February 7, 2013 16 Comments
Books trickle in these days – one can be found on my doormat, and a few days later, there is another one. I buy one, and then nothing, and then the postman brings me a book package. It’s nice. No stress!
Books for review
Stay Close to Me by Helen Warner
A review book from Simon & Schuster UK. A family drama, it sounded like a good read. I am reading this at the moment, and it’s indeed good. I’m enjoying it.
From the publishers: “Amy has enjoyed a charmed life, shopping and lunching while the nanny looks after her children. Until her world is thrown into disarray when husband Ben’s business collapses overnight, taking their house and savings with it. Suddenly Amy finds herself the breadwinner. Can she rise to the challenge? Will her marriage survive such an upheaval? Or is it a case of ‘Till Debt Do Us Part’?
Kate has always had to struggle by, juggling her job with two children and a husband, though she wouldn’t have it any other way. But her safe little world is rocked when she meets enigmatic Jack in a chance encounter. Feeling increasingly estranged from husband Miles, Kate wonders if Jack can offer her a fresh start. But there’s something about Jack that Kate doesn’t know. . .
Jennifer is only just beginning to recover from the death of her own husband. When Jennifer makes contact with old flame Hugh she unlocks a dangerous Pandora’s box. She is desperate to find the answer to a question that has tormented her for decades. But will she be able to cope with the truth?
Man In the Empty Suit by Sean Ferrell
This book I got from Soho Press via Netgalley (ebook). The book sounded fun, but in the end, I didn’t like it enough to finish. Yes, I gave up.
From the publishers: “Say you’re a time traveler and you’ve already toured the entirety of human history. After a while, the outside world might lose a little of its luster. That’s why this time traveler celebrates his birthday partying with himself. Every year, he travels to an abandoned hotel in New York City in 2071, the hundredth anniversary of his birth, and drinks twelve-year-old Scotch (lots of it) with all the other versions of who he has been and who he will be. Sure, the party is the same year after year, but at least it’s one party where he can really, well, be himself.
The year he turns 39, though, the party takes a stressful turn for the worse. Before he even makes it into the grand ballroom for a drink he encounters the body of his forty-year-old self, dead of a gunshot wound to the head. As the older versions of himself at the party point out, the onus is on him to figure out what went wrong–he has one year to stop himself from being murdered, or they’re all goners.”
A Perfect Proposal by Katie Fforde
A book from Random House via Netgalley. I love Katie Fforde’s book, I’ve read quite a few of them. This sounds like a fun read, this time not in England, but in New York.
From the publishers: “Sophie Apperly has spent her whole life pleasing others – but when she realises her family see her less as indispensable treasure and more as general dogsbody, she decides she’s had enough.So when an old friend offers her the chance of a lifetime, she decides to swap Little England for the Big Apple, and heads off to the land of opportunity.
From the moment Sophie hits the bright lights of Manhattan she’s determined to enjoy every minute of her big adventure.And when fate throws her together with Matilda, a spirited grande dame of New York society who invites her to Connecticut for Thanksgiving, she willingly accepts.English-born Matilda is delighted with her new friend – though her grandson Luke, undeniably attractive but infuriatingly arrogant, is anything but welcoming.
When Luke arrives in England a few weeks later, Sophie hardly expects him to seek her out.But Matilda has hatched some complicated plans of her own – and so Luke has a proposal to make …”
The Travel Auction by Mark Green
The author of this book contacted me and asked whether I wanted to review his new book for Young Adults. Now, YA is not a genre I read a lot in, but from a quick scan of the book’s description, this sounded more like chick-lit than YA. And I love chick-lit (see above), so I said Yes.
From smashwords: “It should have been their trip of a lifetime. But with just days to go, Jonathan Cork finds himself dumped by his girlfriend, Kate Thornly. Even worse, a life-threatening allergy means he can’t travel alone. Unable to change the name on the spare ticket and fast running out of time, Jonathan resorts to desperate measures. He advertises on eBay for a travel companion with the same name as his ex. The problem is, it’s a complete lottery who he’ll end up with.
Kate Thornly (the second) is aware of the unusual eBay auction, but she can’t be persuaded to bid. Enter Maria, her best friend, who secretly applies on her behalf! With her nursing credentials and erotic photo, Kate seems the perfect travel companion. But there’s just one small detail Maria’s conveniently left off Kate’s bid…
What follows is a funny, page-turning, rollercoaster ride around South America.”
Norse Greenland by Jared Diamond
This is a non-fiction book about the time, around the year 1000, that Icelanders settled in Greenland. There were also Inuit, who were much better adapted to the environment. I know about this from one of my favorite books, The Greenlanders by Jane Smiley. So I have a certain interest in the topic.
This short book is a selection taken from a larger book, Collapse, by the same author.
From the publishers: “This excerpt from the New York Times–bestselling book Collapse takes a timely and fascinating look at prehistoric Norse Greenland—the closest approximation of a controlled experiment in collapse in history. One island, two unique societies (Norse and Inuit). Only one of these societies would succeed—the other would fail. But how? With his trademark accessibility and comprehensiveness, Diamond documents how environmental damage, climate change, loss of friendly contacts and the rise of hostile ones, and the unique political, economic, and social settings of prehistoric Greenland combine to demonstrate exactly why and how societies choose to fail or succeed.”
A book I was given
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
I’ve heard a lot of people rave about this book, but after my dislike (did I even finish it?) of Man Walks Into a Room a few years ago, I haven’t dared to read another book by Krauss. But this one was free and it seemed a good way to re-try this popular writer.
The train company that my husband and sons travel with daily had been having delays and disruptions and as a peace offer, they let everyone choose a flip back book (a small book that can easily be read on the train) from a selection. Well, with my incredible reading experience, my family let me choose and this was one of the books (the other two were The Dinner by Herman Koch and another book, not translated to English).
From the publishers: “A long-lost book reappears, mysteriously connecting an old man searching for his son and a girl seeking a cure for her widowed mother’s loneliness.”
Did you get any exciting new books recently?