Book Recommendations: Part 1

I’ve mentionedย before that I love reading – I especially adore physical books and seem to buy quite a few every month (but try to stick with used!). I’ve decided to terrorize you all further with my taste, and wanted to share some of my favorite books. I tried to do a variety of genres and I have many, many more recommendations. Please leave some of your favorite books in the comments, and if this is a popular post, then I can do a recurring series and also try to incorporate some of your picks! What are your thoughts?

1. Fun Home. This is a graphic novel and for all you award-winner lovers out there, I think this won Time’s Best Book of the Year. If you haven’t tried graphic novels this is a great one to get started on – it’s an autobiographical comic by the author, Alison Bechdel, who while growing up discovers that she is a lesbian, and whose family runs a funeral home. It deals with her life as she looks back at her childhood and her relationship with her father – who she realizes was also gay.

2. Underground. You have probably all heard of Murakami’s fiction work but he is also a wonderful non-fiction writer. Underground deals with the Sarin attacks in Tokyo both before, during, and after, through a series of interviews with ordinary Japanese citizens. Amazing read and truly insightful not only into the events but also into greater Japanese culture.

3. The Sunne In Splendour. Confession time! I bought this because I was/am so obsessed with Game of Thrones, and discovered that the series was inspired on the War of the Roses, and thus wanted to learn more about it. The Sunne in Splendour does a great job of chronicling the historical events but not in a boring manner, and does take a more sympathetic view towards Edward III. And no…after reading it, I still don’t know who Jon Snow’s parents are. Sigh.

4. Shogun. James Clavell is kind of a badass, I love a lot of his fiction about Asia (though some of his titles are way better than others). Shogun is one of his masterpieces- it follows the story of a Dutch pilot of a ship that crashes on the shores of ancient Japan. Super insightful into Japanese and wider Asian culture. It has action, drama, romance, and even humor. Highly recommended.

5. The Bonfire of the Vanities. I’ve been a fan of Tom Wolfe for many years but just finished this book recently. It’s a great story about the excesses of the 80s and the finance industry in New York – and has a really engaging plot line. It was also fascinating reading this, given what’s currently going on right now in Wall Street – funny how history kind of repeats itself. I’ve never seen the movie but have heard that even if you’ve seen it, you should still read the book.

I hope this list was helpful to some of you! I’d love to hear your thoughts if you’ve read these books, and would love some of your recommendations as well. Please share! ๐Ÿ™‚

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  • chillairandperfume
    November 15, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    I'm always looking for new book recommendations. Thanks!

  • City Girl Chicago
    November 15, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    love this! I think one of my favorite books (at least of recent reads) is East of the Sun ~ have you read it?

    PS ~ LOVE your blog! your newest follower now ๐Ÿ™‚

  • skippysays
    November 15, 2011 at 4:19 pm

    I recently read and loved The Elegance of the Hedgehog. I also highly recommend all of Jonathan Safraon Foer's books- Everything is Illuminated, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and Eating Animals (that last one is non-fiction and I suggest not reading it if you want to keep enjoying eating meat)

  • Wanderlust
    November 15, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    I'm all for making literary rec a weekly blog post! I will pick up a copy of Shogun for sure. I love the feel of a physical book too, especially the smell of the fresh pages. Plus reading on a tablet always make my eyes crossed after 10 minutes!

    Do you like suspense, mystery, or crime books? If yes, check out John Sanford and his Prey books.

    Have a great day!

  • Adele
    November 15, 2011 at 4:46 pm

    I love reading too so have bookmarked these for future reads xoxo

  • preppylawyer
    November 15, 2011 at 4:47 pm

    I've been wanting to read Bonfire of the Vanities for a while now. I'm sure it will be better than the movie. I just finished Brave New World and I thought it was great.

  • Melissa
    November 15, 2011 at 4:59 pm

    Wow, cool recommendations. I am looking forward to checking out the Sunne in Splendour!


  • Chocolate, Cookies & Candies
    November 15, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    I wouldn't dare to show my list of books for fear of being laughed at! The books range from history, cookbooks to romance.

  • Chocolate, Cookies & Candies
    November 15, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    I wouldn't dare to show my list of books for fear of being laughed at! The books range from history, cookbooks to romance.

