Books That Caught Our Eye

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

Every Wednesday we will each share two 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.


The Three-Year Swim Club by Julie Checkoway @ Bermudaonion

3 yr. swim clubIn 1937, a schoolteacher on the island of Maui challenged a group of poverty-stricken sugar plantation kids to swim upstream against the current of their circumstance. The goal? To become Olympians.

They faced seemingly insurmountable obstacles. The children were Japanese-American, were malnourished and barefoot and had no pool; they trained in the filthy irrigation ditches that snaked down from the mountains into the sugarcane fields. Their future was in those same fields, working alongside their parents in virtual slavery, known not by their names but by numbered tags that hung around their necks. Their teacher, Soichi Sakamoto, was an ordinary man whose swimming ability didn’t extend much beyond treading water.

In spite of everything, including the virulent anti-Japanese sentiment of the late 1930s, in their first year the children outraced Olympic athletes twice their size; in their second year, they were national and international champs, shattering American and world records and making headlines from L.A. to Nazi Germany. In their third year, they’d be declared the greatest swimmers in the world, but they’d also face their greatest obstacle: the dawning of a world war and the cancellation of the Games. Still, on the battlefield, they’d become the 20th century’s most celebrated heroes, and in 1948, they’d have one last chance for Olympic glory.

They were the Three-Year Swim Club. This is their story.

“This sounds like such a good book! I love when people who don’t have much in life do something amazing.”

The Victim by Eric Matheny @ Fiction Books.

the victimIn the spring of 2003 on a desolate stretch of Arizona highway, Anton Mackey’s life was changed forever. A reckless decision to get behind the wheel when he was in no condition to drive spawned a moment that threatened to destroy everything the 21 year-old had spent his life working toward. In an instant, Anton made a decision to save himself. A decision that claimed the lives of two people.

Eleven years later, Anton is a rising star in the Miami criminal defense community. He is married and has an infant daughter. He is earning a good living and steadily building a name for himself as an aggressive advocate for the accused. Anton shares an office with veteran defense attorney, Jack Savarese. A mentor of sorts, Anton strives to model his practice – and career – after Jack’s. A Miami criminal defense legend, Jack’s accomplishments in the courtroom are second to none. However, Jack remains burdened by the conviction of Osvaldo Garcia, a mentally-ill client from ten years earlier found guilty and sentenced to life in prison for the death of a troubled teen.

When Daniella Avery, the beautiful wife of a man accused of a heinous act of domestic violence, comes into Anton’s office seeking his services, Anton thinks he’s landed a great case with a great fee. But when he succumbs to temptation, he realizes that Daniella is a figure from his past.

Anton finds himself caught between the possibility of being exposed and the fact that his client – Daniella’s husband – may be an innocent pawn in the victim’s attempt to carry out her revenge against Anton. As Anton struggles to balance defending his client while concealing the secret he has sought to forget, he uncovers the truth behind what really happened on that highway eleven years earlier. The truth that may be connected to the conviction of Osvaldo Garcia.

“​I love reading about people with secrets and seeing how their story ends​”.


Exit Wounds: Soldiers’ Stories Life After Iraq and Afghanistan by Jim Lommasson @ Rose City Reader.


Lommasson presents students, academics, researchers, and general interest readers with a collaborative work of photography and interviews featuring United States veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. The author has organized the main body of his text in parts devoted to the stories of fifty veterans of the two wars, following a foreword by Massachusetts physician and psychologist Jonathan Shay, and an open letter from U.S. marine Eddie Black regarding the distance between the experience of war and the collection of stories presented in the text.

“This sounds like a fascinating project and I’d be interested to see how this comes together.”

The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson @ Book Dilettante.


One of Shakespeare’s final plays, “The Winter’s Tale” is the spellbinding story of newfound love, treacherous jealousy, revenge, regret, and ultimately, redemption. Beloved and award-winning author Jeanette Winterson will introduce this classic in a new and unique way, in the first installment of Hogarth’s historic Shakespeare series.

“I’ve read a number of Shakespeare’s plays, and even though I haven’t read The Winter’s Tale, I think it would be fun to read it and compare the re-imagining of it. I had no idea that there was a series of these books.”


AllTheStarsAll the Stars in the Heavens by Adriana Trigiani Lori’s Reading Corner.

In this spectacular saga as radiant, thrilling, and beguiling as Hollywood itself, Adriana Trigiani takes us back to Tinsel Town’s golden age—an era as brutal as it was resplendent—and into the complex and glamorous world of a young actress hungry for fame and success. With meticulous, beautiful detail, Trigiani paints a rich, historical landscape of 1930s Los Angeles, where European and American artisans flocked to pursue the ultimate dream: to tell stories on the silver screen.

“I always enjoy Adriana Trigiani’s books.”

NeedNeed by Joelle Charbonneau at The Reading Date.

Teenagers at Wisconsin’s Nottawa High School are drawn deeper into a social networking site that promises to grant their every need . . . regardless of the consequences. Soon the site turns sinister, with simple pranks escalating to malicious crimes. The body count rises. In this chilling YA thriller, the author of the best-selling Testing trilogy examines not only the dark side of social media, but the dark side of human nature.

“YA thrillers are a good choice when I’m looking for something a little different.”


4 thoughts on “Books That Caught Our Eye

  1. Thanks for the mention Vicki.
    I am really looking forward to reading ‘The Victim’.
    It sounds like a pacy, action packed storyline, with definite overtones of David baldacci or John Grisham.
    Plenty of potential to keep me turning the pages 🙂


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