It’s time to vote for Round 6 of Moira’s Seattle Times Book Club!
This time around, I thought I’d ask a local bookseller for recommendations — and Michael Coy, manager of Third Place Books in Ravenna, was happy to oblige. Given some general guidelines from me (relatively recent fiction; available in paperback; no doorstops), he offered the following suggestions:
“A Ladder to the Sky” by John Boyne. From the author of “The Heart’s Invisible Furies” (another book that Coy recommended highly), this is the story of a would-be writer making a cold-blooded climb to the top. Comparisons to Patricia Highsmith’s work are made on several of the cover blurbs — and by Coy.
“My Sister, the Serial Killer” by Oyinkan Braithwaite. Longlisted for the Booker Prize, this debut from Nigerian author Braithwaite is both a thriller and a dark comedy, told from the point of view of an older sister who’s constantly cleaning up the mess created by her younger sibling — who has an unpleasant habit of bumping off her boyfriends. Coy thought it would be “great fun” for a book club to discuss, particularly in the examination of an amoral character.
“The Great Believers” by Rebecca Makkai. Makkai’s book, which follows a group of Chicago friends through the AIDS epidemic and beyond, won numerous awards in 2018, including the ALA Carnegie Medal. Recently out in paperback, Coy said it’s a very popular selection for book clubs. (It was a favorite of mine in 2018, too.)
“The Secrets Between Us” by Thrity Umrigar. Loosely a sequel to Umrigar’s 2006 novel, “The Space Between Us,” this novel tells the story of a friendship between two women in India who struggle with poverty but find richness in their connection. Coy called it “Dickensian in the best ways” and said the story reduced him to tears more than once.
Please vote! We’ll announce the selection Nov. 5. Our discussion will take place at noon on Wednesday, Dec. 4 at seattletimes.com/books. Happy reading!