Bedtime Stories: Sept. 2019

  • September 17, 2019

What do book lovers have queued up on their nightstands and ready to read before lights-out? We asked one of them, and here’s what he said.

Bedtime Stories: Sept. 2019

Andrew Shaffer:

I just finished Jaron Lanier's Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now. It's a book every American should read — Lanier is a Silicon Valley veteran and has been raising alarm bells for years about the dark side of tech companies. For the record, I didn't delete my social media accounts, but I have gone on a Twitter hiatus and have stripped all social media except Instagram from my phone.

I'm in the middle of The Boys from Brazil, a 1976 thriller by Ira Levin (author of Rosemary's Baby and The Stepford Wives). An aging Nazi hunter is on the trail of Josef Mengele. It's fast-paced, suspenseful, and frequently funny. Levin was the master of dark satire — it's a shame he only published seven novels in his lifetime, but he was always more of a playwright and screenwriter.

This week, I also started Cold Storage, another novel by a screenwriter (in this case, “Jurassic Park” screenwriter David Koepp). The dialogue crackles and the concepts are big (killer fungus turns victims into exploding zombies!). The point of view head-hops from character to character in dizzying fashion, however, which makes it read like a screenplay that was fleshed out with narration. I set it aside.

Last week, two new books came out that I picked up and can't wait to start: The Testaments by Margaret Atwood and The Institute by Stephen King. And next week, more books come out...and the week after that, and the week after that...

Andrew Shaffer is the New York Times bestselling author of Hope Never Dies: An Obama Biden Mystery and its sequel, Hope Rides Again. He lives in Louisville, Kentucky.

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