What Marie's Reading

Marie works in ecommerce order processing at Greenlight, and reads voraciously; her no-holds-barred "What I'm Reading" reports for fellow Greenlight staff members are not to be missed!  Here's some of what Marie's been reading lately: a reading diary of sorts.


 

The Accusation: Forbidden Stories from Inside North Korea Cover Image
By Bandi, Deborah Smith (Translator)
$16.00
ISBN: 9780802127518
Availability: Available to order (allow for shipping time to bookstore or direct-to-home)
Published: Grove Press - January 16th, 2018

April 29: I finished The Accusation by Bandi.  The stories are all pretty grim but it's an important book in the bearing-witness category and great for people interested in North Korea which I kind of feel like is always worth reading about. The story of its publication was fascinating (the translator was the same person who garnered controversy over The Vegetarian.)  But I'm glad I read it. 


Life as a Unicorn: A Journey from Shame to Pride and Everything in Between Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780008384319
Availability: Available to order (allow for shipping time to bookstore or direct-to-home)
Published: Fourth Estate - June 9th, 2020

April 9: Last night I finished LIFE AS A UNICORN, coming out on June 9 by Amrou Al-Khadi, their memoir of growing up queer/genderqueer in a Middle Eastern Muslim family. They talk about struggling with issues as a kid in the middle east, moving to London, at Eton and Cambridge trying to be British, figuring it out with their family and finally reaching young adulthood while working through issues around gender, religion and race. It's good and they recount their adventures and struggles with humor and grace.


The Grammarians: A Novel Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780374280116
Availability: On Our Shelves Now (while supplies last)
Published: Sarah Crichton Books - September 3rd, 2019

April 2: I finished THE GRAMMARIANS by Cathleen Schine, which is a very New Yorky novel about twins with a passion for language. I can see this being a literary beach book for the brownstone set. The characters are well-drawn and their cerebral life will resonate with those who enjoy considering all things.


The Yellow House: A Memoir (2019 National Book Award Winner) Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780802125088
Availability: Available to order (allow for shipping time to bookstore or direct-to-home)
Published: Grove Press - August 13th, 2019

March 27: I finished THE YELLOW HOUSE by Sarah Broom, which was everything everyone said it was, a moving complex story of a city, a family and a woman's life. Really liked it and she seems like a neat person.


Nothing to See Here Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9780062913463
Availability: Available to order (allow for shipping time to bookstore or direct-to-home)
Published: Ecco - October 29th, 2019

March 25: I finished Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson, which was a quickish read and pretty moving and sweet, about a woman who is kind of a screw up and aimless who becomes a "governess" to two 10 year olds who spontaneously combust when they feel strong emotions. It's about finding family where you can and feeling love you never knew you could. Definitely on the light side in terms of the writing but manages to pack an emotional punch.


Saint X: A Novel Cover Image
$26.99
ISBN: 9781250219596
Availability: On Our Shelves Now (while supplies last)
Published: Celadon Books - February 18th, 2020

I finished Saint X by Alexis Schaitkin, which is a solid melodrama about how a young woman's death on a fictional island resonates and changes the lives of those around her. The young woman is Alison, a wealthy teen on vacation wit her parents and sister. Most affected are her little sister Claire and one of the two prime suspects in her death, Clive, who is a worker at the resort. Oyinkan Braithwaite of My Sister the Serial Killer fame gave the book a tight, thoughtful writeup in the Times covering Schaitkin's treatment of class, race and self-delusion; this sold me on the book and I think it would be a great fit for literary melodrama readers. A good chunk of the novel is set in the PLG/Flatbush neighborhood, fwiw. 


The Witches Are Coming Cover Image
$27.00
ISBN: 9780316449885
Availability: On Our Shelves Now (while supplies last)
Published: Hachette Books - November 5th, 2019

February 21: I finished the audio of Lindy West's The Witches Are Coming, which is by turns bracing, validating, scary, funny, smart, unyielding, angry, moving, hopeful and energizing. You'll probably like it if you work here or shop here. It's not exactly what I'd call challenging for most of its readers but it's a tough, quick read that may buoy you and keep you going on a tough day.


Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781524760595
Availability: On Our Shelves Now (while supplies last)
Published: Tim Duggan Books - January 14th, 2020

I finished Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition & Compromise in Putin's Russia, by Joshua Yaff. This is an excellent examination of life under a dictatorship, profiling several people in long chapters about their lives and how they carve out their work and life under the pressure of the state. Yaffa never mentions the current American president but it's hard to not to think about what may be in store for us. He profiles humanitarian aid workers, a media figure, a priest and zookeeper among others and shows the adjustments and compromises and give and take they engage in in order to do what they do and sleep at night. It's fascinating and engaging. 


Gang of Lovers Cover Image
By Massimo Carlotto, Antony Shugaar (Translated by)
$15.00
ISBN: 9781609452681
Availability: Available to order (allow for shipping time to bookstore or direct-to-home)
Published: Europa Editions - June 2nd, 2015

February 16: Also finished Gang of Lovers, by Massimo Carlotto, the first book in which Carlotto combines his two crime series into one page-turning story about an off-the-books investigator and his cronies going after a remorseless killer who's kidnapped and murdered a wealthy woman's lover. The killer, Giorgio Pellegrini, is like an Italian version of Donald Westlake's Parker with better taste in clothes and wine. Fun.