Date: April 2, 2020
The title above should really be “15 Quarantine Reads in No Particular Order and Based Solely on What I Like” because that’s all it is.
And let me just preface this by saying that this is where that “people vary” adage really comes into play. What constitutes a “great read” for one person may be total trash to another.
That being said, here are some books that I’ve read (and loved) that may appeal to you in this strange time wherein you suddenly have time to do something absolutely decadent like read a book in the daytime on a weekday!
Apocalyptic/Zombie Stuff (might as well start here!)
The Beginning of the End (Apocalypse Z Book 1) – Manel Loureiro – A mysterious incident in Russia, a blip buried in the news—it’s the only warning humanity receives that civilization will soon be destroyed by a single, voracious virus that creates monsters of men. This is available for free on Kindle Unlimited.
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War – Max Brooks – We survived the zombie apocalypse, but how many of us are still haunted by that terrible time? We have (temporarily?) defeated the living dead, but at what cost? Told in the haunting and riveting voices of the men and women who witnessed the horror firsthand, World War Z is the only record of the pandemic.
The Stand – Stephen King – The original apocalyptic story! – This is the way the world ends: with a nanosecond of computer error in a Defense Department laboratory and a million casual contacts that form the links in a chain letter of death.
The Silo Series – Hugh Howey – This is the story of mankind clawing for survival, of mankind on the edge. The world outside has grown unkind, the view of it limited, talk of it forbidden. But there are always those who hope, who dream. These are the dangerous people, the residents who infect others with their optimism. Their punishment is simple. They are allowed to go outside. [This whole series is beautifully written and totally interesting – mankind forced underground into, basically, silos which become the whole world for the inhabitants…]
Some Other Books I’ve Loved…
Where the Crawdads Sing – Delia Owens – Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder.
Big Little Lies – Liane Moriarty – Big Little Lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the little lies that can turn lethal. [Note – I’ve loved every book I’ve read from this author — Husband’s Secret was amazing – check it out!]
The Institute – Stephen King – Caveat – I love Stephen King. I love everything he’s ever written, this is just a recent one…. – As psychically terrifying as Firestarter, and with the spectacular kid power of It, The Institute is Stephen King’s gut-wrenchingly dramatic story of good vs. evil in a world where the good guys don’t always win.
Pines – The Wayward Pines Trilogy Book 1 – Blake Crouch – Secret service agent Ethan Burke arrives in Wayward Pines, Idaho, with a clear mission: locate and recover two federal agents who went missing in the bucolic town one month earlier. But within minutes of his arrival, Ethan is involved in a violent accident. He comes to in a hospital, with no ID, no cell phone, and no briefcase. The medical staff seems friendly enough, but something feels…off. As the days pass, Ethan’s investigation into the disappearance of his colleagues turns up more questions than answers.
All the Little Lights – Jamie McGuire – From #1 New York Times bestselling author Jamie McGuire comes a riveting tale of first love that starts young but runs deep.
Sharp Objects – Gillian Flynn – Fresh from a brief stay at a psych hospital, reporter Camille Preaker faces a troubling assignment: she must return to her tiny hometown to cover the murders of two preteen girls. For years, Camille has hardly spoken to her neurotic, hypochondriac mother or to the half-sister she barely knows: a beautiful thirteen-year-old with an eerie grip on the town. Now, installed in her old bedroom in her family’s Victorian mansion, Camille finds herself identifying with the young victims—a bit too strongly. Dogged by her own demons, she must unravel the psychological puzzle of her own past if she wants to get the story—and survive this homecoming. [The HBO Limited Series based on this is awesome…]
A Gentleman in Moscow – Amor Towles – In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.
The Great Alone – Kristin Hannah – Alaska, 1974. Ernt Allbright came home from the Vietnam War a changed and volatile man. When he loses yet another job, he makes the impulsive decision to move his wife and daughter north where they will live off the grid in America’s last true frontier.
The Woman in the Window – A. J. Finn – Anna Fox lives alone—a recluse in her New York City home, unable to venture outside. She spends her day drinking wine (maybe too much), watching old movies, recalling happier times . . . and spying on her neighbors. Then the Russells move into the house across the way: a father, a mother, their teenage son. The perfect family. But when Anna, gazing out her window one night, sees something she shouldn’t, her world begins to crumble—and its shocking secrets are laid bare.
Blink – K.L. Slater – Three years ago, Toni’s five-year-old daughter Evie disappeared after leaving school. The police have never been able to find her. There were no witnesses, no CCTV, no trace. But Toni believes her daughter is alive. And as she begins to silently piece together her memories, the full story of the past begins to reveal itself, and a devastating truth.
The Soul of an Octopus: A Surprising Exploration into the Wonder of Consciousness – Sy Montgomery – Another New York Times bestseller from the author of The Good Good Pig, this “fascinating…touching…informative…entertaining” (Daily Beast) book explores the emotional and physical world of the octopus—a surprisingly complex, intelligent, and spirited creature—and the remarkable connections it makes with humans.
Do you have any recommendations for me? Happy Quarantining!