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Beyond Bestsellers - Fiction

October - December 2015 Issue


Acevedo, Chantel.  The Distant Marvels.
While a group of evacuees wait out a dangerous hurricane, an old woman tells them the dramatic story of her childhood during the early Twentieth Century Cuban war for independence.

Alvar, Mia.  In the Country.  
These nine stories by an American writer born in the Philippines depict the lives of Filipino exiles and refugees who work, often in menial positions, in the Middle East and the United States.

Barker, Susan.  The Incarnations
A Beijing taxi driver finds letters left in his cab by a mysterious stalker who claims to have known him in many previous incarnations.

Berlin, Lucia.  A Manual for Cleaning Women: Selected Stories
These short stories, which depict the everyday lives of ordinary American women, are witty, melancholy, and sympathetic to their characters.

Bhutto, Fatima.  The Shadow of the Crescent Moon
This novel, written by a member of one of Pakistan's ruling families, tells the diverging stories of three brothers living in a Pakistani border town during the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan.

Chaudhuri, Amit.  Odysseus Abroad
This stream-of-consciousness novel with connections to Homer's The Odyssey and James Joyce's Ulysses, describes a single day for a homesick Indian college student living in London in 1985.

Clegg, Bill.  Did You Ever Have a Family.
A woman in a small town in Connecticut is left homeless and alone after her house explodes on the eve of her daughter's wedding, killing the bride, her fiancé, and both the woman's ex-husband and her current boyfriend.

Cohen, Joshua.  Book of Numbers
In this experimental novel, a freelance writer, hired to ghostwrite a memoir for the CEO of a successful tech firm, takes off on an exploration of creativity, technology and language.

Daoud, Kamel.  The Meursault Investigation
In this novel by an Algerian writer, the brother of the nameless Arab man who was murdered in Albert Camus' novel, The Stranger, tells the story of the victim's life.

De Robertis, Carolina.  The Gods of Tango
In this novel set in Argentina early in the 20th century, a young Italian woman disguises herself as a man, and becomes a professional violinist playing popular new music. 

Gottlieb, Eli.  Best Boy.
A middle-aged autistic man, who has lived most of his life in an institution, plots to escape and revisit his childhood home.

Jarvis, Stephen.  Death and Mr. Pickwick
A man who is hired to research the origin of Charles Dickens's The Pickwick Papers comes to the conclusion that the character of Mr. Pickwick was actually created by the artist whose drawings were printed with Dickens' text.

Kennedy, Eliza.  I Take You
A free-spirited successful young lawyer, about to marry a man she wholeheartedly loves, questions if marriage is really what she wants.

Kracht, Christian.  Imperium: A Fiction of the South Seas
This is a fictionalized story about a real person - a German eccentric who bought an island in the South Pacific early in the 20th century, and founded a cult based on sun worship and coconut eating.

Lansdale, Joe R.  Paradise Sky
In this Western, loosely based on the true story of an African American cowboy named Nat Love, the hero narrowly escapes a lynching in East Texas and sets off on a series of adventures, including winning a shooting contest in Deadwood, South Dakota and befriending Will Bill Hickok.

McLain, Paula.  Circling the Sun
This biographical novel is based on the dramatic life of Beryl Markham, a writer, aviator, and horse trainer who grew up in colonial Kenya.

Morris, Mary.  The Jazz Palace
This novel, which portrays life in Chicago in 1915 during the rise of jazz culture, tells the story of three individuals - a Jewish piano player, an African American trumpeter, and an Anglo woman who swims in Lake Michigan.

Nichols, Peter.  The Rocks
This novel, set in Mallorca, begins with the sudden deaths of the 80-year-old heroine and her ex-husband, and then goes back in time to tell the story of their doomed relationship.

Nović, Sara.  Girl at War
In this coming of age story, a Croatian girl watches ethnic tensions escalate into war, escapes to the United States, and eventually returns to her homeland as a young adult.

Obioma, Chigozie.  The Fishermen
In this novel set in Nigeria, four brothers disobey their parents and go fishing in the local river, which is considered a dangerous place, leading to a series of events that nearly destroys the family.

O’Brien, Edna.  The Love Object: Selected Stories
These are 31 stories, written over four decades, by an Irish-born writer, with distinctive characters and great attention to detail.

Pierpont, Julia.  Among the Ten Thousand Things
A family changes irrevocably after the husband's mistress sends an anonymous package to his wife, and it is found first by the couple's 11 year old daughter.

Tran, Vu.  Dragonfish
In this thriller, an Oakland police officer goes in search of his wife, a Vietnamese woman who abandoned him after a short marriage, and finds that another of her ex-husbands, a smuggler and gambler in Las Vegas, is also looking for her.

Walbert, Kate.  The Sunken Cathedral
In this unconventional novel set in New York City, two elderly French widows sign up for an art class; meanwhile, the tenant of one of the women struggles to meet the expectations of other parents at her son's progressive school.

Williams, Naomi J.  Landfalls.
This historical novel tells the story of the Laperouse expedition, a doomed French attempt in the 1780's to circumnavigate the globe, focusing on the members of the expedition, as well as the indigenous peoples they met on their trip.

Woodward, Gerard.  Vanishing.
In this complicated literary novel, an English artist and former camouflage officer, who has been accused of treason, looks back on his life and recounts his experiences in art school and North Africa in World War II.