Manson by Jeff Guin
“This is a straight forward approach to Charles Manson’s life. Many books about Manson focus on his power, and depict him as some sort of boogey-man. Jeff Guin interview’s Charles’s sister and goes into detail about his relatively normal upbringing. There are definitely indicator of who Charles would become in stories about his childhood. For example, he once got three little girls to beat up a boy for him, when the teacher asked why he did it he only responded by saying he didn’t, the girls did. This book has taught me a lot I didn’t know and I recommend it to anyone who is interested in debunking the mythos of Mason.”
The Beautiful and the Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald
“I’ve wanted to read The Beautiful and the Damned for a long time. It’s said to be a parallel of Francis and Zelda’s life, a satire all about a glamorous and doomed marriage in the decadent high society of New York City in the 1920s. Anthony is an arrogant young man who lazes about and does little work save pleasure seeking and waiting for his inheritance. Gloria is his arrogant equal whose idle time has her slipping into overindulgence. This story is highly descriptive, especially of the characters’ surroundings- it’s absolutely beautiful but starts a little slow. I’m really loving it thus far.”
New School by Dash Shaw
“Danny has been sent by his family to find out what’s happened to his older brother, Luke. Luke left home for a job teaching the inhabitants of a distant island English so they could work at ClockWorld- the new MEGA theme park opening on the island. It’s been two years since Luke left and Danny is determined to get him to come back to America, but Luke has changed. This graphic novel is unlike any I’ve ever read. It’s experimental, incredibly smart, both familiar and new- you have to look at it.”
The Abominable by Dan Simmons
“Sometime over the last 10 years, Dan Simmons has become the master of literary historical horror. His 2007 novel The Terror, set during the search for the NW Passage, is one of the best takes of, well, terror written this century. After a couple of books dealing with the last days of Charles Dickens (Drood) and the impact of Custer and the genocide of Native Americans (Black Hills), Simmons returns to the cold and alienation that defined The Terror with his forthcoming book The Abominable. Set in 1924 during the race to reach the summit of Mount Everest, it is a fascinating tale filled with all the detail and research that one expects from a Simmons novel. I’m at page 245 and our protagonists have only just reached India and I’m pensive waiting for the ascent to begin knowing that things are going to go all wrong and that there is something Abominable up on the peak waiting for them.
If you loved The Terror and/or really well researched historical fiction, this is a must read book for 2013.
Paddle Your Own Canoe by Nick Offerman
“I gasped with delight when I saw an advance copy of Nick Offerman’s book Paddle Your Own Canoe on a cart in our BookPeople offices. That moustache, those eyes, the dry sense of humor, the strong hands (I imagine. Give me this, please.) Nick Offerman’s new memoir is funny, sincere, full of real world advice, manly and if it were a person, would have a strong work ethic. I love this book so far!”
Paddle Your Own Canoe will be released in Oct of 2013, it is now available for Pre-Order.