Thursday, April 2, 2009


My Most Excellent Year: A Novel of Love, Mary Poppins & Fenway Park
by Steve Kluger
Young Adult Fiction
Available now in paperback

This is such a great book. It's a novel told in journal entries and letters from three high school students' journals: T.C., a Red Sox fan who lost his mother when he was six; Augie, T.C.'s "brother" who hasn't yet realized that he's gay; and Alejandra, an ambassador's daughter who is attending public school for the first time. As T.C. attempts to woo Alejandra, he finds himself befriending a six-year-old deaf orphan who has spent his entire life waiting for Mary Poppins to rescue him. Meanwhile, Augie begins a relationship with a boy and Alejandra tries to keep her true passion--dance--from her diplomat parents. Through witty and authentic letters to people alive and dead, Kluger weaves the engrossing tale of three students' most excellent year.

The Lake of Dead Languages
by Carol Goodman
Adult Fiction
Available now in paperback

The Night Villa, Carol Goodman's most recent thriller, is one of my favorite books to recommend. I was expecting this one to be similar--and it was, in that I couldn't put it down. Otherwise, though Goodman's style is completely different (and just as good): this is a novel about a woman, Jane, who leaves her husband and takes a position at her old boarding school to teach Latin. A few weeks into the semester, she opens her homework folder and finds a page torn from the journal she kept during her senior year, which she lost before graduation. Soon afterwards, the tragic events of that year seem to be happening again. As events unfold, Jane finds herself reliving the past. At the time, she did not fully grasp what was she must understand her past in order to keep her students from repeating it. Gripping from beginning to end, Goodman's writing will give you the best kind of chills.

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