Leave the World Behind

While reading this book, I kept thinking, “did Rumaan Alam think his book would be so timely when he was writing it?”  The topics of race, class, and family would have been enough to make this a very 2020 book but how could anyone have known that a book that discussed those topics AND a global catastrophe would be written pre-2020, only to be released at the end of what feels like the longest year ever?  As much as I loved this book, I would hesitate to recommend it right now, solely based on the content, knowing that some people might not want to read about the beginning of the end of the world while we are still dealing with a pandemic. However, if you feel like you can handle this topic right now, this book is one that you will be hearing about a lot over the next few months (Netflix bought the rights before the book was even released and Julia Roberts and Denzel Washington are already set to star in the adaptation,) and I really enjoyed this one, as much as you can enjoy a sad, semi-apocalyptic book.

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The Cactus League

When I picked this book up, I expected to read about baseball.  While the central theme is about America’s pastime, this book is more about the relationships between several characters that happen to all have a connection.  Maybe I was hoping for more baseball but this book, which I enjoyed, could have been a home run.  

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The Glass Hotel

There are authors out there that write books that require contemplation when finished.  They require thought and analysis and ask the reader to think about what they just read.  Emily St. John Mandel is one such author.  Whenever I read her books, I think “this is how books should be written.”  The problem with “The Glass Hotel” is not really anything that can be helped…it’s the follow up to “Station Eleven,” a book that is in my top ten books of all time and won numerous literary awards.  Despite not quite reaching “Station Eleven” heights, it was still a mesmerizing, haunting tale that I would recommend.

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