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Oh, those lovely fall books!

By / May 27, 2008



We've only just gotten through Memorial Day weekend. But if you're a fashionista, you're already thinking about the fall fashions. And if you're a book editor, like me, you're already excited about your fall reading list.

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I spent a lot of today browsing through book catalogs and I feel like a kid in a candy shop. There's plenty of great stuff coming down the line this year and of course no one else's list would look exactly like mine but here are some of the books with which I'm already planning to enjoy on the cooler, shorter days:

September: Stalin's Children by Own Matthews is the true story, by Newsweek's Moscow bureau chief, of his family's entanglement with Stalin, the Soviet Union, and now Russia, throughout the course of three generations. Mrs. Woolf and the Servants by Alison Light tells of life behind the scenes in the most famous of the Bloomsbury homes. Home by Marilynne Robinson is a sequel to her earlier novel "Gilead." (And if you've read the marvelous "Gilead" you don't have to ask why I'm looking forward to "Home.") Dewey by Vicki Myron. (And yes, I know a lot of you will groan at the thought of a feline version of "Marley & Me" but I don't care. The true story of a rescued cat who lived in a small-town Iowa library and went on to become an international celebrity – there's no way I'm going to pass that up. Also, there must be some reason that this one became a seven-figure book deal.)

October: While my husband is busy reading John Lennon: The Life by journalist Philip Norman, I'll be reading To Siberia by Per Petterson (by Norwegian author of "Out Stealing Horses"), Sea of Poppies by Amitav Ghosh, and The Journal of Helene Berr (the recently surfaced journal of a young Jewish woman living in Paris under Nazi occupation – a sensation when published in France last year.)

November: Okay, if you grimaced over my enthusiasm for "Dewey" you probably don't want to look at this list. Because as soon as I finish Ancient Shore: Dispatches from Naples by Shirley Hazzard, I'm going to be reading true stories Alex & Me by Irene Pepperberg (remember the amazing news stories from last year about Alex the African gray parrot and the researcher who loved him?), Saved: Rescued Animals and the Lives They Transform by Karin Winegar, and The Daily Coyote: A Year with Charlie by Shreve Stockton. Oh yes, and Ha Jin's The Writer as Migrant (not an animal story, just a writer I admire.)

What are you looking forward to this fall?

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