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For Readers: Blog

The write stuff

by Book Geniuses on 2022-07-05T16:02:00-05:00 in Fiction, Books & Reading | Comments

Maybe we’re a little biased, but there’s just something irresistible when it comes to books about books. The authors who write books and the readers who devour them are all passionate people, making them a captivating subject. But it’s not all stories of charming bookshops in picturesque villages! These reads show just what lengths people are willing to go to for that special book, whether it's the romantic gesture of a lifetime or a dark decision they can never take back.

Covers of Secret Identity by Alex Segura; By the Book by Jasmine Guillory; The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz

The cutthroat comic book industry turns deadly in Secret Identity by Alex Segura. Carmen is trying to make a name for herself as a comic writer, and lends her creative skills to a fellow writer. When her superhero becomes a hit but her name is left off the credits and her coworker turns up dead, it’s clear that there’s more than a workplace rivalry at play. Combining the gritty atmosphere and measured pacing of a noir with a character study worthy of literary fiction, this is a unique read that benefits from Segura’s background as a comic book creator. [e-book | print]

Romance superstar Jasmine Guillory is back with By the Book, a delightful retelling of Beauty and the Beast. Overworked and overlooked editorial assistant Isabelle is desperate to prove her worth at work. The last thing she expects is being sent to live with Beau, a difficult celebrity who is years behind on his promised memoir, to coax a manuscript out of him. As the two butt heads professionally, they find themselves growing closer and closer. Guillory’s readers won’t find her usual steaminess here, but will nonetheless enjoy this sweet and modern take on a classic. [e-book | print]

Covers of In the Margin by Elena Ferrante; Hell of a Book by Jason Mott; Wingwalkers by Taylor Brown

The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz is a twisty page-turner about the high price a has-been author will pay for his next bestseller. Years after his hit debut, Jacob finds himself teaching at a lackluster creative writing program, and can’t resist temptation when a student shares their brilliant book idea. Back in the spotlight with his new (stolen) book, Jacob has it all, until an anonymous email lets him know he hasn’t gotten away with it. This riveting literary thriller gives readers a look at the high-pressure world of publishing and balances a suspenseful and intricate plot with well-developed characters. [e-book | print | audiobook | large type]

Delve even deeper into the mind and motivations of a writer in In the Margins by Elena Ferrante. This slim volume of essays by the author of the bestselling Neapolitan Novels reflects on her literary influences and her personal development as both writer and reader. Lyrical and thought-provoking, just like her novels, Ferrante’s insights on language and identity function as a mini masterclass while also offering a tantalizing look at the inner-workings of such a mysterious author. [e-book | print]

Hell of a Book by Jason Mott is a rewardingly complex work of metafiction that won the National Book Award for Fiction in 2021. Readers follow the unnamed narrator on his whirlwind book tour, where his overactive imagination blurs the lines between fiction and reality. Is he hallucinating the young child who keeps popping up at his events? Is this vision tied to his novel’s plot, or to his own upbringing? Mott’s moving reflection on the Black experience in America is punctuated throughout by absurdist and humorous moments, resulting in a memorable and dramatic work that leaves you plenty to think over. [e-book | print | audiobook]

Taylor Brown paints a richly-detailed picture of Depression-era America in Wingwalkers, traveling dusty Southern roads with a pair of itinerant aerial daredevils. Zeno and Della try to make a living performing death-defying stunts with their beloved airplane, their sights set on Hollywood. In a parallel narrative, William Faulkner’s meteoric rise to famous script writer and novelist also starts with a passion for stunt flying. Despite being on two very different paths, the characters’ lives all intersect one fateful night, with dramatic consequences. Inspired by real events in Faulkner’s life, this engrossing mix of American history, romance, and adventure captures the essence of the 1930s. [e-book | print]



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