Cindy's blog

Science Fiction by Rebecca Howard

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Barbara Kingsolver’s latest novel Flight Behavior is about climate change.  It is also very much about beautifully flawed humans and the lengths to which we will go to connect to one another and to something larger than ourselves.  It’s both earthbound and ethereal.  It’s Barbara Kingsolver at her finest. 

Gift Me, Please by Laura Raphael

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I am one of those aunts who gives mostly books for Christmas and birthdays – on par with underwear and socks as Worst. Gifts. Ever. in the cultural mythology of gift-giving. Fortunately, our niece and nephew love to read, and they are generally happy to get books from us every year. (Indeed, on more than one Christmas, one or both of them have chosen to read a new book than playing with whatever Nerf Blaster/Teeny Little Puppy/My New Helicopter toy they’d just received.)

Breaking the First Rule of Book Club by Rebecca Howard

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I want to talk about book clubs.  I’ve been involved with several over the years and have found them to be deeply rewarding—each in their own ways.  There are a few dangerous pitfalls that book clubs have to strive to avoid, though.  In no particular order, here they are:
1) The book club becomes a wine club
2) The book club becomes a whine club
3) Not everyone reads the book
4) One individual (who typically has not read the entire book) dominates discussion
5) The same person selects titles each month

It's an Honor Just to Be Nominated by Rebecca Howard

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This may be true, but it’s also incredibly sweet to win.  That’s why I couldn’t be happier that Louise Erdrich’s latest novel The Round House is this year’s recipient of the National Book Award for fiction.  Erdrich is a storyteller of remarkable skill who can create a tone that is at once heartbreaking and tragic.  Using lush, poetic language, she describes settings that few

Feast on This by Laura Raphael

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Some books are light confections, amuse-bouches that please in the moment but as soon as they are closed, disappear from the mind as quickly as cotton candy on the tongue. These lovelies absolutely have a place in my personal reading diet, and they are far harder to write than they seem.

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