-2012.html

Allison Roemer said...

I adore Persepolis! I've read it twice. I think Satrapi is a genius. I'm currently reading The Chronology of Water by Lidia Yuknavitch, her memoir. I'm not usually one for memoirs and I can't yet recommend the book as I'm still reading it. I probably would, but with caution to sensitive readers...

AimeeG said...

I am with you on so many things, but I just can't agree about Persepolis! Definitely wasn't my cup of tea, but then again this was years ago and I had to read it for school - which might have to do with my disdain for it, but still! Hope to hear your thoughts on Persepolis 2!

Sarah Scott said...

How to be Black and Circus Night were my most recent just-for-fun reads. Both were phenomenal - the former in a belly-laugh kind of way, and the latter in a suspenseful, read-in-a-day kind of way. I recommend them both!

abroadathome said...

I have heard amazing things about Persepolis. Glad you liked it! I just finished Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan, which I totally enjoyed and would recommend. Love that she was in the secret service. I also picked up Salman Rushdie's new memoir, Joseph Anton, about how he lived underground with his family for nine years while he was getting death threats based on a book he wrote. Can't wait to read it, just need to find the time in between reading the rest of my books for graduate school (english lit!).

Always love your book posts :)
-Kristina

elizabethcheri said...

Where'd You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple!

Jennifer said...

I am avoiding all my usual recommendations for a change, so here's a mish-mash of books I come back to over + over (1+2), books I borrowed from the library this past year (3+4) + books on my bookshelf! (5+6)

1. Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
Very amusing, but difficult to describe!

2. The Blue Castle, LM Montgomery
Utterly charming (though predictable) story of a woman who decides to change her dreary, oppressive life + live as she wants.

3. The Uncommon Reader, Alan Bennett
The Queen accidentally joins the library.

4. Little Boy Lost, Marghanita Laski
Hilary returns to France after the war to find a boy who may or may not be his son.

5. Nothing to Envy, Barbara Demick (Non-fiction)
Follows the lives of six North Koreans; focuses on the people + their everyday lives + concerns.

6. Flowers for Algernon, Daniel Keyes
Charlie has an IQ of 68. An experiment turns him into a genius, but then the test mouse (Algernon) starts to deteriorate...

Marissa said...

I finally picked up what is the what by Dave Eggers- It's so great!

Laura Rennie said...

It's "The Handmaid's Tale" by Margaret Atwood and it it SO good. Read it with a highlighter in hand b/c every sentence is absolutely breathtaking.

HY said...

I love graphic novels. Have you read these?

Marbles by Ellen Forney - A memoir about Seattle artist Ellen Forney and her diagnosis and struggle with bipolar disorder. I devoured it in a day.

French Milk by Lucy Knisley - A travel memoir about about 20-something Lucy and her mom and their month-long Paris adventure.

The Principles of Uncertainty by Maira Kalman - Quirky, funny, sad, and profound illustrations and words by the celebrated artist.

Dreamingmywaybackhome said...

Rules of Civility - Amor Towles - I recommend it to anyone I can tell!

Maria said...

I apologise beforehand for being so childish but this book's title translates rather funny in my native language Finnish :-)

AMB said...

http://amyrosenthal.blogspot.com/2012/10/book-club.html + Gone Girl

Kelsey O said...

I read that one in my second year of college, loved it as well. I recently started 'The Art of Fielding' after a good friend recommended it. I've been reading it so slowly in order to savor it, very subtle emotional roller coaster.

Joanna Goddard said...

yay!!! thank you for these amazing suggestions!!! can't wait to watch the movie of persepolis now, too. just added it to netflix.

Kate Evans said...

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern - perfect reading for cold, winter nights!

Bea said...

I'm about to get on a long haul flight - loving these book recommendations! My all-time, always recommended books are:
The Book Thief
Never Let Me Go
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
The Fault in Our Stars (I cried so hard I had to put the book down!)

