27 December 2016

Timequake, by Kurt Vonnegut

Vonnegut's last novel, I think.

If you've read Vonnegut, you will probably enjoy this as you have his other work. If, however, you are not familiar with Vonnegut, this late work is--in my opinion--oddly a very good place to start. It is a sort of fictional autobiography, a tour-de-force in which some of his fictional characters appear along with the author.

The world is a sadder and poorer place without Kurt Vonnegut.

Something Rich and Strange, by Ron Rash

Short stories set in Appalachia. Excellent.


Under the Influence, by Joyce Maynard

Having discovered Joyce Maynard, it is easy to keep reading.

This review is not terribly favorable, but I enjoyed the book, nonetheless.

It is the story of an alcoholic woman who loses custody of her son. In recovery, she is befriended by a wealthy, philanthropic couple, and begins to put her life back together. Her relationship with the Havillands is a little strange, though, and drives the plot into an interesting and suspenseful denouement.

Superdove, by Courtney Humphries

Someone asked--rhetorically, but in my hearing--how pigeons manage to survive the winter in a city where winter is lethal. I started reading about pigeons on the Cornell Ornithology website.

On the Cornell site, I saw a reference to this book.

Pigeons are sometimes reviled. They have been called "flying rats."

I tend to like birds, and have developed a fondness for some species that are not, generally, highly regarded, such as crows, and starlings, and so I began to wonder--what about pigeons?

Whether you consider pigeons a pest, a pet, food, or just another part of nature, you will probably find something interesting in Superdove.

New York Times Book Review