the next good book

Mother-Daughter Murder Night

“Lana considered the question. She’d drawn a firm line between work and family while Beth was growing up, putting 90 percent of her attention on the work side of the line. She’d never hung up any of Beth’s drawings In her office or left work early to see a class play. Not that she had a choice. She’d seen what happened to the careers of women who were foolish enough to show those kinds of weakness.
Now Lana looked at her daughter and wondered, not for the first time, if she’d made the right decision.”

The Heaven & Earth Grocery Store

“Chona had never been one to play by the rules of American society.  She did not experience the world as most people did.  To her, the world was not a china closet where you admire this and don’t touch that.  Rather, she saw it as a place where every act of living was a chance for tikkum olum, to improve the world.  The tiny woman with the bad foot was all soul. “

Tom Lake

“There is no explaining this simple truth about life: you will forget much of it.  The painful things you were certain you’d never be able to let go? Now you’re not entirely sure when they happened, while the thrilling parts, the heart-stopping joys, splintered and scattered and became something else.  Memories are then replaced by different joys and sorrows, and unbelievably, those things get knocked aside as well, until one morning you’re picking cherries with your three gown daughters and your husband goes by on the Gator and you are positive that this is all you’ve ever wanted in the world.” 

Symphony of Secrets

” ‘Every so often, however, we discover another portion of the greater story, another section that was left out.  We learn- not everything- but a little more.  And because we learn more, the world is a little brighter.  Our understanding is a little clearer.  I’d like to think our capacity for empathy, for caring, is a little stronger, too.’ “

All the Sinners Bleed

“It occurred to him no place was more confused by its past or more terrified of the future than the South.”


“The simplest explanation is likely that our metabolism, as it has evolved over millennia, is not equipped to cope with our ultramodern diet, which has appeared only within the last century or so.”

The Great Reclamation

“Decades later, the kampong would trace it all back to this very hour, waves draining the light from this slim, hungry moon.  Decades later, they would wonder what could have been had the Lees simply turned back, had some sickness come upon the father manning the outboard motor, or some screaming fit befallen the youngest, forcing them to abandon the day’s work and steer their small wooden craft home.  Decades later, they would wonder if any difference could have been made at all.”

The Reading List

“They were all her favorite books, the books she had grown up with, the books that had found her at the right time, that had given her comfort when she needed it, had given her an escape, an opportunity to live beyond her life, an opportunity to love more powerfully, a chance to open up and let people in.”


“The lightning fast pace of technological change has also produced the largest generation gaps in attitudes since the Boomers defied their Greatest generation parents in the 1960’s.  With older generations lamenting the younger’s work ethic and skills, growing political divides, a distinct generational cast to cancel culture, younger generations criticizing older people’s lack of tech savvy, and the derisive use of phrases such as, ‘OK, Boomer,’ generational conflict seems to be everywhere.  Boomers and Gen X’ers have no reference point for growing up with the internet and social media, and Gen Z has no reference point for growing up without it, leaving Millennials to explain both viewpoints to their elders and juniors.”

Fourth Wing

“Conscription Day is always the deadliest.  Maybe that’s why the sunrise is especially beautiful this morning- because I know it might be my last.”