Juan Gabriel Vasquez latest book, SOUND OF THINGS FALLINGS, is a beautifully written story about a murder investigation. The story examines why the murder took place with the background being the years of the Columbian drug trade. The characters presented are richly flawed yet both believable and interesting. A great read (270 pages).
The Bully Pulpit by Doris Kearns Goodwin As the title suggest, Doris Kearns Goodwin's THE BULLY PULPIT; THEODORE ROOSEVELT, WILLIAM HOWARD TAFT, AND THE GOLDEN AGE OF JOURNALISM (2013) is really three stories. First, it is a wonderful recounting of the friendship and eventual 1915 clash of Roosevelt and Taft. Second, it presents a sweeping account of the rise of the muckraking journalists of the twentieth century. Lastly, it chronicles the relationship between these politicians and these journalists. While each strand is interesting, it is the relationship between these politicians, particularly Roosevelt and Taft, that is the meat of the book. For those familiar with Kearns earlier work's, the story is rich in detail and factual content. For those new to Kearns's work, the writing is superb, the content nearly overwhelming. Like all Kearns's works, the book is not an easy read but it is definitely work the effort.
Just finished this last night and I'm not ashamed to admit I cried my eyes out in the end. I had high hopes for this one, with The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns already being favorites of mine (and every reader everywhere). Good news: Hosseni does not disappoint! Afghanistan comes alive as a magical place. I spent some time looking at pictures of Kabul and the countryside, picturing the small village of Shadbagh and the Wahdati home. And of course, it's impossible not to fall in love with at least a few of the characters. Of course, we're focused on Abdullah and Pari, but for me it was really the side characters that made the book. Markos and Thailia, the two sisters, and my personal favorites: Nabi and Mr Wahdati.
I also liked the different stories from different perspectives. Each chapter is its own mini saga. The story of the div is amazingly spooky and starts the book off on a high note. And the magic just continues from there....
The setting, the characters and the story itself all come together to create a tale of enchantment.