I also like the divergent books - young adult and a bit silly but a nice easy read (and about to be made into a movie with Kate Winslet!). Oo and one last oldie but a goodie - has anyone read Del Del by Victor Kelleher? I read it when I was young and it scared me to death! I might have to revisit this one soon...

Bea x
http://thegoogleyear.blogspot.com.au/

Sarah said...

Moira, me too! "As Always, Julia" just cracked me up because she was always so uninhibited with her writing and language. The best :)

Caroline @ The Feminist Housewife said...

I just finished "The Bean Trees" by Barbara Kingsolver and really loved it. Easy to read, and incredibly touching.

I loved the movie Persepolis - I will HAVE to read the graphic novel!

Up next I'm going to read "Cat's Eye" by Margaret Atwood and "Pride and Prejudice" (because I'm STILL waiting to see any of the movies until after I read it....hah.)

Anna Woodward said...

If you like graphic novels/narratives, I HIGHLY recommend Alison Bechdel's "Fun Home." Her second narrative is called "Are You My Mother".. It's also good, but Fun Home is my favorite of the two.

Franzi said...

Everything by Orhan Pamuk, Turkish Nobel Prize Winner - I loved "The Museum of Innoncence", a beautiful and tragic love story and he wrote many controversial novels about Turkish history and politics as well, for example "Snow".

Laura @ Chaotic Domestic said...

I heard good things about Persepolis but I hadn't read it. Maybe I'll have to pick it up now!
I just finished Age of Miracles, which was a quick read but really good! I thought the plot was interesting and different. I just started the Happiness Project which I'm enjoying so far, too.

Darcie said...

Skeletons at the Feast is a great book and tells a story from the Prussian perspective of WWII. I wasn't expecting the honesty. A very good read.

Caroline Friend said...

I've never replied to one of your posts, but I feel so compelled to tell you about "Wonder" by RJ Palacio. It is an absolutely beautiful story, and I can't imagine there's a person who's read it that hasn't fallen in love with Auggie.

It's the author's first novel and it may just be my all-time favorite book! Enjoy!

Maura said...

I just read Room by Emma Donaghue at a friend's recommendation, and I could literally not put it down. I read it in 24 hours - to the neglect of getting my week's groceries, laundry, and sleeping! It's the story of a mother and five year-old son, told from the perspective of the little boy. The entire book is heart-wrenching, charming, and completely had me seeing the world as a child again. Loved it, loved it, loved it.

Reina said...

I loved the Plain Janes as well as the sequel, Janes in Love.
Also, Blankets was lovely.

Darcie said...

Also, two YA novels: The Weight of the Sky and Life, After. Both are books about the Jewish culture. In the first one, the female character travels to Jerusalem to learn about her Jewish culture and finds out much more about herself. The second one is a female character whose life is turned upside down when her parents lose their jobs and have to travel to America and she has to relearn so many things.

talia said...

Septembers in Shiraz -- beautifully written, also about the Iranian Revolution. Highly recommend!

Paige said...

It's by no means a new book, but I just read "Dandelion Wine" by Ray Bradbury. It's (mainly) about a young boy's summer in his small town (not sci-fi at all, despite being by Ray Bradbury). The prose is lovely, and I found the book really touching and beautiful.

J.Elizabeth said...

How fortuitous! I left a comment yesterday because Im in the middle of a great book by Nora Ephron. Its an easy read, nice before bedtime. It's called "Heartburn" - about a food critic whose seven months pregnant when her husband cheats on her. Its not a tragedy though, its a comedy, as only Nora can spin it. Recipes and satire ensue...

let me know if you get into it! I think you'd really love it.

Lauren G said...

The Dovekeepers By Alice Hoffman. A book that completely transports you. Its about 4 different women during Biblical times, and how their lives intertwine.

Mom on a Mission said...

I just finished What Alice Forgot and would recommend it. It was an entertaining, easy read. Now I'm starting Blackberry Winter by Sarah Jio and its much more sad so far, but keeps your interest.

Cherub said...

This book gives me the love to read

Leanne said...

