May 11

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Ann and I decide to put our literary fates in your hands, and are asking you to vote on which book we each should read this summer. Next, I interview Karen Corvello from RJ Julia Booksellers, who tells us about a book she loves and the amazing review it recently received. And in “Two Books We Can’t Wait for You to Read,” Ann discusses The Invisible Bridge and I talk about The Other Wes Moore.

If you are receiving this by email, you can listen to the podcast by clicking through to Books on the Nightstand.

For more extensive show notes, including links, keep reading …

Tell Us What to Read This Summer

You’ve all heard me whine and moan about all of the books I regret not having read yet. Well, this Summer Ann and I are facing our perpetual-TBR piles and letting you pick which book we’ll read. We’ve each chosen 5 books that have been patiently waiting for us to pick them up. You vote for one title for each of us, and we’ll read the top vote-getters! I’ve chosen A Fraction of the Whole, Tinkers, Waiting for Columbus, Middlesex, and The Yiddish Policemen’s Union. Ann has chosen The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay, Lonesome Dove, The Poisonwood Bible, War and Peace, and Middlesex (great minds…). Click on the image below to vote!

Did Karen Corvello Shave Her Head? (5:30)

I sat down with Karen Corvello, the Adult Books Buyer for RJ Julia Booksellers in Madison, CT, one of the many wonderful stores Ann and I get to work with. She told me about The Imperfectionists by Tom Rachman, a book she loved long before Christopher Buckley’s gushing front-page New York Times Book Review rave. In fact, in a recent RJ Julia blog post, Karen told her customers that if she didn’t convince five of them to read The Imperfectionists, she was going to shave her head and move to the Himalayas to become a nun. Thankfully, Karen has sold far more than five and got to keep her hair! Karen and I also discussed book reviews in general (she mentions the New York Times’ Dwight Garner as someone who writes particularly entertaining reviews), and the incredible “book opinion” resource that is your local bookstore’s staff. Be sure to check out the Staff Suggestions section on RJ Julia’s website, for more from this wonderful store!

Two Books We Can’t Wait for You to Read (11:36)

Ann raves about The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer, calling this story of two Hungarian Jewish brothers during World War II, the best book she’s read this year. I tell you about The Other Wes Moore by Wes Moore, which is the true story of two young men, who grew up in similar circumstances, but whose fates were polar opposites of each other. Click here to see a section of the author’s visit to The Oprah Winfrey Show.

  • http://www.rjjuliablog.com Karen

    How’s this for good timing: to understand why I like Dwight Garner so much, read today’s review of Operation Mincemeat. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/12/books/12book.html?ref=books

  • http://www.rjjuliablog.com Karen

    How’s this for good timing: to understand why I like Dwight Garner so much, read today’s review of Operation Mincemeat. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/12/books/12book.html?ref=books

  • Donna Denham

    I chose Middlesex for both of you.Maybe the listener’s could read along with you.It could be all our summer challenge.I plan to read whichever books get selected for you as I have only read “Waiting for Columbus”.It is good to read things out of our comfort zone.I just read my first Graphic novel because of Steve’s praise.I loved Maus and then quickly read Persepolis1 and 2.Now everyone I meet I tell them they must try these books out.Love your podcast!!!Djdee

  • Donna Denham

    I chose Middlesex for both of you.Maybe the listener’s could read along with you.It could be all our summer challenge.I plan to read whichever books get selected for you as I have only read “Waiting for Columbus”.It is good to read things out of our comfort zone.I just read my first Graphic novel because of Steve’s praise.I loved Maus and then quickly read Persepolis1 and 2.Now everyone I meet I tell them they must try these books out.Love your podcast!!!Djdee

  • Jimesa Wilson

    Hiya. I chose Middlesex for both of you as well. I had the same idea as Donna about a read along. I thought reading along with you two over the summer would be fun and give me a good excuse to buy another book. Love the show, keep up the good work.

  • Jimesa Wilson

    Hiya. I chose Middlesex for both of you as well. I had the same idea as Donna about a read along. I thought reading along with you two over the summer would be fun and give me a good excuse to buy another book. Love the show, keep up the good work.

