Books That Caught Our Eye

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dragonlegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that weeks’ Mailbox Monday. We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

We hope everyone has a Safe and Happy New Year. See you all in 2022.

Here’s some books that caught our eyes this week.

MARTHA:

28943714._sx318_Midcentury Christmas by Sarah Archer found at The Book Connection.

Midcentury America was a wonderland of department stores, suburban cul-de-sacs, and Tupperware parties. Every kid on the block had to have the latest cool toy, be it an Easy Bake Oven for pretend baking, a rocket ship for pretend space travel, or a Slinky, just because. At Christmastime, postwar America’s dreams and desires were on full display, from shopping mall Santas to shiny aluminum Christmas trees, from the Grinch to Charlie Brown’s beloved spindly Christmas tree. Now design maven Sarah Archer tells the story of how Christmastime in America rocketed from the Victorian period into Space Age, thanks to the new technologies and unprecedented prosperity that shaped the era. The book will feature iconic favorites of that time, including:

  • A visual feast of Christmastime eats and recipes, from magazines and food and appliance makers
  • Christmas cards from artists and designers of the era, featuring Henry Dreyfuss, Charles Ray Eames, and Alexander Girard
  • Vintage how-to templates and instructions for holiday decor from Good Housekeeping and the 1960’s craft craze
  • Advice from Popular Mechanics on how to glamorize your holiday dining table
  • Decorating advice for your new Aluminum Christmas Tree from ALCOA (the Aluminum Company of America)
  • The first American-made glass ornaments from Corning Glassworks

Midcentury Christmas is sure to be on everyone’s most-wanted lists.

“This looks particularly interesting and covers a variety of history on Christmas.”

59068107._sy475_A Cross-Country Christmas by Courtney Walsh found at Colletta’s Kitchen Sink.

Lauren Richmond isn’t a fan of Christmas.

Which is why she rarely makes the trip home to the Midwest for the holidays. After all, she has plenty to keep her busy—namely, her duties as a set decorator on a TV sitcom.

But this December, Lauren’s brother and his wife are expecting a baby, so her brother arranges a ride home for her with his good friend, Will.

Unfortunately for Lauren, she’s been trying to forget college baseball coach and childhood crush Will Sinclair for more than ten years.

Now, thanks to her fear of flying, she’s stuck in a car with him from California to Illinois.

She’s circumspect and organized. He’s flirty and spontaneous.

She’s convinced that people don’t change. He’s trying to prove to her (and himself) that he has.

On this cross-country road trip, they’ll both discover that history doesn’t exactly repeat itself. . . but like any good Christmas carol, it does have a second verse.

“I am still eyeing Christmas books for the next season and this sounds like another second chance romance I would like.

VELVET:

58294567._sy475_The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs at Sam Still Reading.

Eliza Acton, despite having never before boiled an egg, became one of the world’s most successful cookery writers, revolutionizing cooking and cookbooks around the world. Her story is fascinating, uplifting and truly inspiring.
Told in alternate voices by the award-winning author of The Joyce Girl, and with recipes that leap to life from the page, The Language of Food by Annabel Abbs is the most thought-provoking and page-turning historical novel you’ll read this year, exploring the enduring struggle for female freedom, the power of female friendship, the creativity and quiet joy of cooking and the poetry of food, all while bringing Eliza Action out of the archives and back into the public eye.
England 1837. Eliza Acton is a poet who dreams of seeing her words in print. But when she takes her new manuscript to a publisher, she’s told that ‘poetry is not the business of a lady’. Instead, they want her to write a cookery book. England is awash with exciting new ingredients, from spices to exotic fruits. That’s what readers really want from women.
Eliza leaves the offices appalled. But when her father is forced to flee the country for bankruptcy, she has no choice but to consider the proposal. Never having cooked before in her life, she is determined to learn and to discover, if she can, the poetry in recipe writing. To assist her, she hires seventeen-year-old Ann Kirby, the impoverished daughter of a war-crippled father and a mother with dementia.
Over the course of ten years, Eliza and Ann developed an unusual friendship – one that crossed social classes and divides – and, together, they broke the mould of traditional cookbooks and changed the course of cookery writing forever.
“Sounds like a fascinating historical on cookbooks and how they come to be.”

SERENA:

The Language of Food was also on my list.

Reputation by Lex Croucher at Sam Still Reading.

