"Only the learned read old books and we have now so dealt with the learned that they are of all men the least likely to acquire wisdom by doing so." -C.S. Lewis
The Screwtape Letters, C.S.Lewis: I'm a major lover of C.S. Lewis's writing, but had never read Screwtape, which explores the battle between Heaven and Hell from Hell's perspective. Written as a series of letters from "Uncle Screwtape," a demon/tempter, to his nephew, the book offers "advice" on how to win humans to Hell versus "The Enemy," who is (of course) God. Wry, funny, and thought-provoking, and a fairly quick read for those who have busy holiday seasons coming up!
An Untamed State, Roxane Gay: Oh my god, borrowed this from Emily over the holiday and stayed up past 1am on Thanksgiving night to read it. SUPER DARK AND DEPRESSING but incredibly written. She got it from her feminist book club (because, yes, she is in a feminist book club), and the book centers around how much a woman can survive (ranging from kidnapping to rape to family discord and marital strife). I reiterate: SUPER DARK. That said, couldn't put it down.
Alexander Hamilton, Ron Chernow: DUH did you seriously think I wasn't going to read the biography that started it all? I loved it. So illuminating, gave so much context to the musical and illustrated a fascinating life in concise, clear, not-too-high-falutin' terminology. I think that even those who don't necessarily love biographies would really enjoy it...but then again, I'm Hamilton-obsessed OOPS.
Stardust, Neil Gaiman: This was a movie about a decade ago, about a fallen star in an alternate universe. I was in the mood for a fairy tale, and this fit the bill exactly. Perfect for younger readers looking for a bit of a challenge, too...
Sex, Lies, and Handwriting, Michelle Dresbold: A handwriting expert and criminologist outlines different personality "tells" in handwriting. Heavily illustrated, it was a fun, quick and light read - although according to my handwriting, I'm apparently both a serial killer and a sex maniac. Damn!
One, Sarah Crossan: Teenage conjoined twins struggle to find identities separate from one another, a process that is accelerated when one twin is diagnosed with heart failure. Written in weird, almost poem-like little baby chapters, I breezed through it in an hour and was left unmoved - a disappointment after such a promising premise.
None this month - all new, and that's a delight!