Christmas is coming, and it's coming fast. My top 5 book recommendations to fill your favorite reader's--or writer's--stocking.
The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving (Jonathan Evison): One of my favorite books of the year, when a stay-at-home dad loses his reason to stay at home, he finds work taking care of a disabled young man. A road story, a love story, a coming-of-age story, Revised Fundamentals hits every emotional peak, and then some. I covered Evison's recent visit to Baltimore's Book Festival HERE.
City of Thieves (David Benioff): A love story of sorts between two unlikely young men who become best of friends. Leningrad is under seige by the Germans, and a Russian soldier AWOL and a literary kid caught stealing from a dead German are tasked with procuring a dozen eggs for a high-ranking officer's daughter's wedding--or face execution.
Let the Great World Spin (Colum McCann): I read this book every year and always find more to marvel at McCann's mastery. The thread of a tightrope walker balancing between the World Trade Towers in the 1970s makes the present that much palpable and poignant.
The Meadow (James Galvin): A poetic transport to the meadows and mountains of the American West. Non-fiction that reads like the finest fiction.
Stories for Nighttime and Some for the Day (Ben Loory): A fabulous short story collection with Carver-esque prose and unpredictable plots. For writers wanting to study the opening line 'hook', read no farther.
And a couple of other short but not necessarily sweet offerings:
Conversations with S.Teri O'Type (Christopher Allen): Goofy, high-camp, and amazingly good fun from one of the most promising emerging writers.
Shortly Thereafter (Colin D. Halloran): Heart-stopping poems about war written by a soldier-poet stationed in Afghanistan.
HAPPY SHOPPING and HAPPY HOLIDAYS! Peace...