Friday, September 25, 2015


We are continuing to take a look at the National Book Award fiction nominees for 2015. Celebrating great writing and readers who love to be engaged by great books, the following novels were nominated for their creativity, originality and appeal. Readers can find these books on the shelves at the Monrovia Public Library. 

For more than 35 years Edith Pearlman has been writing short stories and essays for magazines and anthologies. Her newest book Honeydew is a collection of 20 stories that highlight average people in situations, average and serious, that often bring special meaning to their lives. The gifted author, often called a master of her art and craft, is able to observe people without passing judgement. The book is notable also for its pristine writing style which does not waste one word. When was the last time you read a book of short stories?

There is so much in the news about the state of Detroit and its abandoned industries and neighborhoods. The Turner House by Angela Flournoy is about a woman in Detroit who has lived and raised her children for many generations in the same house, now bordered by decaying structures and vacant lots. She wants to move, but discovers that the house is worth much less than her mortgage. The novel’s tracking of how the family arrived at this point makes for an epic story filled with fabulous characters and great humor. 

 What makes a relationship work or go haywire? Lauren Goff’s novel Fates and Furies takes a look at the ups and downs of marriage. Lotto and Mathilde come together with the electricity that only a new relationship can generate, but 24 years can change a lot.  The book is told from various perspectives and critics have called the writing dazzling.

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