These frigid days have us all wanting to cozy up with a good read & a hot cup of tea… which is what sparked the idea of an Outpost Book Club. This is the first of this new series which we’ll be continuing throughout the year. Our Media Manager Lindley Rust has compiled her short list of favorites for this winter & through it we hope you find something to add to your list. Feel free to read along with us & comment on your favorites!
The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani
A quick & gripping read, this is the perfect vacation book. It opens with a horrific scene: a French family’s nanny has stabbed both of the children she cares for (not a spoiler alert). You then travel back to the when it all started… to the day she was hired to work. Follow along through time to the events that led up to that dreadful day. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time wondering how and why could someone do something so awful. It’s a sad and disturbing tale of a nanny that slowly loses her mind while caring for two children. “Building tension with every page, The Perfect Nanny is a compulsive, riveting, bravely observed exploration of power, class, race, domesticity, motherhood, and madness.” It won’t leave you disappointed.
Buy: The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani
Calypso by David Sedaris
If you’ve read a David Sedaris book before you’ve most likely laughed your way from cover to cover. You’ll definitely still laugh, but this time around it’s just a different laughter. “Many of the essays in Calypso are set at the ‘Sea Section’—Sedaris’s retreat on the Carolina coast. There, his family whiles away the holidays playing cutthroat board games, baking in the sun, and feeding tumors to snapping turtles (yes, you read that right). In others, he describes shopping shenanigans in Japan (you can thank him for the resurgence of the culotte, or not), his unhealthy Fitbit obsession, and a side vocation picking up trash near his Sussex home. All provide the sort of everyday fodder that is ripe for his beloved brand of witty repartee. But Calypso is as dark as it is droll; it also touches on his late mother’s alcoholism, his sister’s suicide, and a sometimes strained relationship with an irascible father. Any one of these things could fracture a family but it’s clear from these pages that their bond is strong. Calypso is David Sedaris’s funniest, most outrageous, most moving offering yet.” —Erin Kodicek
Buy: Calypso by David Sedaris
Hold Still by Sally Mann
Sally Mann has been my favorite photographer since the day I first saw her photos when I was in college. I’ve watched her documentary at least five times so when this memoir was released I was quick to grab one knowing I would enjoy the further insight to her life. Her searching memoir finds her pulling out family records & yellowed photographs from the attic, raising questions and finding quite a fortuitous outcome: “deceit and scandal, alcohol, domestic abuse, car crashes, bogeymen, clandestine affairs, dearly loved and disputed family land . . . racial complications, vast sums of money made and lost, the return of the prodigal son, and maybe even bloody murder. In lyrical prose and startlingly revealing photographs, she crafts a totally original form of personal history that has the page-turning drama of a great novel but is firmly rooted in the fertile soil of her own life.” This book will leave you breathless.
Buy: Hold Still: A Memoir with Photographs by Sally Mann
To purchase books locally visit the Valley Book Store.