Archives for posts with tag: should i read it

Into the Water

 

This weekend’s # 1 bestseller is the sophomore novel from The Girl on the Train author Paula Hawkins. But should you read it?

My review on CBC’s Day 6 >> listen here.

Summer Reads 2016

 

Mid-June = time for my annual list of beach reads for Day 6 on CBC Radio One.

Listen to the audio here.

This year’s selection includes three debut novels, and has history, mystery, spies, spooks, and … well also quite aa lot of sadness. Sorry about that.

The five novels (pictured above) are:

  • Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett
  • Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
  • On the Shores of Darkness there Is Light by Cordelia Strube
  • I’m Thinking of Ending Things by Iain Reid
  • The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen

 

 

Don DeLillo has a new novel out. And after a few teeny tinies in recent years, this one is, say his publishers, his greatest work since 1997’s Underworld.

So … should you read it?

I reviewed it for CBC Day 6, here.

 

Don’t panic…but there are only five shopping days left until Christmas. Listen here for my annual Holiday Gift Guide for CBC’s Day 6, a selection of six great books for a variety of readers on your list (hint: said books are stacked in my arms right up there /\. Look how happy I am to be recommending them!). Remember, folks: books are easy to wrap. Happy Holidays!

 

More than half a century after modern classic To Kill a Mockingbird was published, a new manuscript by its reclusive and media-shy author came to light under mysterious circumstances. Mystery or not, the world went mad for it, and on July 14, 2015, it landed.

The new novel is called Go Set a Watchman. It has raised many, many questions, and spawned many, many reviews. It has an initial North American print run of 2 million copies.

I’ve been doing a segment called “Should I Read It?” on CBC Radio One’s Day 6 for the past five years. We review high-profile, much-talked-about books. We’ve never done one quite as talked about as this.

Go Set a Watchman: should you read it? Here’s my review.

 

Mark Z. Danielewski has both dazzled and confounded readers with his high-concept novels that utilize font, colour, footnotes within footnotes, and sometimes turning the book upside down every few pages to tell a story.

His latest book, The Familiar: One Rainy Day in May, is presented as Volume 1 of a projected 27 volume series, of which new volumes (or “episodes”) will be released every 6 months. It’s unlike any book you’ve picked up before. But should you read it?

My review on CBC Day 6 >> listen here.

Conveniently timed to air on the longest day of the year (thank you, June 21, for falling on a Saturday), I’m pleased to present my annual summer reading list for Day 6 on CBC Radio One.

Here I am (up there, look!) balancing in my skinny arms my complete set of books to suit all summer reading tastes.

Moments after this photograph was taken I overheard a man sitting at the other end of the table (yes, I am on a patio drinking early summer beer) telling his friends that he likes reading crime fiction by British writers. I gave him my copy of The Farm, thus lighting my load by one book for the journey home.

>> Listen to my summer reads conversation with Day 6 host Brent Bambury here.

>> Read my suggestions for EVEN MORE reading at CBC.ca, here.

image: shovel ready

 

A writer publishes his debut novel. The writer has a toe hold in the literary establishment on both sides of the Canada/US border. The novel has a toe hold on both sides of the noir/sci-fi genre border. The setting of the novel is almost borderless; near-future New York functioning as everyplace and no place, a Gotham or Metropolis, a metaphor for where society has gone wrong. The protagonist is an assassin with a code: one foot on either side of the moral fence.

The review is not like the novel. The review has to pick a single side.

Shovel Ready by Adam Sternbergh. Should you read it?

Listen to the segment on CBC Day 6.

 

image: Holiday Reads 2013

 

For your last-minute gift-giving needs, my 2013 gift guide on CBC Day 6 includes:

For the fiction lover:
The Orenda by Joseph Boyden
Longbourn by Jo Baker
Stoner by John Williams

For the tech-savvy reader, nonfiction fan or parent to teenage smartphone addicts:
Smarter Than You Think by Clive Thompson

For the graphic novel reader or whimsical adventurer  of any age (10 and up):
The Encyclopedia of Early Earth by Isabel Greenberg

For the cook:
The Old World Kitchen by Elisabeth Luard

Listen to the audio.

image: The Luminaries

 

On Tuesday night, Canadian-born Kiwi Eleanor Catton became the youngest author ever to win the Man Booker Prize. She won for The Luminaries, which, at 830-odd pages, is also the longest book ever to have won, and will forever be the last book to have won before the prize changed its entry rules to include writers beyond the Commonwealth and Ireland.

But should you read it?

I did – more quickly than I’d suggest you do. Here’s my conversation with Brent Bambury on CBC Day 6.