The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
This book came highly recommended, and for good reason. I’m a huge fan of fairy-tale retellings and stories rich with mythology (and romance!). So far, The Song of Achilles is covering all of the bases. The story is told from Patroclus’ point of view as he grows up with Achilles, follows him to the Trojan War, and inevitably falls in love with him. It’s beautifully written and absolutely spellbinding, succeeding in paying homage to the Illiad while at the same time giving us a closer and more sympathetic view of the epic’s well-known characters. Although I’m steeling myself for the ending, I know I’ll enjoy the journey no matter what. You can find copies of The Song of Achilles on our shelves and via bookpeople.com.
The Lunatic: Poems by Charles Simic
I first met Charles Simic in the last chance section of a bookstore. He offered fifty years of his poems for me to read. I fell in love. He begged me to buy his book but I paused, choosing to read it alone, there, in my silent moments instead. When later I discovered someone else had bought his book, a piece was torn from my body. I mourned and mourned. Now there is The Lunatic, and I am more whole than I was. You can find copies of The Lunatic: Poems on our shelves and via bookpeople.com.
The Mysteries of Pittsburgh by Michael Chabon
The Mysteries of Pittsburgh was Chabon’s first novel, which is annoying, because it’s near perfect. Shouldn’t there be a learning curve? In any case, the story follows Art Bechstein, the son of a mobster, as he navigates post-college life with an eccentric group of 20-somethings in 1980s Pennsylvania. Chabon has said he was inspired by The Great Gatsby, and I can see it! You can find copies of The Mysteries of Pittsburgh on our shelves and via bookpeople.com.