Summer reading opportunities abound
For us Anchorage residents, summer adventuring, more often than not, begins and ends with a road trip. Whether it’s fishing and clamming on the Kenai Peninsula or viewing the wildlife at Denali Park, there’re miles to go before you reach your destination. Enter your proverbial best friend for the trip – a good book.
Whether you are listening to your books, reading them on a device or turning pages the old-fashioned way, don’t forget to give the library’s vast catalog a scan before buying your selections. (For those of you with little kids, check out the “going someplace read with me” kits that include a number of board books, a puppet and other materials all collected in a canvas bag.)
Here’s a list of reads that caught my eye while I was perusing the web:
More Readings From One Man’s Wilderness: The Journals of Richard L. Proenneke — Richard L. Proenneke built a cabin in Twin Lakes in 1968, and spent most of the next 30 years in the wilderness alone. Following in the footsteps of One Man’s Wilderness, a classic 1999 book compiling some of the mountain man’s journals, this book was released in 2012. Alone in the Wilderness, featuring Proenneke’s video of his experiences, showed recently on Alaska Public Television.
The Moose Jaw by Mike Delany — Strange things happen in the Alaska Bush. Gus O’Neill spends a summer on Moose Jaw Creek where he builds a cabin, finds a ravaged red-haired beauty he comes to love, and murders the man who had sexually molested her. Then the bodies disappear.
Invasion: Alaska by Vaughn Heppner — The year is 2032, and the Chinese are crossing the polar ice and steaming through the Gulf of Alaska. They have conquered oil-rich Siberia and turned Japan into a satellite state. Now a new glacial period has begun, devastating the world’s food supply. China plans to corner the world’s oil market and buy the needed food for their hungry masses.
Big Miracle by Tom Rose — The dramatic account of the dramatic rescue of three gray whales trapped under the ice in Alaska in 1988, that was recently turned into a movie.
Submerged (Alaskan Courage) by Dani Pettreym — Romantic suspense in Yancy, Alaska, where two former lovers must work together to find the murderer who killed two deep-water divers.
The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey — In this nationally celebrated book based on a Russian folktale, a homesteading couple builds a child out of snow that comes alive and transforms their lives.
*Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie — How a minor German princess became Empress of all the Russias.
*The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood by James Gleick — Comprehensive study on transmitting human knowledge, from talking drums to the internet.
*Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable — New look at charismatic leader’s life/death during turbulent civil rights era.
Slouching Toward Adulthood: Observations From the Not-So-Empty Nest by Sally Koslow — Explores the explosion of young adults who boomerang back to the family nest after college and the reaction of their Boomer parents.
Floyd Patterson: The Fighting Life of Boxing’s Invisible Champion by W.K. Stratton — Biography of the two-time heavyweight champ overshadowed by Muhammad Ali and Sonny Liston.
*The Forgotten Waltz by Anne Enright — A woman about the love of her life and their affair.
*Lost Memory of Skin by Russell Banks — Walking a mile in the shoes of a society’s outsider and exploring the moral complexities at the heart of our justice system.
*Swamplandia! by Karen Russell — A 12-year-old gator-wrestler Ava, her eccentric family and the Florida theme park they run straddle the boundaries between real and surreal.
The Meryl Streep Movie Club by Mia March — Three women share secrets about their lives after watching Meryl Streep movies.
The 500 by Matthew Quirk — Harvard law school grad, working for a consulting firm in Washington, D.C., is pursued by killers.
XO by Jeffery Deaver — Agent Kathryn Dance aids budding country-pop star being stalked by obsessive fan. Third in series.
*Finalists for this year best in literature Carnegie Medal Awards