  • Lissy
    November 15, 2011 at 5:19 pm

    I love to read and just never seem to have enough time. Of your list, I've only read Bonfire of the Vanities which I thought was great. I look forward to checking out your other ones.
    My all time fave books are:

    Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
    Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosay
    The Charm School by Nelson Demille
    Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

  • The Blonde @ Stylish3
    November 15, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    The only one of those I've read is The Bonfire of the Vanities. I've seen the movie too and it was pretty disappointing.

    Thanks for the recommendations!

    I recently finished The Elegance of the Hedgehog and really enjoyed it. Right now I'm reading The Happiness Project… I'm only 1/3 of the way through with it, but I can already tell that it's going to become one of those books I re-read every few years.

  • newpetite
    November 15, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    I get laughed at my book selections coz for me it is all about relaxing and getting my mind out of the daily mundane stuff. I like steamy romance reads ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Samantha
    November 15, 2011 at 5:46 pm

    I think people might laugh at my reading list, but there is ONE book that I feel comfortable sharing. It's called "Same Kind of Different as Me" and it's based on a true story that takes place here in Fort Worth. I couldn't put it down when I started reading it. Here is the website:

  • makeupandpearls
    November 15, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    i've read shogun before but that was quite a few years ago!

    i'm always glad to have new book recs, lord knows i love a good book!

  • Tiffany
    November 15, 2011 at 6:09 pm

    thanks for your book recommendations! I read a lot too and I am always looking for good book recs. I read a variety of genres too, as long as it's well written, I'm happy to read it. I just read "The Art of Racing in the Rain" which was really good (but made me cry).

  • SassyUptownChic
    November 15, 2011 at 6:37 pm

    I hope this is a popular post because I love learning about new books Katherine. I am definitely getting "Bonfire of the Vanities"! I enjoy reading. Hope you're having a wonderful Tuesday. I just finished reading "Sarah's Key".

  • ali
    November 15, 2011 at 6:49 pm

    I honestly cannot remember the last book that I have read. I'm a lame-o. Thanks for the reminder to keep reading! I used to be a big reader… I don't know what happened!

    November 15, 2011 at 7:00 pm

    Good recommendations. I will be sure to jot these down for book club. If you haven't read Room by Emma Donoghue, you should. It is fantastic.

  • EngineeringFashionista
    November 15, 2011 at 8:38 pm

    Thanks for the recommendations. I just finished a book and was looking for another to read.

    I'm a big fan of Barbara Kingsolver's books; my all time favorite is The Poisonwood Bible. I also love reading biographies and autobiographies. I recently finished reading Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson and God, If you're not up there, I'm f**ked by Darrell Hammond. Both were pretty good reads.

  • homestilo
    November 15, 2011 at 9:21 pm

    I'm not a reader Katherine (I know, awful). But, judging by the size of it, I'd be willing to give Fun Home a go!

  • Sarah
    November 15, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    Great post! I'm a bookworm, so I'm always looking for recs. The latest book I've gotten into is The Night Circus. Not finished yet, but so far it's amazing. I definitely recommend it. ๐Ÿ™‚

  • signature mix
    November 15, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    I really want to read Bonfire of the Vanities. Thanks for all the greats recs!

  • Cindy
    November 15, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    This is a great idea! I haven't read any of the books…yet haha. This is half of my summer holiday reading sorted! Thanks ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Ria
    November 15, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    Thanks for all the great recommendations. I've been "wandering" around aimlessly on the Amazon ebooks page wondering what I should read next! Will definitely look into one of these!

  • Call me M
    November 16, 2011 at 1:06 am

    I'm not a huge fan of book reading, but I like it sometimes. However, I seriously doubt that we'll have any of these in my country.
    Thank you so much for your comment! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • peach_
    November 16, 2011 at 2:14 am

    Thanks for the recommendations! I'm always looking for the next book to pick up. I'm a huge fan of Murakami's fiction, so I'm especially interested in Underground. I just picked up his latest book, 1Q84!

    Aside from Murakami Haruki, I read anything Neil Gaiman and Chuck Palahniuk publish!

  • Katrina
    November 16, 2011 at 2:31 am

    Now you have me heading to Barnes & Noble to check these out. Reading is by far one of the most relaxing things ever…its a great escape from one's own life.

