Books That Caught Our Eye

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DragonLegendsHere at Mailbox Monday, we want to encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.Here are the books that caught our eye this week…

Vicki

Aftermath Lounge by Margaret McMullan @ Lori’s Reading Corner.

AftermathLoungeAFTERMATH LOUNGE is a compelling tribute to the Gulf Coast in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Resurrecting the place and its people alongside their heartaches and triumphs, Margaret McMullan creates a riveting mosaic that feeds our wish to understand what it means to be alive in this day and age.

“Living in Florida, I’m very familiar with hurricanes. One year we had 4 in 5 weeks. I remember not having electricity or water for 2 weeks and watching the water creep closer and closer to our house. It made it into our pole barn and then stopped.

“The hurricane I remember the most is Hurricane Katrina. It went through Florida (category 1) before hitting New Orleans, Louisiana (category 5). Hearing of all the destruction it caused in New Orleans was heartbreaking. I know this is a book of fiction, but I’m interested in anything related to this hurricane. I can’t imagine what the people of New Orleans went through, and what some are still going through.”

Eeny Meeny (Helen Grace #1) by M.J. Arlidge @ Under My Apple Tree.

EenyMeenyTwo people are abducted, imprisoned, and left with a gun. As hunger and thirst set in, only one walks away alive.

It’s a game more twisted than any Detective Inspector Helen Grace has ever seen. If she hadn’t spoken with the shattered survivors herself, she almost wouldn’t believe them.

Helen is familiar with the dark sides of human nature, including her own, but this case—with its seemingly random victims—has her baffled. But as more people go missing, nothing will be more terrifying than when it all starts making sense….

“Sounds so interesting. I want to know who abducts them and why, who the two people are and which one of them walks away.”

Serena

GrandmotherAskedMeMy Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry by Fredrik Backman @ Book Dilettnte.

A novel about a young girl whose grandmother dies and leaves behind a series of letters, sending her on a journey that brings to life the world of her grandmother’s fairy tales.

“I love mysteries, particularly mysteries within families, and fairy tales are almost always engaging, which is why this book particularly piqued my interest this week.”

 

The Arranged Marriage by Jehanne Dubrow @ Everything Distils Into Reading.

ArrangedMarriageWith her characteristic music and precision, Dubrow’s prose poems delve unflinchingly into a mother’s story of trauma and captivity. The poet proves that truth telling and vision can give meaning to the gravest situations, allowing women to create a future on their own terms.

“It’s poetry, and one of my favorite poets, Dubrow. How could this not be on my list?!”

Leslie

Blackeyed Susans by Julia Heaberlin at Rainy Days and Mondays.

BlackEyedSusansAs a sixteen-year-old, Tessa Cartwright was found in a Texas field, barely alive amid a scattering of bones, with only fragments of memory as to how she got there. Ever since, the press has pursued her as the lone surviving “Black-Eyed Susan,” the nickname given to the murder victims because of the yellow carpet of wildflowers that flourished above their shared grave. Tessa’s testimony about those tragic hours put a man on death row.

Shocking, intense, and utterly original, Black-Eyed Susans is a dazzling psychological thriller, seamlessly weaving past and present in a searing tale of a young woman whose harrowing memories remain in a field of flowers—as a killer makes a chilling return to his garden.

“I’ve been drawn to psychological thrillers lately and this one sounds like a winner.”

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo at Griperang’s Bookmarks

LifeChangingMagicJapanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo takes tidying to a whole new level, promising that if you properly simplify and organize your home once, you’ll never have to do it again. Most methods advocate a room-by-room or little-by-little approach, which doom you to pick away at your piles of stuff forever. The KonMari Method, with its revolutionary category-by-category system, leads to lasting results. In fact, none of Kondo’s clients have lapsed (and she still has a three-month waiting list).

With detailed guidance for determining which items in your house “spark joy” (and which don’t), this international bestseller featuring Tokyo’s newest lifestyle phenomenon will help you clear your clutter and enjoy the unique magic of a tidy home—and the calm, motivated mindset it can inspire.

“I really, really, really need to learn how to get rid of stuff. Clutter causes me stress, and yet I persist in keeping too many things I no longer want or need.”

