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Top Ten Books On My Fall 2013 TBR List
This is the first year I'm not going back to class in September. And nerd confession: I kind of miss the back-to-school feelings. I don't miss exams and unlikeable professors and/or classmates (or group projects, for that matter), but I want to buy school supplies and brand new textbooks and be excited about new subjects. So I've decided to incorporate a bit of nonfiction into my fall reading mix –which is the closest I can get to a new subject–...
1. The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History, by Robert M. Esdel
The subtitle says it all. What could be better than a group of Allied soldiers trying to save works of art from Nazis and destruction. It kind of sounds like an Indiana Jones movie. And, there's a movie coming out this year.
2. The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat, by Oliver Sacks
Super weird neurological case studies written in an entertaining way.
3. DNA: The Secret of Life, by James D. Watson
A microhistory of DNA since its discovery told by one of the discoverers: James D. Watson. An important man with really questionable opinions, so what's to lose?
...and novels with academic hullabaloos.
4. Ever After, by Graham Swift
An academic reflects about his current life and his past. I know, it doesn't sound like much fun. But it came recommended by someone I trust, so I'm giving this a chance.
5. The Secret History, by Donna Tartt
Secrets and death among a group of Greek scholars - just right up my alley.
6. Possession, by A.S. Byatt
Two young scholars research the lives of two Victorian poets. And the cover is gorgeous.
Fall is also synonymous with spookiness and scares. There's Halloween! So there must be terror novels, right? But I'm a scaredy cat, so I fill that need with novels that have elements of fantasy and otherworldliness:
7. The Ocean at the End of the Lane, by Neil Gaiman
Nobody does otherworldliness better than Neil Gaiman. I've been a long-time fan and am dying to read his new novel. I may or may not be waiting to buy it in case it's a birthday present.
8. The Victorian Chaise Longue, by Manghanita Laski
A woman takes a nap on her Victorian chaise longue and wakes up in Victorian era. And there (then?) she's Milly, ill with tuberculosis and confined to bed because of a great guilty secret, oppresed by her own family. It sounds a little bit like The Yellow Wallpaper.
9. Kraken, by China Miéville
An author I've been dying to read, too. I know Miéville recreates different sides of London in his novels, and this is no exception. While a naturalist is studying a Giant Squid specimen in the Natural History Museum, it disappears into thin air. I know there is a war, Kraken God worshippers, magic and Impending Doom. And I've heard it's scary.
And just because there are new Sherlock episodes this fall:
10. The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, by Arthur Conan Doyle