Ah, September! Fall is almost here…and by almost, I mean here is Houston we still have two more months of heat, but all the ads will show us very cute boots and sweaters…and we can dream of cooler days! However, we still have some great reads for when you might be able to sneak a sit on the patio on a cooler evening or remain in the air-conditioned refuge of your home.
So, what are we reading this month?! Glad you asked.
First, we delve into a Romeo and Juliet retelling from Rosaline’s perspective (remember her, the girl Romeo quickly moved on from to Juliet). Then a tale about a woman whose job is to bring Nazi war criminals to justice, but in one phone call her world changes. Further, we have a smart dystopian novel following a chef who lands at a lush mountaintop colony filled with the world’s elite. If you enjoy biographies or learning about writers, this is your opportunity to read all about one of the most prolific American West writers.
Finally, there are two great options for the kids. First is a middle grade novel about a little free library that mysteriously appears in a small town…and it is guarded by a big orange cat. And the second is a wordless picture book about a bird finding a place to nest and the joy it brings to the people observing her.
What will you read this month? Head over to our Facebook Discussion Group where we are happy to talk all things books. Or catch up with us on Instagram. And, for more book talk, read along with me and you might get a sneak peek of future books. I bookstagram at VictoriaIsBooked.
Let’s turn pages!
Book Lady for GHM
September 2023 | What to Read
September 12, 2023
Historical Fiction, Women’s Fiction
Taking over from her father and grandfather as the head of the Survivor’s Campaign, an organization whose purpose is to bring Nazi war criminals to justice, Milia Gottstein has dedicated her life to making sure the voices of Holocaust victims will never be silenced. It is an overwhelming and heartbreaking mission that has often usurped her time and energy being a wife to busy surgeon Julius, and a mother and grandmother. But now, just as she is finally ready to pass on her work to others, making time for her personal life, an unexpected phone call suddenly explodes all she thought she knew about her present and her future.
In the midst of this personal turmoil, Milia receives an invitation to be the keynote speaker at a Holocaust conference in Lithuania from Dr. Darius Vidas, the free spirited, rebellious conference head.
Despite suspecting his motives―she is, after all, viewed as a ‘public enemy’ in that country for her efforts to have them try war criminals and admit their historic responsibility for annihilating almost their entire Jewish community, including her own family―she nevertheless accepts, having developed a secret agenda of her own. But as Milia and Darius begin their mission, shared experiences profoundly alter their relationship, replacing antagonism and suspicion with a growing intimacy. However, this only ramps up the hostile forces facing them, threatening their families, livelihoods, and reputations, and forcing them into shocking choices that will betray all they have achieved and all that has grown between them.
Sensuous and surprising, joyous and bitingly sharp, told in language as alluring as it is original, Land of Milk and Honey lays provocatively bare the ethics of seeking pleasure in a dying world. It is a daringly imaginative exploration of desire and deception, privilege and faith, and the roles we play to survive. Most of all, it is a love letter to food, to wild delight, and to the transformative power of a woman embracing her own appetite.
September 12, 2023
In over forty books, in a career that spanned over sixty years, Larry McMurtry staked his claim as a superior chronicler of the American West, and as the Great Plains’ keenest witness since Willa Cather and Wallace Stegner. Larry McMurtry: A Life traces his origins as one of the last American writers who had direct contact with this country’s pioneer traditions. It follows his astonishing career as bestselling novelist, Pulitzer-Prize winner, author of the beloved Lonesome Dove, Academy-Award winning screenwriter, public intellectual, and passionate bookseller. A sweeping and insightful look at a versatile, one-of-a-kind American writer, this book is a must-read for every Larry McMurtry fan.
When a mysterious little free library (guarded by a large orange cat) appears overnight in the small town of Martinville, eleven-year-old Evan plucks two weathered books from its shelves, never suspecting that his life is about to change.
Evan and his best friend Rafe quickly discover a link between one of the old books and a long-ago event that none of the grown-ups want to talk about. The two boys start asking questions whose answers will transform not only their own futures, but the town itself.
Told in turn by a ghost librarian named Al, an aging (but beautiful) cat named Mortimer, and Evan himself, The Lost Library is a timeless story from award-winning authors Rebecca Stead and Wendy Mass. It’s about owning your truth, choosing the life you want, and the power of a good book (and, of course, the librarian who gave it to you).
The streets were empty and the playgrounds still. Puzzled but determined, the bird explores the town in search of a suitable place to nest. The residents of an apartment building notice her resting in a tree outside and take comfort in her song. Watching through their windows, they look beyond their lives and pause to appreciate the wonders of nature. The bird chooses to make this community her home and builds a nest, an act of resilience and hope that inspires the humans to emerge as well, reminding them that natural rhythms continue, seasons change and life goes on. Once again.
This wordless picture book is a hopeful contemplation of our interconnectedness with the natural world and the joy that nature brings us, even in unusual times.
LAST MONth’s Popular Book Club Picks
Which ones will you be reading this month?
Note: Many of our books were read courtesy of NetGalley ARCs. While this does give us a sneak peak all suggestions and opinions are our own – we have no obligation to provide positive reviews. We will never recommend books we would not read ourselves or share with our own family. Additionally, italicized descriptions are from the publisher. Throughout the month we are so excited to discuss our opinions on all these picks – please join us here, on our Bookstagram, and in our Facebook discussion group!