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January 10, 2024
The Covenant of Water by Abraham Verghese is set on the southern coast of India. It is a family saga (already love that) spanning generations (yup tell me more about how family you never met affects your life). In the beginning we meet a 12 year old girl who is preparing for her wedding, an arranged marriage.
The House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III - I received this book as a gift nearly 15 years ago, and I am just getting around to reading it. I am excited about this book because the characters seem so complex. Iranian immigrants searching for the American Dream clash with an American woman clinging to the little she has left. I think this book is really going to highlight the inequalities in our systems and how people are often at odds with each other rather than the systems.
Broken Horses by Brandi Carlile - This musical memoir is a great one to listen to. After almost every chapter Brandi plays acoustic versions of her songs. Each song relates to the people or time in her life that she discusses in the previous chapter. She also does a fair amount of name-dropping, which I find fascinating. Did you know Brandi is friends with Sir Elton John? Me neither, but her story about how she met him and their friendship is a treat.
Geek Love by Katherine Dunn - My dear friend Andie recommended this book while we were wondering around a used bookstore in central PA. She explained that the story revolves around a geek show - an act in traveling carnival shows in which a person chases live chickens and bites their heads off. This was news to me and I was immediately intrigued.
I haven't finished the book yet, but so far it has lived up to my expectations. A husband and wife team lead a traveling carnival. When the business starts to fail they decide to create their own acts - while pregnant the wife uses drugs and radioactive substances to cause birth defects. Essentially the couple is creating their own freak show with their children. When you strip away the shock factor this is the story of a complicated family (aren't they all). Highly recommend.
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February 12, 2024