Favorite Reads

Traveling gives you plenty of time to read. Here’s a few random favorites from the past few years. Click on the covers to order from Amazon.

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Lush Life

Richard Price

Characters fascinating for their banality. The modern Lower East Side viewed from inside the kaleidoscope after a  murder that no one view the same way.

The Big Sleep

Raymond Chandler

Perennial Fave

Words like fine wine you want to swirl around endlessly so you can savor them forever. I’m good for a read about every two years.

Behind the Scenes at the Museum

Kate Atkinson

Ruby is a plucky narrator who takes us through five generations of her family’s lives. It’s a tale that draws you deeper every page.

In the Beauty of the Lilies

John Updike

Who better than Updike to chronicle a family saga that captures America’s 20th century. Oddballs and deeply felt principals abound.

The Great Fire

Shirley Hazzard

Hiroshima, a nutball Australian brigadier and his intriguing family plus a British war hero on his own quest combine for an unlikely love story.


Jane Smiley

One of the most readable serious fiction writers today, Smiley fertilizes with farce in this tale about a university that’s a cow town at heart. Don’t visit Iowa without it.

Ordinary Thunderstorms

William Boyd

London’s myriad layers swallow up the main character and readers. Never assume what’s coming next, you’ll be wrong.

The Imperfectionists

Tom Rachman

The chapter with Rich Snyder alone is worth the price. When he drops his drawers, I dropped my jaw and laughed like a loon. A joyous, breeze of a read.

The Lonely Silver Rain

John D MacDonald

Perennial Fave

The unexpected last entry of the Travis McGee series is a showstopper of MacDonald’s talent. (But start with the Deep Blue Good-by.)

Starvation Lake

Bryan Gruley

I’d love this first installment in this mystery series set in downtrodden upstate Michigan even if the author wasn’t a pal. Deeply felt characters always ring true.

Last Night at the Lobster

Stewart O’Nan

It’s a snowy night right before Christmas and corporate HQ has pulled the plug on a Red Lobster; a brilliant look at real lives

In the Electric Mist

James Lee Burke

Perennial Fave

My favorite from the long-running series. When Burke is at his best, his moody, melodic prose captures the Bayou like no one else.

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