Good week. A great mix of books in the mail and a couple of goodies from the library. Kristi at Story Siren hosts In My Mailbox, Marcia at the Printed Page hosts Mailbox Monday, I host New Crayons at Color Online and Eva hosts Library Loot at A Striped Chair. Just another handful of places to find more books as if you don't know where to find your next reads already. :-) Check out this week's treasure.
In the mail:
Trail of Crumbs by Kim Sunee
Kim takes readers on a lyrical journey from Korea to New Orleans to Paris and Provence, along the way serving forth her favorite recipes. A love story at heart, this memoir is about the search for identity and a book that will appeal to anyone who is passionate about love, food, travel, and the ultimate search for self. I started this a few days after receiving it. I love food and I love memoirs. Sunee is modern renaissance woman: liberal arts education, loves of great food, art and literature. Her writing is poetic. I suspected it would be a good read and it is. More later.
Transparency by Frances Hwang.
With a deceptively simple yet graceful style, and in the tradition of Lara Vapnyar, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Gish Jen, Frances Hwang captures the thousand minor battles waged in the homes of immigrants--struggles to preserve timehonored traditions or break free of them, to maintain authority or challenge it, and to take advantage of modern excesses without diluting one's ethnic identity. In "Garden City," a weary Chinese couple, struggling to evict their deadbeat tenant, is forced to face the aftermath of their teenage son's death from cancer. I have neglected reading short stories this year. There's also a challenge over at Chasing Ray I think this just might fit. Looking forward to this.
The Double-Daring Book for Girls by Andrea Buchanan
This second volume, with all new original material, promises to be even more of a daring adventure than the first. Girls will learn how to surf, get horseback riding tips, make a labyrinth, find out about April Fool's Day history and pranks, how to organize a croquet tournament, find out about cowgirls, the Nobel Prize... This was a donation from author, Lori L. Tharps. This will be a great addition for our library. I'm sure the coordinator will be very happy to see this.
From the library:
Kendra by Coe Booth
This is a novel that addresses a teen girl’s sexuality without pulling punches – we see both the terror and the pleasure that come out of Kendra’s first sexual relationship. She is a smart, self-aware young woman who recognizes that she is not making good choices – she is just caught up in the moment, and caught up in getting attention from such a desirable young man. She’s confused and elated and terrified all at the same time, and the reader is right there with her inside her head. There is no question that older teens who are grappling with similar questions will relate to Kendra – as is evidenced by the empty spot on my YA shelves where Coe Booth’s books should be. See full review at Bib-Laura-graphy. Recently connected with the author. Received the book as a donation. This is a must read. Incredibly relevant for the population I serve.
Rosey In The Present Tense by Louise Hawes
Six months have passed since Rosey Mishimi's fatal accident. But Franklin still can't adjust to being without her. Every day he feels as though he's moving underwater, just going through the motions. Remembering Rosey is the only thing that brings him any relief. He is used to having conversations with her in his head, but when Rosey starts to talk back to him one night, Franklin can't believe his ears. Is she really there with him, or just a figment of his imagination? At first Franklin doesn't care as long as it means having his Rosey back... We have had this on the shelves for awhile. When I got it, I thought it had an interesting premise but never got around to reading it. Then a saw a post in my google reader by Aerin at In Search of Giants and I made a point of grabbing it off the shelf on my last trip to our library.
Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan
This is a beautiful, complicated book, that I will definitely be buying in the future so that I can reread it to my heart’s content. There’s certainly a fairy tale feel to it; at the end of the opening, pregnant Liga and baby Branza are whisked away to Liga’s idea of heaven. It’s similar to her home village, but without any mean or prying people, and Liga happily begins raising her two little girls in a quiet cottage (if you’ve read “Snow White and Rose Red,” you’ll definitely see parallels!). But then a ‘mudwife’ in the village Liga left behind unintentionally creates an opening into the heaven, and from that moment it’s just a matter of time until Liga, Branza, and Urdda have to return to the world Liga ran away from so long ago. See Eva's review at A Striped Armchair. That Eva is forever wielding her influence over me. :-)