No Two Persons by Erica Bauermeister
narrated by a full cast
Macmillan Audio, 2023
8 hours and 54 minutes
"No two persons ever read the same book” is a familiar quote, and now Erica Bauermeister has written a novel which shows how one book impacts many lives in very different ways. The novel is comprised of connected stories and begins, naturally, with an author... one writing a novel called Theo. It continues with a story about a young, overworked and underpaid publishing assistant who pulls Theo from the slush pile. We're later introduced to an actor turned audiobook narrator, a homeless teenager, an artist, a bookseller, and more. Each story highlights the subject's relationship with Theo and, by the end, I kind of wished I could read Theo for myself!
I loved nearly all of the stories and was delighted any time a familiar character reappeared in a later chapter. This is truly a book for book lovers! Listening added to my overall enjoyment - each story has a different narrator and they were all great. My only complaint, which is true for many short story collections, is that I was frequently left wanting more when a story ended.
I chose this book after seeing Tina's glowing review, and it later became a Modern Mrs. Darcy July selection. The live author chat enhanced my appreciation of this book, and made me want to reread it in print.
by Jake Bittle
Simon & Schuster, 2023
It's impossible to deny climate change these days and The Great Displacement explains how climate migration is already underway. I found this to be an absolutely riveting read, especially in light of our experience with Hurricane Ian in Sanibel, FL last September.
Bittle structures the book to cover both weather/climate disasters and long-term growing problems. Each gets a separate chapter where the author digs into possible causes, government response, construction/ insurance/housing ramifications, and stories of individual families and homeowners in each danger zone.
The Great Displacement begins with Hurricane Irma in Big Pine Key, FL in 2017, then moves back to 1999 and the first attempt at government buyouts. This occurred in Kinston, NC following flooding along the Neuse River after Hurricane Floyd. Bittle explore the situation following California wildfires, coastal erosion in the Louisiana bayous, flood control in Houston, water scarcity in Arizona, and rising sea levels in Norfolk, VA. This is a comprehensive look at the many manifestations of climate change and various attempts to deal with them. I learned even more about the national flood insurance program, the insurance industry in general, FEMA, the Army Corps of Engineers, changing flood zones, and the effects on the housing market.
This is the most comprehensive look at the many climate change scenarios facing the United States that I have seen. I could not put this book down and even added the audio version so I could continue to listen when I could no longer sit and read. This will be one of my favorite nonfiction reads of 2023.