  • Hope

    Middlesex. You really haven’t read Middlesex?

  • Hope

    Middlesex. You really haven’t read Middlesex?

  • http://www.booksonthenightstand.com Ann Kingman

    Nope, neither of us have read Middlesex, can you believe it? If t doesn’t win, maybe we will do a readalong. That would be fun!

  • http://www.booksonthenightstand.com Ann Kingman

    Nope, neither of us have read Middlesex, can you believe it? If t doesn’t win, maybe we will do a readalong. That would be fun!

  • http://bibliosue.blogspot.com Suzanne

    Call me a masochist, but I voted for War & Peace for Ann, and if it is selected I will read it along with you.

    I just picked up The Invisible Bridge at the library the other day. Can’t wait to read it.

  • http://bibliosue.blogspot.com Suzanne

    Call me a masochist, but I voted for War & Peace for Ann, and if it is selected I will read it along with you.

    I just picked up The Invisible Bridge at the library the other day. Can’t wait to read it.

  • Shona

    I was torn – I wanted to vote for Middlesex for both of you as it is in my TBR pile so I would read it over the summer as well. But I had to vote for A Fraction of the Whole for Michael (one of my favorite books of all time) and Poisonwood Bible for Ann (also a great read). Such great books and I want you to experience them!!!

    But now you have also inspired me to put together my own summer reading list…

  • Shona

    I was torn – I wanted to vote for Middlesex for both of you as it is in my TBR pile so I would read it over the summer as well. But I had to vote for A Fraction of the Whole for Michael (one of my favorite books of all time) and Poisonwood Bible for Ann (also a great read). Such great books and I want you to experience them!!!

    But now you have also inspired me to put together my own summer reading list…

  • Callie

    I didn’t vote for it for either of you, but if you read Middlesex, I’ll give it a go also!

  • Callie

    I didn’t vote for it for either of you, but if you read Middlesex, I’ll give it a go also!

  • http://www.bostonbibliophile.com Marie

    I voted for MIDDLESEX for Michael and WAR & PEACE for Ann. If W&P comes in first, I promise to read it with you- I have my own copy moldering on the shelf.

  • http://www.bostonbibliophile.com Marie

    I voted for MIDDLESEX for Michael and WAR & PEACE for Ann. If W&P comes in first, I promise to read it with you- I have my own copy moldering on the shelf.

  • http://twitter.com/sawinkler Stephen

    I unabashedly voted for Kavalier & Clay for Ann. If it doesn’t win, I’ll. . .continue to issue threats with no consequences. Suffice to say I love the book and agree with Michael that it needs to be read. And Ann, my wife – who is NOT a comic book geek like Michael and I – also loved it so don’t think you need that background to enjoy the book.

    To balance the vote, I chose A Fraction of the Whole for Michael since I know it’s one of Ann’s favorites. So how about this? I’ll read it too, but only if Kavalier & Clay wins. I know, I’m such a tough guy.

    Michael – YPU is a good Chabon book, but not nearly strong enough, IMO, to leap-frog other books on your TBR pile as a definitive “Must-read.”

  • http://twitter.com/sawinkler Stephen

    I unabashedly voted for Kavalier & Clay for Ann. If it doesn’t win, I’ll. . .continue to issue threats with no consequences. Suffice to say I love the book and agree with Michael that it needs to be read. And Ann, my wife – who is NOT a comic book geek like Michael and I – also loved it so don’t think you need that background to enjoy the book.

    To balance the vote, I chose A Fraction of the Whole for Michael since I know it’s one of Ann’s favorites. So how about this? I’ll read it too, but only if Kavalier & Clay wins. I know, I’m such a tough guy.

    Michael – YPU is a good Chabon book, but not nearly strong enough, IMO, to leap-frog other books on your TBR pile as a definitive “Must-read.”

  • http://www.greatbooksforkidsandteens.com Sue Jackson

    Ann – You absolutely must read The Poisonwood Bible – one of my top 5 books of all time!

  • http://www.greatbooksforkidsandteens.com Sue Jackson

    Ann – You absolutely must read The Poisonwood Bible – one of my top 5 books of all time!

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