Corona Book Blast

One of the bright sides of a pandemic and the world falling to pieces is the books. And the loungewear, but that’s a different blog. And the lacking need for hygiene, but that’s a different blog, and probably a doctor’s visit.

The problem with a pandemic, aside from all the, you know, illness, is that while I am reading lots of good books, there’s nobody to tell about them. Trying to bring up books on the phone is like trying to tell someone about one of your dreams. And the last time I tried to recommend a book to the nice waitress at my local pub, she told me “sorry, I have a boyfriend. Also, he’s big and a police officer.”

So, now that leaves you poor souls who still read my blog. Here are some books I’ve read over the pandemic that you might like and even read over the next, sadly inevitable, lockdown.

Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared Diamond

A brief history of all humans everywhere and the entire world and why some people have stuff and some people don’t seem to have so much stuff. Sound intimidating? Here’s the thing, it’s not in the least. It’s just brilliant. Jared Diamond lays out the entire history of the world in an accessible way that doesn’t make you want to clean your household weapon. Not only that, it is possibly the most interesting book I have ever read. On each page, I found myself saying: wow, I didn’t know that. Wow, I didn’t know that either. This book will make you smarter. Maybe even smart enough to get the vaccine.  

The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman

If you love a good cozy mystery, British English, and old people, get this book now. Richard Osman spins a tale of a murder in a senior community and makes it hilarious and compelling. He creates these very real characters that extend so far beyond the common drooling cliches that often inhabit a senior community. Funny, charming, and told so well, this book is a brilliant beach book or just for when you need a break from Netflix.

Night Shift by Stephen King

OK, OK, I know, I know. Stephen King on a must read book list, how cliché. But the thing is, there’s a reason he keeps showing up on them. Night Shift is a collection of stories written in the 1970s and they are frigging awesome. There’s one thing I have learned about Stephen King is that he does not faff about. Nobody is safe in his stories – not women, children, nor main character. If you want throwback horror that doesn’t give a shit about hurt feelings or your fears, then read this. With the lights on. And with your mommy nearby.

The Last Girlfriend on Earth by Simon Rich

OK, when you get done reading Stephen King and you need to lighten the mood with some humor, you get this book. I heard about Simon Rich because he wrote the Seth Rogan Netflix movie An American Pickle. The movie was bad, but I just chalked that up to Netflix magic. I looked him up and got this book of short stories. I was finished the next day. You will be too. It’s comforting knowing that the boyfriend of the last girl on earth, God, and magical goats all have trouble with love.

This is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper

A novel about a Jewish family whose patriarch dies and who sit shiva as part of his last request. There are a lot of “zany family comedies” out there and a whole lot of them fall pretty damn short because they try too hard to make the family comedic and zany. This book is about people, damaged and sad, but getting on with life, and it is laugh out loud hilarious. Wouldn’t you like to read a book that makes you laugh out loud so you can us lol just once and actually mean it? Also, this is a movie too with Jason Bateman, Tina Fey, and a busty how old is she again? Jane Fonda.     

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