Happy Fall everyone! It has been a little while since I've blogged about books, and I can't think of a better way to welcome in the new season than with a list of books I just can't wait to curl up with this season.
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So excited about this one... One of the things I've missed most about J.K. Rowling is her wit and humor in writing. I really can't wait to see what this story holds, I've missed Rowling's masterfully created worlds and I think this novel promises more of what we've come to love best about her prose.
Description (from Amazon.com): When Barry Fairbrother dies unexpectedly in his early forties, the little town of Pagford is left in shock. Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war. Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils…. Pagford is not what it first seems. And the empty seat left by Barry on the town’s council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations? Blackly comic, thought-provoking and constantly surprising, The Casual Vacancy is J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults.
I've loved Barbara Kingsolver's writing since picking up Animal Dreams in high school. I was delighted to see this book now available for pre-order. Kingsolver's books are such a beautiful blend of humor, poignant moments and lovely characterization, this will be a must read for me.
Description: Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at seventeen. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, she has settled for permanent disappointment but seeks momentary escape through an obsessive flirtation with a younger man. As she hikes up a mountain road behind her house to a secret tryst, she encounters a shocking sight: a silent, forested valley filled with what looks like a lake of fire. She can only understand it as a cautionary miracle, but it sparks a raft of other explanations from scientists, religious leaders, and the media. The bewildering emergency draws rural farmers into unexpected acquaintance with urbane journalists, opportunists, sightseers, and a striking biologist with his own stake in the outcome. As the community lines up to judge the woman and her miracle, Dellarobia confronts her family, her church, her town, and a larger world, in a flight toward truth that could undo all she has ever believed.
Flight Behavior takes on one of the most contentious subjects of our time: climate change. With a deft and versatile empathy Kingsolver dissects the motives that drive denial and belief in a precarious world.
This has been on my list for a while and I just haven't gotten to it... yet. I've heard such wonderful things about this book. Gillian Flynn has said that she "specializes in difficult characters" and I love that about her writing. This book has great buzz and excellent reviews and I'm looking forward to reading this soon.
Description: Marriage can be a real killer.
One of the most critically acclaimed suspense writers of our time, New York Times bestseller Gillian Flynn takes that statement to its darkest place in this unputdownable masterpiece about a marriage gone terribly, terribly wrong. The Chicago Tribune proclaimed that her work “draws you in and keeps you reading with the force of a pure but nasty addiction.” Gone Girl’s toxic mix of sharp-edged wit and deliciously chilling prose creates a nerve-fraying thriller that confounds you at every turn.
On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy's diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media—as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents—the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter—but is he really a killer?
Atonement continues to be one of my favorite reads ever and Ian McEwan continues to be one of my favorite writers ever. He crafts characters with complexity and depth yet is able to do so while making them seem incredibly real and vulnerable. I'm so happy to have this book to enjoy this fall/winter season. November promises to be filled with amazing reads and this is certainly one of them.
Description: Cambridge student Serena Frome’s beauty and intelligence make her the ideal recruit for MI5. The year is 1972. The Cold War is far from over. England’s legendary intelligence agency is determined to manipulate the cultural conversation by funding writers whose politics align with those of the government. The operation is code named “Sweet Tooth.”
Serena, a compulsive reader of novels, is the perfect candidate to infiltrate the literary circle of a promising young writer named Tom Haley. At first, she loves his stories. Then she begins to love the man. How long can she conceal her undercover life? To answer that question, Serena must abandon the first rule of espionage: trust no one.
Once again, Ian McEwan’s mastery dazzles us in this superbly deft and witty story of betrayal and intrigue, love and the invented self.
I fell in love with Louise Erdrich's brand of story telling after reading A Plague of Doves and have been captivated by her novels that have followed. Her novels are always sweeping generational tales that are irresistible and difficult to put down. This book comes out in early October and will likely be my first pick following my epic Anna Karenina re-read.
Description: One Sunday in the spring of 1988, a woman living on a reservation in North Dakota is attacked. The details of the crime are slow to surface as Geraldine Coutts is traumatized and reluctant to relive or reveal what happened, either to the police or to her husband, Bazil, and thirteen-year-old son, Joe. In one day, Joe's life is irrevocably transformed. He tries to heal his mother, but she will not leave her bed and slips into an abyss of solitude. Increasingly alone, Joe finds himself thrust prematurely into an adult world for which he is ill prepared. While his father, who is a tribal judge, endeavors to wrest justice from a situation that defies his efforts, Joe becomes frustrated with the official investigation and sets out with his trusted friends, Cappy, Zack, and Angus, to get some answers of his own. Their quest takes them first to the Round House, a sacred space and place of worship for the Ojibwe. And this is only the beginning.
Written with undeniable urgency, and illuminating the harsh realities of contemporary life in a community where Ojibwe and white live uneasily together, The Round House is a brilliant and entertaining novel, a masterpiece of literary fiction. Louise Erdrich embraces tragedy, the comic, a spirit world very much present in the lives of her all-too-human characters, and a tale of injustice that is, unfortunately, an authentic reflection of what happens in our own world today.
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We're pulling massive amounts of butternut squash out of the garden... expect some recipes soon. We had our first few really, really cold nights and the leaves are turning the most amazing shades. I really do love this season that is on us. We're in the process of putting away: firewood, apples, the last of the tomatoes. It always seems like this is the most fleeting of seasons. Winter will be here along with its short days and long, fireside evenings. Those books will see me through much of it, as will a bit of sewing, I hope.
Just a note for full disclosure, the state that I live in (Connecticut) and Amazon have been unable to come to an agreement regarding taxes and the Affiliate Program that I was asked to be apart of last year. I blogged about that new venture here. Because of that, Amazon has stopped it's Affiliate Program with all Connecticut residents and I am no longer allowed to take part in their program. Disappointing! As always, my recommendations are linked to Amazon (or other sites) for convenience purposes only and are wholly my own, that is not influenced by any outside source. The only difference, now, is that I continue to make recommendations about books and fabric (mostly fabric) and do not earn pennies as a result of others buying them. Happy Fall everyone, I hope you are enjoying these changing seasons!