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Customer Discussions > Women's Fiction forum

What's on YOUR bookshelf?

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Showing 1-25 of 81 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 18, 2007 4:05:22 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 26, 2007 4:46:33 PM PDT
lscollison says:
We all know who the best selling authors are. What I want to hear about are obscure books that are truly memorable, in your opinion. (If you are an author you can toot your own horn, but also mention another book -- perhaps one that inspired you to write yours!)

What's on YOUR bookshelf? What makes it great?

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 19, 2007 1:31:08 PM PDT
Oh, the list is just endless but a few memorable ones are:

ISTANBUL by Orhan PAmuk
CRY TO HEAVEN by Anne Rice
A MOVEABLE FEAST by Ernest Hemingway (possibly my favorite book of all)
THE SEVILLE COMMUNION by Arturo Perez-Reverte (anything by him, really)

Well, that's a start....

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 19, 2007 2:55:28 PM PDT
lscollison says:

I too, liked Hemingway's "A Moveable Feast." I just now pulled it off MY bookshelf and am glancing through it, reliving it again. I am a real francophile. Speaking of which, I really enjoyed Gerturde Stein's The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas. (Funny, that title reminds me of the other thread I started, about titles about so-and-so's wife or daughter. Because of course the Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas is really more about Gertrude Stein herself...) But back to Hemingway, my favorite is his short story, "The Snows of Kilimanjaro."

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 19, 2007 3:02:19 PM PDT
Linda, if you are a Franco-phile (me, too) have you tried Cara Black's mysteries? I LOVE them. Get "Murder in Montmartre", you'll LOVE it.

Yes, I love Kilimanjaro, too. He was brilliant.


In reply to an earlier post on Aug 24, 2007 11:37:38 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 24, 2007 11:38:26 AM PDT
lscollison says:

Thanks for alerting me to the Cara Black mysteries. I checked them out here on Amazon.
I'm not a big mystery fan, but I am going to try one for the setting alone. I love reading about Paris!

Ok, two of the following books aren't exactly obscure to those of you who like literary fiction, but in the past few months I have read and reviewed "Never Let Me Go" by Kazuo Ishiguro, "Suite Francaise" by Irene Nemirovsky, and "Masquerade; the "Life and Times of Deborah Sampson, Continental Soldier" by Alfred Young.

Three very different books, yet three favorites of mine.

Check out my reviews of these books under my Amazon profile (Linda Collison).

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 26, 2007 3:31:00 PM PDT
SB says:
Since you said self-promotion is okay, may I mention my own debut novel that will be released on Aug 28? THE DOWRY BRIDE is set in India and offers a rare glimpse into India's notorious dowry system. The story is about a young bride who is trapped in an arranged marriage and dowry culture and her dramatic escape and journey to freedom and hope.

What inspired me to write the book was Khaled Hosseini's Kite Runner, which exposed some of the ills of Afghanistan. I set out to write a book that touched on the darker side of India's culture - a country I grew up in.

Hope you and the readers on this loop will give THE DOWRY BRIDE a shot? So far, I've had some great reviews. See my website at


Shobhan Bantwal

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 26, 2007 4:44:45 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 26, 2007 4:47:08 PM PDT
lscollison says:
Hello Shobhan, and thanks for participating.

Your book sounds so interesting, I just checked out your website. Great website, by the way. And it looks like you have quite a few appearances coming up. I'm looking forward to reading The Dowry Bride.

P.S. Girl, you are kicking my butt on Amazon today!!!

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 1, 2007 11:47:23 AM PDT
lscollison says:
I just remembered why I love Amy Tan's writing!

After so many years I finally read "The Hundred Secret Senses", and fell in love with her stories, the way she brings characters alive, all over again. I had read "Joy Luck Club" when it first came out, and "The Bonesetters Daughter", shortly after it was released. I like the way Tan tells stories within stories, mixes past with present. She is lyrical without being gushy. Her characters are strong. Actually, I recognize versions of the same characters in the three books I have read: the younger American-Chinese woman and the old soul, the Chinese mother/auntie/older sister/ancestor who teaches the hip young American something important.

There are many favorite authors represented on my shelves; today I honor Amy Tan, and vow to read the rest of her oeuvre.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 4, 2007 1:36:23 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 4, 2007 1:37:39 PM PDT
Hi Linda,

Well my friend has just written a book and due to be published in Nov (UK) out now in USA

I read a copy early in its life (it has had some changes since) and I loved it...

Author is Judy Malloy - book is Gabriella - I think that it's a very female book (mother earth) type of thing - but in a good way..

Cannot wait to see how it does...

Jeremy Robinson's "Didymus Contingency" is also another good obscure one..



