Monday, October 31, 2011

Monday Mailbox - No Tricks, Just Treats

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house recently, but here's a warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists!

Created by Marcia at The Printed Page, Mailbox Monday, now has its own blog. Hosting  this month by Savvy Verse & Wit has been an absolute treat.  Be sure to stop by to see what others got in their Trick or Treat mailboxes this week.

This is a consolidated Mailbox list for Tutu covering the past few weeks.  I've been traveling and have tried to keep down review requests piling up at the Post Office while I'm away, so some are virtual arrivals in my NOOK.

From Macmillan Audio comes a copy of Pulitzer Prize winner Jeffrey Eugenides' latest.  This one should get me through many long hours of needlework in the upcoming winter.
"There is no happiness in love, except at the end of an English novel." — Anthony Trollope, Barchester Towers

Madeleine Hanna was the dutiful English major who didn't get the memo. While everyone else in the early 1980s was reading Derrida, she was happily absorbed with Jane Austen and George Eliot: purveyors of the marriage plot that lies at the heart of the greatest English novels. Madeleine was the girl who dressed a little too nicely for the taste of her more bohemian friends, the perfect girlfriend whose college love life, despite her good looks, hadn't lived up to expectations.

But now, in the spring of her senior year, Madeleine has enrolled in a semiotics course "to see what all the fuss is about," and, for reasons that have nothing to do with school, life and literature will never be the same. Not after she falls in love with Leonard Morten--charismatic loner, college Darwinist and lost Oregon boy--who is possessed of seemingly inexhaustible energy and introduces her to the ecstasies of immediate experience. And certainly not after Mitchell Grammaticus--devotee of Patti Smith and Thomas Merton--resurfaces in her life, obsessed with the idea that Madeleine is destined to be his mate.

The triangle in this amazing and delicious novel about a generation beginning to grow up is age old, and completely fresh and surprising. With devastating wit, irony and an abiding understanding and love for his characters, Jeffrey Eugenides resuscitates the original energies of the novel while creating a story so contemporary that it reads like the intimate journal of our own lives.
No....nothing is wrong with the picture.  This small 110 page photo essay arrived in my mailbox just before I left for Florida.  I had ordered it based on recommendations from LibraryThing friends.  It wasn't exactly what I'd expected--a little sparse on the storyline,  but it will certainly be a discussion starter when left on your coffee table.

Hurricane Story is a spellbinding odyssey of exile, birth and return told in forty-six photographs and simple, understated prose. This first-person narrative told through dreamlike images of toys and dolls chronicles one couple’s evacuation from New Orleans ahead of the broken levees, the birth of their first child on the day that Katrina made landfall, and their eventual return to the city as a family. Shaw’s photographs, at turns humorous and haunting, contrast deftly with the prose.

This clothbound hardcover edition includes an introduction by Rob Walker, author of Letters From New Orleans and former “""columnist for The New York Times Magazine.
BOOKS that landed on my NOOK

Blood Safari is a harrowing novel from internationally acclaimed thriller writer Deon Meyer, an expert storyteller whose wickedly fast narratives reveal the heart of his enthralling country.In Blood Safari, Emma Le Roux, a beautiful young woman in Cape Town, sees her brother named on the television news as the prime suspect in the killing of four poachers and a witch doctor. But it can’t be possible: Emma’s brother is supposed to be dead, having disappeared twenty years ago in Kruger National Park. Emma tries to find out more but is attacked and barely escapes. So she hires Lemmer, a personal security expert, and sets out into the country in search of the truth.
A complicated man with a dishonorable past, Lemmer just wants to do his job and avoid getting personally involved. But as he and Emma search for answers from the rural police, they encounter racial and political tensions, greed, corruption, and violence unlike anything they have ever known.
The first in a series of Cork O'Connor mysteries, Iron Lake looked too good to pass up when Barnes and Noble offered it for their Friday special. This is one series I'm itchin' to get into.

