My January reading follows.
Those books that stood out were:
Two classics -- A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens and Peter Pan by J.M. Marie;
A graphic novel, American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang;
A collection of sculptures based on fairy tales, The Singing Bones by Shaun Tan;
Shakespeare and Company Paris: A History of the Rag & Bone Shop of the Heart, edited by Krista Halverson, and Rogue Heroes by Ben Macintyre;
A novel inspired by the song, Tennessee Stud, Rode by Thomas Fox Averill;
And three mysteries -- The Ranger by Ace Atkins, Any Other Name by Craig Johnson, and In The Company of Liars by David Ellis.
Rogue Heroes is a history of the SAS, Britain's Special Air Service, who fought behind enemy lines during World War II. The SAS was the inspiration for one of my favorite television shows, The Rat Patrol, which aired on ABC from 1966 to 1968.
I took a class from Thomas Fox Averill more than twenty years ago. He was a wonderful instructor and is an amazing writer. In Rode, he fashions a complete story to the song, Tennessee Stud. I first heard the song, sung by Doc Watson, in Lawrence, Kansas, forty years ago. The song has haunted me since first hearing it, as it appears to have haunted Averill.