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Big Kids’ Table: Something Old & Something New

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How often do you research authors you read and liked a long time ago? For me, not so much. Unless I happen to see a familiar name, I don’t actively seek them out. But after two authors who I once loved so fiercely made their way on my radar again, I decided to take a look back and see what was new with some of my old favorites.

Today is a “double the pleasure” sort of post. On one hand, you are getting a highly recommended backlist title and on the other, a newer or upcoming book that might strike your fancy. I hope you enjoy the list as much as I enjoyed putting it together!

Anna Quindlen

Book I Loved: Rise & Shine | New Title: Still Life With Bread Crumbs (1/2014)

Anna Quindlen Big Kids Table Book Picks

I actually lent Rise & Shine to Magan many moons ago. It’s a strong story about family, sisters, different paths and it really resonated with me. (I have no idea why I picked it up at first. Paperback table?) I haven’t read a Quindlen since but her newest is about a photographer who hits tough times and escapes her life in NYC for a quieter one in a cabin. Sign me up!

Carole Radziwill

Book I Loved: What Remains (memoir) | New Title: The Widow’s Guide to Sex and Dating (2/2014)

Carole Radziwill Big Kids Table Book PIcks

I remember reading What Remains waiting in line for a musical at Disney’s Animal Kingdom one summer. I had sweat rolling down my back and tears rolling down my cheeks. It was a moment. What Remains is Carole’s memoir about her marriage soon to be cut short by cancer, and her friendship with JFK Jr. and Carolyn Bessette. (Carole’s husband was JFK’s cousin.) It’s a beautiful book about endearing unexpected tragedy in a short period of time, and it’s stayed with me all of these years. (Tip: the eBook is under 10 dollars — go buy it!) This year, Carole released her fiction debut: The Widow’s Guide to Sex and Dating. It sounds semi-autobiographical but I’m interested to see what she can do in this genre. (And someone compared her to Joan Didion, who is my writing idol! Big deal.)

Karen Joy Fowler

Book I Loved: The Jane Austen Book Club | New Title: We Are All Completely Besides Ourselves (pb 2/2014)

Karen Joy Fowler Big Kids Table Book Picks

I am so surprised over how low the ratings are for JABC on Goodreads. So incredibly low. It’s been a long time since I read it, sure. But it’s a paperback that I’ve kept in my collection even after I’ve culled time and time again. I loved the characters and their relationships. (Plus who doesn’t like a book club!) Fowler’s newest release actually came out in 2013 but the paperback is out in stores as of February, and the reviews were solid! Sounds like an interesting family dynamic that I need to experience for myself. (I should probably reschedule a re-read for JABC too.)

Sarah Bird

Book I Loved: The Gap Year | New Title: Above the East China Sea (May 2014)

Sarah Bird Big Kids Table Book Picks

First, The Gap Year is one of the first books I reviewe on RBR. It holds a dear place in my heart and I’m sad I’ve sort of forgotten it because I was over the moon when I first read it. (It’s since come out in paperback and I love the cover.) Mother daughter relationships in books never get old for me. But oh gosh, I love that Bird is taking on a semi-historical fiction set during World War II for her next book. I cannot wait to read this one. It sounds intense, and I do like stories that alternate between present day and the past.

[ BONUS PICK ]

Matthew Quick

New Title: The Good Luck of Right Now

The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick

The truth is I own 3 (three!) books by Matthew and I haven’t read any of them yet. Two YAs (Sort of Like a Rock Star and Forgive Me Leonard Peacock) and also Silver Linings Playbook (I saw the movie twice; does that count?). I am the worst. This is why I go on book buying bans. His new novel came out two weeks ago and it was a very nice birthday present from a friend. Quick is a writing machine, isn’t he? Synopsis? A guy loses his mom, discovers she had been writing to Richard Gere, and as he sets off on a “new life” he continues to write to him as well. Sounds quirky, right? I need to get a move on with Matthew’s books!

Have you read anything non-YA lately? Leave your suggestions below! And thanks for stopping in today!

March 1, 2014 - 2:59 pm

Maggie @ Just a Couple More Pages - I am excited for you to read The Widow’s Guide to Sex and Dating so I can then decide if I want to read it. I remember reading What Remains while I was in college and really enjoying it (although the only thing I remember from the book is that she worked in Caldor, do you remember Caldor?).

March 1, 2014 - 3:14 am

Alice - So much love for this post! I love seeing recommended books that I have completely and utterly never heard of before. This is really great Estelle! 😀 I’m very tempted to look into all of these books.

February 28, 2014 - 3:00 pm

Leah - You know I’m already gooey-eyed over this feature, but THIS ONE. This is brilliant!

Radziwill & Bird are new to me but I don’t think that’ll last long! Also, We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves was blurbed by Ruth Ozeki who wrote the amazing, fantastic, wonderful, gorgeous, phenomenal, OMGGOREADIT novel A Tale for the Time Being. ..& a quick search on my library’s site turned up a few copies. GUESS WHAT I’LL BE DOING THIS WEEKEND.

I haven’t read any of Quick’s novels either, but this new one sounds like a perfect starting point.

February 28, 2014 - 11:16 am

Lucy - Have I told you I love this feature?! I do. I missed your review of The Gap Year but that sounds like a must read, as does Bird’s latest.

I just picked up the audio of The Good Luck of Right Now, and Sort of Like a Rock Star in fact. I liked Leonard Peacock and am interested to hear what you think of it. SLP is one of my fave movies 🙂

Thanks for the great recs as always!

February 28, 2014 - 10:11 am

Alexa S. - Every time, Estelle. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. Whenever you do a Big Kids Table post, without fail, I just want to add all the books on there into my TBR. What is this sorcery? Kidding and teasing aside, I actually really want to read some of these! Still Life with Bread Crumbs sounds fantastic, as does The Jane Austen Book Club and The Gap Year.

February 28, 2014 - 8:25 am

Daphne Trumps - I do like to that find old authors I loved have new books but for some reason they haven’t been on my radar. I think I may have to take a tour of my GR to see what is new on that front. Also, I really loved The Silver Linings Playbook movie, so I think I need to check out Matthew Quick. I read one review for his latest book & it wasn’t a good one, but that doesn’t mean I won’t like it. I must give him a shot. great post!

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