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General Fiction Recommendations

Here is the spot for all of those fiction books that just don't seem to fit into any other category.

Please add a summary of each book, so those that are interested can find out a little more.  Also, please just add new recommendations and not posts that just say "I agree" and "I like that one too".  It will make it a lot easier for everyone to sort through the posts.

         Abigail 5/17/06 and Isabelle 10/17/07

"Life's what you make it - so let's make it rock." - Hannah Montana

by on Jun. 21, 2008 at 9:52 AM
Replies (41-50):
mupt02
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 10:36 AM
Title:  Garden Spells
Author: Sarah Addison Ellen
Brief Summary: A woman escapes from her abusive husband back to her hometown to live with her sister. The sister runs a catering business with recipes that use flowers and herbs from their "magic" garden. It's a little difficult ot explain, but it is really a good story.


***originally posted by jacnzac***

         Abigail 5/17/06 and Isabelle 10/17/07

"Life's what you make it - so let's make it rock." - Hannah Montana

mupt02
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 10:38 AM

by Sh00tingStarGrl on Nov. 28, 2007 at 4:31 PM

Title: A Separate Peace
Author: John Knowles

This is a beautiful story of teenage boys coming of age during the WWII era. Two best friends have to face the truth about themselves, the world, and human nature. This book at times kept me on the verge of tears, wishing with all my heart that their dreams wouldn't be shattered, and at times it had me at the edge of my seat wondering what would happen next . It's a tear jerker, I have to say. I just can't say enough about it.

 From Barnes&Noble website:

Set at a boys' boarding school in New England during the early years of World War II, A Separate Peace is a harrowing and luminous parable of the dark side of adolescence. Gene is a lonely, introverted intellectual. Phineas is a handsome, taunting, daredevil athlete. What happens between the two friends one summer, like the war itself, banishes the innocence of these boys and their world.

A bestseller for more than thirty years, A Separate Peace is John Knowles's crowning achievement and an undisputed American classic.

Annotation

Knowles' classic story of two friends at boarding school during World War II--one of the most starkly moving parables ever written about the dark forces that brood over the tortured world of adolescence--has been a consistent seller for more than 20 years.

         Abigail 5/17/06 and Isabelle 10/17/07

"Life's what you make it - so let's make it rock." - Hannah Montana

j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 2:04 PM

by emlosmom on Nov. 24, 2007 at 12:00 PM

TITLE:  Stones From the River


AUTHOR:  Ursula Hegi

GENRE:  Fiction (Oprah's Book Club)

SUMMARY:  Stones from the River is a daring, dramatic and complex novel of life in Germany. It is set in Burgdorf, a small fictional German town, between 1915 and 1951. The protagonist is Trudi Montag, a Zwerg -- the German word for dwarf woman. As a dwarf she is set apart, the outsider whose physical "otherness" has a corollary in her refusal to be a part of Burgdorf's silent complicity during and after World War II. Trudi establishes her status and power, not through beauty, marriage, or motherhood, but rather as the town's librarian and relentless collector of stories.

Through Trudi's unblinking eyes, we witness the growing impact of Nazism on the ordinary townsfolk of Burgdorf as they are thrust on to a larger moral stage and forced to make choices that will forever mark their lives. Stones from the River is a story of secrets, parceled out masterfully by Trudi -- and by Ursula Hegi -- as they reveal the truth about living through unspeakable times.

j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 2:08 PM

by 2Blue2BrownEyes on Nov. 25, 2007 at 4:38 PM

I just finished a good book called

TITLE:  "The Thirteenth Tale"

AUTHOR:  Diane Setterfield

GENRE:  Fiction

SUMMARY:  It's a murder mystery and it has lots of wacky characters, and an ending that I didn't even expect.  You can get it from your local library.  It reminded me of a gothic romance novel too.  The story is about a famous novelist who is very old and has never told the truth in her life.  She decides to write a memoir and the biographer has to figure out if she is telling the truth. 
j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 2:33 PM

by WrtrMom on Dec. 10, 2007 at 4:40 PM

I also recommend

TITLE:  Saving Fish From Drowning

AUTHOR:  Amy Tan

GENRE:  Fiction

SUMMARY:  On an ill-fated art expedition into the southern Shan state of Burma, eleven Americans leave their Floating Island Resort for a Christmas-morning tour-and disappear. Through twists of fate, curses, and just plain human error, they find themselves deep in the jungle, where they encounter a tribe awaiting the return of the leader and the mythical book of wisdom that will protect them from the ravages and destruction of the Myanmar military regime.
j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 2:36 PM

by Bitsandpieces on Dec. 14, 2007 at 9:10 AM

TITLE:  Empire Falls (Made Into An HBO Movie)

AUTHOR:  Richard Russo

GENRE:  Fiction

SUMMARY:
  Miles Roby has been slinging burgers at the Empire Grill for 20 years, a job that cost him his college education and much of his self-respect. What keeps him there? It could be his bright, sensitive daughter Tick, who needs all his help surviving the local high school. Or maybe it's Janine, Miles ~ soon-to-be ex-wife, who's taken up with a noxiously vain health-club proprietor. Or perhaps it's the imperious Francine Whiting, who owns everything in town, and seems to believe that everything, includes Miles himself. In Empire Falls Richard Russo delves deep into the blue-collar heart of America in a work that overflows with hilarity, heartache, and grace.
 