Mailbox Monday

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bright boxesMailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

It’s been a fine spring weekend here in the Midwest with lots of rain, humidity and mild temperatures. My garden is growing, the birds are singing, and I’m thrilled that spring has finally sprung.

I hope everyone good book week and some new arrivals in their mailbox.

Join in by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back here on Wednesday when I will post a selection of Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

3 Comments
DragonLegendsHere at Mailbox Monday, we want to encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.Here are the books that caught our eye this week…

Vicki

“I love non-fiction, and I can’t begin to imagine what it must have been like for the authors of these books.”

InnocenceInnocence by Heda Margolius Kovály @ Diary Of An Eccentric.

Famed Holocaust memoirist Heda Margolius Kovály (Under a Cruel Star) knits her own terrifying experiences in Soviet Prague into a powerful work of literary suspense.

1950s Prague is a city of numerous small terrors, of political tyranny, corruption and surveillance. There is no way of knowing whether one’s neighbor is spying for the government or what one’s supposed friend will say under pressure to a State Security agent. A loyal Party member might be imprisoned or executed as quickly as a traitor; innocence means nothing for a person caught in a government trap.

But there are larger terrors, too. When a little boy is murdered at the cinema where his aunt works, the ensuing investigation sheds a little too much light on the personal lives of the cinema’s female ushers, each of whom is hiding a dark secret of her own.

Nearly lost to censorship, this rediscovered gem of Czech literature depicts a chilling moment in history, redolent with the stifling atmosphere of political and personal oppression of the early days of Communist Czechoslovakia.

Head Case by Cole Cohen @ BermudaOnion.

HeadCaseA spirited, wry, and utterly original memoir about one woman’s struggle to make her way and set up a life after doctors discover a hole the size of a lemon in her brain.

The summer before she was set to head out-of-state to pursue her MFA, twenty-six-year-old Cole Cohen submitted herself to a battery of tests. For as long as she could remember, she’d struggled with a series of learning disabilities that made it nearly impossible to judge time and space—standing at a cross walk, she couldn’t tell you if an oncoming car would arrive in ten seconds or thirty; if you asked her to let you know when ten minutes had passed, she might notify you in a minute or an hour. These symptoms had always kept her from getting a driver’s license, which she wanted to have for grad school. Instead of leaving the doctor’s office with permission to drive, she left with a shocking diagnosis—doctors had found a large hole in her brain responsible for her life-long struggles. Because there aren’t established tools to rely on in the wake of this unprecedented and mysterious diagnosis, Cole and her doctors and family create them, and discover firsthand how best to navigate the unique world that Cole lives in. Told without an ounce of self-pity and plenty of charm and wit, Head Case is ultimately a story of triumph, as we watch this passionate, lovable, and unsinkable young woman chart a path for herself.

Leslie

The Stranger by Harlan Coben at Stacy’s Books.

StrangerThe Stranger appears out of nowhere, perhaps in a bar, or a parking lot, or at the grocery store. His identity is unknown. His motives are unclear. His information is undeniable. Then he whispers a few words in your ear and disappears, leaving you picking up the pieces of your shattered world.

Adam Price has a lot to lose: a comfortable marriage to a beautiful woman, two wonderful sons, and all the trappings of the American Dream: a big house, a good job, a seemingly perfect life.

Then he runs into the Stranger. When he learns a devastating secret about his wife, Corinne, he confronts her, and the mirage of perfection disappears as if it never existed at all. Soon Adam finds himself tangled in something far darker than even Corinne’s deception, and realizes that if he doesn’t make exactly the right moves, the conspiracy he’s stumbled into will not only ruin lives—it will end them.

“I enjoy thrillers and mysteries, and yet I’ve never read anything by Harlen Coben. Every time I see one of his books I tell myself you need to read one of those!

Letters to the Lost – Iona Grey at Melissa’s Eclectic Bookshelf and BookNAround.

LettersToTheLostLate on a frozen February evening, a young woman is running through the streets of London. Having fled from her abusive boyfriend and with nowhere to go, Jess stumbles onto a forgotten lane where a small, clearly unlived in old house offers her best chance of shelter for the night. The next morning, a mysterious letter arrives and when she can’t help but open it, she finds herself drawn inexorably into the story of two lovers from another time.

