I found Gilead such a complete experience that I didn’t feel a need to know more about Lila, a secondary character in the book. But in Marilynne Robinson’s new book, Lila, her occupation of this young woman’s thoughts and experience is so musical and convincing that I’ve read the novel twice and recommend it far and wide.
Lev Grossman has written The Magician’s Land, the conclusion to his Magicians trilogy. Grossman’s take on fantasy and schools of magic is dark, smart, and atheistic in a heartbreaking way. Give the trilogy to someone who wants to hope but has lost that Narnia magic.
Sue Monk Kidd’s writing is as wonderful in The Invention of Wings as it was in the highly regarded The Secret Life of Bees, but this time she is using her literary skills to tell a story of freedom from slavery—freedom for both blacks and whites.