Saturday, May 3, 2014

Chicago Tribune's Reader of the Week

Well. Ahem. That's yours truly - the Chicago Tribune's Reader of the Week!

Who I am

Michelle Newby Lancaster from Colorado City, Texas.

One unique thing about me

I don't remember how I first fell in love with books. My mother read to me from birth, and I've always read voraciously, usually two books a week, sometimes three. I do remember being conscious, at the age of 8, of the idea that I could enter another world and/or another skin through books. To date I've found no concept more exciting than that.

I liked

"The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D." by Nichole Bernier, "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee, "Paris Requiem" by Lisa Appignanesi, "Love in the Time of Cholera" by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and "Flight Behavior" by Barbara Kingsolver. I loved "The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D." because I identified so strongly with the central struggles of the two female protagonists: societal expectations of motherhood and gender roles. Also, the sentences were often exquisite — so beautiful!

I didn't like

"Manuscript Found in Accra" by Paulo Coelho. I felt this book was the literary equivalent of "live, laugh, love."

Author I'd like to meet

I would most like to meet Charles Bowden and talk about how Mexico can break your heart. I would also ask whether he thinks things are improving there or if the fact that we get less news is a result of the intimidation of Mexican journalists or short American attention spans.

Up next

"Revolt" by Qaisra Shahraz, "The Whitehall Mandarin" by Edward Wilson, "Bittersweet" by Miranda Beverly-Whittemore and "The Opposite of Maybe" by Maddie Dawson.

Tell us about your reading life at

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