√ The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
√ The Punishment of Virtue; Inside Afghanistan After the Taliban, Sarah Chayes (Click here for review)
√ The English Passengers, Matthew Kneale, “I love this book- its quite a yarn…hard to get into, but OH SO WORTH IT! I put it under Australia, b/c ultimately it end up there, but it starts in the Isle of Man and spend much of the time at sea.”
√ The No. 1 Ladies’ Detecitve Agency, Alexander McCall Smith, “the first in a series, I’m finding it fun and touching”
√ The Dancer Upstairs, Nicholas Shakespeare
√ In Fond Remembrance of Me, Howard Norman- I found this book intriguing and touching. I could blabber about it, but I think the Seattle Times does a fabulous job with their review, so I defer to them. It is a quick read, and a hearfelt story.
√ Chairman Mao Would Not Be Amused, Ed. by Howard Goldblatt, “a collection of short stories, a great look at post modern Chinese fiction”
√ River Town: Two Years on the Yangtze, Peter Hessler, “Written by a former Peace Corp volunteer who spent his service in a town that will be/is now flooded by the Three Gorges dam project. Its a great look at life in western China, and what it is like to be a Foreign Devil. He does a good job of describing life and culture there, as well as painting a picture of the scenery. An easy read, and an interesting one since this town no longer exists.”
√ Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China, Jung Chang, “This is a fantastic book – depicts the lives of three women in different historial periods in China. You must read this is you have any interest in China, or in E. Asian gender issues”
√ Mandate of Heaven, “This is an exciting read, true story, about the student uprising leading to the Tiananmen Square massacre- I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to better understand what happened
√ The Hunger Trilogy, Wang Ruowang, “I had to read this for a Chinese Domestic Policy course I took at BU. It was a controversial book when published- essential reading for anyone interested in Chinese politics.
√The Rape of Nanking; The Forgotten Holocaust of World War II, Iris Chang.
√ The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver, “FANTASTIC- about a missionary who moves his family to the Congo in the 60s, follows the wife/mother and daughters through their adjustment to their new life. Each chapter is told from a different perspective- I LOVE THAT! A book you will remember. I read this in 2 nights.”
√ Angela’s Ashes, Frank McCourt
√ Stolen Live; Twenty Years in a Desert Jail, Malika Oufkir
√ Stories from Puerto Rico, Robert L. Muckley. Stories from Spain/Historias de Puerto Rico allows you to explore the island’s rich history. It includes 18 well-known Puerto Rican legends that stretch from the dawn of creation to the twentieth century. These tales will introduce you to an array of characters as dynamic and colorful as the country that gave birth to them. Animals, indigenous peoples, conquistadors, spiritual beings, and extraterrestrials are among those who will make these pages come alive for you! As you read these stories side by side, you will be not only fine-tuning your language skills but also gaining insight into the rich cultural heritage of the Puerto Rican people.
√ When I Was Puerto Rican: A Memoir, Esmeralda Santiago
√Last King of Scotland, Giles Foden. I was in Uganda when they were filming this movie, so as soon as I got back, I bought the book and read it in just a few days. The movie was good, but the book is much better.