Oh, yes, it’s our first pick of 2011, from an interesting quartet of choices. These come from Danielle Virgin, an integral part of RealSimple.com’s IT team and January’s discussion leader. Be sure to vote for your favorite by 11:59 p.m. EST on Sunday, December 19. Thanks, everyone!
Ellington Boulevard, by Adam LangerA colorful multicharacter cast crowds a funny yet poignant story that revolves around a hot topic: real estate. Or in this case, an underpriced Manhattan apartment in an overinflated market.
One Day, by David Nicholls
One day in 1988, Dex and Em meet, only to go their own ways. Is that the end of their relationship? Over the next two decades we get snapshots of their lives as they stand on one day each year: July 15. Witty, charming, and heartbreaking, this was one of the most buzzed-about books of 2010.
Nothing Is Quite Forgotten in Brooklyn, by Alice Mattison
Told in two long vignettes, Mattison’s ninth book is a gripping mix of intrigue and family dynamics, as a woman tries to unravel the mystery of her mother’s death.
Family Planning, by Karan Mahajan
Family is also at the heart of this debut novel, which examines the life of an Indian civil servant—and father of 13—and asks whether even the ordinary is not in its own way extraordinary.