5 Most Popular Posts: November 2020
- December 2, 2020
We here at the Independent love every piece we run. There are no winners or losers. But all kidding aside, here are November’s winners.
- “Our 51 Favorite Books of 2020.” “We don’t possess the hubris to declare certain books ‘the best.’ Instead, in no particular order, here are some of our most-loved titles of 2020, a year that can't end soon enough.”
- “Political? Books.” by Lupita Aquino. “But what many don’t acknowledge is that reading is a privilege. Carving out space on social media or in person (I hope you aren’t doing this; there’s still a pandemic going on!) to discuss books is a privilege. Being able to buy a book is a privilege. Being able to say, ‘Reading isn’t political’ is a privilege because either you’ve never had to fear for your own basic rights, or the rights of your loved ones haven’t been endangered depending on the administration in power.”
- Robert Allen Papinchak’s review of Anxious People: A Novel by Fredrik Backman (Atria Books). “It is the most bizarre heist story since Sidney Lumet’s ‘Dog Day Afternoon,’ with narrative nods to Ann Patchett’s Bel Canto and O. Henry’s ‘The Ransom of Red Chief.’ The dominoes start falling quickly when a bungled robbery turns into a mordantly serious situation. In many ways, it can be read as a locked-apartment mystery bonded with a unique variation on the police procedural.”
- Philip K. Jason’s review of The German Midwife: A Novel by Mandy Robotham (Avon). “Originally published in the U.K. as A Woman of War, the instant bestseller The German Midwife offers astonishing portraits of several women caught up in Hitler’s nightmarish aspirations. The circumstances that threaten the lives of these women (and of countless others) make this story at once an historical novel, a thriller, and a romance.”
- Mike Maggio’s review of Shuggie Bain: A Novel by Douglas Stuart (Grove Press). “Third takeaway: the American reader will need a Scottish to English dictionary to get through some of the local language (e.g., wean = child; smirr = drizzle; doubt = cigarette butt). There are many more instances of working-class Scottish dialect, but don’t be deterred. This novel is well worth the slog through unfamiliar lingo. And the language is so well tuned that it transforms a working-class tale into a literary tour de force.”
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