“A story told through letters from the past sounds too good to pass up.”

Serena

The Book of Men by Dorianne Laux @ Everything Distils Into Reading.

BookMenThe narrative poems in Dorianne Laux’s fifth collection charge through the summer of love, where Vietnam casts a long shadow, and into the present day, where she compassionately paints the smoky bars, graffiti, and addiction of urban life.

“It’s poetry; there was no way this was not going to be on my list this week.”
 
 
The Other Oregon by Steve Anderson @ Rose City Reader.

On the surface, Greg Simmons seems an utterly improbable informant. He’s an idealistic, Cascadia independence proponent from the city of Portland. When the FBI calls on Greg to go undercover to investigate a dangerous militia movement out in rural Oregon, he knows exactly why: his long-estranged friend from the country, Donny Wilkie, could have deep ties to the militia.
OtherOregon
Greg doesn’t want the FBI’s help. He needs to pursue the threat all on his own, because his true motives run far deeper—making sure that his former friend will never reveal a damning secret from their past. Greg strikes out for the remote small town of Pineburg, a fish out of water. As he grapples with his and Donny’s relationship and why it soured, as the threats to his worldview and to hiding the grim truth darken and mount, he discovers that no one is really who they seem, least of all himself. The dark misdeeds that both he and Donny covered up for so long threaten to reap their toll in the most deadly way.

“I always need a good thriller!”

Mailbox Monday

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bright boxesMailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms!

I hope everyone good book week and some new arrivals in their mailbox.

Join in by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back here on Wednesday when I will post a selection of Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

3 Comments
DragonLegendsHere at Mailbox Monday, we want to encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.Here are the books that caught our eye this week…

Leslie

Crossfades by William Todd Rose at Savvy Verse and Wit

CrossfadesIn a dark horror novella for fans of Stephen King, Joe Hill, and Dean Koontz, one unsuspecting man faces a mass murderer who’s turned the afterlife into his own terrifying playground.

Some men fear their own deaths. Others dream of peace and heaven. But Albert knows exactly what he wants: to be the lord of his own private hell, where his eternal reward will be torturing the souls of his victims. And he knows how to get it.

“This sounds delightfully creepy… and I like creepy!”
 
 
 
Miss Dreamsville and the Lost Heiress of Collier County by Amy Hill Hearth at BookNAround.

MissDreamsvilleJust as Hearth’s debut explored the ways we can find a sense of belonging in other people, her latest novel shows how closely tied each of us is to our sense of home—and the conflicts that can arise when our idea of that home becomes threatened.

For Darryl, the river is a place ripe for development. For Dora, who’s known as the Turtle Lady because she rescues Everglades “snappers,” it’s a place that belongs to the critters. And for Dolores, former stripper, it’s a place to hide from the world…

“This has a unique, quirky sound to it. Plus there’s a bird on the cover—that will always grab my attention!”

Serena

A Planet for Rent by Yoss at Dolce Bellezza.

PlanetForRentA Planet for Rent, Yoss critiques ‘90s Cuba by drawing parallels with a possible Earth of the not-so-distant future. Wracked by economic and environmental problems, the desperate planet is rescued, for better or worse, by alien colonizers, who remake the planet as a tourist destination. Ruled over by a brutal interstellar bureaucracy, dispossessed humans seek better lives via the few routes available — working for the colonial police; eking out a living as black marketeers, drug dealers, or artists; prostituting themselves to exploitative extraterrestrial visitors — or they face the cold void of space in rickety illegal ships.

“I don’t read a lot of sci-fi, but I’m interested in new voices in fiction and in books that stem from environmental problems, especially since that’s such a current prevailing concern.”

Hotel Moscow by Talia Carner at Luxury Reading.

