I mention it on Twitter all the time and I may have mentioned it here, but I can’t remember- I live upstairs from Barnes and Noble. I literally walk out my door, take a right, walk approximately 10 steps and I’m at the entrance of the store. This has probably very literally cost me a grand since I moved to this apartment in March. I don’t want to think about it too closely, because I’m sure I will realize it’s even much more and and that will only bring me to the brink of realizing how huge my little book problem is; and we can’t have that. So anyway, let’s move along to what I picked up last time I was there and not think too much about the fact that I bought five hardcovers and two paperbacks.
I have been eyeing Kalisha Buckhanon’s Conception for the past year. Many times I have held it in my hand and almost walked out of the store with it. It’s a contemporary fiction novel set in 1992 Chicago and it tells the story of Shivana Montgomery, who is struggling to avoid all of the stereotypes she’s heard all of her life about black women- when she becomes pregnant at 15 by an older man and finds herself attracted to someone her own age.
I was also intrigued that this book was featured in the main section of all the stores and libraries that I have seen it, especially considering that it features an African-American woman on the cover (well, a piece of her anyway) and that is by an African-American author- two things that rarely happen in publishing. I’m looking forward to reading it.
Last year I read Ann Packer’s The Dive From Clausen’s Pier. I had already seen the Lifetime Television movie and was very curious about the book. Even though I loved Ann Packer’s writing style and her interesting exploration into questions of loyalty and what’s owed in relationships with people whom we love- the book just didn’t live up to its promise for me. However, her writing is so lush and gorgeous that I can’t just walk away from her after one book.
I struggled back and forth over trying another of her books and finally broke down and bought her highly anticipated second novel, Songs Without Words. In this new novel she is exploring the relationships between sisters, who are both mothers, and their daughters. I love the topics that she chooses for her books so I am looking forward to this one. Gail, of Every Day I Write The Book, wrote of her friend’s reaction to this novel back when it was a new release. Seems the friend thought The Dive from Clausen’s Pier was brilliant and hated this newest one, so maybe that means I will love it.
I first saw The Natural Laws of Good Luck, by Ellen Graf on Kathy’s blog – BermudaOnion, and was immediately intrigued when two people who have known each other for less than a month, and who don’t speak the same language, decide to marry. I’m surprised I hadn’t pick this up sooner and I think the only reason that I hadn’t was because I hadn’t seen it. It caught my eye this last time that I was at the store and I snapped it up immediately.
In this day and age I think most of us have had the experience where a friend marries someone after a short Internet dating period or some other eyebrow raising circumstances. I had a friend who went from meeting to marriage in three weeks, but at the very least they spoke the same language, so I definitely want to find out how this couple made it work. Maybe it helps to mot be able to communicate. I’m thinking that this might be a good Read-a-Thon pick.
I can blame Kelly, at Hachette Book Group for buying Tad Friend‘s, Cheerful Money. It was all she could talk about at BookExpo America. I didn’t pick up a copy then, but when I saw that Tad Friend was having reading I remembered our conversation and went to check it out. True to form I started reading the book while I was sitting and waiting for the reading to start and was immediately drawn into the story of this family of WASPs who have been steadily losing money over the generations. Though I hear it is mainly the fault of the grandfather who had too much fun partying. Of course I didn’t get much past chapter that read at the reading because of other reading obligations, but I can’t wait to get back to it. His mother seems like she is going to be a real character.
I also bought two books which I zipped through, and have already read. In both cases they are just in and already on their way out. I started Anita Shreve’s A Change In Altitude the same night and finished it the next day. I think the reviews on it have been mixed, but I really enjoyed it. It was just the kind of internal and character driven novel which I enjoy. Lenore is going to Kenya next month, where the novel is set, and I sent it to Germany for her to read. Hopefully it makes it there before she goes! If not she can tell me how the books descriptions of the land and culture match up to what she experienced I should have told her she had to do a guest post!
I also read The Seance, by John Harwood, but have not yet posted my review. I was so into it, and I loved the writing style, but it meandered a bit a little past the middle for me. Jen is going to give it a try. I also bought a book for my little cousin on the condition that she write a review for me. She is getting to be like me, and she finished the books the same day that I bought it for her, in fact in a few hours. I told her that I was going to return it! I’m waiting for my review, but she keeps telling me that she has homework. I think I’ve been taken.
Has your wallet been taken for a ride lately? What books have you bought recently?