Thanks for the recommendation! I've recently loved the following: 1000 White Women, Kite Runner, Wild and Pillars of the Earth. All of these were great page turners!

http://theroadlesstraveledtoday.blogspot.com/

Mary said...

Agreed! Loved The Fault in Our Stars.

The Cyclists Wife said...

I just learned the Outlander series are graphic novels...here are some things I've been reading http://thecyclistswife.blogspot.com/2013/01/books-of-late.html

Missing Tercy said...

Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry. My long-time friend commented, "of all the advice on love, career and general life 'read Lonesome Dove' might be the best". Cattle-drives aren't just for boys.

S Beddoe said...

How To Be A Woman by Caitlin Moran. Joanna, it's hilarious. Stick it out through the first chapter. You will laugh out loud. If you like Girls, and you liked Tina Fey's Bossypants, you can't not love this.
shannon

Emknox said...

Maiden Voyage by Tania Aebi.

It's about a 18 year old girl who's dad offers her a college education or a sailboat to sail around the world. She sail's around the world by herself and with her cat. She became the first woman and youngest person to sail around the world alone. It's such a good story! (It's a bibliography, recounting her voyage years later).

BKHJB said...

YES!!!

Kristin E Bazan said...

a thousand splendid suns is really good. not funny like persepolis, but so interesting to read about afghans.

Qaiser said...

Samarkand by Amin Maalouf. Like persepolis it was orginially written in French. A fantastic fiction revolving around real life event around the time of Omar Khayyam. A must read for anyone interested in Persian culture.

Emily said...

Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion. The movie adaptation is coming out pretty soon, so I wanted to read the book before seeing it. I finished it in one day, I couldn't put it down! It's basically Romeo and Juliet set after the zombie apocalypse. Not the best selling point I know, but it's beautifully written and thought-provoking. Highly recommend it.

Sarah said...

I highly recommend the graphic novel Blankets by Craig Thompson - it's a beautiful story of first love and all the bitter sweetness that comes along with it.

xx S.

Nariman jelveh said...

The Quest by Daniel Yergin. It's about how energy and oil in particular have shaped the global politics in the modern era. I also have a couple of other books (http://www.mixnode.com/profile.php?username=nariman&collection=books) except for a few technical ones, the rest I recommend to everyone who enjoys non-fiction (this is the list of my new library, I had a larger one which I donated to the city library last year).

H said...

Joanna, I highly recommend "Just Kids" by Patti Smith. It's very insightful into Patti Smith's life before she became a famous singer/songwriter/poet.

Marie Adamo said...

Native Son by Richard Wright. amazing. And because it seems like you're into graphic novels, Watchmen. Easy to dismiss if you're not into superheroes and the very commercial movie- but honestly way more complex than that. Times named it one of the 100 best novels of all time. Native Son is also on that list. Or Out by Natsuo Kirino- so crazy and awesome.

Karen Travels said...

Please read Gone Girl, Jo, I would love to know what you think! It's actually kind of funny and I can see Jennifer Anitston and Vince Vaughn playing the couple, if it become a movie!

C. Scheick said...

If you're looking for some other outstanding graphic novels, I'd suggest "Fun Home" and "Swallow Me Whole." In "Fun Home," the author looks back on her tense relationship with your late father. "Swallow Me Whole" is a surreal story about adolescent stepsiblings and struggles with schizophrenia.

Alyssa English said...

I just devoured "Where'd you Go, Bernadette? By Marie Semple in 2 days. I couldn't put it down! It is a fun and light, yet smart read.

Whitney said...

This is one of my favorite books ever!!!

Whitney said...

It truly waas stunningly beautiful.

Whitney said...

About to start this!!

benrho98 said...

I am in the middle of "Everything is Illuminated" by Jonathan Safran Foer. It is so unique, I love it so far. Very witty, poetic, and captivating.

tappergirl said...

Just read and loved the Chronicles of Articia. Young adult novel, but great story. Written by a 14 year old girl before she died and finished by her father.
http://www.amazon.com/The-Chronicles-Articia-Children-Dead/dp/1593307802/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1359592534&sr=8-1&keywords=k.d.enos

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