Three Books I'm Reading Now, 8/21/23 Edition
The Books I'm Reading Now
I'm reading Congratulations, The Best Is Over, essays by R. Eric Thomas; I'm listening to Katlia's story based on fact about Indigenous people and the greed that displaced and discounted them; and I'm reading Alice Hoffman's newest novel about a cult and a desperate woman saved by a book, The Invisible Hour.
What are you reading these days, bookworms?
01 Congratulations, The Best Is Over by R. Eric Thomas
Thomas was living his best life following the success of his writings about the chaotic political climate and his reactions to it.
Then he moved home to Baltimore, where he had pledged never to live again--and had mixed feelings about even visiting again.
He finds himself in the odd position of living in his own past while trying to shift into his future life.
R. Eric Thomas is also the author of Here For It: Or, How to Save Your Soul in America.
I received a prepublication edition of this book courtesy of NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group, Ballantine Books.
02 This House Is Not a Home by Katlia
Katlia's novel This House Is Not a Home is a novel of Indigenous people displaced by greedy settlers.
The story takes place in northern Canada, but the tragedy is uncomfortably familiar and based on real-life events: Indigenous children kidnaped and sent to residential schools, homes snatched, traditions erased, and a culture dismissed.
I received an audiobook edition of this book courtesy of Libro.fm and Fernwood Publishing.
This House Is Not a Home is narrated by Brianne Tucker.
Katlia is a Cree and Metis writer.
A book that keeps coming to mind as I read this one is This Tender Land, historical fiction by William Kent Krueger. It details the goings-on at an Indian Training School and the "restructuring" that cut off American Indians from their culture, their families, and their history and traditions.
03 The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman
The Invisible Hour tells the story of Mia Jacob, accidentally pregnant, threatened with the forcible adoption of her baby, then a runaway.
Mia flees to the embrace of the Community, a group of people living off the grid in rural western Massachusetts who preach love, share belongings, farm and harvest their own food, take collective care of children--and endure severe punishment for asking questions or departing from the group's leader.
When Mia, who has become desperate, stumbles upon The Scarlet Letter--which is, as all books are, forbidden within the cult--the two-hundred-old story speaks to her so completely, it feels like it might just save her.
I received a prepublication edition of this book courtesy of Atria Books and NetGalley.
Alice Hoffman is also the author of The World That We Knew and over thirty books.
Another book with a character based upon Nathaniel Hawthorne--although it treats him very differently as a character--is the historical fiction novel Hester by Laurie Lico Albanese.