The leaves are changing color, and there’s a nip in the air. Fall is coming, and with it my favorite apple: the Honeycrisp. It is so good that I refuse to buy it at the supermarket when it is out of season. This is an apple you want to get straight from the orchard. Because of that, today’s recommended reading is brought to you by the APPLE.
- Fiction: The Smell of Apples by Mark Behr
“The dreams of the parents become the dreams of the children,” observes Marnus Erasmus, the 10-year-old son of an affluent white South African family of the early 1970s. The irony behind his remark lies at the heart of this moving and tragic first novel, whose innocent narrator provides the perfect lens through which to view a culture in decay and self-denial. Behr creates a situation so potent that the characters seem to indict themselves. And yet the reader retains sympathy for Marnus, a boy just beginning to understand the horror around him and, in italicized passages seeded throughout the narrative, a man facing death 15 years later on the battlefields of Angola.
- Non-fiction: The Apple: Based on the Herman Rosenblat Holocaust Memoir by Penelope Holt
Holocaust survivor Herman Rosenblat’s controversial memoir has been called “The greatest love story ever told.” But when his story is attacked and his memoir canceled, Rosenblat must defend his narrative. The Apple first tells the story of his struggle to survive the camps and the girl he says helped him by tossing apples over the fence. It then uncovers the story behind the story: Why did an old man weave real love with a dream of love into an account that touched and inspired many, but also ignited a firestorm of criticism?
- Classic: The Golden Apples of the Sun by Ray Bradbury
Ray Bradbury’s disarming simplicity of style underlies a towering body of work unmatched in metaphorical power by any other American storyteller. This classic contains thirty-two of his most famous tales—prime examples of the poignant and mysterious poetry which Bradbury uniquely uncovers in the depths of the human soul, the otherwordly portraits of outré fascination which spring from the canvas of one of the century’s great men of imagination.