While I have grown past the allure of “starting over” at the beginning of a new year, I have to admit that I am prone to making unattainable goals for the summer. The tantalizing prospect of a few months away from school inspires in my mind all sorts of fantasies of productivity. They often have to do with reading for fun, filling in the gaps of my literary history. As this semester draws to a close, I find that this year is no exception.
In theory, I absolutely think it’s important to support today’s writers. However, in reality I don’t remember the last time I read a quality book that was written in the 21st century. I guess I just get overwhelmed because time has not yet been able to weed out the bad novels, so I’m left with this Russian roulette where I might easily waste my time on something I hate just because it was popular or the plot synopsis sounded interesting. (Because, of course, that would be the absolute worst thing that could ever happen.) However, the importance of not treating writing like it’s a dead art outweighs the very minimal damage that could come from being dissatisfied with something.
This brings me to my summer goal: I want to try to read at least one newly released book. I’m sharing this with you because I think a lot of other people have this problem as well, and I want to encourage support for modern writers.
So, if you’re interested in joining me on this journey, here’s a list of books being released this summer that might be potentially interesting to read, with descriptions from Barnes and Noble’s website.
Tibetan Peach Pie: A True Account of an Imaginative Life by Tom Robbins
Released May 27, 2014
“In Tibetan Peach Pie, Robbins turns that unparalleled literary sensibility inward, weaving together stories of his unconventional life–from his Appalachian childhood to his globe-trotting adventures–told in his unique voice, which combines the sweet and sly, the spiritual and earthy. The grandchild of Baptist preachers, Robbins would become, over the course of half a century, a poet interruptus, a soldier, a meteorologist, a radio DJ, an art-critic-turned-psychedelic-journeyman, a world-famous novelist, and a counterculture hero, leading a life as unlikely, magical, and bizarre as those of his quixotic characters. Robbins offers intimate snapshots of Appalachia during the Great Depression, the West Coast during the sixties’ psychedelic revolution, international roving before Homeland Security monitored our travels, and New York publishing when it still relied on trees.”
Resistant by Michael Palmer
Released May 20, 2014
“When Dr. Lou Welcome fills in last minute for his boss at a national conference in Atlanta he brings along his best friend, Cap Duncan. But an accident turns tragic when Cap injures his leg while running. Surgeons manage to save the leg, but the open wound is the perfect breeding ground for a deadly microbial invader committed to eating Cap alive from the inside out. Meanwhile, hundreds of miles away, a teenaged girl is fighting for her life against the same bacteria. The germ is resistant to any known antibiotic and the government scientist tasked with finding a cure has been kidnapped. Turning to the Centers for Disease Control for help, Lou Welcome uncovers a link to a shadowy group known as One Hundred Neighbors that has infiltrated our society and is using our health institutions as hostages. Like the deadly germs they can unleash, One Hundred Neighbors will stop at nothing to further their agenda. From the hospital corridors where anything you touch can mean your end, to the top corridors of power in this race against time, Lou must stop an epidemic, save his best friend, and face even his own most terrifying demons.”
The City by Dean Koontz
Released July 1, 2014
“There are millions of stories in the city—some magical, some tragic, others terror-filled or triumphant. Jonah Kirk’s story is all of those things as he draws readers into his life in the city as a young boy, introducing his indomitable grandfather, also a “piano man”; his single mother, a struggling singer; and the heroes, villains, and everyday saints and sinners who make up the fabric of the metropolis in which they live—and who will change the course of Jonah’s life forever. Welcome to The City, a place of evergreen dreams where enchantment and malice entwine, where courage and honor are found in the most unexpected corners and the way forward lies buried deep inside the heart.”
What are some newly released books you’re looking forward to reading this summer?
Have a great summer, everyone!