ASK! about Fiction
[ASK! Editor speaks:]
I have just completed ‘The Thirteenth Tale’, and it comes highly recommended!
For those in the unknown, ‘The Thirteenth Tale’, by Diane Setterfield, chronicles the tale of a reclusive author, Vida Winters. Vida Winters was renowned for her enthralling book of stories ‘ Thirteen tales of change and desperation’. Except that there was only twelve stories in that book. Curiously, Vida Winters called upon a young unknown biographer, Margaret Lea, to help unravel her personal story — the missing thirteenth tale. For most of her life, Vida Winters has woven nineteen different versions of her life story to different journalists.
Why does Vida Winters try so hard to conceal her life story? What horrifying secret is Vida Winters trying to hide? Read ‘The Thirteenth Tale’ to find out!
If you have read ‘The Thirteenth Tale’ and enjoyed it as much as I have, below are some readalikes recommendations.
There is a suggested list of titles which feature “books” as part of the storyline. A “identity fiction” title and two “recluses as authors fiction” titles have been included as suggested readalikes to ‘The Thirteenth Tale’. The location and availability of the books can be checked via our online catalogue at http://vistaweb.nlb.gov.sg/.
 Title: Literacy and longing in L.A.
By: Jennifer Kaufman and Karen Mack
Call Number: English KAU
“Whenever her life hits a crisis, Dora escapes into a carefully selected stack of books, shutting herself away from the outside world until she emerges from her book binge capable of facing her problems.”
 Title: If on a winter’s night a traveler
By: Italo Calvino ; translated from the Italian by William Weaver
Call Number: English CAL
“Ten different and thoroughly dissimilar novels intertwine as the beginning of each book, interrupted at a critical moment of suspense, leads into yet another novel reflecting yet another literary mode”
 Title: The Jane Austen book club
By: Karen Joy Fowler
Call Number: English FOW-[RO]
“As six Californians get together to form a book club to discuss the novels of Jane Austen, their lives are turned upside down by troubled marriages, illicit affairs, changing relationships, and love.”
 Title: The camel bookmobile
By: Masha Hamilton
Call Number: English HAM
“Establishing a bookmobile in a destitute Kenyan village, well-intentioned Fiona Sweeney inadvertently renews a decades-old tribal feud involving a camel-powered bookmobile and prior efforts to promote local education.”
 Title: The Dumas club
By: Arturo Pérez-Reverte ; translated from the Spanish by Sonia Soto.
Call Number: English PER -[MY]
“Lucas Corso’s search for the original copy of a book of the occult takes him from Madrid to Paris and into a secret society of antiquarians.”
 Title: The ghost writer
By: John Harwood.
Call Number: English HAR -[HO]
“Plagued with unpleasant memories of his mother’s death, shy Gerard Freeman is obsessed with the manuscript of a century-old ghost story written by his great-grandmother and entrusted to his care.”
 Title: The stolen child : a novel
By: Keith Donohue.
Call Number: English DON -[FN]
“Stolen from his family by changelings, Henry Day is given the name “Aniday” by the ageless and magical beings, who replace him with another child who takes his place with his parents, a young boy who possesses an extraordinary gift of music.”
Recluses as authors fiction:
 Title: The tattooed girl: a novel
By: Joyce Carol Oates
Call Number: English OAT
“When his failing health prompts him to hire an assistant, reclusive author Joshua Siegl recruits Alma, unaware of her tortured past and the hatred stirring within her that incides her to commit anti-Semitic acts.”
 Title: The muse asylum
By: David Czuchlewski
Call Number: English CZU
“From within the confines of a psychiatric ward, Andrew Wallace, a troubled young genius, continues his obsession with a reclusive writer, spinning conspiratorial tales that threaten to overwealm his world. A first novel. Reprint.”
Book summaries are extracted from EBSCO NoveList
Answered by Ms Ng Kiak Peng, Librarian, Adult and Young People’s Services
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