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What are you reading?

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 11:15 am
by MarciaMarciaMarcia
It's time to choose a few good beach reads to pack for our upcoming trip. I recently finished <a href=""><b>Pillars of the Earth</b></a><img src="" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="">
by Ken Follett and loved it which surprised me because Oprah recommended it. I usually find her picks to be a bit rip your heart out, throw it on the ground, stomp on it, give it a few more good kicks then throw it off a cliff. None of that on vacation, thanks. The order of the day is fun....clever, suspenseful, funny, sexy. Suggestions? Maybe something Thomas Crown Affairish?

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 11:21 am
by liamsaunt
Books, one of my favorite things to talk about! And perfect timing since I need to start putting together my book box for April.

Have you read <a href=""><b>Don't Stop the Carnival</b></a>? That's a good island read.

I also really liked <a href=""><b>Water for Elephants</b></a><img src="" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="">
, by Sara Gruen.

John's got the new Grisham novel lined up for the beach--I think it is called the Alibi.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 11:28 am
by Carolyn
My husband is the BIG reader of the 2 of us but we both read Pillars of the Earth at the same time and thoroughly enjoyed it too. He went on to read Follett's next book World Without End which he claimed to also like. For our recent trip he switched to Herman Wolk's Don't Stop the Carnival which he really enjoyed reading while on island...seemed to have the funny, sexy island vibe. We didn't know til we were there that the resort in the book was based on the one that used to be on Water Island. Our very first trip to STT we took a day, bike trip over to Water Island and stopped for a break on the old tennis courts which were all that was left of the old building. It is next on my list as I think I can enjoy it from having just returned.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 11:43 am
by MarciaMarciaMarcia
I absolutely loved Don't Stop the Carnival and have a copy handy to take and reread. I love Grisham, too and maybe will pick up The Broker. Keep 'em coming please!

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:12 pm
by jmq
Fun beach reads = anything by <a href=""><b>Carl Hiaasen</b></a><img src=";l=ur2&amp;o=1" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="">.
Former crime beat reporter for Miami Herald writes fictional crazy/funny crime/murder eco-vigilante hi-jinks in the Sunshine State.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:22 pm
by MarciaMarciaMarcia
jmq, thanks for the reminder. He is fun. I read Carl Hiaasen a little while ago....I can't remember the name but it was about a woman whose husband threw her overboard on a cruise. He thought he got away with it but she swam to safety and stayed "undercover" to take her revenge. Very funny, fun read. I'll check to see what else he's come up with.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:27 pm
by LysaC
I just finished Duma Key- the new Stephen King. It takes palce on fictionla Duma Key- an island off FLA. It's haunted- surprise!

I loved Duma Key.

I was sad when it ended- I loved it that much.

Stephen King has matured a lot since his accident. He retains his creepiness and now adds several levels of character development to his plots. He seems to have not only a real appreciation of life post-accident but also of the people he shares it with and it really shows in his latest works (I'm thinking if Lisey's Story as well).

Stepehen King's Skeleton Crew is the reason I love reading. It was the first non-children's book given to me and I fell in love. After that is was Salem's Lot and, christ, I was head-over-heels! Some of his stuff in the 90's really sucked but I'm really cool with a few of his latest.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:38 pm
by linne
The last two books I have read are Nelson Mandela's memories and a book from Khaled Hosseini with the American title "A thousands Splendid Suns". Both were very touching,especially the last one about two women in Afghanistan.


PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:45 pm
by PA Girl
Marcia, I share your feelings about O's recommendations. I swear I was clinically depressed after I read We Were the Mulvaneys and I am typically not one to be so impacted by fiction.

Along the Thomas Crown lines but slighty edgier and more mind-bendy - I liked Len Deighton's Berlin Game, Mexico Set, London Match series - Cold war British spy, beautiful rich wife, German best friend, sneaking back and forth across the border type of stuff.

Oh, I loved Don't Stop the Carnival. I read it during our first trip to St. John (on the recommendation from a rather drunk Southern man on the Caneel shuttle)

I just finished Winds from the Carolina by Robert Wilder. It follows one family and their attempts to establish on Exuma. The time frame spans 1780s to 1920s. It was an enjoyable book.

Driving Over Lemons: An Optimist in Spain Chris Stewart is a great vacation read.

I started Night of the Silent Drums this weekend and so far find it very interesting.

I have Keep Left in my travel bag for the plane.

I was surprised by how much I loved The Shadow Divers (non-fiction) as I have little interest in submarines or extreme diving, I could not put it down.

Other non-fiction that I liked recently:
Perishable:A memoir Dirk Jamison
Don't Lets Go to the Dogs Tonight Alexandar Fuller (some depressing events)

Slow Motion Dani Shapiro - fasinating but not a vaca read, a bit dark

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 12:51 pm
by DCphoto
Biography by Patty Boyd, George Harrison's wife of the Beatles.
I didn't think I would like this book, but it was very interesting and inside look at the Beatles and later her marriage to Eric Clapton. I thought I would pass it along to those of you who might be interested.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 1:01 pm
by Chet
Anything by Dennis Lehane (Dorcester, MA), Laura Lippman (B-more, MD...hon), or George Pelecanos (Wash, DC).

All good mystery reads. And paperbacks travel light and can be left behind when completed. Good additions to Villa libraries.

I also highly recommend books by Carl Hiaasen. If you're a Nature Girl then Drink a Double Whammy, and take your Sick Puppy for a Skinny Dip during Tourist Season...Lucky You.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 1:20 pm
by jmq
Good one Chet - you are obviously a real Basket Case.

Worth mentioning if you have middle school readers in your crew Hiaasen has 2 entertaining books for them: "Hoot" and "Flushed".

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 1:32 pm
by RickG
Mom, the Oprah fanatic, gave me "Pillars of the Earth". I read one chapter and never stopped. Great characters.

Right now, I'm re-reading "Idoru" by William Gibson. If you have not read his other works, "Pattern Recognition" is a very good stand alone book. It addresses a lot of interesting current issues in a great story.

Chet, I love the Pelaconos books too. He places his stories in DC and uses the music and radio stations that were active to set the mood. I can hear it now.

"An Embarrassment of Mangoes" by Ann Vanderhoof takes you through a two year sabbatical in the Caribbean.

I'm always reading a couple of books. It keeps the voices in my head quiet.

Cheers, RickG

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 2:00 pm
by PA Girl
I just ordered An Embarassment of Mangos on Friday. Hoping it gets here in time for me to take along.

PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2008 2:11 pm
by liamsaunt
RickG wrote:"An Embarrassment of Mangoes" by Ann Vanderhoof takes you through a two year sabbatical in the Caribbean.

Yes, I second this one! Very fun. A Trip to the Beach by Bill and Melinda Blanchard is another good one in the Caribbean vein.

LysaC, I used to be a big Stephen King fan but I put his novels on lifetime ban after getting a concussion from reading Gerald's Game. (I was standing in my kitchen reading a particularly disturbing part of the book--so disturbing to me that I actually passed out, fell backwards, and smashed my head, ending up with a concussion!) I did read his "On Writing" though, and you could tell from that book how much the accident changed his perspective on things.

Another funny author, if you like his style of humor, is David Sedaris.

I also really enjoyed The Twentieth Wife, by Indu Sundaresan.

Have you read Wide Sargasso Sea? It’s the story of the madwoman in Mr. Darcy’s attic. Most of it takes place in Jamaica.

Like Linne, I also loved a Thousand Splendid Suns. I would not want it as a beach read though—it is really upsetting. I cried a couple of times while reading it.