You know everything about Kate Gosselin’s new hairstyle and Heidi’s new everything. It’s time to step away from the Interweb and ingest something of substance.
Nerds bond over the finer things in life (comic books, cyborgs) in DC Pierson’s debut novel, The Boy Who Couldn’t Sleep and Never Had To. It’s about an evil force that chases two teenage friends after one reveals he never sleeps. It’s funny, thrilling, and awkward in the best way.
Fantasy? Nah. Just the story of a girl who rubs margarine on her knees, eats crayons, and eventually devours her entire town. Okay, Darrin Doyle’s The Girl Who Ate Kalamazoo is wildly out there, but its message about family dysfunction is achingly real.
Return to the Dark Side
Two sisters become orphaned after witnessing their father kill their mother in Randy Susan Meyers’s The Murderer’s Daughters. They’re then shuffled from one home to another — all while coping with their shaky past. Beautiful language balms the dark plot.
Amy Bloom (a.k.a.: the queen of interwoven stories) is back with another tightly coiled collection, Where the God of Love Hangs Out. This time, she spills secrets and confessions of friends and lovers who dip in and out of each other’s lives.
Debut novelist Amy Greene grew up in remote Appalachian foothills and recreates the colorful and eerie landscape in Bloodroot. Four voices, including a witchcraft-practicing grandmother and a pining-for-love neighbor boy, draw the action out over several decades.
The Secret Life of Emily Dickinson, by Jerome Charyn, blurs fact and fiction as he cracks open the exploits of the American poet (and closet homebody). It’s told from Dickinson’s point of view in old-fashioned speak that’ll make you reach for the nearest knickers.
There’s more than a remote chance you’ll like them.
Photo: Courtesy of Amazon