HotelMoscowBrooke Fielding, a thirty-eight year old New York investment manager and daughter of Jewish Holocaust survivors, finds her life suddenly upended in late September 1993 when her job is unexpectedly put in jeopardy. Brooke accepts an invitation to join a friend on a mission to Moscow to teach entrepreneurial skills to Russian business women, which will also give her a chance to gain expertise in the new, vast emerging Russian market. Though excited by the opportunity to save her job and be one of the first Americans to visit Russia after the fall of communism, she also wonders what awaits her in the country that persecuted her mother just a generation ago.

Inspired by the women she meets, Brooke becomes committed to helping them investigate the crime that threatens their businesses. But as the uprising of the Russian parliament against President Boris Yeltsin turns Moscow into a volatile war zone, Brooke will find that her involvement comes at a high cost. For in a city where “capitalism” is still a dirty word, where neighbors spy on neighbors and the new economy is in the hands of a few dangerous men, nothing Brooke does goes unnoticed–and a mistake in her past may now compromise her future.

“Anyone who knows me, knows that I like WWII-related fiction, and there is something about Russia that is alluring — from its prestigious royalties to its darkest years and the continued turmoil the nation still faces.”

Vicki

Lost and by Jeff Griffin @ Savvy Verse And Wit.

LostAndEver since he was a child sitting in the back of his parents’ car, Jeff Griffin has been taking explorative journeys into the desert. In 2007, as an art student, he started wandering the back roads of the Mojave Desert with the purpose of looking for a place to reflect in the harshly beautiful surroundings. What he found were widely scattered postmodern ruins—abandoned trailers and campers and improvised structures—whose vanished occupants had left behind, in their trash, an archaeological record of astonishing richness and poignancy.

“I love books about any kind of walking journey, and the idea of finding abandoned trailers etc. in the Mojave Desert has me excited to read it.​”

When the Moon Is Low by Nadia Hashimi @ Book Diletta​n​te.

MoonIsLowMahmoud’s passion for his wife Fereiba, a schoolteacher, is greater than any love she’s ever known. But their happy, middle-class world—a life of education, work, and comfort—implodes when their country is engulfed in war, and the Taliban rises to power.

Mahmoud, a civil engineer, becomes a target of the new fundamentalist regime and is murdered. Forced to flee Kabul with her three children, Fereiba has one hope to survive: she must find a way to cross Europe and reach her sister’s family in England. With forged papers and help from kind strangers they meet along the way, Fereiba make a dangerous crossing into Iran under cover of darkness. Exhausted and brokenhearted but undefeated, Fereiba manages to smuggle them as far as Greece. But in a busy market square, their fate takes a frightening turn when her teenage son, Saleem, becomes separated from the rest of the family.

Faced with an impossible choice, Fereiba pushes on with her daughter and baby, while Saleem falls into the shadowy underground network of undocumented Afghans who haunt the streets of Europe’s capitals. Across the continent Fereiba and Saleem struggle to reunite, and ultimately find a place where they can begin to reconstruct their lives.

“So far from what I usually read, but for some reason this book just wouldn’t get out of my head, so I gave in.”

Mailbox Monday

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bright boxesMailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week. Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

It’s May so that means I will be your host at Mailbox Monday for the rest of the month. This year feels like it’s flying past, but I’m glad spring has finally arrived. And with the temperatures we’ve had this weekend, it’s more like summer.

I hope everyone had a good book week and some new arrivals in their mailbox.

Join in by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back here on Wednesday when I will post a selection of Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

6 Comments

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Here at Mailbox Monday, we want to encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday Leslie, Serena and I will each share 2 books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.
 
 
Leslie:
The Killing Lessons by Saul Black at Sam Still Reading
21301871 When the two strangers turn up at Rowena Cooper’s isolated Colorado farmhouse, she knows instantly that it’s the end of everything. For the two haunted and driven men, on the other hand, it’s just another stop on a long and bloody journey. And they still have many miles to go, and victims to sacrifice, before their work is done.

In this extraordinary, pulse-pounding debut, Saul Black takes us deep into the mind of a psychopath, and into the troubled heart of the woman determined to stop him.

I’ve been in the mood for psychological thrillers… and this one sounds pretty creepy
 
 

Tomorrow and Tomorrow by Thomas Sweterlitsch at Drey’s Library 23281802
A decade has passed since the city of Pittsburgh was reduced to ash.

