Lisa Rogak’s Holiday Gift Suggestion

Lisa Rogak is the author of more than 40 books; her most recent is A Boy Named Shel, a biography of songwriter, poet, cartoonist, and children’s book author Shel Silverstein. She’s also the author of an unauthorized bio of Da Vinci Code scribe Dan Brown… but her taste in international bestselling thrillers seems to run a bit more upscale, as her holiday gift recommendation demonstrates.

lisa-rogak.jpgWhenever one of my friends sees me headed their way with a fiendish glint in my eye and a book in my hand thrust out in their direction as if in greeting, I know they’re going to react in one of two ways: Either they quickly glance at their wrist —whether or not it is adorned by a watch—and offer up some lame excuse about how they’re late for a clambake, or they get that deer-in-headlights look and start to sprint towards me in a dead run, anxious to see what it is I’ve discovered this time…

I tend to read some pretty obscure books in the course of my research, with usually ten or more fighting for my attention at any one time, and so I do occasionally wonder about those who eagerly accept a copy of The Only Way to Learn Astrology, The Ghosts of Williamsburg, or Opus Ultimum: The Story of the Mozart Requiem from my outstretched hands. But this year, the book I most often pushed upon them is The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon, a beautifully-written Gothic novel translated from the Spanish about a boy, a book, and a nonstop twisty mystery that usually succeeded in tearing my attention away from more important things—like deadlines—whenever I had the nerve to put it down.

And now it’s my friends’ turns to look at me wide-eyed, because I rarely read novels. But The Shadow of the Wind literally took my breath away.

27 November 2007 | gift ideas, guest authors |