Beside Myself by Ann Morgan

This is a novel about identical twins. Not a heartwarming twin story, except for maybe one chapter near the end, but by then your heart is so cold and frozen you wonder if it will ever thaw. A bit of hope enters in the last chapter but you have seen hope dashed many times in this gruesome tale. In fact, a reader who comes through with a warm heart is likely more screwed up than these twins ever were. read more

The Circle by Dave Eggers

Ever wonder what it might be like to live in a world where one tech company was attempting, for lack of a better phrase, to take over the world? I know, I know… seems ridiculous to even read that last sentence. Imagine how I felt writing it. It’s not like there’s tech companies out there right now attempting to do the very same thing by infiltrating every waking second of your life, tracking your every moment and purchase, and slowly but surely making privacy a thing of the past. read more

The Happy Marriage by Tahar Ben Jelloun

I have made a goal this year to read more literature written in countries outside the English speaking world. Tahar Ben Jelloun was born and raised in Morocco, then began to live and write in Paris after attending The Sorbonne. He is bilingual in Arabic and French but writes in French because to him Arabic “is a sacred language, given by God in the shape of the Koran, it is intimidating—one feels very small in front of this language.” read more

Strange Animals by Chad Kultgen

Let’s be honest, folks: Chad Kultgen isn’t for everyone. In fact, I’d argue he probably isn’t for most. Outside of his one turn in the sci-fi world with Darklight (which, admittedly, I haven’t read), his novels tend to focus squarely on the vile, sexual, masturbatory, selfish and destructive tendencies in relationships between men and women—with a specific focus on the male perspective. read more

Not Dark Yet by by Berit Ellingsen

At times, because I read incessantly, I grow weary of novels published by the major houses; novels that are written and released with the intention to reach a majority of readers and to sell. For palate cleansing I turn to books from indie publishers. Two Dollar Radio is such a one, run out of their home in Columbus, OH. by a husband and wife team. Berit Ellingsen is a Korean-Norwegian science writer and novelist who lives in Norway and writes in English. Not Dark Yet is her second novel. read more

The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

There is probably not another writer who could make me read a Shakespeare play. Jeanette Winterson, whose writing always excites me, has filled the role that no English teacher ever played for me during my school days. Because I had not realized she included a summary of The Winter’s Tale at the beginning of her retelling, I read the play first and enjoyed it more than I expected I would. That in turn enhanced the sheer fun of reading The Gap of Time. read more