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Mary will read just about anything, but tends toward historical fiction, mysteries, thrillers, and well-researched nonfiction (especially if it reads like a novel). She's frequently reading one of each, with a little literary fiction thrown in as well. Mary recommends...
The Paper Palace by
Over 24 hours at her beloved family summer place, "the paper palace", Elle struggles to decide if she should upend her life and marriage to be with the man she has loved since they were children. When the events of a night 40 years ago are redefined by others who were present, she grapples with her choices about her past and her future.
Nowhere Girl by
Diamond's memoir about her childhood and young adulthood as a fugitive and her family's non-standard lifestyle reads like a cross between spy fiction and relationship drama. This quick read is almost unbelievable, but the struggles and achievements she details fascinated me!
The Weight of Ink by
This dual-timeline historical fiction alternates between the stories of Helen, an aging scholar of history in the present time, and Esther, the 15th Century female scribe who assists a blind rabbi on the outskirts of London. As Helen battles to control the academic find of a lifetime, the story of Esther's fight to help the rabbi and live a unique life as a literate woman in an era set to move her life in a very different direction.
When the Stars Go Dark by
Anna Hart, a missing persons detective, returns to the town of her youth after an unknown family trauma. Her arrival coincides with the disappearance of a teenage girl, and that case soon mirrors the disappearance of a teen which happened during her high school years there. She is drawn into the investigation and focuses there to avoid her own grief. A well-developed mystery with interesting characters.
Katharine Swift, society wife of wealthy banker James Warburg, is a serious pianist and a talented composer of popular and classical music. Early in her marriage, Kay realizes that her husband is a philanderer and he declares it's in his nature and that she is free to do so herself. Kay's only affair is with George Gershwin, and she loves him deeply. Sadly, she thinks Gershwin will be devoted to her in a way her husband was not, but instead, finds Gershwin was not as faithful as she.
Chlorine Sky by
A coming of age novel written in verse, all about growing up and growing apart from friends, broken promises, and the effect of rumors on relationships.