GOAL! The World Cup is in full swing and Team USA already has one win under their belts as they prepare to take on Portugal this Sunday. If you find yourself in the “futebol” spirit, you may want to check out one of these great reads about the fascinating world of soccer.
No one is more surprised than Judd Foxman when his father passes away. Not so much by the death, but by the nonreligious patriarch’s last wish to have the family sit Shiva, a Jewish tradition that requires his mother and siblings to spend an entire week together under one roof. This wouldn’t be so bad if Judd’s family wasn’t so dysfunctional. As this group of unique characters are forced to spend time together old wounds are brought to surface and they are made to deal with issues they would have rather continued to ignore. The only family member not present is Judd’s wife who has been openly having an affair. As Judd unwillingly reconnects with his family and struggles to deal with the reality of his deteriorating marriage what results is a novel full of biting, albeit slightly dark humor with realizations about family life and love.
If you're looking for something to brighten your dreary winter day, pick up Pancol's first English-translated novel. The plot revolves around two sisters - Iris, a glamorous, rich attorney's wife and her plain Jane, bookish sister Jo. The story begins when Jo's husband empties their joint savings account and leaves her for his manicurist, who he runs off to farm crocodiles with in Kenya. Jo is left to pick up the pieces of her life and raise her two daughters, Zoe and Hortense, on the meager salary she makes as a 12th century scholar. Iris and Jo hatch the perfect scheme - Jo will write a medieval historical novel that Iris will take the credit for, thus giving Jo the money she needs and Iris the fame she craves. As in life, things don't go quite as planned and hilarity ensues. It's chick lit done up en Francais; humorous, quite charming and perfect to curl up on the couch with and escape to bright, sunny Paris, if only for a few hundred pages.
Yes, it's true; David Fincher has adapted Gillian Flynn's bestselling thriller Gone Girl into a film starring Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike. Filming has started and 20th Century Fox posted a pic of Ben in character as Nick Dunne on their twitter account. The film is scheduled to hit theaters in October 2014. For more info, see the article on CNN's The Marquee Blog.
Kate Moore and her husband decide to accept a job offer in Luxemburg. While her husband begins his new job and Kate spends more time with her children she must learn how to adjust to the daily life in a new country. Kate begins to notice her husband’s suspicious behavior and also becomes suspicious of another American couple they have befriended. As she begins to investigate she becomes nervous they are connected to her past. Mystery lovers will enjoy this novel which keeps them guessing until the very end.
Mr. Rosenblum is a Jewish refugee who fled to England from Germany before the outbreak of WWII. He longs to be accepted as a true Englishman. As a profitable businessman, he buys the correct Savile Row suit, a Jaguar, and shops at Fortnum & Mason. But his Jewish background prevents his membership into a golf club, for him the ultimate sign of an English gentleman. In desperation he decides to build his own golf course which proves to be a greater endeavor than anticipated. The character is exasperating at times, but heartwarming overall, especially when you learn the author is writing about her grandfather.
It begins with dinner at a high-end restaurant in Amsterdam. Two brothers, Paul and Serge, and their wives meet to discuss their teenage sons. It is quickly apparent this is no ordinary discussion. What have the cousins done? What is to be done about it? Slowly the tension builds and the reader becomes anxious as the story unfolds. The ending is a stunner!
After his friend Michael commits suicide, Charlie must begin his first year of high school alone. He begins to write letters to an anonymous friend. It is through these letters we learn about Charlie, his family, friends, mentor and life. This is a well-written, articulate, funny, and poignant coming-of-age book.
The hypnotist has finally started dating someone that seems like he could be “the one.” He tells her on a date that he has a stalker and she finds herself fascinated rather than disturbed. This story is told from the point of view of two characters, one of whom is the stalker. The author has such a way with character development that it's easy to sympathize with the stalker and you find yourself liking her. Moriarty seems to be able to capture the most complicated of human emotions and motivations in a simple and accessible way. There are no black and white issues in her books and the truthfulness of that really shines through. This was a very enjoyable read.
Me before You is the story of Louisa Clark, and Will Traynor. “Lou” is a small town British girl, living with her zany family, and a waitress in a small Tea Shoppe. She answers an ad in the paper for a companion to a young man, and is hired for her likability and cheerfulness. Will, who was once a very active man, had an accident and is now a quadriplegic. His depression and sorrow are understood, but his mother would like him to live life in a different way. What follows is a combining of heart and soul, as these two unlikely people share their lives careening toward an unbelievable ending.