  • Chanello
    November 16, 2011 at 2:50 am

    My current reading schema is:
    Read Orwell's 1984. Then Murakami's 1Q84.

    Also Jobs bio ofcourse!

  • Bianca
    November 16, 2011 at 3:00 am

    i need to read more ,but i do love a good physical book!!

  • Rod and Alex - aka: "Rolex"
    November 16, 2011 at 3:38 am

    I am always looking for great reads! So thank you for this! I will add these books to my reading list! ๐Ÿ™‚
    I recently read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer and really loved it. Currently I am reading House of Spirits by Isabel Allende, so far I'm enjoying it!

  • Teresa
    November 16, 2011 at 8:13 am

    Thanks for sharing these!

    I'm currently reading The Girl Who Played with Fire. So far so good. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo was amazing although it was a bit slow in the first section of the book.

  • Neris / Fashion Fractions
    November 16, 2011 at 8:25 am

    Great recommendations, will definitely check them out! I recently read My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult and LOVED it!


    Fashion Fractions

  • Fabrizia
    November 16, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Thanks for your useful advices!!Nice post!

    Enter the Shopkempt giveaway on my blog!
    Please Follow me on Cosa mi metto???

  • GoNcha GoNcha
    November 16, 2011 at 10:00 am

    great recommendations. thanks. looking forward to reading your next book post.
    have a Cupcake sweet day;)

  • Jessica
    November 16, 2011 at 2:04 pm

    I'm not totally familiar with Murakami, but I started reading one of his fiction books a little while back, I haven't finished it though. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle I think. Mainly because I start three or four books at a time sometimes. I love reading as well. ๐Ÿ™‚

    xx Jessica

  • Anna
    November 18, 2011 at 5:01 pm

    Haveyouever heard of the Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco? It's a spectacular read about a historic murder mystery that was actually banned in Russia during the Communist era. My dad bought his copy on the black market and passed on the English version to me. It's more than worth a read. And thanks for your recommendations! Once I'm through with Treasure Island I'll give once of those titles a try.

  • Anna
    November 18, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    P.s the iPad loves to bunch words together I see… ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Megan
    November 20, 2011 at 12:27 am

    Went through an MBA program like you. But after all those books, my favorite is 'Confessions of a Shopaholic'. I've read every single book. It reminds me a lot of Purseforum but in hardcover. lol Each book took me one day to read – thanks HBR case studies! Hilariously fun to read. I picked up some British words while reading it. I'm looking forward to her next installment.

    'The Reader' was pretty interesting in both movie and book format. I usually find the book better than movies based on it. But in the case of The Reader, they were equally enjoyable to read & watch. love Kate Winslet.

  • Susan
    November 21, 2011 at 1:46 am

    lol. Confessions of a Shopaholic is my guilty pleasure too!! It's fun reading it in the airplane. All of a sudden I'd burst out laughing and the passengers will go "huh?" The main character, Becky, is that little devil on my shoulder when I go shopping. ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Kara
    November 21, 2011 at 4:40 am

    What a great idea! My favorite novel is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers. It's based on the book of Hosea in the Bible (which is a wild one for sure!) and centers around a prostitute during the gold rush in CA and a man who decides to love her for better or for worse (and there's a lot of that). I actually read this book out loud to my husband on car trips years ago after I had already read it once and even he enjoyed it. Thanks for giving us a chance to share here:-)

  • audrinajulia
    November 22, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    I love reading books most especially in my high school and college days.I believe that thru reading you can earn knowledge.Now I'm a bit busy mom and relay my winding moment thru reading blogs and watching news to feed my brain.:)

    On the contrary if I have time I have books on romance, religious and some investigative kind..sort of bourne identity like.But the most memorable book I ever read is "The greatest story ever told" by Og Mandino when I'm in college and "Purpose Driven Life" by Rick Warren five years ago.This book change my perspective in life as well. Can't wait for your part 2 post.:)

  • tiffyama
    November 23, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    Ooh! Thanks so much for the recommendations! I was a English major back in college and read a whole array of books…but haven't gotten around to picking up a new one for pleasure. Will look into some of these!

  • Mich9
    March 20, 2012 at 6:21 am

    google knows it ๐Ÿ˜€

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