Great Reads: That's Life

May 30, 2017 | Book Buzz

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Great Reads is a series of posts featuring recent books that are highly recommended by Toronto Public Library staff.

These books focus on the daily life of their characters. Some of these lives may be recognizable; others may be less familiar but each book allows readers to immerse themselves in the story of a unique character. 

Betrayers  

The Betrayers by David Bezmozgis Maple leaf

This novel covers one fateful day in the life of Baruch Kotler, a disgraced Israeli politician. When he refuses to back down on a position, his political opponents expose his affair with a much younger woman. Fleeing scandal, they head to Yalta where he meets a former friend who denounced him to the KGB almost 40 years earlier.

Regular Print
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Talking Book (Restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

     
Empty room  

The Empty Room by Lauren B. Davis Maple leaf

A day in the life of Colleen, an intelligent, educated alcoholic, as she hits rock bottom and recalls the slow unraveling of her life in a series of flashbacks. It ends with a glimmer of hope that sanity will prevail. Painful, cringe-inducing, yet an utterly compelling read.

Regular Print
eBook
Talking Book (Restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

     
I was there the night he diee  

I was There the Night he Died by Ray Robertson Maple leaf

A heartbreaking tale, balanced with wise humour. Sam, who has just lost his wife, goes back to his Ontario hometown, Chatham, to visit his father who is in long-term care, and to arrange for the sale of his father's house.

Regular Print
eBook

     
Longbourn  

Longbourn by Jo Baker

A downstairs backstory of the barely mentioned servants in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. Astonishingly, when mentioned, the much beloved Bennett girls come off as not very likeable! Luckily the surprising depths of the Bennetts' housekeeper, Mrs. Hill, and her downstairs crew more than make up for this small shortcoming.

Regular Print
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Large Print
Talking Book (Restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

     
The spinning heart  

The Spinning Heart by Donal Ryan

Twenty-one characters in 21 short chapters narrate this story of a working-class Irish community undone by the dealings of an unscrupulous boss. Among them is Bobby Mahon, an honest man, widely admired by all. But, Bobby may not be all he seems.

Regular Print

     
Sweetland  

Sweetland by Michael Crummey Maple leaf

The inhabitants of a remote island in Newfoundland are facing resettlement. They have been offered packages to leave, the only stipulation being that everyone must go. At first, Moses Sweetland refuses, but is swayed by the persistent opposition of family and friends. In a tragic twist of fate, Moses fakes his own death and stays on the deserted island which still seems to house ghosts of former residents.

Regular Print
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Talking Book (Restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

     
To rise again at a decent hour  

To Rise Again at a Decent Hour by Joshua Ferris

A New York dentist's online identity gets compromised when someone sets up social media accounts in his name and begins promoting the rantings of a mysterious sect. This darkly hilarious novel examines all the absurdities of our modern world.

Regular Print
Audiobook
eAudiobook
eBook
Talking Book (Restricted to Print Disabled patrons)

     
An unnecessary woman  

An Unnecessary Woman by Rabih Alameddine

Aaliya is a Lebanese woman who has experienced much in her 72 years – wars, an unhappy marriage, the death of a close friend. As she walks through Beirut, her rich interior life is revealed in memories and observations about her city and the people she knows.

Regular Print
eBook

     
Visitation street  

Visitation Street by Ivy Pochoda

Two 15-year-old girls from Red Hook go rafting at night on Brooklyn's Upper Bay. The next morning, one girl is found washed up on shore barely alive; the other girl has simply vanished. Accusations, grief and guilt both divide and unite members of this diverse working-class community throughout this powerful story of redemption and forgiveness.

Regular Print
eAudiobook
eBook

Other posts in the Great Reads series:

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