The hilarious debut novel from Lex Croucher. A classic romcom with a Regency-era twist, for fans of Mean Girls and/or Jane Austen.

Abandoned by her parents, middle-class Georgiana Ellers has moved to a new town to live with her dreary aunt and uncle. At a particularly dull party, she meets the enigmatic Frances Campbell, a wealthy member of the in-crowd who lives a life Georgiana couldn’t have imagined in her wildest dreams.

Lonely and vulnerable, Georgiana falls in with Frances and her unfathomably rich, deeply improper friends. Georgiana is introduced to a new world: drunken debauchery, mysterious young men with strangely arresting hands, and the upper echelons of Regency society.

But the price of entry to high society might just be higher than Georgiana is willing to pay …

“I love a good twist on Regency romance, and this one sounds like it could be hilarious.”

What books caught your eyes this week?

Mailbox Monday

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bluebirdonsnowmailbox

Mailbox 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.

I hope those of you who celebrate these holidays had a wonderful time with family or friends. Like many of you, I love receiving books for the holidays, and most of the time I receive at least one. This year I received two! Both of them poetry books, so that makes me happy. I can’t wait to see what everyone else received.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

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dragonlegends

At Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that weeks’ Mailbox Monday. We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

Here’s some books that caught our eyes this week.

MARTHA:
RisingTIdeThe Rising Tide by Sam Lloyd found at Bookfan.

HOW DID IT COME TO THIS?
The news doesn’t strike cleanly, like a guillotine’s blade. Nothing so merciful. This news is a slovenly traveller, dragging its feet, gradually revealing its horrors. And it announces itself first with violence – the urgent hammering of fists on the front door.

Life can change in a heartbeat.

Lucy has everything she could wish for: a beautiful home high on the clifftops above the Devon coast, a devoted husband and two beloved children.

Then one morning, time stops. Their family yacht is recovered, abandoned far out at sea. Lucy’s husband is nowhere to be found and as the seconds tick by, she begins to wonder – what if he was the one who took the boat? And if so, where is he now?

As a once-in-a-generation storm frustrates the rescue operation, Lucy pieces together what happened onboard. And then she makes a fresh discovery. One that plunges her into a nightmare more shocking than any she could ever have imagined . . .

“This sounds like a good suspense thriller.”

——–

WishitcouldbeChristmasI Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day by Milly Johnson found at The Infinite Curio.

It’s nearly Christmas and it’s snowing, hard. Deep in the Yorkshire Moors nestles a tiny hamlet, with a pub at its heart. As the snow falls, the inn will become an unexpected haven for six people forced to seek shelter there…Mary has been trying to get her boss Jack to notice her for four years, but he can only see the efficient PA she is at work. Will being holed up with him finally give her the chance she has been waiting for?

Bridge and Luke were meeting for five minutes to set their divorce in motion. But will getting trapped with each other reignite too many fond memories – and love?

Charlie and Robin were on their way to a luxury hotel in Scotland for a very special Christmas. But will the inn give them everything they were hoping to find – and much more besides?

A story of knowing when to hold on and when to let go, of pushing limits and acceptance, of friendship, love, laughter, mince pies and the magic of Christmas.

Gorgeous, warm and full of heartfelt emotion, I Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day is the perfect listen this winter!

“One more Christmas story that ‘caught my eye’ sounds good to me.”
VELVET:

My Fine Fellow by Jennieke Cohen at Kait Plus Books.

It’s 1830s England, and Culinarians—doyens who consult with society’s elite to create gorgeous food and confections—are the crème de la crème of high society.
Helena Higgins, top of her class at the Royal Academy, has a sharp demeanor and an even sharper palate—and knows stardom awaits her if she can produce greatness in her final year.
Penelope Pickering is going to prove the value of non-European cuisine to all of England. Her contemporaries may scorn her Filipina heritage and her dishes, but with her flawless social graces and culinary talents, Penelope is set to prove them wrong.
Elijah Little has nothing to his name but a truly excellent instinct for flavors. London merchants won’t allow a Jewish boy to own a shop, so he hawks his pasties for a shilling a piece to passersby—but he knows with training he can break into the highest echelon of society.
When Penelope and Helena meet Elijah, a golden opportunity arises: to pull off a project never seen before, and turn Elijah from a street vendor to a gentleman chef.
But Elijah’s transformation will have a greater impact on this trio than they originally realize—and mayhem, unseemly faux pas, and a little romance will all be a part of the delicious recipe.
“Curious about a Filipina in the 1800’s – a rarity”

The Fifth Avenue Story Society by Rachel Hauck at Coletta’s Kitchen Sink.

