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ivete

You liked Confessions better than Wicked? really? Wicked is one of my favorite books EVER. I liked Confessions ok. . . have you read his other fairy-tale type books?

Whenever anyone asks for book suggestions I always suggest Memoirs of a Geisha. Have you ever read that?

I'm currently going though the Ender's Game series again -- if you like Sci Fi you'll like it. They're easy reads and all about society, but of course told through alien invasion stories. ;o)

abby

I would bet that you've probably read them, but these are the books that really Got me within the past few years:

The Red Tent
The Lovely Bones (also her memoir, Lucky)
Permanent Midnight
and a book I read ages ago by Mary McCarthy called The Group

Lately all I've been reading are knitting books!

margene

Ahab's Wife is one of my very favorites. It was such a good read that I read it twice. Favorite Mary McCarthy is A Charmed Life and Iris Murdock is very good, too. Bee Season was very good. I'm off to buy Wicked!

Jen

I'll echo Ivete in saying that I definitely preferred Wicked to Confessions. I also agree that Memoirs of a Geisha is a great book, if you haven't read it yet. In order to actually add new info to this post, I will also suggest Drowning Ruth.

Jeanine

I enjoyed I Know This Much is True so much that I've actually considered reading it again.

Others I enjoyed
The Lovely Bones
Bastard Out of Carolina
East of Eden

Up next on my list will be the Secret Life of Bees.

Kitty

Sorry I haven't made it yet to the Thursday night group - Dane has been with me the last two Thursdays - usually he is at his Dad's house on Thursday. HOpe to make it in 2 weeks. Have you read the time traveller's wife? Just read it and loved it. Another good one, albeit nonfiction, is 'The Sewing Circles of Herat', about Afghanistan written by a British female journalist. I loved it.

Alison

Wow, thanks to all for the recommendations. I'm going to reply to all of you at once:

Ivete and Jen - I think most people would probably agree with you that Wicked is better than Confessions. I just couldn't get into Wicked for some reason... or it lost me somewhere. But Confessions was right for the headspace I'm in right now I think, in that it was poingnant and a quick read. However, I really want to see the musical of Wicked. I've read Memoires of a Geisha and really liked it.

Abby - I've actually never read any of the books you listed, but I've been meaning to read some of them, especially Lovely Bones and Lucky. One of those might be next, actually, if I find myself in a bookstore or library in the next few days.

Jeanine - I also have wanted to re-read I Know This Much Is True, but instead I just lend it to all my friends! (Anyone want to borrow it?) Secret Life of Bees is also high on my list.

Margene and Kitty - I'll have to keep my eye out for the books you mentioned - I don't know them...

Thanks again all! (And keep 'em coming! I like making lists...)

vanessa

i could not put ahab's wife down.

Rose

Let's see -- I loved Bee Season (and its author will be my neighbor very soon!). I have an unusual reading suggestion -- the series of Vorkosigan books, by Lois McMaster Bujold. The place to start is a two-novel paperback that has both _Shards of Honor_ and _Barrayar_ (the ombibus title is _Cordelia's Honor_). These are set in a future time, on a planet, Barrayar, that has been colonized by people from Earth for hundreds of years. The books combine a little romance, some science fiction, some "future history" (a term I think I coined), and a lot of very fine writing. The best thing is that there are several books, so when you get hooked on them, you can just keep going!

In more mainstream fiction, I recently enjoyed _Waiting_, by Ha Jin -- this was both thought-provoking and heart-breaking. Ayun Halliday's travel essays, _No Touch Monkey!_, were hysterical, and made me *very glad* I will never have to be on a trip with her.

Have fun! It was so nice to see you at the store today!

Kerstin

My well-read husband gave The Time Traveler's Wife two thumbs-up. Actually, he said it was a fantastic book. (I've heard this from others as well.) However, it has a tear-jerker ending. He finished it on a plane during a business trip and couldn't stop crying. Wonder what the guys on either side of him thought! teehee

Kitty

It does have a tear jerker ending - but it's also kind of happy and sweet at the ending, too.

Sharon

Some of my all-time favorites are listed on my blog sidebar. Others I think you'd like....
Anything written by Jodi Picoult
The Other Boleyn Girl - Phillipa Gregory
Never Change - Elizabeth Berg
Peace Like a River - Leif Enger
Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague - Geraldine Brooks
And I'll add another excellent book with the word "bee" in the title: A Recipe for Bees by Gail Anderson-Daigatz

Tipper

I'm currently reading Was It Beautiful? by Alison McGhee, which I must plug because a) it IS beautiful and b) the author is my academic advisor at Metropolitan State University. :) It's a very tragic, depressing book, but the rhythym and descriptions are just entrancing.

Colleen

I've read most of the books you liked, so we must have similar taste in books. Therefore, I'll recommend one of my all time fav. authors: Annie Lamott. I like her earlier stuff best, especially the book about her 1st year with her son Sam (something like "My year with Sam"). I also recently read Dan Brown's DaVinci Code - wasn't going to because of all the hype, but couldn't put it down. Eliz. Berg: nice, light reading (female oriented). House of Pi - it took me a little while to get into it, but worth it. Will put your recommendations on my list - thanks. Colleen

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