March

Brooks, Geraldine. March. Penguin Books (New York: 2005).

MarchImpressive reimagining from the point of view of Mr. March, father in The Little Women, using Bronson Alcott as a model. March is an idealistic, well-meaning, but flawed man who volunteers himself into the Civil War, tries to make a difference, and ends up feeling that he failed the people who really needed him. Interestingly, these aren’t his wife, a feisty Marmee, nor his little women. For writers: A solid example of revisiting a classic from an unexpected angle. This book tells a new story, brings life to an underwritten character, and at the same time deepens our original experience.



Click here for more reading recommendations.

Criminals

Livesey, Margot. Criminals. Penguin Books (New York: 1995).

Criminals2Alternating points of view tell the story of an adult brother and sister who slide from rescuing a baby to taking her. The sleazy boyfriend of the true mother attempts to work the situation for a profit. The brother isn’t fully aware of his sister’s deceit, but has his own issues with an insider trading offense which he slipped into because of love. Criminality as potentially part of anyone’s nature. For writers: A solid example of using multiple points of view to increase tension and psychological insight, without sacrificing cohesion or clarity.



Click here for more reading recommendations.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime

Haddon, Mark. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime. Vintage Books (New York: 2003).

Curious Incident2Story of autistic Christopher’s quest to solve the suspicious death of the dog next door, which leads him to the deeper mystery of what happened to his own mother, all told from his point of view as an autistic boy. Intriguing and well done. For writers: Shows how much can be done with an inherently limited voice, without breaking character.



Click here for more reading recommendations.