Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Dear Great Book Guru,  With the upcoming Columbus Day weekend, I am looking for a good novel to read. First , of course, I will attending the Sea Cliff Museum’s opening of its 1960’s retrospective that curator Sara Reres has so smartly organized.  It sounds like great fun especially with everyone being encouraged to come in 1960’s attire.  But back to that novel, any recommendations?  Sea Cliff Museum Supporter

Dear Museum Supporter,   I am certainly looking forward to Friday night’s Museum reception and I do have a fast moving, topical novel to recommend: A WINDOW OPENS by Elisabeth Egan.  Alice Pearse is happily living in an affluent suburban community,  her husband is on the partner track at a prestigious New York law firm, she works a few days a week as a magazine book reviewer while helping her best friend run a local bookstore, her three young children are well adjusted, her devoted parents live nearby, and she has Jessie, the perfect babysitter. Shortly into the book, everything changes and there is one major villain (other than the vagaries of life): Scroll-her new employer- a fictional combination of Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Apple.  Scroll is developing plans “to reinvent reading as Starbucks reinvented coffee” with lounges featuring leather chairs, e-reader terminals, foot massages, plastic-encased first editions,  and artisanal refreshments.  Midway through the story, the company decides to shift its focus from books to video games, but meanwhile Alice finds herself caught in a nightmarish trap of  electronic servitude reminiscent of Dave Eggers’s THE CIRCLE.   This  book, while predictable in many ways, was surprisingly poignant in its depiction of family and work relationships. Recommended!

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