Kristin Hannah

Kristin Hannah writes:

Like many book lovers, I am always looking for a novel that sucks me in at the beginning and won't let me go. You know the kind of book I mean -- it's the one you're hurrying to get back to. The dishes pile up in the sink, the laundry is forgotten, the weeds takeover your garden, and you don't care about any of it. For those few perfect hours, you are in another world. Best of all for me are the novels that teach you something along the way or change your perspective by shedding new light on a topic or time period you thought you knew. Each of the books I have chosen to recommend to you fits that bill for me. I hope you find them as amazing as I did.


The Shadow of the Wind
By Carlos Ruiz Zafón

This was first recommended to me by booksellers when I was on tour. It was literally placed in my hands. I couldn't be rude, of course, so I took it, even though it meant lugging a heavy hardcover to twelve cities and then home. I'll admit that I didn't read it for a while, but when I finally opened to page one, I was instantly hooked and transported to a world I'd not seen before: Barcelona, Spain, just after World War II. This novel is pure magic. I adored every word and hated for it to end.

The War
By Marguerite Duras

I'll admit, I love sprawling, epic novels set against the backdrop of war. I have written novels about women in both the Iraq war and World War II Russia, so I have read deeply on the subject, but even so, this memoir by Duras was a revelation. It was unlike anything I've read before -- raw, powerful, brutal, and elegant.

Lonesome Dove
By Larry McMurty

Quite simply one of the all-time great novels. A love story, an adventure, a re-imagining of the classic western; Lonesome Dove has something for everyone. If you've only seen the miniseries (which was great), you've missed out on a rare reading experience. This is one of those stories that has stayed in my head for decades.


April 16: ""Blue pottery vases and bowls for flowers are most attractive, and certain blue books...will repeat and emphasize color."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…

Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Poems That Make Grown Men Cry

And women too.  Luminaries from Colin Firth to Nick Cave and Jonathan Franzen chose the poems that bring them to tears, and the result is a stunning collection of poignant verse from writers like Auden, Whitman, Bishop, Larkin, Neruda and many others.  Warning: choking-up hazard.

The King of Pain

Trapped beneath his entertainment system, reality TV mastermind Rick Salter reflects on his life and tries to piece together the events of the previous evening. Seth Kaufman’s romp is an outrageous meditation on pain and entertainment in a deranged world in which the two are often interchangeable.

The Good Inn

Frank Black, frontman for the Pixies, has written a transgressive historical fiction with shades of Thomas Pynchon (focused as it is on the history of explosives and cinematic pornography), all set in a hallucinatory Edwardian Europe.