Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday Mailbox

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week.  Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists!
Mailbox Monday, created by Marcia at The Printed Page, is on a blog tour!  This month Sandra at Library of Clean Reads is hosting.  Stop on over and see what everyone else got this week. For the total scoop on Mailbox Monday, visit the recently established Mailbox Monday blog.

As you know, I was out of town for most of the month, and I tried very hard not to request or accept books that I knew would be arriving while I was gone, but what's a person to do when she wins a contest!  So while I was gone I got three new ones-two of them contest wins--- all of which are high on my WANT THEM list so I was thrilled.

 Land of the Painted Caves (Earth's Children #6)
by Jean Auel

The first to arrive is the long awaited next installment in Jean Auel's Earth's Children series.  I read the first one of these Clan of the Cave Bear back in 1981 when it was first published.  I was a SAHM with an antsy 2 year old, so it took me awhile to get through it, but I'm so glad I did.  I have anxiously awaited and quickly grabbed each of the next ones in the series.  But we've all been waiting a long time for this last one -- in fact at one time I remember going to google Jean Auel to see if she was still writing!  It's been over 9 years since the last one Shelters of Stone came out, and I'm lining up all my copies in case I need to flip through them for an update.  Anyhow, at 768 pages, this one will keep me busy for the rest of the year.  If you have never read any of the series, this is a great time to jump in and find yourself enthralled by the adventures of Ayla and Jondalar.  You can download the first three chapters from the publisher's web page.

Cleopatra, a Life
by Stacy Schiff

I've been wanting this one since the first mention came out several months ago, so I was thrilled to win it and in audio to add to my delight.  I can't wait to get back to the pool to listen to this one.  Stacy Schiff's biography of Cleopatra almost does not need any more raves, but this audio set included a wonderful PDF download which I printed out--it includes the full color cover art, maps, and illustrations, and certainly will add to the audio experience.

I love biographies, and find myself constantly looking for good ones.  Stacy Schiff is the Pulitzer Prize winning biographer of Vera Nabokov, and also wrote biographies of Saint-Exupery and Benjamin Franklin.  This one then is high on my read it soon list:
Famous long before she was notorious, Cleopatra has gone down in history for all the wrong reasons. Shakespeare and Shaw put words in her mouth. Michelangelo, Tiepolo, and Elizabeth Taylor put a face to her name. Along the way, Cleopatra's supple personality and the drama of her circumstances have been lost. In a masterly return to the classical sources, Stacy Schiff here boldly separates fact from fiction to rescue the magnetic queen whose death ushered in a new world order. Rich in detail, epic in scope, Schiff 's is a luminous, deeply original reconstruction of a dazzling life.
Radio Shangri-La
by Lisa Napoli

After reading this biographical info about the author, I was quite intrigued and thrilled to win an ARC from Crown.  This is an area of the world that fascinates me, and Lisa Napoli's book looks like it will provide a great armchair visit.

When Lisa Napoli found herself unhappy with her work in the fast-paced U.S. media world, she volunteered to help start Bhutan's first youth-oriented radio station. Bhutan is a small kingdom in the Himalayas, home to 650,000 residents, most of whom make their living as subsistence farmers. The nation has experienced rapid change in the past forty years, becoming a democracy in 2008 after a century of monarchy.
In her time in Bhutan, Napoli learned more about the people, history and culture of the "last Buddhist kingdom" and the "happiest kingdom on Earth," and she also learned quite a bit about herself. She's sharing those lessons in her new book, Radio Shangri-la: What I Learned in Bhutan, the Happiest Kingdom on Earth.
Earlier in her career, Lisa was the Internet correspondent for MSNBC, a columnist for, and the first staff reporter/columnist at the NY Times Cybertimes, now defunct. She's also worked at a division of the home shopping channel QVC, in craft services for the horror film Hellraiser 3, and in public relations for Summit House, an alternative to prison for women and their kids in Greensboro, North Carolina. She began her career at CNN in 1984.

Looks like the vacation is over.....there's some wonderful serious reading ahead!  What did your mailbox hold this week?


  1. Congrats on scoring an ARC. This sounds like an interesting read.

  2. I loved Radio Shangri-La and hope you enjoy your books.

  3. Cleopatra and Radio Shangri-la. Can't wait to hear more about them!

  4. I enjoyed Cleopatra, for the most part, I hope you like it too!


Welcome, thanks for stopping by. Now that you've heard our two cents, perhaps you have a few pennies to throw into the discussion. Due to a bunch more anonymous spam getting through, I've had to disallow anonymous comments. I try to respond to all comments posing a question, but may not always get to you right away.