good fiction

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4 06, 2017

An Ode to Girlhood (We’ll Do the Boys Next Week)

By | 2017-06-04T17:50:08+00:00 June 4th, 2017|good fiction|0 Comments

Oh, but I had the best time this week, reading Dodie Smith’s I Capture the Castle. Anybody whose ever been female and fifteen and dreamy can identify with Castle’s heroine, Cassandra Mortmain, who writes everything she sees and hears in her little notebook. I can feel her breathless excitement when I read things like: So much has happened since I last wrote here that I [...]

28 05, 2017

Bless the Children

By | 2017-05-28T17:47:14+00:00 May 28th, 2017|good fiction|0 Comments

I’m sorry if the above picture throws a sinister shadow on one of sweetest verses in the New Testament. But you can hardly blame the Catholics for the sour taste in their mouths when they contemplate priests and children. Faith, a novel by Jennifer Haigh, tackles the subject of sexual abuse within the Church. Arthur Breen is a Catholic priest in the South Shore [...]

7 05, 2017

Can You Pay the Price of Greatness?

By | 2017-05-07T17:31:04+00:00 May 7th, 2017|good fiction|1 Comment

I could swear I attempted Chaim Potok’s novel, My Name is Asher Lev way back in college. It would’ve been on one of those long Saturday afternoons, probably in the summer, when I had leisure to walk the eight blocks to the library. I couldn’t take the dull brown sobriety of Potok’s story world. I probably needed more boy-meets-girl back then. But this time around, I [...]

9 04, 2017

More Plot Strands Than a . . .

By | 2017-04-09T15:15:38+00:00 April 9th, 2017|good fiction|0 Comments

Sorry, I can’t summarize the plot of Eleanor Catton’s The Luminaries for you. It’s got more plot strands than that braid. It’s an enjoyable read but . . . Whew! I can tell you about the place: New Zealand in the 1860s. They’re having a gold rush. And a lot of rain. And mud. While living in tents. In fact, the most dignified houses [...]

26 03, 2017

Womb for Rent

By | 2017-03-26T19:46:16+00:00 March 26th, 2017|good fiction|0 Comments

When Julia Strauss was a teenager, her father sat her down and warned her, “Men are going to look at you.” By the time Julia is a senior at Princeton, she’s used to turning heads. But the stare of a particular man from across the food court at the mall one day feels a little too intense. And when he approaches and hands her [...]

19 03, 2017

Those White Folks Can Be Nasty

By | 2017-03-19T18:19:35+00:00 March 19th, 2017|children's books, good fiction|0 Comments

“It is not polite, and it is full of pain.” Author Mildred Taylor grew up on her father’s stories of slavery and “of those who lived still not free.” “I was outraged that one person would treat another person with such inhumanity and disrespect, and I grew from that outrage, determined to pass the stories on.” Holding Taylor’s Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry [...]

12 03, 2017

On Mormon Handcart Pioneers

By | 2017-03-12T20:13:37+00:00 March 12th, 2017|good fiction, Uncategorized|0 Comments

I didn’t expect Sandra Dallas’ book, True Sisters, to splash cold water on my view of the Mormon pioneers. I already had opinions of my own, which Dallas’ story only reinforced. I was raised to revere those continent-crossing converts. But all I can muster is pity. Dallas fictionalizes the journey of the Martin Handcart Company. I assume that you already know a little about [...]

5 03, 2017

Find the Missing Girl

By | 2017-03-05T21:17:44+00:00 March 5th, 2017|good fiction|0 Comments

A mentally-handicapped girl named Elizabeth disappears from her close-knit Detroit neighborhood, igniting the plot of Lori Roy’s Until She Comes Home. The neighborhood is anchored by two institutions: the factory where all the men work, and the church where all the women stage bake sales and thrift drives. Don’t forget the growing racial tensions from the “coloreds” who live in the apartment building up [...]

26 02, 2017

A Hot Time in the Old Town

By | 2017-02-26T21:37:14+00:00 February 26th, 2017|good fiction|0 Comments

Writers, as they hone their craft, learn that their stories must begin with a bang. The character’s apple-cart of a world must be turned upside down. An exploding dance hall will do it. That how Daniel Woodrell starts his book, The Maid’s Version. Well, actually he starts with a young boy hanging out with his grandmother, Alma. He hates her “pinched, hostile nature.” Mentally, [...]

19 02, 2017

Is Anybody Paying Attention to You?

By | 2017-02-16T22:02:02+00:00 February 19th, 2017|good fiction, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Read Fast Eat Slow is pleased to announced a new award, the PB&J award. This high honor recognizes books so engaging that readers are willing to risk late fees on the bills, haystack-sized laundry piles, and the shame of looking like a bum just to finish the darn book. Children of these eager readers will be told to fix themselves a sandwich and leave [...]