More than a beach book: Our guide to summer reading - Omaha.com
Published Friday, June 21, 2013 at 1:00 am / Updated at 9:39 am
More than a beach book: Our guide to summer reading

As summer starts today, it's time to kick back and relax on your porch with a brand new book. But, which ones should you crack open first? We talked to some locals who know what's up in the literary world and may make your choice a little more simple.


Amanda Lynch, co-owner of Jackson Street Booksellers

“Kafka on the Shore” by Haruki Murakami. “It's a really well told fantastical story.”

“Ask the Dust” by John Fante. “It's a very fun, man-against-the-world story.”

"Little Big Man” by Thomas Berger. “It's historical fiction ... It's the colonization of the west from the Native American point of view and it's very funny. It was made into a really good movie.”


Beth Black, owner of The Bookworm

“Inferno” by Dan Brown. “He's not a formula writer, but it follows the same Indiana Jones kind of uncovering of art world — it's good fun reading.”

“And the Mountains Echoed” by Khaled Hosseini. “It's typical Hosseini. ... It's not just about love relationships, it's about family relationships and friend relationships. (He's) just a great writer.”

“Ladies' Night” by Mary Kay Andrews. “It's what we call good beach reading. You learn a little bit, but they don't tax your brain. There is a little element of romance, a little element of mystery.”


Kate Birkel, owner of The Mystery Bookstore — A Stitch in Crime

Birkel recommends that if you embark on a mystery series, you start at the very beginning, because otherwise it will be hard to keep up. “You won't know the players unless you have a score card,” she said.

“Instruments of Darkness” by Imogen Robertson. “There's a whole swarth of (books) coming out about the beginning of Forensics. ... I found the characters very interesting and I found the mystery very interesting. The background, she fleshed it out very well and she shot to the head of my 'must be read now' list.”

“Ender's Game” by Orson Scott Card. “It's very, very different. The movie is coming out this summer with Harrison Ford playing one of the characters. ... It's the ultimate us vs. them — I like the writing, it was not the usual bug-eyed monster book. “

"Foreigner" by C.J. Cherryh. “Her aliens are always alien — they're not gussied up humanoids.”


Teresa Shane, Omaha Public Library employee in Collection Development

“Visit Sunny Chernobyl” by Andrew Blackwell. “It's just hysterically funny, it deserves to be well-read. It's thought-provoking and it's eye-catching.”

“Tender: A Cook and his Vegetable Patch” by Nigel Slater. “It's not huge and it doesn't take itself really seriously, and the vegetables are easily acquired. There's nothing in there that requires a great deal of thought. The food is fresh and accessible and not scary to make.”

“Silver: Return to Treasure Island” by Andrew Motion. “I'm not always a fan of people who rewrite classics for a lot of reasons. They are using someone else's characters and basing it on somebody else's story. You're stealing from that person who has been dead for 100 years. But where (Motion) started with Jim Hawkins and Long John Silver was just a start off. These characters have developed all on their own.”

“The Dog Stars” by Peter Heller. “Truly one of the best books I read last year.”


READER SUGGESTIONS

Kendra Galante — “Lean In” by Sheryl Sandberg, “And the Mountains Echoed” by Khaled Hosseini and A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin

Justine Davis — “Inferno” by Dan Brown

Bill Kos — “The Emperor of all Maladies: A Biography of Cancer” by Siddhartha Mukherjee

Laura Simonon — “In the Garden of Beasts: Love, Terror, and an American Family in Hitler's Berlin” by Erik Larson and “Fault in Our Stars” by John Green

Contact the writer: Andrea Kszystyniak

andrea.kszystyniak@owh.com    |   402-444-1149    |  

Andrea writes about local entertainment and events for Omaha.com.

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