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'Good Reads' book suggestions from Nancy Schreher

belcantoAuthor Ann Patchett has five novels and two nonfiction books to her name, and one of her fans – Nancy Schreher – works in Educational Communications at Upstate.

Schreher, who majored in English in college, first read Patchett‘s acclaimed “Bel Canto.”

"It‘s about a group of diplomats and business people who are held hostage by terrorists somewhere in South America. The relationships that develop between the hostages and the terrorists become very interesting, very touching. They work a lot of things out. So, in the end when the police come in shooting, you think, ‘why are you doing this? These people are getting along well.‘

“Patchett has a knack for taking a situation and making you think of it in a different way. There are two sides to every story.”

patronSchreher also recommends “The Patron Saint of Liars,” Patchett‘s first book.

“It takes place in Kentucky at St. Elizabeth's home for unwed mothers that is run by the Catholic church. This young lady, Rose, grew up in California, got married and then came to the realization she is not in the place that she should be. She leaves her husband, even though she is pregnant, and drives to Kentucky and becomes a resident at St. Elizabeth's. It‘s a perspective you wouldn‘t ordinarily get. You meet all these young ladies and learn their stories. I find it very similar to ‘Bel Canto‘ in the sense that you get a very intimate view of the story from the inside.”