Whether you are headed somewhere hot and exotic, to a winter wonderland or having a staycation, Go Crave Rave has selected some of our favourite books to throw in your beach bag, ski bag or handbag.
Ladette Randolph understands her life best through the houses she has inhabited. From the isolated farmhouse of her childhood, to the series of houses her family occupied in small towns across Nebraska, to the equally small houses she lived in as a single mother – houses have shaped her understanding of her place in the world and served as touchstones for a life marked by both constancy and endless cycles of change. A compelling, evocative memoir exploring the meaning of home and family, Leaving the Pink House truly shows us the beauty in “people trying to make sense of our lives, trying to make sense of a world too big to ever understand”.
Gail Gutradt was at a crossroads in her life when she learned of the Wat Opot Children’s Community. Once a haunted scrubland, Wat Opot became a place of healing and respite where children with, or orphaned by, HIV/AIDS could live without fear of judgment and find a new family – a place that Gutradt calls “a workshop for souls”. This courageous, surprising, and evocative memoir is an inspiring true story that shows that true generosity of spirit can overcome even the most fearsome of obstacles.
A recent addition to Oprah’s Book Club 2.0 selection, Ruby is a beautiful and devastating debut book infused with passion and courage. Ephram Jennings has never forgotten the beautiful girl with the long braids running through the piney woods of Liberty – their small East Texas town. Young Ruby Bell, “the kind of pretty it hurt to look at,” has suffered beyond imagining, so as soon as she can, she flees suffocating Liberty for the bright pull of 1950s New York. However thirty-year-old Ruby finds herself reliving the devastating violence of her girlhood when she is forced home, and Ephram must choose between loyalty to the sister who raised him and the chance for a life with the woman he has loved since he was a boy.
A National Book Award Finalist and shortlisted for the 2013 Man Booker Prize, The Lowland is an engrossing family saga steeped in history: the story of two very different brothers bound by tragedy, a fiercely brilliant woman haunted by her past, a country torn apart by revolution, and a love that endures long past death. Moving from the 1960s to the present, and from India to America and across generations, this dazzling novel is Jhumpa Lahiri at the height of her considerable powers.
Just in case you have a teenager with you on your otherwise peaceful holiday, throw this book in your beach bag. He eats cereal out of a large mixing bowl. Her bedroom looks like a garbage dump… on a good day. If there were an Academy Award for eye-rolling, she’d win. She changes outfits three times before breakfast. Sound familiar, get some tips from Dr. Kevin Leman on how to establish boundaries, gain respect, and turn problem behaviours around with their teenager in five days. Hopefully by the end of the holiday, all will be good.