Lifestyle & Parenting

6 winter reads we can’t put down

December 17, 2013

Once the holiday madness dies down, nothing is more indulgent than spending a few days with a novel we’ve been meaning to read. And books make a thoughtful, easy-to-find and inexpensive gift. Herewitih, 6 picks to add to your collection (or someone else’s).

The Goldfinch
Goldfinch Donna TarttMichiko Kakutani  of The New York Times rarely gives a rave review, so we certainly take notice she she does. The Goldfinch, Donna Tartt’s  first novel in 11 years, has been called Dickensonian, but we can’t help but compare protagonist Theo Decker to Holden Caulfield. Both sweeping and intimate, the story follows, the book’s nuance characters are as vivid as the object of Theo’s obsession – an ethereal and emotionally loaded work of art.  At 700+ pages, be prepared for a few late nights. $16.50 at —Maria Tallarico

Where’d You Go, Bernadette?
Where did you go bernadetteSet in Seattle, this caustic and incredibly sharp and funny novel centres on Bernadette, a genius but increasingly shut-in housewife whose daily life becomes overrun with judgmental private school moms, an impending family trip, a virtual assistant and prescription medication (or lack thereof). Her hilarious disdain for Canadians made us love her even more. $11.55 at —MT

InfidelityToronto writer Stacey May Fowles’ third novel follows two characters through the arc of a passionate affair, exploring the foundations of relationships and the choices we make surrounding them. $13.83 at —Kat Tancock

Mastering the Art of Soviet Cooking
Mastering the art of soviet cookingThis memoir by an American cookbook author and childhood Soviet émigré, Anya von Bremzen unpacks the meaning behind the foodstuffs she and her compatriots grew up with and that she pined for after leaving her homeland – all while telling the story of everyday Soviet life. $18.81 at

The Turk who Loved Apples
The Turk Who Loved ApplesThere are travel memoirs bathed in golden light, and then there are those that are honest. This is the latter: Matt Gross, the former Frugal Traveller for the New York Times shares the stories that didn’t make it in print the first time around – and makes us all feel better about the less-than-perfect experiences of our own travels. $13.36 at

The Silent Wife
The Silent WifeDevour this intelligent page-turner in a single sitting:  an average American couple with an average American life succumb to mid-life crises that unravel them both and leave one of them dead. As with all good thrillers, it ends in an unexpected way. The movie people, of course, have been calling. This is the break out novel from Toronto author A.S.A Harrison who, sadly, passed away just before its publication. $12.60 at —Sarah Bancroft


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