Friday, April 12, 2013

Sarah Pekkanen shares her favorite books for FridayReads!

TGIF! We are honored and thrilled that FridayReads has chosen us to host Sarah Pekkanen for their chick lit feature this week. Her fourth novel, The Best of Us, was published on April 9th. 

Sarah has been a strong supporter of CLC since its inception almost three years ago. Not only is she a great writer, but also a warm and friendly individual. She's here today to talk about books. (What else, right?!?)

Not only that, but there are THREE ways to win The Best of Us:

*FridayReads on Facebook, open worldwide and ends April 18th.

*At our review, open to US readers and ends April 14th at midnight EST.

*From Booking with Manic, open to readers in US and Canada, ends around April 14th.

Five books that changed my life:

Photo by Hilary Schwab
In Her Shoes by Jennifer Weiner. I felt electrified when I read this book, because it was exactly the kind of novel I hoped to write some day. Years later, I signed with Jennifer's editor, which was - and still is - a dream.  

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. This book taught me that it's possible to take a real event - in this case the horrific murder of a Kansas farm family - and write a non-fiction book that is as fluid and gripping as the best fiction. As a newspaper reporter, I used the narrative style developed by Capote as a model for the stories I reported, and it was terrific training for becoming a novelist.

Plot & Structure by James Scott Bell. When I turned in my first manuscript to my agent, she gently pointed out that I was lacking ... a plot. Which isn't something you want missing from a book you're trying to sell to a publishing house. I bought every book on plotting I could find, and Bell's tome was the one that helped me overcome my weakness. I still rely on it today.

Judy Blume's Are You There God? It's Me Margaret. A friend passed me this book in elementary school, and I still vividly remember how real and true the words felt. Blume wrote about kids who seemed like me - and that made me feel less alone as a nervous, awkward pre-teen.

To Kill a Mockingbird
by Harper Lee. Every chapter, every scene, every word is perfection. I re-read this book recently, and it moved me to tears. I think a mark of a great book is that you learn something new every time you read it, and your appreciation for the work increases. It's a shame that she only wrote one book, but what a book to have written!

Learn more about Sarah by visiting her at her website, Facebook and Twitter


Nova said...

I can't wait to read this book!

Mary Jo Burke said...

I read To Kill a Mockingbird in high school. Now my kids have read it. They still talk about it. Powerful, beyond words.