What book will Clifton Park and Halfmoon be reading in 2014? Now’s your chance to help decide! Voting is open through October 27th for the library’s Two Towns One Book selection. There are five contenders to choose from. Doesn’t matter if you haven’t read any of them. Just vote for the one you would like to read, and that you think would be best for community sharing!
Last month Lauren weighed in on the two non-fiction candidates: The Bucolic Plague by Josh Kilmer-Purcell, and The Dirty Life by Kristin Kimball. I have read both of those, and they are truly fabulous!
Here’s the three fiction contenders:
1)The Round House by Louise Erdrich is the second in a planned trilogy (Plague of Doves is the first) that will span 100 years in the life of an Ojibwe woman. Round House won the National Book Award for fiction, and has been compared to “To Kill a Mockingbird”. Here’s what Library Journal has to say about it:
“Set on an Ojibwe reservation in North Dakota in 1988, Erdrich’s 14th novel focuses on 13-year-old Joseph. After his mother is brutally raped yet refuses to speak about the experience, Joe must not only cope with her slow physical and mental recovery but also confront his own feelings of anger and helplessness. Questions of jurisdiction and treaty law complicate matters. Doubting that justice will be served, Joe enlists his friends to help investigate the crime. Erdrich skillfully makes Joe’s coming-of-age both universal and specific.”
2)The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson is part thriller, part love story, set in North Korea. Publisher’s Weekly praises Johnson for accomplishing “the seemingly impossible: an American writer has masterfully rendered the mysterious world of North Korea with the soul and savvy of a native, from its orphanages and its fishing boats to the kitchens of its high-ranking commanders. The book traces the journey of Jun Do, who for years lives according to the violent dictates of the state, as a tunnel expert who can fight in the dark, a kidnapper, radio operator, tenuous hero, and foreign dignitary before eventually taking his fate into his own hands.”
3)In The Whistling Season, Ivan Doig again celebrates the natural beauty of his native Montana. For years, Doig has regaled fans with stories about frontier life, such as This House of Sky and English Creek. Whistling Season is his latest on this theme, and with great results:
“Set in the early 1900s, this novel is a nostalgic, bittersweet story about a widower, his three sons, and the year these boys spend in a one-room country schoolhouse. The novel begins with the father, Oliver, hiring a widowed housekeeper named Rose from Minneapolis (her advertisement reads “Can’t Cook but Doesn’t Bite”). She arrives with her unconventional brother, Morrie, in tow. Morrie is something of a scholar, and he soon finds himself pressed into service as a replacement teacher. During the course of the novel, these intriguing and unpredictable characters come together in surprising and uplifting ways. This is an affectionate, heartwarming tale that also celebrates a vanished way of life and laments its passing” – Library Journal.