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Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk by Ben Fountain
Carol’s book of the month is Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk by Ben Fountain. This novel illustrates the way many Americans have become bewitched with inserting themselves into every situation they deem newsworthy. Even down to hobnobbing with war heroes to make themselves feel more important, influential, and impressive. It also calls attention to the country's caste system of haves and have-nots, the lower castes often being on the front lines of our wars. Unfolding over the course of one Thanksgiving Day, this book follows the 8 survivors of Bravo Company and the battle of Al-Ansakar Canal, and especially focuses on Specialist William Lynn, a 19-year-old Texas native. Over the course of this day, Billy begins to understand the difficult truths about himself, his country, his struggling family, and his brothers-in-arms, soldiers both dead and alive. In the final few hours before returning to Iraq, Billy will drink and brawl, yearn for home and mourn those missing, face a heart-wrenching decision, and discover pure love and a bitter wisdom far beyond his years.
The Michigan Quarterly Review
Our book of the month is actually The Michigan Quarterly Review.
Our dear friend Alison Swan has written prose for it occasionally and we love to read everything she writes and recommends. MQR is an eclectic interdisciplinary journal of arts and culture that seeks to combine the best of poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction with outstanding critical essays on literary, cultural, social, and political matters. They are the flagship journal of the University of Michigan. In the past they have published works by Margaret Atwood, Joyce Carol Oates, John Updike, and other authorities in their field. They also try to include at least one story, essay, or poem by a previously unpublished writer in every issue. It’s a delight to read. For more info or to order a subscription, click here.
Dark Currents by Jacqueline Carey
Dark Currents by Jacqueline Carey is the first book in her new series
Agent of Hel. Dark Currents is an excellent new entry in the world of urban fantasy, though to be fair, it’s perhaps more rustic fantasy. Dark Currents does an exemplary job of creating an intriguing world of fantastical creatures, interesting normals, and subtle complexities behind the scenes. Daisy, the main female character, is a good blend of supernatural species and human. The book is a fascinating interpretation of ghouls, and the werewolves are believable, which is refreshing. And best of all, it takes place in a cool little tourist town, just like Saugatuck! This book is entertaining, funny, and well written
Lizard Cage by Karen Connelly
The kind of book that you just want to grab the next person you see and say, you must read this! Outstanding story of a devout Buddhist named Teza who is sentence to 20 plus years solitary confinement in a Burmese Prison Camp. Beautiful story, well written. Connelly gives vivid descriptions of characters that make for gripping reading. You can purchase or order this book at the Singapore Bank Bookstore in Saugatuck (269-857-3785).
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