Need something to read

I’m sick of my own taste in books. What should I read?

FYI no vampires. No alternate worlds with their own unique vocabularies. Schlock is ok. Prefer sweeping epics a la James Michener. Anything about LBJ goes to the top of the list,

JFK no. Jackie O yes.

Biographies yes. Historical fiction yes. India yes. Georgian manners yes. Meeting aliens yes. Cookbooks yes. Early California yes except for boomtowns with hookers no.

Africa no. China no. Time travel no. Technical/scientific detail no. WWII no. Ecology/global warning Capital N Capital O. Euro trash opinions about USA no.

Harlequin romances no. Yes. No. Maybe.

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18 thoughts on “Need something to read

  1. Thought of you last night, my Amtrak train from NYC to Norfolk, Va was engine dead on the tracks in Secaucus (?) for 2 hours, for a moment I wondered if I had enough time to run over to your house and take a peek at your lovely outdoor projects. Was I close?

  2. I just finished “Amarcord” by Marcella Hazan. It is a cooking memoir but includes a childhood in Italy during WWII and moving to NYC as a young bride with no English. She is a woman with OPINIONS!

  3. How about murder mysteries? I am hooked on Scandinavian crime fiction. I recommend Jo Nesbo, Mari Jungstedt, Arnaldur Indridison. Also, on the American side of the pond, early Michael Connelly – Hieronymous Bosch books and John Sandford..

    You mentioned early California – Steinbeck is the best. East of Eden, Cannery Row, etc., except you’ve probably already read those.

    My tastes are extremely fickle. I just finished a Mari Jungstedt book and am now simultaneously reading Heroes and Villains (about the Beach Boys) and Bob Keppel’s book about his Ted Bundy interviews. I denounce myself.

  4. Recently read Where Did You Go, Bernadette?, an unusual and very entertaining (I thought) read.

    Would recommend Christopher Fowler’s Bryant & May mysteries – a real romp of a series – but they are set (at least the early ones) in WWII London, the Blitz. Terribly original, entertaining and funny.

  5. Have you tried BookBub? They have free books every day. Usually a variety of mystery, romance, historical fiction, some vampires and aliens. But with anywhere from 4-8 books daily, you can fill a Kindle in no time. If you don’t have a Kindle, you can still get the Kindle App for phone or tablet, or computer, and read them that way. Some days are better than others, but it’s still easier than wading through Amazon’s whole list of freebies.

  6. I just got hooked on Philippa Gregory novels, the last ones I read were The Other Boleyn Girl and The White Queen. I also just finished the latest Dave Barry Insane City. He writes as well as Carl Hiasaan, who I love. Christopher Moore is good, Christopher Buckley is great. Usually I’ll read something heavy followed by a couple of lighter books.

  7. I’ll second Philippa Gregory books, and also suggest any of Carolly Erickson. She has several historical fiction novels, as well as non-fiction history. (I always go for the fiction.) Maeve Binchy or Marian Keyes for lovely Irish fiction.

  8. Maeve Binchy always leaves me feeling there isn’t any trouble that can’t be overcome eventually.
    I also love Philippa Gregory. Also in the nonfiction area Neil Boorstins books are hard to beat for historical perspective.

  9. Historical fiction mixed with epidemic disease! Right up your street! The Given Day by Dennis Lehane.

    Much of his contemporary detective fiction has been made into movies (Gone Baby Gone, etc), but he is doing historical fiction now, set in Boston right after WWI. (He is currently doing writing on Boardwalk Empire.)

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