Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Best Seller Read-Alikes for the Week of October 21st

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 #1 this week in fiction is J.K. Rowling's much-anticipated novel The Casual Vacancy. Rowling's first venture into adult fiction centers on the small English village of Pagford and begins with the sudden death of a councilman. The empty seat on the council set off a fierce fight between the haves and the have-nots, the differing cultures and between the generations of Pagford. A darkly humorous satire, Rowling explores the far less magical battles between good and evil in small-town life. 

Books similar to Rowling's The Casual Vacancy include:

A False Sense of Well Being by Jeanne Braselton - After eleven years of marriage, thirty-eight-year-old Jessie Maddox finds herself in the middle of a midlife crisis as she begins to experience a number of dark fantasies about her husband's untimely end. Black humor suffuses Jessie's attempts to explain and alleviate her boredom as she confides in other women and finally return to her hometown in Alabama, searching for some kind of comfort.

Below Stairs:  The Classic Kitchen Maid's Memoir that Inspired 'Upstairs, Downstairs' by Margaret Powell (Biog. Powell)- A memoir written by a kitchen maid in 1920's England, detailing the daily drudgery of domestic service, the inequities between social classes and the dynamic between the family of the house and those who served them. Powell writes with unsentimental wit and bluntness that is refreshing and entertaining.

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson - Set in the small British village of Edgecombe St. Mary, where Major Ernest Pettigrew (retired) leads a quiet life until his brother's death sparks an unexpected friendship with Mrs. Jasmina Ali, the Pakistani shopkeeper from the village. Drawn together by their shared love of literature and the loss of their respective spouses, the Major and Mrs. Ali soon find their friendship blossoming into something more. But will their relationship survive in a society that considers Ali a foreigner? An engaging love story that explores the social and politcal boundaries of small-town life.

Click here for more fiction bestsellers... 

At #1 in non-fiction is Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot, Bill O'Reilly & Michael Dugard's follow-up to their bestseller detailing President Lincoln's assassination (Killing Lincoln: The Shocking Assassination that Changed America Forever). O'Reilly and Dugard take the same route here, retelling the events leading up to the assassination of President Kennedy and how the event affected the nation and the world.

Books similar to Killing Kennedy include:

Reclaiming History: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy by Vincent Bugliosi (973.922092 BUG) - Best known as the prosecutor of the Manson murders, Bugliosi presents a thorough analysis of the assassination of JFK and its surrounding conspiracy theories draws on forensic evidence, key witness testimonies, and other sources to explain what really happened and why conspiracy theories have become so popularized.

Jack Kennedy, Elusive Hero by Chris Matthews (Biog. Kennedy) - Based on interviews with some of his closest associates, Matthew creates a portrait of the thirty-fifth president, discussing his privileged childhood, military service, struggles with a life-threatening disease, and career in politics. More thoughtful that shocking, this biography delves deeper into the personal life of JFK.

The Destiny of the Republic: A Tale of Medicine, Madness and the Murder of a President by Candice Millard (973.84 MIL) - A narrative account of James Garfield's political career offers insight into his background as a scholar and Civil War hero, his battles against the corrupt establishment, and Alexander Graham Bell's failed attempt to save him from an assassin's bullet.

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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