September Books

Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok
Kimberly Chang and her mother emigrate from Hong Kong to Brooklyn, where both become sweatshop workers. Kimberly gets to attend school during the day and excels. Incredible story and amazing insight into the hope that immigrants have, while struggling to fit in, learn a new language and deal with poverty and injustice. ♥♥♥

Gold by Chris Cleave
Zoe and Kate are world-class athletes who have been friends and rivals since their first day of cycle training. Fast forward 10 years and it’s London 2012, but there’s only one spot on the Olympic team. Much-much more than a story about racing. ♥♥♥

Sutton by J.R. Moehringer
Willie Sutton’s life is an incredible story told by master story-teller, J.R. Moehringer. Sutton is poor and also trapped in the times-- bank panics, depressions and soaring unemployment. Needing money and wanting to win the girl of his dreams he becomes one of America's most successful bank robbers. Three decades of crime and numerous prison stints, and fearless break-outs, earn him the title of the most dangerous man in New York. Supposedly he never fired a shot, and the public loved him.♥♥♥

Wallace by Jim Gorant
Gorant is the author of The Lost Dogs– one of my favorite dog books. He’s back with another heartwarming story – this time about an unwanted Pit-bull named Wallace. Andrew “Roo” Yori and his wife save Wallace in the nick of time, start training him to pull heavy loads and play competitive Frisbee -- which everyone thinks is a terrible idea. Wallace ends up being a star so the good guys have the last laugh, er, bark. 

Dog Days & Wolf Days of August

Seven Patients by Atul Kumar
This is one of my favorite books of the year, yet it seems to be unknown and under-appreciated. The writing is sharp, the characters alive, until, well they aren't....and the seven stories are tied together like a fine surgeon sutures a wound. Highly recommended. ♥♥♥♥

The Dog Stars by Peter Heller
Hig survived the flu that killed almost everyone on earth. Now he’s holed up with a crazy gun-toting vigilante. His only solace is flying a 1956 Cessna (his beloved dog as copilot) around what was once Colorado. ♥♥

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman
Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia after some less than ideal tours of duty, and becomes the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock. The job and island suit him well enough but that would make a boring story so he marries Isabel. Years later, after it’s obvious Isabel can’t have children; a mysterious boat washes up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby. What to do, what to do…♥♥

Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt
Fourteen-year-old June Elbus is devastated when her godfather/uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss dies of AIDS. Finn painted a canvas for June and her sister to remember him by, which is worth about a million bucks, but the girls take turns de-facing it. However, it’s the coded message Finn leaves that helps her understand the mysterious illness and her uncle’s very full life – oh, and the strange man who was at the funeral. ♥♥

The Sandcastle Girls by Chris Bohjalian
Inspired by his grandparents, Bohjalian introduces us to "The Slaughter You Know Next to Nothing About," aka the Armenian genocide of 1915-16. The 20 second over-view: Elizabeth accompanies her father on his philanthropic mission to Syria, where she befriends Armenian engineer Armen. They are separated and write many letters. Years later, grand-daughter Laura hears about a photograph of a woman rumored to be her Armenian grandmother, taken by some brave photographers trying to bring the genocide to the attention of the world. ♥♥♥

July produces some hot reads

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
This was my book of choice as I lounged with Bobette in ZIH. I could not put it down – not to chat, not to walk on the beach, not to (heaven forbid) have a Mohito! What could she do but join me and get lost in the story as well? A great book about a marriage on the rocks that leads to murder. Or does it?? ♥♥♥

Let’s Pretend this Never Happened by Jenny Lawson
Lawson’s “mostly true memoir,” is hip, fun to read and full of her views on sex, drugs, and relationships. I came away from the experience realizing that the most mortifying moments of our lives—the ones we’d like to pretend never happened—are usually the ones that define us. ♥♥♥

A Secret Kept by Tatiana de Rosnay
Antoine Rey and his sister Mélanie revisit the beach where they spent many happy childhood summers. But the trip only reminds them of the last island summer when their Mother died, and awakens some not so savory family secrets.

The Girl Who Fell From the Sky by Heidi W. Durrow
Rachel is the only survivor of a family tragedy so she is forced to move in with her strict African American grandmother. A great book about social justice and being biracial.♥♥