Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Best Seller Read-Alikes for the Week of July 15th

Can’t wait to get your hands on the latest best-seller, but the hold list is too long? To tide you over, every week we’ll offer similar titles and authors to the week’s fiction and nonfiction best sellers.

At the #1 spot for fiction this week is Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Flynn's latest (after Sharp Objects) work has earned high praise from readers and reviewers alike, and Oprah put the book at the top of her "6 Page-Turners You'll Tear Through" list. In this dark tale of psychological suspense, a woman goes missing on her fifth wedding anniversary. Her diary reveals hidden turmoil in her marriage, while her husband, desperate to clear himself of suspicion, realizes that something more disturbing than murder may have occurred.

Last month, as the book climbed the charts, Sarah wrote a read-alike list for the title. Here are some highlights:

Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson - Watson's debut novel, Before I Go to Sleep, also features a marriage that isn't as happy as it appears on the surface, with secrets revealed by the wife's journal. Christine's memory is damaged, and the past 22 years of her life, including her marriage to Ben, are missing. The first person narration of Christine's attempt to understand who she really is and what really happened to her is fast-paced and suspenseful.

Heartsick by Chelsea Cain - Chelsea Cain's popular mystery series focuses on the twisted relationship between the damaged detective, Archie Sheridan, and the twisted serial killer, Gretchen Lowell. The plots are thrilling, the crimes are gruesome, and the humor is darkest black. The series starts with Heartsick, Archie is haunted and broken by his time as Gretchen Lowell's prisoner, but he returns to the force to catch a killer targeting young girls.

In the Woods by Tana French - Irish author Tana French’s grim and compelling mysteries have won her an international success. The character-driven stories follow the suspenseful cases of the Dublin Murder Squad. Start with In the Woods, a young girl is found murdered in the woods near Dublin, the same woods where one of the detective’s two friends disappeared twenty years ago. Detective Ryan struggles to catch the killer as his long-suppressed memories resurface.

Click here for more fiction bestsellers...


This week's #1 nonfiction book is is Cheryl Strayed's Wild: From Lost to Found the Pacific Crest Trail, and you can find read-alikes for that title here. At #2 is  The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House by Edward Klein and you can find read-likes for that book here.  At #3 is a title that has appeared on the best seller's list for 86 consecutive weeks - Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand.

In Unbroken, Hillenbrand (who also wrote Seabiscuit in 2002) tells the story of Louie Zamperini. A track athlete at the 1936 Munich Olympics, Zamperini became a B-24 crewman in the U.S. Army Air Force. When his plane went down in the Pacific in 1943, he spent 47 days in a life raft, then was picked up by a Japanese ship and survived starvation and torture in labor camps until the end of the war. Hillenbrand expertly recreates Zamperini's life, from his wild youth, his imprisonment and repatriation, and subsequent struggles to build a life under the shadow of PTSD, a disorder that had yet to be recognized. With his wife's support, Zamparini eventually gains a spiritual rebirth

Other books similar to Unbroken include:

Band of Brothers by Stephen Ambrose (940.5421 AMB) - History professor and author of numerous military histories, Stephen Ambrose vividly recounts the history and life of one U.S. Army infantry company from its founding in July 1944 until November 1945. The narrative is mixed with personal recollections or veterans, letters and diary entries, recounting not only the military activity, but also the interpersonal relationships and impressions of the countries they campaigned through.

Strength in What Remains by Tracy Kidder (305.896 KID) - An All Iowa Reads 2012 selection, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Kidder presents the story of Burundi civil war survivor Deo, who endures homelessness before pursuing an education at Columbia and eventually returning to his native land to help people in both countries.

Click here for more nonfiction bestsellers ...

If you'd like more recommendations, stop by the Recommendations Desk on the first floor, check out NoveList Plus on the library's website, or visit W. 11th & Bluff next week for more reading suggestions. Or submit a Personal Recommendations request, and we'll create a reading list just for you!

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