What We’re Reading, January 2021

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January 21, 2021

If there was ever a time to cozy up indoors with a good book in-hand, it is now. We’ve pulled together a list of what our team is reading (and loving) this month. From thrilling short story collections about crime, to novels raising universal questions about what it means to belong…we’ve got your downtime covered for at least the next few days. Find a comfortable chair, settle in, and read from this month’s picks:

Istanbul: Memories of the City

by Orhan Pamuk

A shimmering evocation, by turns intimate and panoramic, of one of the world’s great cities, by its foremost writer.

Orhan Pamuk was born in Istanbul and still lives in the family apartment building where his mother first held him in her arms. His portrait of his city is thus also a self-portrait, refracted by memory and the melancholy–or–hüzün–that all Istanbullus share: the sadness that comes of living amid the ruins of a lost empire.

Get your copy here.

Matt’s pick

What Kind of Woman

by Kate Baer

A stunning and honest debut poetry collection about the beauty and hardships of being a woman in the world today, and the many roles we play – mother, partner, and friend.

Get your copy here.

Tanya’s Pick

Crime Stories and Other Writings

by Dashiell Hammett

In the stories and novellas he wrote for Black Mask and other pulp magazines in the 1920s and 1930s, Dashiell Hammett took the detective story and turned it into a medium for capturing the jarring textures and revved-up cadences of modern American life. In this volume, The Library of America collects the finest of these stories: twenty-four in all, along with some revealing essays and an earlier version of his novel The Thin Man.

Get your copy here.

Vernon’s Pick

The Heart's Invisible Furies

by John Boyne

From the beloved New York Times bestselling author of The Boy In the Striped Pajamas, a sweeping, heartfelt saga about the course of one man’s life, beginning and ending in post-war Ireland.

Get your copy here.

Clara’s Pick


by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

The story of two Nigerians making their way in the U.S. and the UK, raising universal questions of race, belonging, the overseas experience for the African diaspora, and the search for identity and a home.

Get your copy here.

Sarah’s pick

Same Kind of Different as Me

by Ron Hall & Denver Moore

Gritty with pain and betrayal and brutality, this true story also shines with an unexpected, life-changing love.

Get your copy here.

Nix’s pick

The Florios of Sicily

by Stefania Auci

Based on the true history of the uncrowned kings of Sicily: the story of a family, restless and ambitious, shrewd and determined to be richer and more powerful than anybody else.

In this grand, sweeping epic inspired by the real lives of history-making titans, international best-selling author Stefania Auci brings to life the dark secrets, the loves and betrayals, and the cruel acts of revenge that marked the Florio family’s century of influence.

Get your copy here.

Valentina’s pick

Note: Some of these links are affiliates, which means that if you make a purchase, a small percentage comes to support the activities of The Lausanne Guide.


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