In reply to an earlier post on Oct 5, 2007 7:41:36 AM PDT
I am currently reading Abdundance by Sena Jester Naslund. A beautifully written fictional protrayal of Marie Antoinette. Ms. Naslund has done her homework!! I've visited the area of France that she speaks of many times and the descriptions are extremely vivid and true to life. Also her references to Marie Antoinette are extremely accurate as she brings this young woman's story to life. It is a joy to read this book.

Linda Bilodeau
Author: Stepping Through Seagrass.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 5, 2007 8:15:00 AM PDT
lscollison says:

That's fabulous news! It's a real accomplishment to write and publish a book, and I shall check out Gabriella by Judy Malloy. I wish your friend success.

"Didymus Contingency" is another book flying below the radar. Thanks for bringing that one to light as well. A very few books get all the marketing and buzz, so when you come across an obscure book that's a gem, you have to spread the word.

Thanks for writing!

Star-Crossed Linda

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 5, 2007 8:16:31 AM PDT
lscollison says:

Actually, I'd like to hear more about "Stepping Through Seagrass." I guess I'll check it out here on Amazon...

Star-Crossed Linda

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 5, 2007 3:03:32 PM PDT
Hi Star-Crossed Linda

I hope you enjoy reading about Stepping Through Seagrass. Though my taste in books tends to be literary, I do write genre fiction and STS is a genre, contemporary women's ficiton, novel. However, I must say, I've been getting some nice reviews on it.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 8, 2007 6:30:52 PM PDT
Hi Linda,
Big Amy Tan fan here too. I also loved:

The Red Tent, Anita Diament
Some Things I Never Thought I'd Do, Pearl Cleage
Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston
Third Girl from the Left, Martha Southgate
Getting Mother's Body, Suzan-Lori Parks
The Untelling, Tayari Jones
Practical Magic, Alice Hoffman
Eating Heaven, Jennie Shortridge
The Sunday List of Dreams, Kris Radish
On Beauty, Zadie Smith

My first novel, Orange Mint and Honey (a mother-daughter story) is due out February 26, 2008.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 8, 2007 11:55:40 PM PDT
Hi Linda,

Another author and books that I just thought of was Mary Doria Russell's The Sparrow and Children of God (to be read in that order) not really womens fiction, but a really good read none the less.

Also is Jeff Long's Descent - brilliant book

Check em out

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 9, 2007 8:32:21 AM PDT
lscollison says:
Oh, thanks for these suggestions, many of which are flying under the radar, so to speak. Congratulations on your first novel; I'll certainly check it out!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 9, 2007 8:34:41 AM PDT
lscollison says:
Mrs. F. Mulligan,

Thanks for the suggestions. Your first paragraph brings to light the question, What is womens fiction? Probably as many different answers as there are people who read it!

Jeff Long's Descent is an intriguing title...

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 9, 2007 9:12:55 AM PDT
Excellent point!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 9, 2007 9:15:48 AM PDT
Thanks! :)

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2007 11:37:00 AM PDT
Shayna says:
"Undoing I Do" by Anastasia Royal. It's wonderful!

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 24, 2007 8:51:08 PM PDT
The Bass says:
Amy Lane is a self-published author of whom many are unaware. I, however, am more than aware of her. I love all of her books! She writes romantic fantasy/horror/action similar to, but with much more heart and depth than, Laurel K. Hamilton's books. I can't possibly do them justice in a brief summary, but if you like fantasy and vampires (among other mythical creatures), you will love Amy Lane.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 30, 2008 6:48:54 PM PST
Avid Reader says:
I just read SHELTER ME by Juliette Fay. It's terrific. It's available at Amazon, Target, Barnes & Nobles, and other small bookstores. The book is about a women, Janey, who suddenly loses her husband in a freak accident. She is left to raise her two small children, 5 and 2, alone. Its a journey from grief back to life, with a surprise ending. Check it out.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 1, 2009 4:50:59 AM PST
Luvourpets says:
I am a huge fan of women's fiction, but my choices are a little different than some of the ones listed here. I tend to be drawn to authors like Jodi Picoult and Sue Monk Kidd because of the questions raised: moral dilemmas that arise in the lives of women, thus challenging their ideas about self, family, and the world. In keeping with my love, I recently published my first novel, STRAWBERRIES IN WINTER. Mine is a story of identity, self definition, and family secrets. It begs the questions: What does it mean to be a 'good' mother? And what are the limits of forgiveness? I hope some of your readers will take the time to explore my novel and let me know their thoughts.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 2, 2009 6:26:35 PM PST
Mike says:
My favorite this year was "Little Lost River" by Pamela Johnston. It's about three generations of women growing up in the Pacific Northwest. ---Michelle

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 4, 2009 8:00:06 AM PST
I will have to take a look at that one. I'm currently reading The Diplomat's Wife, a great book.


Linda Bilodeau
The Wine Seekers is now available on
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Discussion in:  Women's Fiction forum
Participants:  40
Total posts:  81
Initial post:  Aug 18, 2007
Latest post:  Dec 23, 2012

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