June Read Picks

See below for a few selections from Melissa. Feel free to cast your vote and let her know which you find most intriguing by answering the poll.

1) The Damnation of Theron Ware by Harold Frederic – [From Melissa: I’ve been meaning to re-read this for a while. It’s been over 20 years since the last time but I liked it then.]

An 1896 novel by American author Harold Frederic. It is widely considered a classic of American literature by scholars and critics, though the common reader often has not heard of it. The novel reveals a great deal about early 20th century provincial America, religious life, and the depressed state of intellectual and artistic culture in small towns. It is written in a realistic style. Click here for more.

2) The Awakening by Kate Chopin – [From Melissa: This is another one I want to re-read. I adored it when I read it in college and wonder how I would feel about it now]

First published in 1899. Set in New Orleans and the Southern Louisiana coast at the end of the nineteenth century, the plot centers on Edna Pontellier and her struggle to reconcile her increasingly unorthodox views on femininity and motherhood with the prevailing social attitudes of the turn-of-the-century South. It is one of the earliest American novels that focuses on women’s issues without condescension. It is also widely seen as a landmark work of early feminism, generating mixed reaction from contemporary readers and criticism.
Click here for more.
3) John the Revelator by T.J. Beitleman – [From Melissa: Written by a local author and teacher at ASFA. In the spirit of supporting local authors and because I am hoping it will be good, I’m putting it up for consideration. Also, I think he might be willing to come speak to us]

Every prophet needs a home where they can hate him,” says the black buzzard of the title character’s nightmares. Part reluctant Tiresias, part locusts-and-honey outcast, teenaged John stumbles into the darker thickets of human insight—the high arts of vice and violence—and the small Alabama town he calls home will never be the same when he comes out the other side. T.J. Beitelman’s John the Revelator is the novel that Francesca Lia Block would write if someone dragged her kicking and screaming to Alabama and she started writing from the darkest corners of the Southern Gothic tradition. Click here for more.:

4) Galveston by Nic Pizzolatto – [From Melissa: Although I am not a fan of the noir genre, I love the show he wrote, True Detective, and am interested to see what kind of dialogue we have in this book]

From the creator, writer, and executive producer of the HBO crime series True Detective, comes a dark and visceral literary debut set along the seedy wastelands of Galveston.
On the same day that Roy Cady is diagnosed with a terminal illness, he senses that his boss, a dangerous loan-sharking bar-owner, wants him dead. Known “without affection” to members of the boss’s crew as “Big Country” on account of his long hair, beard, and cowboy boots, Roy is alert to the possibility that a routine assignment could be a deathtrap. Which it is. Yet what the would-be killers do to Roy Cady is not the same as what he does to them, which is to say that after a smoking spasm of violence, they are mostly dead and he is mostly alive.
Click here for more.

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