Saturday, April 17, 2010

Here's a nice post-tax season surprise: Yesterday, Amazon delivered my copy of Anne Tyler's latest novel, Noah's Compass. Woo hoo! I'm as happy as a little girl! No more of this books-I'm-not-reading for me. No, sir. At last, a book I've been looking forward to reading since January.

Why is Anne Tyler my favorite author? (What? You thought Hemingway was my favorite author? No, he's my favorite dead author; Tyler's my favorite living author. See the difference? And, aside from their living/dead status, they couldn't be any more different from one another. I'm complicated that way.) No one I've been reading, or reading about, writes better about the things that mean most to me - families and what makes up a family and the bonds of love between family members. No, she doesn't fish or hunt big game in Africa but what Tyler does, she does exceedingly well, and I can't recommend her novels too highly.

But don't take my word for it. Here's what Nick Hornby had to say about Anne Tyler in his August, 2005 column (Sorry. The link only goes to a preview of the article. To view the whole thing you have to, get this, pay cash money. Imagine that.) for The Believer:
Anne Tyler is the person who first made me want to write. I picked up Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant in a bookshop, started to read it there and then, bought it, took it home, finished it and suddenly I had an ambition, for about the first time in my life.

A review to follow when I'm finished.

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