Part Irish, part Anishinaabe Indian, Corcoran "Cork" O'Connor is the former sheriff of Aurora, Minnesota. Embittered by his "former" status, and the marital meltdown that has separated him from his children, Cork gets by on heavy doses of caffeine, nicotine, and guilt. Once a cop on Chicago's South Side, there's not much that can shock him. But when the town's judge is brutally murdered, and a young Eagle Scout is reported missing, Cork takes on a mind-jolting case of conspiracy, corruption, and scandal.
As a lakeside blizzard buries Aurora, Cork must dig out the truth among town officials who seem dead-set on stopping his investigation in its tracks. But even Cork freezes up when faced with the harshest enemy of all: a small-town secret that hits painfully close to home.
Then through Net Galley, I received publisher's ARCs for these:

Pub date:  11/01/2011
From the author of Home in the Morning comes the sweeping story of a father and son, and of the loves that transform them amid the turbulence of the American South.

Bernard Levy was always a mystery to the community of Guilford, Mississippi. He was even more of a mystery to his son, Mickey Moe, who was just four years old when his father died in World War II. Now it’s 1962 and Mickey Moe is a grown man, who must prove his pedigree to the disapproving parents of his girlfriend, Laura Anne Needleman, to win her hand in marriage. With only a few decades-old leads to go on, Mickey Moe sets out to uncover his father’s murky past, from his travels up and down the length of the Mississippi River to his heartrending adventures during the Great Flood of 1927. Mickey Moe’s journey, taken at the dawn of the civil rights era, leads him deep into the backwoods of Mississippi and Tennessee, where he meets with danger and unexpected revelations at every turn. As the greatest challenge of his life unfolds, he will finally discover the gripping details of his father’s life—one filled with loyalty, tragedy, and heroism in the face of great cruelty from man and nature alike.
A captivating follow-up to Mary Glickman’s bestselling Home in the Morning, One More River tells the epic tale of ordinary men caught in the grip of calamity, and inspired to extraordinary acts in the name of love. 
Mary Glickman is a writer, public relations professional, and fundraiser who has worked with Jewish charities and organizations. Born on the south shore of Boston, Glickman studied at the Université de Lyon and Boston University. While she was raised in a strict Irish-Polish Catholic family, from an early age Glickman felt an affinity toward Judaism and converted to the faith when she married. After living in Boston for twenty years, she and her husband traveled to South Carolina and discovered a love for all things Southern. Glickman now lives in Seabrook Island, South Carolina, with her husband, cat, and beloved horse, King of Harts.
 Pub date: 11/08/2011.  I started this's fairly hefty, but really pulling me right in.
Set in Madrid, Tetuan, and Lisbon before the outbreak of the Spanish Civil War through the Second World War, The Time In Between follows the life of Sira Quiroga, a poor seamstress from Madrid who, after being abandoned in Algiers by her lover, forges a new identity and becomes the most sought-after couturiere in North Africa for the idle rich and the wealthy wives of German Nazi officers. But she is soon embroiled in a world of spies and counterspies and passes information on to the British Secret Service through a secret code stitched into the hems of her dresses.

The Time In Between 
is one of those rare, richly textured novels that, down to the last page, keeps you hoping it won’t end.  Written in splendid prose, The Time In Between moves at an unstoppable pace. An exceptional debut, it is is a thrilling adventure through ateliers of haute couture, the glamourous elite, political conspiracies and obscure secret service missions blended with the unhinged power of love.
Penguin Audio sent an electronic copy of The End of Normal  for my review.  It's one I'm really excited about - an audio and a memoir.
An explosive, heartbreaking memoir from the widow of Mark Madoff and daughter-in-law of Bernard Madoff, the first genuine inside story from a family member who has lived through- and survived-both the public crisis and her own deeply personal tragedy.
I'm thinking these are going to be more than enough to add to my already toppling pile of books to be savoured, but they are each singing to me for different reasons, so I'm always going to have something that will fill my unquenchable thirst for good reading.  What was in your mailbox recently?


  1. Good luck with the Madoff women's memoir. I'm sure it will be an eye opener.

  2. I just finished Marriage Plot and enjoyed it; hope you do as well Tina.

    We just got our internet back today after Saturday's storm, so I am thrilled I can visit your blog again.


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