The Man Who Came Uptown by George Pelecanos
A Washington D.C. located crime novel that also serves as a love letter to the redemptive power of literature and libraries. Pelecanos shows that his focus on scriptwriting for shows like The Wire, Treme and The Deuce have done nothing but sharpen his skills as a novelist. He's entered what I think of as Elmore Leonard territory (one author, among many, he references in this book) where the writing seems so effortless you'd don't notice the craft in it. A true gift for anyone who works with books and literacy.
Adult Fiction Hardcover pr2335224
The Runner: Four Years Living and Running in the Wilderness by Markus Torgeby
A beautiful, haunting memoir that reads like a modern day Scandinavian Walden, written by an athletic and mentally distressed Thoreau. Torgeby recounts growing up in a small village in Northern Sweden, struggling at school and having to care for his invalid mother. Discovered by a running coach, and showing the talent to achieve national and Olympic results, Torgeby is mostly crippled by anxiety over expectations and usually runs faster in training than racing. At the age of 20, he builds a canvas walled yurt (with an open smoke hole) in the wilderness and stays there year round, despite temperatures that sometimes plummet as low as -37. He later spends six months training in Tanzania, all the while continuing to ask himself “why am I doing this?” and allowing space and quiet for the answers to get past the noise of modern existence. This treatise of living simply and the struggle to find one’s self should appeal to reluctant readers and teens, as well as anyone interested in a slower existence.
Adult Non-Fiction Paperback pr2101215