Elaine from Book Passage WHIRLs!

I went to the wonderfully fabulous independent book store Book Passage the other day to listen to a book talk given by the wonderfully fabulous Elaine Petrocelli.  If you haven’t yet visited Book Passage in Corte Madera, you really are missing out.  It is the literary hub in the San Francisco Bay Area.  You may run into a president, a movie star, or a Nobel Laureate while browsing the shelves in this charming and unpretentious shop.  No doubt about it, all the literary giants pass through here.  Click here for a link to check it out.

Elaine is very entertaining when talking about books, and she had many to recommend.  Here are just a few that she highlighted:


May We Be Forgiven by A.M. Homes

Lionel Asbo by Martin Amis

The Chemistry of Tears by Peter Carey

Telegraph Avenue by Michael Chabon

  • I know many people reading this right now.  In fact, I’m supposed to be reading it for my personal book club!  I’ll let you know what I think at a later date!

The Mirrored World by Debra Dean

  • Elaine suggested that book clubs read this over a two-month period paired with Catherine the Great by Robert K. Massie.  What a wonderful idea!

This Is How You Lose Her by Junot Diaz

  • I can’t wait to read this book!  It is a finalist for the National Book Award (as you know because I told you that in an earlier blog post!).  Also, Diaz’s Pulitzer Prize winning The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao was a HUGE Literary Masters hit!

Round House by Louise Erdrich

  • Also a finalist for the National Book Award!

The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers

  • Also a finalist for the National Book Award!  I highly recommend this book, although I must warn you, it’s tough to read.  Two American soldiers in Iraq.  Very poetic, moving, and thought-provoking.

Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter

  •  As you know, this little gem of a novel was the September selection for Literary Masters book groups and literary salons.  Everyone loved it!  My blog post on it will be posted soon, so stay tuned.

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

  •  This was last season’s Literary Masters selection for May.  Again, a real winner!  Everyone loved this novel, and we had great fun with all the references to Moby Dick–some Literary Masters members were inspired and read Melville’s masterpiece over the summer!  I went to a talk that Chad gave; if you “like” Literary Masters on Facebook, you’ll see a photo of Chad and me!

A Hologram for the King by Dave Eggers

  • Also a finalist for the National Book Award!  I’m looking forward to reading this one soon.


Joseph Anton by Salman Rushdie

  • I am a Rushdie fan, so I’m looking forward to reading his account of the fatwa that was placed upon him due to his publication of The Satanic Verses.

Paris, A Love Story by Kati Marton

  • Kati Marton’s story of her marriages to Peter Jennings and Richard Holbrooke.  It sounds…juicy!  I bet it’s a page-turner.

The Longest Way Home by Andrew McCarthy

Some Girls, Some Hats, and Hitler by Trudi Kanter

Yes, Chef by Marcus Samuelsson

  • An Ethipian boy is adopted by Swedes, grows up in Sweden, and becomes an award-winning chef in America.   This memoir sounds like it’s worth reading.

The latest Book Passage catalogue has even more of Elaine’s picks–check it out!

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