Executive assistant Lexa is eager for a much-deserved promotion, but her boss is determined to keep her underemployed.
Literature professor Jett is dealing with a broken heart, as well as a nagging suspicion his literary idol, Gordon Phipps Roth, might be a fraud.
Uber driver Chuck just wants a second chance with his kids.
Aging widower Ed is eager to write the true story of his incredible marriage.
Coral, queen of the cosmetics industry, has broken her engagement and is on the verge of losing her great grandmother’s multimillion-dollar empire.
When all five New Yorkers receive an anonymous, mysterious invitation to the Fifth Avenue Story Society, they suspect they’re victims of a practical joke. No one knows who sent the invitations or why. No one has heard of the literary society. And no one is prepared to bare their deepest secrets to a roomful of strangers.
Yet curiosity and loneliness bring them back week after week to the old library. And it’s there they discover the stories of their hearts, and the kind of friendship and love that heals their souls.
“Love to see how these characters lives change from being part of the society.”

SERENA:

Lucy by Ellen Feldman at An Interior Journey.

On the eve of World War I, Assistant Secretary of the Navy Franklin Delano Roosevelt, fiercely ambitious and still untouched by polio, falls in love with his wife’s social secretary, Lucy Mercer. Eleanor stumbles on their letters and divorce is discussed, but honor and ambition win out. Franklin promises he will never see Lucy again.

But Franklin and Lucy do meet again, and again they fall in love. As he prepares to run for an unprecedented third term and lead America into war, Franklin turns to Lucy for the warmth and unconditional approval Eleanor is unable to give.

Ellen Feldman brings a novelist’s insight to bear on the connection of these three compelling characters. Franklin and Lucy did finally meet, across the divide of his illness and political ascendancy, her marriage and widowhood. They fell in love again. As he prepared to run for an unprecedented third term and lead America into war, Franklin turned to Lucy for the warmth and unconditional approval Eleanor was unable to give.

Drawing on recently discovered materials to re-create the voice of a woman who played a crucial but silent role in the Roosevelt presidency, Lucy is a remarkably sensitive exploration of the private lives behind a public marriage. Reading group guide included.

“This sounds fascinating.”

The Bromance Book Club by Lyssa Kay Adams at Sam Still Reading.

Nashville Legends second baseman Gavin Scott’s marriage is in major league trouble. He’s recently discovered a humiliating secret: his wife Thea has always faked the Big O. When he loses his cool at the revelation, it’s the final straw on their already strained relationship. Thea asks for a divorce, and Gavin realizes he’s let his pride and fear get the better of him.

Welcome to the Bromance Book Club.

Distraught and desperate, Gavin finds help from an unlikely source: a secret romance book club made up of Nashville’s top alpha men. With the help of their current read, a steamy Regency titled Courting the Countess, the guys coach Gavin on saving his marriage. But it’ll take a lot more than flowery words and grand gestures for this hapless Romeo to find his inner hero and win back the trust of his wife.

“This sounds hilarious.”

What books caught your eyes this week?

Mailbox Monday

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NorthPoleMailbox 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.

I just can’t seem to get enough of that mailbox. So creative. I haven’t read much other than book festival submissions, but I was happy to have an interview with a poet I admire go up on my blog this week, and a review of her collection. I hope everyone is finding good things to read and enjoying some down time. We all need that.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

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dragonlegends

At Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that weeks’ Mailbox Monday. We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

Here’s some books that caught our eyes this week.

VELVET:

Tidings of Comfort & Joy by T. Davis Bunn at Bookfan.

As the questions begin, an extraordinary story unfolds. A story of love and loss and caring, of separation and reunion. Of small acts of heroism in a distant and war-weary English village, now half a century ago.

As her grandmother shares this story with Marissa, the two discover that the most precious gift of Christmas is that of the present. And the season of giving is not limited to once a year.

“For the holiday cozies…”

Lucky by Marissa Stapley at Kait Plus Books.

