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Monday, November 11, 2013

A Nod to Fine Authors: Part Two

My last blog post looked at new authors I’ve discovered from reading e-books on my Kindle. I mentioned three, ending with the well-known author of PAY IT FORWARD, Catherine Ryan Hyde, who was new to me. I’d like to start with her again.

Catherine Ryan Hyde

As I mentioned before, I discovered Hyde when I read her book, WHEN YOU WERE OLDER. The day after losing his job and many of his coworkers in the collapse of the Twin Towers, Russell awakens to learn his mother has just passed on and he has inherited the care of his brain-injured brother, Ben. Although chronologically older, Ben is now much like a child and Russell must help him learn to live again. It’s both painfully raw and touchingly tender.

Having read (and thoroughly enjoyed) that first Hyde book, I picked up another. The title tells the story. SECOND-HAND HEART is indeed about a transplant and fans of RETURN TO ME will enjoy it, but it has some unexpected elements—and developments—that make it well worth reading. Most recently I read Hyde’s DON’T LET ME GO, a touching discussion of fear, courage, and the transformative power of a child. I can’t recommend it highly enough.

Michaelene McElroy
When I saw the title, THE LAST SUPPER CATERING COMPANY, I wondered if I’d be comfortable with the story, but I downloaded it anyway. The fresh, appealing voice caught me within seconds and the quirky, I’ve-never-read-anything-like-it plot kept me fascinated. This is an odd book, but it’s a nice kind of odd. I enjoyed it thoroughly.

Tracey Garvis-Graves
Ms. Graves debut novel, ON THE ISLAND, was a well-I-can-try-it experiment for me. Wow. I just recently reread the whole thing, start to finish—something I don’t do often since there are so many great books and so little time. This one swept me away.

Anna is 30 years old when the charter plane carrying her and 16-year-old T.J., the high school student she has been hired to teach over the summer, is downed in the Indian Ocean. They make it to a tiny, uninhabited island in the Indonesian archipelago as student and teacher. Three and a half years later, when helpers are rescuing survivors from the great tsunami of 2004, their relationship has changed. How did they survive on the island? And how will their tender new relationship survive when they return to the civilized world?

Don’t read this one if you’re squeamish, but if “painfully raw and touchingly tender” are your style, you’ll love it just as I did. Enjoy!

These are just a few of the many fine authors you can read on Kindle, Nook, I-Phones, computers and other mobile devices. If you are committed to paper-only reading, I'm sympathetic; there is nothing like turning the pages of a book. Yet these are inexpensive reads you can enjoy without getting a cramp in your forearm. Think about it, anyway.  :-)

Susan Aylworth is the author of 11 published novels now available for ebook readers. A 12th is scheduled for publication in June 2014. She lives in northern California with her husband of 43 years, a devoted old dog and two quirky cats. Her 22nd and 23rd grandchildren are expected next spring. She loves to hear from readers. Find her at (sign up for the newsletter too) or @SusanAylworth.