While the rest of the world has moved on, losing itself in the noise of a media-glutted future, survivor John Dominic Blaxton remains obsessed with the past. Grieving for his wife and unborn child who perished in the blast, Dominic relives his lost life by immersing in the Archive—a fully interactive digital reconstruction of Pittsburgh, accessible to anyone who wants to visit the places they remember and the people they loved.

I’m always looking for some good dystopia too
 
 
 
Serena:
A Walk in Paris by Salvatore Rubbino @ From L.A. To LA
18142385 Join a girl and her grandfather on a walking tour through Paris. Follow them as they climb to the top of Notre Dame — formidable! — sample tasty treats at bistros and pâtisseries — délicieux! — and take in a stunning view of the Eiffel Tower — magnifique! Young Francophiles and armchair travelers will be charmed by Salvatore Rubbino’s lively, sophisticated llustrations and fascinating trivia about this beloved city.

It’s about a girl who walks around Paris seeing the sights with her grandfather, which is something that would most likely appeal to my daughter.
 
 

At the Water’s Edge by Sara Gruen @ Sam Still Reading
23209927 After embarrassing themselves at the social event of the year in high society Philadelphia on New Year’s Eve of 1942, Maddie and Ellis Hyde are cut off financially by Ellis’s father, a former army Colonel who is already embarrassed by his son’s inability to serve in WWII due to his being colorblind. To Maddie’s horror, Ellis decides that the only way to regain his father’s favor is to succeed in a venture his father attempted and very publicly failed at: he will hunt the famous Loch Ness monster and when he finds it he will restore his father’s name and return to his father’s good graces (and pocketbook). Joined by their friend Hank, a wealthy socialite, the three make their way to Scotland in the midst of war. Each day the two men go off to hunt the monster, while another monster, Hitler, is devastating Europe. And Maddie, now alone in a foreign country, must begin to figure out who she is and what she wants. The novel tells of Maddie’s social awakening: to the harsh realities of life, to the beauties of nature, to a connection with forces larger than herself, to female friendship, and finally, to love.

I’ve had a fascination with the Loch Ness monster since I was a kid, which is what attracts me to this one.
 
 
 
Vicki:
A Robot In The Garden by Deborah Install @ Bakey’s Book Blog
25224758 Ben Chambers wakes up to find an unfamiliar object – rusty and lost – sitting underneath the willow tree in his garden. Refusing to throw it on the skip as his wife Amy advises, he takes it in.

Ben does not want children, or even a job, and now he has found yet another reason to stay in his study and ignore everyone.

It is only when Amy walks out that Ben realises he has alienated all the human beings in his life. He has only one friend left.

This is the story of a unique friendship, and how one man opens his heart to a past he did not want, and a future he cannot lose.

This sounds very different and that’s what sold me.
 
 
 
Pirate Hunters by Robert Kurson @ Under My Apple Tree 23164968
Finding and identifying a pirate ship is the hardest thing to do under the sea. But two men—John Chatterton and John Mattera—are willing to risk everything to find the Golden Fleece, the ship of the infamous pirate Joseph Bannister. At large during the Golden Age of Piracy in the seventeenth century, Bannister’s exploits would have been more notorious than Blackbeard’s, more daring than Kidd’s, but his story, and his ship, have been lost to time. If Chatterton and Mattera succeed, they will make history—it will be just the second time ever that a pirate ship has been discovered and positively identified. Soon, however, they realize that cutting-edge technology and a willingness to lose everything aren’t enough to track down Bannister’s ship. They must travel the globe in search of historic documents and accounts of the great pirate’s exploits, face down dangerous rivals, battle the tides of nations and governments and experts. But it’s only when they learn to think and act like pirates—like Bannister—that they become able to go where no pirate hunters have gone before.

Fast-paced and filled with suspense, fascinating characters, history, and adventure, Pirate Hunters is an unputdownable story that goes deep to discover truths and souls long believed lost.

I’ve enjoyed a few documentaries on this subject, so when I saw this book I figured I’d like it. I thought this book was a work of fiction but Leslie let me know it was a true story. That makes me even more interested in reading it. Thanks for letting me know Leslie!