Marcia at The Printed Page is no longer hosting this meme at her blog, she’s now hosting the Mailbox Monday Blog Tour. This month’s home is Chick Loves Lit. Come over and check out what other bookish people had appear in their to-be-read piles, and share your new acquisitions.
Two books arrived in my mailbox this week!
The first is the audio version of <strong>How To Buy a Love of Reading by Tanya Egan Gibson, from the audio publisher, Tantor Media. They sent it to me due to a contact on Twitter– I saw another book blogger asking about a review copy of the book, and I begged for one for me!
To Carley Wells, words are the enemy—her tutor’s innumerable SAT flashcards; her personal trainer’s “fifty-seven pounds overweight” assessment; and the endless reading assignments from her English teacher, Mr. Nagel. When Nagel reports to her parents that she has answered “What is your favorite book?” with “Never met one I liked,” they decide to fix what he calls her “intellectual impoverishment.” They will commission a book to be written just for her—one she’ll have to love—that will impress her teacher and the whole town of Fox Glen with their family’s devotion to the arts. They will be patrons—the Medicis of Long Island. They will buy their daughter The Love of Reading.
Impossible though it is for Carley to imagine loving books, she is in love with a young bibliophile who cares about them more than anything. Anything, that is, but a good bottle of scotch. Hunter Cay, Carley’s best friend and Fox Glen’s resident golden boy, is becoming a stranger to her lately as he drowns himself in F. Scott Fitzgerald, booze, and Vicodin.
When the Wellses move struggling writer Bree McEnroy into their mansion to write Carley’s book, Carley’s sole interest in the project is to distract Hunter from drinking and give them something to share. But as Hunter’s behavior becomes erratic and dangerous, she finds herself increasingly drawn into the fictional world Bree has created and begins to understand for the first time the power of stories—those we read, those we want to believe in, and most of all, those we tell ourselves about ourselves. Stories powerful enough to destroy a person. Or save her.
The second is Broken Birds, The Story of My Momila by Jeannette Katzir , which came my way due to last week’s Mailbox Monday! Susan at Suko’s Notebook posted about receiving this book, and I commented that one of my book clubs might be interested in it. Jeanette Katzir saw my comment, and asked if I would like a copy to look at, and consider. I was, and I’m looking forward to seeing if my WWII-obsessed book club (well OK, in general we read about 2 WWII related books a year) would be interested in adding Broken Birds to our list.
World War II has long since ended, and yet Jaclyn and her brothers and sisters grow up learning to survive it. Having lived through the Holocaust on the principle of constant distrust, their mother, Channa, dutifully teaches her children to cling to one another while casting a suspicious eye to the outside world. When Channa dies, the unexpected contents of her will force her adult children to confront years of suppressed indignation. For Jaclyn and her siblings, the greatest war will not be against strangers, but against each other.
Two more books wandered in from my friend Ruth, thanks to the contest she won!
One sunny morning in 1969, near the end of her first trip to Miami, twenty-six-year-old Frances Ellerby finds herself in a place called Stiltsville, a community of houses built on pilings in the middle of Biscayne Bay.
It’s the first time the Atlanta native has been out on the open water, and she’s captivated. On the dock of a stilt house, with the dazzling skyline in the distance and the unknowable ocean beneath her, she meets the house’s owner, Dennis DuVal—and a new future reveals itself.
Stilt houses, 1975
Turning away from her quiet, predictable life back home, Frances moves to Miami to be with Dennis. Over time, she earns the confidence of his wild-at-heart sister and wins the approval of his oldest friend. Frances and Dennis marry and have a child—but rather than growing complacent about their good fortune, they continue to face the challenges of intimacy, and of the complicated city they call home.
Stiltsville is the family’s island oasis—until suddenly it’s gone, and Frances is forced to figure out how to make her family work on dry land. Against a backdrop of lush tropical beauty, Frances and Dennis struggle with the mutability of love and Florida’s weather, and with temptation and chaos and disappointment.
But just when Frances thinks she’s reached some semblance of higher ground, she must confront an obstacle so great that all she’s learned about navigating the uncharted waters of family life can’t keep them afloat.
Twenty-nine year old Lindsey Rose has, for as long as she can remember, lived in the shadow of her devastatingly beautiful fraternal twin sister, Alex. Determined to get noticed, Lindsey is finally on the cusp of being named Creative Vice President of an elite New York advertising agency, after years of 80 plus-hour weeks, migraines, and profound loneliness. But during the course of one devastating night, Lindsey’s carefully-constructed life implodes.
Humiliated and desperate, she flees the glitter of Manhattan and retreats to the time warp of her parents’ Maryland home. As her sister plans her lavish wedding to her prince charming, Lindsey struggles to maintain her identity as the smart, responsible twin, while she furtively tries to put her career back together. But things get more complicated when a long-held family secret is unleashed that forces both sisters to reconsider who they are and who they are meant to be.
Any thoughts on these books? What’s in your mailbox?