New Arrivals!

I didn’t really need to go to the recent Book Sale – a big, big, exhibition hall full of books on tables, that were very nicely reduced. I have enough books, really. I enjoy being in the presence of books, though, so I thought, if I bicycle there (45 minutes each way), it will be good exercise and as a reward, I can have a look at those books. Maybe pick a few up for my mother (who relies on me for her reading). Since I still had a lot of my budget from the weekend before, when I went to a proper book fair, I erm… did buy some books for myself as well. Nine books in total (2 or 3 are suitable for Mum). [When you see two covers, I show you the English and the Dutch copy, I bought the Dutch one. I bought some books in English too.]

From the Book Sale

The Best Thing That Can Happen to a Croissant by Pablo TussetHet beste wat een croissant kan overkomen by Pablo Tusset

The Best Thing That Can Happen to a Croissant by Pablo Tusset

Such a crazy title! I just had to find out about this book. says: “An easy-riding, ball-busting comedy of bad manners, this is one of the most surprising and entertaining literary debuts of recent years. Pablo Baloo Miralles, a fat, useless and flatulent thirty-year-old, is the black sheep of his obscenely wealthy family. While he dedicates his days to online philosophy chatrooms and his nights to whatever pleasures he can find, his brother, ‘The First,’ is president of his booming family business. But, when ‘The First’ suddenly disappears, Pablo finds himself being sucked into a hair-raising, mind-bending adventure – an adventure in which he must use all of his well-honed survival instincts to come out alive.”


The Children's Hospital by Chris AdrianHet kinderziekenhuis by Chris Adrian

The Children’s Hospital by Chris Adrian

This book was recommended to me by the Dutch publisher of the book. Erm, yes. Well, she has some idea of what I like so I’ll take her word for it. 🙂 The description sounds both fun (post-apocalyptic) and totally weird (green fire???)….

Description from the USA publishers: “Jemma Claflin is a third-year medical student at the unnamed hospital that is the only thing to survive after an apocalyptic storm. Inside the hospital, beds are filled with children with the most rare and complicated childhood diseases—a sort of new-age Noah’s Ark, a hospital filled with two of each kind of sickness. As Jemma and her fellow doctors attempt to make sense of what has happened to the world, and try to find the meaning of their futures, Jemma becomes a Moses figure, empowered with the mysterious ability to heal the sick by way of a green fire that shoots from her belly.”


The Orphan Master's Son by Adam JohnsonGestolen leven by Adam Johnson

The Orphan Master’s Son by Adam Johnson

I heard a lot about this book and I’m very curious to find out for myself what it’s like. It’s a BIG book (in Dutch, at least) and I hope it’s good!

Description from the USA publishers: “Pak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother—a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang—and an influential father who runs a work camp for orphans. Superiors in the state soon recognize the boy’s loyalty and keen instincts. Considering himself “a humble citizen of the greatest nation in the world,” Jun Do rises in the ranks.

He becomes a professional kidnapper who must navigate the shifting rules, arbitrary violence, and baffling demands of his Korean overlords in order to stay alive. Driven to the absolute limit of what any human being could endure, he boldly takes on the treacherous role of rival to Kim Jong Il in an attempt to save the woman he loves, Sun Moon, a legendary actress “so pure, she didn’t know what starving people looked like.” ”


A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

I have read several books by Dickens, and this one was next on my list. 

From Dutch online bookshop “A TALE OF TWO CITIES begins on a muddy English road in an atmosphere charged with mystery and it ends in the Paris of the Revolution with one of the most famous acts of self-sacrifice in literature. In between lies one of Dickens’s most exciting books–a historical novel that, generation after generation, has given readers access to the profound human dramas that lie behind cataclysmic social and political events. Famous for its vivid characters, including the courageous French nobleman Charles Darnay, the vengeful revolutionary Madame Defarge, and cynical Englishman Sydney Carton, who redeems his ill-spent life in a climactic moment at the guillotine (“It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done”), the novel is also a powerful study of crowd psychology and the dark emotions aroused by the Revolution, illuminated by Dickens’s lively comedy.”


My Last Confession by Helen FitzgeraldMijn laatste bekentenis by Helen Fitzgerald

My Last Confession by Helen Fitzgerald

I’ve read two books so far by Helen Fitzgerald, The Duplicate and Bloody Women, and loved them both. So I was glad to see another book by her, for a nice price.

Description from the UK publishers: “Tips for parole officers:

  1. Don’t smuggle heroin into prison.
  2. Don’t drink vodka to relieve stress.
  3. Don’t French-kiss a colleague to get your boyfriend jealous.
  4. Don’t snort speed.
  5. Don’t spend more time with murderers than with your son.
  6. Don’t invite crack-head clients to your party.

This is Krissie’s advice after being in the job for a month. She’s happy and in love, but her naivety and blind compassion plunge her into a shocking murder case that could jeopardise everything.

The case is that of Jeremy, who is on remand for the brutal murder of his mother-in-law. A tragic childhood accident combined with his lack of alibi seem to make it an open-and-shut case. But Krissie can’t help feeling there has been a miscarriage of justice and battles to secure his release.

A dark family secret is at the heart of the case, and Krissie is out of her depth. Because someone isn’t happy. Someone dangerous. Someone who will stop at nothing to get to her.”


