one of the best books I've read in the last 6 months is . . .

A Manual for Cleaning Women by Lucia Berlin is a great collection of related short stories. I was pretty wowed, and this isn’t a favorite genre. Can’t remember if I mentioned it upthread.

@collegemom3717, I had read a review of Say Nothing and thought it looked good - but potentially tough going. Thanks for the rec.

Hamnet. It took me about fifteen pages to get into, but then it was so good!


Oh, Hamnet was so good! I was glad that I read the book jacket ahead of it to know a bit more of the backgroud. I loaned it to a friend. She liked it, but I should have warned her how sad.


This was a CC book club selection if you weren’t aware:


Not sure how to sort through on this thread for book titles so that I can see others comments that have already been posted on books I’ve recently read!

Recently finished The Sweeney Sisters by Lian Dolan (she’s a Satellite Sister (podcast) - it was really good! And just finished Crying In H Mart - which I liked but sort of expected it to be “more” from all the hype.

Currently reading The Gunckle- which so far is pretty delightful!

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I’ll read the Hamnet posts-I really loved it. Still thinking about it and read it a while ago.


@abasket, similar reaction to Crying at H Mart. I’ve recommended it to others though and think it’d be a great book club choice. It’s rich for discussion on so many fronts, from mother-daughter relationships to identity and how we connect with that.

It’s funny, one of the last conversations I had with my grandmother, when her short term memory was gone but her long term memory was perfect, was one in which she explained to me where bushes of wild fruit were near her house and how to make jam from them. I was delighted to be having a sustained conversation in spite of having zero interest in picking fruit or making jam. Yet here I am, decades later, making jam from the fruit from those bushes and feeling her spirit throughout. Guess I’m saying, parts of that book sort of “stuck”.


I really enjoyed Pachinko—heard the author speak at a local book festival a few years ago where she talked about her journey as a novelist. She worked on Pachinko off and on for 30 years.


I loved Pachinko


I thought Pachinko was amazing. But yesterday I found Crying in H Mart at the library, and finished it in about one sitting. Historically I have ties to Korea and Korean culture so both got me in the heart.

Upthread there was mention of Year of Wonders. I read that a number of years back, but given current conditions, it would be a good re read. Thinking on that book, I have stated to a few folks that this is the best pandemic in human history, given our many means of communication. Just about anything by Geraldine Brooks I found well worthwhile, though it has been a few years.


Have had Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield on my to be read list for years. No idea why I didn’t pick it up earlier because it turned out to be a fantastic book. Beautifully written with a thread of magical realism woven through it, I got lost in the story. Had no idea where we’d end up, which I totally appreciated. So many times, I’ll read a book and it’s good but I know where we’re going. This time the journey took slight turns and detours that were unexpected. Loved it.


It was a selection for the CC book club, ably led by @mary13. You may wish to search for it. We had a rather lively discussion about it.


I find the previous book club discussions by searching threads @Mary13 has started.


Having a good time reading The Golddiggers by Sanjena Sathian. Haven’t finished yet but am enjoying everything about it - very well written.


I read that recently. Intriguing and unusual

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Thanks @HImom!

Thanks @Marilyn!

I liked this one read with my local/zoom book club (quote from GoodReads):
The Paper Daughters of Chinatown by Heather B. Moore is a historical fiction novel rooted heavily in the lives of Donaldina “Dolly” Cameron, Tien Fuh Wu, and countless other women who rescued Chinese slaves and prostituted women in San Francisco.”

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Just started a funny, quirky book–Interior Chinatown by Charles Yu. It didn’t grab me at first, but I stayed with it and I’m glad I did.