I recommend this book to everyone who likes to listen to books during their daily commute. Narrated by John Lee using an Indian accent, it is about daily life in India: the struggles, the glories, and the chances of redemption. Balram is the son of a rickshaw puller, seemingly destined to a miserable life somewhere in India’s countryside. His life changes fast after landing a driver position with a wealthy family. It was a joy to listen to his story unfold. (submitted by IM)
As a new season the The Tudors begins, I am reminded of my love of the Shardlake series of historical mysteries by C.J. Sansom. Set in the time of Henry VIII, they revolve around the life of lawyer Matthew Shardlake whose work keeps him in the periphery of the Court. In this first book, he is hired by Thomas Cromwell to facilitate the removal of stubborn monks refusing to leave their monastery. There are four other titles in this series. These are big books, well- researched with complex plots & well-drawn characters that put you right in the dirt, smells, and the political intrigue of 16th century London. (submitted by LL)
Laferrière is my favourite writer in French at the moment. His writing is honest, vivid, brutal and funny. A Haitian-Canadian writer, Laferrière lived in Haiti during the Duvalier regime and only emigrated to Canada in his twenties. Consequently, many of his books are set in Haiti or echo with the remembrance of Haiti and he, himself, or an imagined version of himself, is often the narrator. Le goût des jeunes filles is one of those remembrances, which takes the author back to Haiti in the late sixties when, as an adolescent, he does something which makes him a target for the tonton macoute (a militia of thugs). He hides out in his neighbour’s apartment over a period of days and it is her and her band of friends who change his life. (submitted by LH)
Jane Austen and vampires … in the same book? And it’s not about Darcy? Michael Thomas Ford skewers the present day book industry, centuries of literary criticism, and notions of celebrity through Austen’s eyes. Team Austen or Team Brontë? After reading this, you should have your answer. I had a lot of fun reading this book, it made me laugh out loud. (submitted by ZZ)
I loved this play about a group of Aboriginal women who live together on the Wasaychigan Hill Indian Reserve. It offers some insight into life on “the rez” as it follows the women’s dreams of going on a road trip to the biggest bingo game ever. The realism is heartbreaking, and the laughs are plentiful. (submitted by CT)
I read a lot of crime fiction & mysteries, and I have just discovered this author. It is a pseudonym for an apparently well-known Canadian writer of literary fiction. The quality of writing shows. The first of two books, it takes place in a small town north of Toronto. Senior police officer Hazel Micallef is 60 years old, divorced, living with her mother, and coping with severe back pain. The crimes revolve around psychologically disturbed individuals and have some gruesome details. However, it is redeemed by the wonderfully drawn character of Hazel, as she struggles with her personal life, her infirmity, and her place in a changing police force. (submitted by LL)
What Are Library Staff Reading Right Now?
Susan is enjoying What is Left the Daughter by Howard Norman.