> Granite State Readers Recommend
Nancy Lewendowski [July 2008]
The Colony - John Tayman. This informative book takes a look back at the history of leprosy (Hansen's disease) and the colony of exiles that was created on the island of Molokai and lasted well into this century. The voices of those who were exiled to the island are heard throughout the book and intertwined with the politics of each successive presidential administration. The lives that these unfortunate souls were forced to lead after being torn from their friends and families is difficult to imagine and I found myself truly caught up in their individual stories. By sharing this story of the struggle for basic human rights the author is able to let us hear the voices of the victims and at the same time provide a cautionary tale for the future.
Mary Martin [April 2007]
I strongly recommend The Knitting Circle by Ann Hood. It is a wonderful story about doing something you can learn and enjoy doing when the world seems to have turned on you. The women you meet in this book will become friends. You know them already.
Mary Russell [Spring 2007]
Director, Center for the Book at the NHSL
The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets by Eva Rice. I loved this book! It was funny, the characters were very memorable, and it was full of clever turns of phrase. Publisher’s Weekly said (and I agree) : “With élan and insight into human foibles . . . Rice, daughter of lyricist Tim Rice, ties the Wallace and Delancy families together with a surprising, bittersweet plot twist. Rice’s remarkable gift for creating singular characters in this memorable story underscores her presence as a fresh new voice in fiction.”
Charles Shipman [July 2006]
Librarian, New Hampshire State Library
I'd like to recommend Black Swan Green by David Mitchell. It is the story of a precocious thirteen year old navigating the treacherous seas of early adolescence in early 1980's England. The theme isn't new, but the writing is fresh and original, the characters are vividly drawn, and the protagonist, Jason Taylor, is one of the most engaging characters I've ever encountered.
Todd Russell [Fall 2005]
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman. A fascinating, otherworldly account of the London Underground by one of the up and coming fantasy writers.
Katie Goodman [March 2005]
Executive Director, New Hampshire Writers' Project
I recommend This Day: Diaries from American Women.
This book answers the question...What is a day in the life really like for a CEO, an at-home mom, a refugee, a rodeo rider, a young executive, an actress, a congresswoman, a widow..indeed any woman. Editors Joni B. Cole, Rebecca Joffrey, and B.K. Rakhra invited hundreds of women across America to keep a "day diary" on the same day in October of 2002. (Co-editor Joni Cole recently taught a workshop at the New Hampshire Writers' Project's Upper Valley Writers' Conference and lives in Vermont.) The result is an extraordinary collection of intimate details, real-life drama, and laugh-out-loud moments‹all the good stuff of real life. This book will have universal appeal to any woman who has ever woken up and had to face an ordinary or extraordinary day!