Friday, August 6, 2010

Elizabeth's Bookshelf

I've been in a bit of a reading slump (gasp!) lately what with moving to a new apartment and lots of oh-so-lovely overtime at work, so I apologize for my lack of posting. Now that I have a bit more free time, however, my bookshelf selection has expanded. Here are a few of the books I'm currently reading:

Heidi W. Durrow's The Girl Who Fell From the Sky

Durrow's debut novel begins with a mysterious family tragedy. The only survivor is--you guessed it--the girl who fell from the sky, Rachel. As the daughter of a white Danish mother and black G.I. father, Rachel's exploration of her racial identity is compounded by her broken family. Durrow's prose is excellent; deliberate and evocative. Durrow doesn't shy away from hard truths about what it means to be biracial in America or having to deal with difficult family dynamics. My only disappointment was that while The Girl Who Fell From the Sky starts off strongly, the narrative loses some of its drive towards the end. However, I would still recommend this title, and I'm looking forward to more of Ms. Durrow's writing.

Check out Heidi Durrow's excellent blog, Light-skinned-ed Girl.

The Best American Series: The Best American Comics 2009

When I realized that this installment of the Best American Series was edited by Charles Burns, I immediately ordered it. Charles Burns is one of my favorite graphic novelists (if you haven't read Black Hole do so immediately) and I was excited to see which established and up-and-coming graphic novelists were showcased in Comics 2009. So far there's an excellent story by Adrian Tomine and a sweetly sad brother-sister tale by Laura Park. The Best American Series rarely disappoints, so I'm eager to continue reading.

**To build off Kerry's previous post, David Mitchell's The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet is amazing. I'm more of a fan of his inventive rather than traditional narrative; Cloud Atlas is one of my favorite novels while it took me a while to get through Black Swan Green, so I was a bit worried that I wouldn't be as engrossed by the traditional narrative of Jacob de Zoet. I should never have doubted you, David Mitchell! Jacob de Zoet might be Mitchell's best novel yet. Add your name to the crazy-long library queues now.

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