Book Reviews

Remember November: To Get You In The Spirit Of The Month, Here Are Five Good Reads With November

What does November mean to you? For many of us, November signals the start of the holiday season. It also ushers in the unofficial start of winter weather for many parts of the country.

Here are some other more unusual facts about our calendar’s 11th month.

  • November starts on the same day of the week as the month of March in a common year and ends on the same day of the week as the month of August.
  • According to Twitter data, November is the month of love for the Spanish. Spaniards are more likely to tweet “Te amo” (meaning “I love you”) in November than in any other month.
  • In weather lore, an old saying goes, “If there’s ice in November to bear a duck, there’ll be nothing after but sludge and muck.”
  • November 2 is the only day of the year that is the birthday of two American presidents: James Polk (1795) and Warren Harding (1865).
  • According to research by Clearblue pregnancy testing company, November is the month in which women least want to give birth.
  • People in Finland call November “Marraskuu,” which means month of the dead.

Remember November – Five books on the 11th month of the year

With its colder weather and its shortening days, November often figures prominently into books and even into book titles. Here are five books with November in the title.

Remember November – November Man by Bill Granger (Armchair Detective Library, 1979)

The late Bill Granger began his November Man series with this action-packed spy thriller, which later became a major motion picture starring Pierce Brosnan.

Often called the American James Bond, Devereaux is Granger’s single-named protagonist. After receiving the cryptic message “There are no spies,” Devereaux gets caught up into a web of international espionage with spies spying on spies.

“Terrorism has no rules except to effect terror. And that is why I wrote the book I did, based on experience and what I thought I understood of the way politics works,” Granger once said of this book. “And terrorism is politics, no matter how extreme.”

Granger’s prose is tight, and he builds the tension well in this Cold War page-turner. So what’s the November connection? Devereaux’s code name is November Man.

Remember November – Red November by W. Craig Reed (Harper Collins, 2010)

Author W. Craig Reed, a former U.S. Navy diver and submariner, whose father was a top naval intelligence specialist during the Cuban Missile Crisis, reveals riveting details about the underwater Cold War.

Reed, who also was a special ops photographer, shares his interviews with other navy divers, spies, submariners and government officials on both sides of the conflict.

In many cases, he gives us an unsettling account of just how close the world came to nuclear war during the second half of the 20th century. For example, one especially chilling detail Reed reveals is that Chinese navy launched 31 nuclear submarines from 1995 to 2005.

Remember November – Remember, Remember (The Fifth of November) by Judy Parkinson (Delacorte Press, 2009)

Britain has a long and storied history. If you would like to take a quick ride through some of the more interesting pieces of it, here is a clever book for you. Subtitled “Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know About British History with All the Boring Bits Taken Out,” this book offers 150 concise chunks of information.

Londoner Judy Parkinson has written several other non-fiction books, including “I before e (except after c): old-school ways to remember stuff” and “Spilling the Beans on the Cat’s Pajamas.”

By the way, in case you were wondering, the title quote “Remember, remember the fifth of November” is the date in 1605 that Guy Fawkes and his group of Catholic co-conspirators tried to blow up the British Parliament.

Remember November – 11/22/63 by Stephen King (Simon and Schuster, 2011)

What if you could travel back in time and change life-altering events? It is always an engaging premise, and Stephen King uses it effectively in this dramatic novel.

The date is Nov. 22 1963, and the place is Dallas, Texas. Jake Epping is the Maine teacher who goes on a journey to change history by attempting to prevent the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

King shows his enduring versatility as a writer by leaving the horror out of this novel and by creating a fast-paced exciting look at America at the time of diners, sock hops, car cruises and a fatal day in November.

Remember November – November 9 by Colleen Hoover (Simon and Schuster, Release date: Nov. 10, 2015)

Colleen Hoover self-published her first novel, “Slammed,” in 2012, and only five months later, it hit the bestseller list of the New York Times. Since then she has written nine other bestsellers.

“November 9,” which is being released this month, is her latest effort. It is a love story about an aspiring writer who meets his muse on the same day every year – November 9. The well-crafted plot has some surprising twists and turns that should keep Hoover’s growing group of fans happy.

Remember November: To Get You In The Spirit Of The Month, Here Are Five Good Reads With November