50 fiction recommendations from the last 5 years

Today, I start working part-time my favorite bookstore – Changing Hands in Phoenix. I am incredibly stoked because I love bookstores. I often spend any free time that I need to kill at a local indie or at Barnes & Noble. I even worked at BN in Augusta, Maine and Tempe, Arizona (where I dated someone at each one… so there’s that).

For nearly three years, now I have interviewed authors for various sites including Electric Literature and the Millions. I’ve provided some reviews and criticism as well; mostly at Writer’s Bone. If you didn’t already know, I love books. Now that I am going to be on the front lines of the book world a few days a week, I went through my favorite works of fiction – mostly novels, but some short story collections as well – so I could be ready to suggest some works people may have missed.

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Five books to read after watching the trailer for ‘Detroit’

Kathryn Bigelow’s trailer for her (sure to be Oscar-nominated) Detroit hit the Internet today and already has me eager for August 4 to get here. The Oscar winner teamed up again with journalist-turned-screenwriter Mark Boal (The Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty).

The period piece is about the unwarranted police raid of an after-hours bar in a motel during the summer of 1967. The event, where black men ended up dead at the hands of police, kicked off the 1967 Detroit Riot. Bigelow and Boal have been working on this for a while now, but barely anything was known about the project. For months we knew John Boyega, Will Poulter, Hannah Murray, and Anthony Mackie would star in the film. Yet their roles remained nearly a mystery. Finally, with the release of the trailer, we learned the name of the film would simply be Detroit and who would play which role.

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Picking the National Book Award winner

The National Book Awards will be announced on Wednesday (November 18). Here are my predictions for who will win the fiction award. I should start off by noting that I really enjoyed two longlisted works that didn’t make the finals better than some of the finalists. Those were Bill Clegg’s Did You Ever Have a Family (you can read an interview I did with him here) and Nell Zink’s Mislaid. Even so, I still think the eventual winner is among the following.

National Book Award

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