The Finder by Colin Harrison

The Finder by Colin Harrison

This was a cheapy that looked interesting. A nice, floppy American paperback. I was reminded of The Reconstructionist when I saw this book, and I thought I’d try it.

Description from the USA publishers: “Jin Li is a beautiful, driven young woman running a dangerous little operation. Manhattan corporations hire her for a simple but delicate task: to shred and destroy the reams of highly classified documents. But they don’t know that she and her brother, Chen, have been using their discarded secrets to game the international markets, making a pile of cash. When someone at the Good Pharma corporation, whose stock is plummeting, uncovers the scheme, two of Jin Li’s workers die a grisly death, and Jin is on the run. Her brother extorts Jin’s old flame, Ray Grant–an ex-firefighter with a disturbing 9/11 past–to track her down. He’ll have to comb every strata of New York, from the brutal Mexican mafia to the greed-fueled penthouse billionaires of Wall Street, to find her. ”


De gele ogen van de krokodillen by Katherine PancolTegenlicht by Esther VerhoefDe schuldigen by Thomas van Aalten

De gele ogen van de krokodillen [The Yellow Eyes of Crocodiles] by Katherine Pancol. Translated from the French, Les Yeux Jaunes Des Crocodiles. A trilogy about a family with secrets.

Tegenlicht [Backlight] by Esther Verhoef. A Dutch writer. The story is about a woman with traumas from her youth trying to survive in her marriage.

De schuldigen [The Guilty] by Thomas van Aalten. Another Dutch writer. An attack on world’s only 7-star hotel and the super-rich parents of the main character are the themes in this book.


About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

23 Responses to New Arrivals!

  1. Suzanne says:

    Maybe we should read The Orphan Master’s Son together? I got about 100 pages in a few months ago but I just wasn’t in the right mood for it at the time.
    I like the title The Best Thing That Can Happen to a Croissant — I can’t wait to hear if the book is just as fun.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Suzanne, I would love to read *The Orphan Master’s Son* together, but not before December… I’m full, totally booked full. Or… I have plans that I don’t want to upset yet again: I want to read all the books that I owned before January 1st this year, before the end of the year. That was a great plan, until I realised I hadn’t included ebooks… Anyway, I’ll still try it for the paper books at least.

      So, December or January any good for you? 🙂

  2. Boekhapper says:

    Zo zeg, je bent voorlopig weer onder de pannen! die voor je moeder lees je zeker ook eerst zelf (om te beoordelen of het wel wat voor haar is natuurlijk) 😉
    Overigens kan ik je Maria Duenas (het geluid van de nacht) ook aanraden voor je moeder. De mijne vond het erg mooi! Ze leest nu Parnassia van Josha Zwaan. Je begrijpt, ik moet ook m’n moeder voorzien van boeken….

    • Leeswammes says:

      Joke, bedankt voor de tip – ik ken het boek van Duenas niet. Sommige boeken zal ik eerst zelf lezen – vooral omdat ik graag eerst een boek lees voordat ik het doorgeef, zodat het nog helemaal mooi is. Maar een aantal mag ze meteen hebben….

      Grappig dat jij ook je moeder van boeken moet voorzien.

  3. JoV says:

    This is awesome Judith, you got Orphan master’s son in your bag! I look forward to hear what you think about it. and as for “The Best Thing That Can Happen to a Croissant” it is to spread it with jam and chocolate and it goes straight to my stomach! 🙂

    • Leeswammes says:

      JoV, I’m looking forward to *The Orphan Master’s Son* a lot. I won’t have time to read it just yet, though.

      Your idea of what to do with a croissant sounds fine to me!

  4. What a funny title The Best Thing to Happen to A Croissant-I want to see what the book is about.

  5. farmlanebooks says:

    The Best Thing That Can Happen to a Croissant? Wow ! I love the title! I think I’d have picked it up too. I hope it is as good as it sounds.

  6. The Finder looks really interesting. The only other book on your new arrivals list that I’ve read is The Orphan Master’s Son. It is quite long and took me a bit to really get into the story but it’s such a fascinating read and it’s interesting to learn more about the secret world of North Korea. I hope you enjoy it and look forward to your review!

  7. shelleyrae @ Book'd Out says:

    I’ve added My Last Confession to my wishlist Judith – it seems like something I would enjoy!

  8. Chinoiseries says:

    You managed to keep it down at nine, that is an accomplishment as well, isn’t it? 😉 I’d have bought much, much more… I see a book buying ban in the near future o__o But your book haul is an interesting and very diverse one, ranging from classic literature to modern crime. Something for every mood? Have you read anything by Esther Verhoef before?

  9. Athira says:

    Children’s Hospital intrigues me the most! I hope the publisher was right and that you enjoy it.

  10. I would love to read The Finder and The Orphan Master’s Son. You have some excellent books on your list.

  11. Mystica says:

    None of us seem to be able to resist a book sale. Worldwide phenomenon!

  12. Marie says:

    The Children’s Hospital sounds very very interesting. I’ve just headed over to GoodReads and it certainly seems to have polarised opinions over there – they’re all 1 star reviews or 5 star reviews! I might do a little more research before putting it on my wishlist but am very intrigued!

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