As a librarian, I always have to be ready to recommend a good book. Since I can’t always recall what I’ve read off the top of my head, I rely on the website Goodreads to keep track of books I have read and what I thought about them. The site allows readers to rate books on a scale of one to five and to write reviews to share with other readers. Here are two novels and one non-fiction book that I deemed worthy of five stars.
An illustrious group of guests gathers in the home of a South American vice president to honor Japanese businessman Mr. Hosokawa. Among the guests is world-renowned soprano Roxanne Coss, Mr. Hosokawa’s favorite singer. The festivities are abruptly interrupted when a band of political terrorists takes the entire party hostage. As the weeks go by, the hostages form relationships amongst themselves and with their captors, with music serving as the common denominator that brings them together. There’s passion, there’s tragedy – what more could you ask for?
This absolutely charming love story centers around Ernest Pettigrew, a retired military Major, and Mrs. Ali, a Pakistani shop owner. The unlikely pair of widowers comes together as they both find themselves in the middle of messy family matters with no one else to turn to. But not everyone in their English village approves of the budding relationship. Beautiful writing, an enchanting setting, and a memorable cast of characters made this one a true delight.
Just when you think former Olympic runner and World War II veteran Louie Zamperini will not be able to endure yet another harrowing ordeal, he does. After surviving a plane crash that leaves him adrift on the ocean on a tiny raft, he is captured and put through horrible abuse in Japanese POW camps. How he found the will to carry on through unimaginable torture and starvation is difficult to comprehend. While reading this book, I found myself taking a look at my own life and re-examining what I consider to be suffering or hardship. This is an inspiring story about the triumph of the human spirit.