It’s summer, when people have way more time to read than usual because they’re hiding inside from the sun, or out of school / work, on vacation, etc. The problem is, when you have all this time, sometimes it’s hard to know what to pick up first!
Starting today, we’ll post a list of three books that we think are great every Wednesday, in the hopes that one of them piques your interest, and takes you on that special journey that only a great book can. Our whole staff is participating, so enjoy the variety of voices and opinions, and may you find camaraderie among them!


Cien_a�os_de_soledad_(book_cover,_1967)One Hundred Years of Solitude
Gabriel García Márquez (1967)

Yes, this novel lives on the top book lists of many famous people, including Presidents Obama and Clinton and Oprah Winfrey. It almost seems redundant to list it here. But, it’s completely worth mentioning. This is a perfect novel for summer. Márquez’s dense magical realism may take a little while to get into in our hectic modern lives. But, if you give yourself time to unplug from social media and your phone and dive into the world of the Buendía family, you will be richly rewarded. Romantic, political, lush, sexy, funny, and unforgettable.

Recommended by Katie Hae Leo – Associate Editor




A Coat of VarnishA Coat of Varnish
C.P. Snow

A detective story, but a rather odd one, lacking a detective, or rather what passes for the detective is oddly lethargic. A mystery with, on the one hand, an excess of mystery, and on the other very little. Embedded in this book is a deep critique of how our obsession with facts and knowledge distorts our understanding of what is truly important, ideas not unexpected from the man who started the two cultures argument. Written in Snow’s limpid style, utterly readable. He did write another detective story in the early 30s, Death Under Sail, which is clever, but primitive in comparison to this one.

Recommended by Charles Brownson – Associate Editor





Mark Doty

A texturally gorgeous work of poetry, ornate and painterly in language and image while maintaining a strong narrative feel. In this collection, Doty echoes both the ecstasy of Walt Whitman and the precision of Elizabeth Bishop, a synergy of unexpected bedfellows. It details life with a dying partner (and friends) in a way that beautifully conveys both heartbreak and hope, starring a memorable cast of drag queens, marine life, migratory geese and a young man with a set of chairs trapped inside his chest.

Recommended by Elyse Arring – Editor