Summer 2010 reading guide
Which new summer releases should you pick up first?
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The 1939 New York World’s Fair was seen as an opportunity to promote world unity – a sad irony given that the fair took place on the eve of World War II. In Twilight at the World of Tomorrow, journalist James Mauro relies on many firsthand sources to re-create the fair and the culture and era that fostered it.Skip to next paragraph
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Zoo Story by Thomas French is a behind-the-scenes look at the animals living at Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo. Although the questions surrounding the keeping of wild animals in captivity are not easy ones, this book is a must-read for animal lovers, who will enjoy the starring roles the animals play.
One of the 14 original copies of America’s Bill of Rights was stolen by a ransacking Union soldier during the US Civil War. In Lost Rights (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 352 pp., $26), journalist David Howard traces the stolen document and tells a surprising story sure to delight history buffs.
If you like good writing, you won’t want to miss The Fiddler in the Subway (Simon & Schuster, 288 pp., $15.99) by Pulitzer Prize winner Gene Weingarten. This collection of Weingarten’s writing tackles topics as diverse as the complicated life of William Jefferson Blythe (Bill Clinton’s biological father), the biography of one of the writers of the “Hardy Boys” mystery series, small-town life in America, and what it feels like to send a daughter off to college.
NEW FICTION: SUMMER OF 2010
Emily and Jess are sisters – and just about as unlike as possible. One runs a data-storage business while the other is a graduate student mostly attracted to fellow idealists and causes like Tree Savers. But in The Cookbook Collector (Random House, 416 pp., $26) skilled novelist Allegra Goodman (“Kaaterskill Falls,” “Intuition”) weaves their lives and conflicting worldviews into a rich, engaging narrative.
Can you taste emotions in food? Rose Edelstein can. She discovers this unwanted gift at the age of 9, and Aimee Bender uses this conceit to turn her novel The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake (Knopf Doubleday, 304 pp., $25.95) into a funny, haunting, hurting, coming-of-age story.
What does it mean to be a Mexican in America today? Brando Skyhorse tackles this question in his debut novel, The Madonnas of Echo Park (Simon & Schuster, 224 pp., $23).The book, which is really a collection of eight linked stories, explores questions of identity and belonging as experienced by a group of Mexican-Americans with connections to Los Angeles’s Echo Park neighborhood.