Category Archives: Contemporary

The Glorious Heresies

After finishing the Booker longlist, I decided to try a book that perhaps should have been on the longlist, so I turned to Lisa McInerney’s The Glorious Heresies, winner of the 2016 Bailey’s Prize. It turns out that it was published … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 8 Comments

Hot Milk

Deborah Levy’s novel about a twenty-something daughter and her ailing mother is one I’m going to be pondering for a while. Much like Levy’s previous novel, Swimming Home, this is a book that I’m not sure that I liked, but I’m finding … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 4 Comments

All That Man Is

The stories in this collection by David Szalay trace the life history of man by looking at nine men at different stages of life. There’s a university student named Simon, traveling through Europe with a friend. There’s Bérnard, who has … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction, Short Stories/Essays | 5 Comments

The Sellout

Satire is hard. It’s hard to write and hard to read. And I’ll admit straight off that I’m not good at reading it. If the point of the jokes are too obvious, I get annoyed. If it’s too subtle, I miss it. … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 15 Comments

We Love You, Charlie Freeman

The Freeman family has an opportunity to be part of scientific history. Laurel Freeman learned sign language at a young age, but she hit a road block in her career as an interpreter because she refused to sign like a white person. … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 9 Comments

Americanah

Americanah is the third book I’ve read by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, after Half of a Yellow Sun and Purple Hibiscus. This book, which digs deeply into the experience of being black in America (and, secondarily, the UK), is fascinating and … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 8 Comments

Important Artifacts and Personal Property from the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris, Including Books, Street Fashion, and Jewelry

At first glance, there’s nothing to tip readers off to the fact that this book is anything other than an auction catalog. The cover includes an auction date (Saturday, 14 February 2009) and the name of the auction house (Strachan … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 6 Comments

Fates and Furies

I didn’t expect much from this book. I wasn’t a fan of Groff’s first book, The Monsters of Templeton, and there was nothing much in this book’s premise—rich white New Yorkers with marriage problems—that appealed to me enough to make me set aside … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 12 Comments

Broken Harbor

This is the fourth of Tana French’s loosely-linked mysteries that I’ve read, and I have to say that I’ve enjoyed each of them more than the last. Broken Harbor is no exception. In it, French explores love, mental illness, the … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction, Mysteries | 7 Comments

The Dinner

Two sets of parents have decided to meet at a high-end restaurant in Amsterdam in order to discuss a terrible crime committed by their children, and what their next steps should be: Serge and Babette; Paul and Claire. This, at … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Fiction | 12 Comments