THE BOOK ABOUT THE PERSON WITH THE THING

When I am not writing something, I am reading something. And since writing novels requires a lot of breaks, I read a lot. Most weeks, I read at least two books, but some weeks, it’s three.

So, this is the result: I not only go so quickly from one book to the next that I can almost never remember the titles of the books I have just finished, but I also can almost never remember the plots.

This goes something like the following. At lunch with a friend:

HER  I just read the greatest book. It’s called Blah Blah by Blah Blah.

ME  Oh, really? What’s it about?

HER  *Gives an accurate plot summary*

ME  That sounds great! *writes down the title*

I go home, and fire up my Kindle, enter the title of the book in the search bar of the Kindle store, only to get the message: GO TO LIBRARY. This means that I have already read the book. I click on it to read the book summary, and sure enough, I have read it.

Basically, I have read everything. I am not kidding. Apart from tomes like Infinite Jest, War and Peace, and Ulysses, which nobody has actually read but says they have, I really have read everything. The books just meld together in my mind, that’s all. I bet I am not the only one this happens to. So, every once in awhile, I go to my Kindle library to refresh myself on where I stand with the books I have read, and I review the synopses, so that the next time a friend brings up a book, I will be actually able to discuss it without being vague.

I just finished my review of what I have read and liked recently. So before I forget once again, here is a list of books that you may not have read. Or maybe you, like me, have read and completely forgotten about:

  • Left Neglected, by Lisa Genova. As the wife of a stroke survivor, I felt that this hit very close to home. The chronicle of a victim of head trauma and her very slow recovery.
  • One True Thing by Anna Quindlen. A mother is dying. Her daughter is accused of euthanizing her. Excellent, as is every Quindlen novel.
  • Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult. A school shooting. But we see it through the eyes of the shooter. Wow.
  • The Ninth Hour by Alice McDermott. This is a book I loved and, of course, forgot I had read. Then bits of it came back to me, and I read it again. Brilliant.
  • True Places by Sonja Yoerg. Sonja is a friend of mine. This book is tremendous.
  • The Madwoman Upstairs by Catherine Lowell. The last surviving member of the Bronte family. I loved it.
  • The Trauma Cleaner by Sarah Krasnostein. An unbelievable biography of a transgender woman who cleans up after murders, suicides, hoarders, and all sorts of horrendous situations. Gruesome but somehow inspirational. Fascinating.
  • The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon. Gosh. Not my usual fare. Ghosts.
  • The Third Wife by Lisa Jewell. His wife accidentally stepped in front of a bus and was killed. Or was it an accident?
  • The Stranger Inside by Laura Benedict. Scared the crap out of me.

I have begun working on my fourth novel. This one will be my magnum opus. I hope. Teaser: it is about a woman who grew up unloved by her mother; her aunt, who was “the golden child;” and some revelations about family, love, truth, and perception. It will follow my next release, The World Came to Us. Wish me luck.

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