Though I still can’t watch news from out east without a cardigan and blanket on, spring has arrived here in North Van. With it, comes plenty of rain (and plenty of good excuses to curl up with a pot of tea and a brand new book) and some warm dry days (and some good excuses to sprawl out on a picnic blanket with a brand new book).
Right now I’m craving hearty non-fiction that sucks me into other people’s lives, and absorbing literary fiction. The latter is no doubt inspired by the recent announcement of the Bailey’s Prize Longlist, which every year sends me into a frenzy of reading.
Here’s what are my Spring Picks:
If I tell you I’m excited to read a book about a saola, you would look at me blankly. What is a saola anyway? But if I told you the book is about the hunt for a mammal so rare that it wasn’t discovered until 1992, you might be just as excited as I am.
An award winning journalist discovers that her great-great-grandmother Julia is a ghost that haunts an upscale Santa Fe hotel and sets out to learn more about her.
Three strangers living in London find their lives intersect in unexpected ways. Emily has survived the Rwandan genocide and is trying to make a life in a new country; Vera is a recent convert to Christianity trying to reconcile with her past; Lynn has been diagnosed with terminal cancer and is bitter and full of regret.
This novel of female friendship is getting rave reviews. I have to confess though, it’s the premise that draws me in. Dear Thief is a novelization of Leonard Cohen’s “Famous Blue Raincoat” — the story of a love triangle told as a letter.
The Shore is thirteen chapters about the lives of residents of The Shore. It spans across time from 1876 to 2143, and blurs the lines between realism and fantasy. The Guardian raves, “This debut is a testament to an exuberant talent and an original, fearless sensibility. It’s also enormous fun to read.”
If you haven’t read Ann Enright before, I urge you to do so. The way she describes relationships is both poignant and devastating. I am utterly looking forward to this Irish family saga.
*Thank you to Edelweiss and Net Galley for providing ARCs of these titles.