**** He'll make you laugh and he'll make you cry!

j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 2:43 PM

by camdensmom06 on Jan. 4, 2008 at 9:28 PM

"The Mermaids Singing" by Lisa Carey 

Book jacket description:  

     There is an island off the west coast of Ireland called Inis Muruch--the Island of the Mermaids--a world where myth is more powerful than truth, and love can overcome even death.  It is here that Lisa Carey sets her lyrical and sensual first novel, weaving together the voices and lives of three generations of Irish and Irish-American women.  

     Years ago, the fierce and beautiful Grace stole away from the island with her small daughter, Grainne, unable to bear its isolation.  Now Grainne is motherless at fifteen, and a grandmother she has never met has come to take her back.  Her heart is pulled between a life in which she no longer belongs and a family she cannot remember.  But only on Inis Muruch can she begin to understand the forces that have torn her family apart.    

    *** I liked the character development in this book.  However, it is a little disjointed as it jumps around among three different points of view (Grainne, Grace, and Grace's mother, Cliona) back and forth through time.  Overall I recommend this book.
j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 3:06 PM

by mom2joshnlauren on Jan. 20, 2008 at 10:58 PM

TITLE:  The Kindness of Strangers

AUTHOR:  Katrina Kittle

GENRE:  Fiction

SUMMARY:  Sarah Laden is a widow with two sons, Nate and Danny, and a thriving catering business. Her best friend, Courtney, helped her through the horrible days after her husband's death and is always there when she's needed. Her son, Jordan, is even Danny's best friend. Then one day all that changes. In a nightmare chain of events, Sarah discovers that she really didn't know Courtney at all and poor, odd Jordan has been living a hell no one could imagine. As Courtney waits in jail, Sarah decides at the request of her older son, Nate, to take on the foster care of Jordan, with all its painful ramifications. Child sexual abuse is hard to read about and Kittle sometimes gets a little heavy-handed with her facts and statistics. But told through the perspectives of Sarah, Nate, Danny, and Jordan, this is ultimately an attractive story of ordinary people trying to make the best of an awful situation and finding the healing power of love and forgiveness in the process.
j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 3:12 PM

by Ryanswife06 on Jan. 18, 2008 at 2:38 AM

The Swallows of Kabul by Yasmina Khadra.

GENRE:  fiction

if you like the Kite Runner, you will enjoy this book. It tells the story of 2 couples living under the Taliban Rule in Afganistan. It's a very emotional story in which you will relate to the characters even though their lives are so different from anything we experience here in western civilization.
j_l_b
by on Jun. 25, 2008 at 3:15 PM

by jdolphin on Jan. 30, 2008 at 3:45 PM

I have read this book

Sisters by Danielle Steel

it is truly a wonderful book ...
Four sisters, a Manhattan brownstone, and a tumultuous year of loss and courage are at the heart of Danielle Steel's new novel about a remarkable family, a stunning tragedy--and what happens when four very different young women come together under one very lively roof.

Candy--it's the only name she needs--is blazing her way through Paris, New York, and Tokyo as fashion's latest international supermodel...

Her sister Tammy has a job producing the most successful hit show on TV, and a home she loves in L.A.'s Hollywood Hills... In New York, oldest sister Sabrina is an ambitious young lawyer, while Annie is an American artist in Florence, living for her art... On one Fourth of July weekend, as they do every year, the four sisters come home to Connecticut for their family's annual gathering. But before the holiday is over, tragedy strikes and their world is utterly changed.

Suddenly, four sisters who have been fervently pursuing success and their own lives--on opposite sides of the world--reunite to share one New York brownstone, to support each other and their father, and to pick up the pieces while one sister struggles to heal her shattered body and soul. Thus begins an unscripted chapter of their lives, as a bustling house is soon filled with eccentric dogs, laughter, tears, friends, men...and the kind of honesty and unconditional love only sisters can provide. But as the four women settle in, they are forced to confront the direction of their respective lives. As the year passes and another July Fourth approaches, a season of grief and change gives way to new beginnings--as a family comes together to share its blessings and a future filled with surprises and, ultimately, hope.

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