A Good Book Year Part Two

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Every year I am given the weighty responsibility of choosing the last book of the year-- the Christmas book--for our reading group. The reason this is such a difficult choice is because, traditionally, all the good books are released in the fall/winter. Just look at what we have to choose from this year:

John Krakauer: Where Men Win Glory
Krakauer, author of the unforgettable Into the Wild and Into Thin Air takes on the tale of NFL hero Pat Tillman, who abandoned a promising career to die a hero in the war against the Taliban. Whenever Krakauer undertakes to tell a story, it promises to be rivetting. For this and no other reason, this book makes my list for consideration.

Audrey Niffenegger: Her Fearful Symmetry. Did we love The TimeTraveler's Wife? Well, yes, actually-- it was my book cluib selection two (or three) Christmases ago! We're all wondering whether she can possibly follow it up with something as tame as a story of sibling rivalry... although I must say it does sound as though it has some intriguing twists. I love the setting of Highgate Cemetery, and the promise of Elspeth-from-the-Other-Side. This will have to be done well, but it's definitely worth looking into.

Margaret Atwood: The Year of The Flood Ah, now. The author of A Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake... this one I am sure of. If the earmark of a good book club selection is a book with potential for controversy, this one definitely makes the list.

And last but not least, coming September 15.... Wait! That's now!

Dan Brown's The Lost Symbol
Okay, welcome back from your trip to Mars if you haven't heard the news. Perhaps the most eagerly anticipated book since the last Harry Potter installment, the manuscript was only three years overdue (care to guess what would have happened to me if I'd tried that??). All I can say is, it had better be good! And yes, my copy has been on order for two months now, and no, when it arrives I will not put aside all else, turn off the phones, close the curtains, order take-out and settle down to read it straight through... until the weekend.

The problem, of course, with having such a luxury of choices is that some of the lesser known writers risk getting trampled in the stampede... and by lesser known writers, I mean anyone not on this list who has the misfortune to have a book out in the fall. That would be me.

So, my Christmas Book Club selection this year? At Home on Ladybug Farm by Donna Ball.

Hey, these days a girl has got to look after herself.


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