I spend a lot of time writing about books that I’ve recently finished. Many of these titles are newly published, which means that they likely have a long list of holds at the library. Considering that you might want to check out some titles after reading about them, I thought I’d do an overview of some of my favorite titles that are a little older and less in demand—although no less impressive or enjoyable! All annotations are from NoveList.
If you enjoy issues-driven, contemporary novels and while you are waiting for Love Anthony by Lisa Genova, try:
The Senator’s Wife by Sue Miller
Two unconventional women, neighbors in adjacent New England townhouses--Meri Fowler, pregnant, newly married, and discovering the gap between reality and expectation, and Delia Naughton, wife of a notoriously unfaithful liberal senator--confront the costs and challenges of love.
Testimony by Anita Shreve
A New England boarding school is rocked in the wake of a sex scandal in which participants were caught on videotape, a situation that derails the innocence and best intentions of students, parents, and others in life-shattering ways.
Three Junes by Julia Glass
Reveals the interconnected lives, loves, and relationships of different generations of the McLeod family over the course of three crucial summers.
If you enjoy novels with a strong sense of place and a deliberate, character-driven pace and while you are waiting for Benediction by Kent Haruf, try:
Plainsong by Kent Haruf
An unlikely extended family is formed when a high school teacher helps a pregnant student make a home with two elderly bachelor ranchers. *Not a prequel to Benediction, but features the same, beloved rural ranching community of Eastern Colorado.
Peace Like a River by Leif Enger
The quiet 1960s Midwestern life of the Land family--father Jeremiah, and children, Reuben, Davy and Swede--is upended when Davy kills two teenage boys who have come to harm the family. On the morning of his sentencing, Davy escapes from his cell and the Lands set out in search of him. Their search is at once a heroic quest, a tragedy, a love story, and a haunting meditation on the possibility of magic in the everyday world.
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
As the Reverend John Ames approaches the hour of his own death, he writes a letter to his son chronicling three previous generations of his family, a story that stretches back to the Civil War and reveals uncomfortable family secrets.
If you enjoy psychological suspense/mystery with complex characters and while you’re waiting on The Dinner by Herman Koch, try:
Tabloid City by Pete Hamill
When a wealthy socialite and her secretary are found murdered in a stately West Village townhouse, a flurry of seemingly unrelated people spring into action. A reporter chases the story while a tabloid executive holds the presses, a ruined financer attempts to leave the country, a war veteran plots revenge, and a terrorist plans an attack.
Alys, Always by Harriet Lane
Comforting a dying car crash victim before being invited to meet the woman's privileged family, Frances is transformed through her friendships with two family members from an unknown editor to a sought-after figure in literary society.
Enduring Love by Ian McEwan
Joe and Clarissa Rose's spring idyll in the park is cut short when Joe helps rescue a child from a balloon accident, one man is killed, and Joe becomes the target of suspicion and ultimately an assassination attempt.
I’ve checked. All of these titles have available copies for your reading enjoyment NOW. No delayed gratification required! Enjoy.