Lucky Armstrong is a tough, talented grifter who has just pulled off a million-dollar heist with her boyfriend, Cary. She’s ready to start a brand-new life, with a new identity—when things go sideways. Lucky finds herself alone for the first time, navigating the world without the help of either her father or her boyfriend, the two figures from whom she’s learned the art of the scam.
When she discovers that a lottery ticket she bought on a whim is worth millions, her elation is tempered by one big problem: cashing in the winning ticket means she’ll be arrested for her crimes. She’ll go to prison, with no chance to redeem her fortune.
As Lucky tries to avoid capture and make a future for herself, she must confront her past by reconciling with her father; finding her mother, who abandoned her when she was just a baby; and coming to terms with the man she thought she loved—whose dark past is catching up with her, too.
“For the thrills…”

MARTHA:

A Christmas Spark by Diana Biller found at The InfiniteCurio.

Winnifred can’t believe her luck! She’s been hired to work for renowned scientist John Moore – which in 1843 is the next best thing to being one herself. Unfortunately, she didn’t expect to find his very presence so… distracting during experiments.

John thinks Winnifred Byrne is a disaster of an assistant. She makes a dreadful cup of tea and has caused not one but multiple explosions! Except…she’s warm, funny, brilliant, and to make matters much worse, is probably the most beautiful woman he’s ever met.

As the snow falls and their friendship deepens, one thing becomes clear: he’s met his match in more ways than one.

“I like Christmas stories and this sounds so cute with a scientist and his assistant.”

The Wedding Wager by Eva Devon found at Lisa Everyday Reads.

All Lady Victoria Kirby wants is to dig in the dirt, take notations, and record history, thank you very much. Bumbling through ballrooms and getting disdained by the ton for her less than ideal looks, on the other hand, is the last thing she wants. But her reckless father has a different idea for her future when he puts up the ultimate ante—her hand in marriage—and loses. Over her dead body.

The Duke of Chase cannot bear to see a woman misused. After all, he saw that often enough as a child. So when he’s witness to a marquess gambling away his daughter to a lecher of a man, he has no choice but to step in and rescue her. Lady Victoria has a reputation for being as tart as a lemon and as bitter as one, too. So, he may have just found the perfect wife to keep a promise he made to himself long ago—to never have an heir. With her, surely, he’ll never be tempted to take her to bed and break that promise.

But when he meets the wild, witty, intelligent, young lady he’s bound to marry, he knows trouble is headed his way… And everything he ever swore to uphold may very well come undone, especially his heart.

“I’m not crazy about the cover but I do like this trope (reluctant wife won in a wager).”

SERENA:

Miss Eliza’s English Kitchen: A Novel of Victorian Cookery and Friendship by Annabel Abbs at Silver’s Reviews.

England, 1835. London is awash with thrilling new ingredients, from rare spices to exotic fruits. But no one knows how to use them. When Eliza Acton is told by her publisher to write a cookery book instead of the poetry she loves, she refuses—until her bankrupt father is forced to flee the country. As a woman, Eliza has few options. Although she’s never set foot in a kitchen, she begins collecting recipes and teaching herself to cook. Much to her surprise she discovers a talent – and a passion – for the culinary arts.

Eliza hires young, destitute Ann Kirby to assist her. As they cook together, Ann learns about poetry, love and ambition. The two develop a radical friendship, breaking the boundaries of class while creating new ways of writing recipes. But when Ann discovers a secret in Eliza’s past, and finds a voice of her own, their friendship starts to fray.

Based on the true story of the first modern cookery writer, Miss Eliza’s English Kitchen is a spellbinding novel about female friend­ship, the struggle for independence, and the transcendent pleasures and solace of food.

“I just love books that center on food, and I hope this one doesn’t disappoint. I want to smell the food and taste it. And of course, there is Ann and the poetry angle. Not to mention friendship.”

The Christmas Escape by Sarah Morgan at Colletta’s Kitchen Sink.

It was supposed to be Christy Sullivan’s perfect Christmas escape – a dream trip to Lapland with her family and best friend, Alix. But facing a make-or-break marriage crisis, Christy desperately needs time alone with her husband, Seb. Her solution? Alix, along with Seb’s oldest friend, Zac, can take Christy’s daughter on the planned Lapland trip, and they will all reunite there for Christmas Day. After all, what are friends for?

There’s nothing Alix won’t do for Christy, but Christy’s plan to save Christmas is testing their friendship. Especially as Alix and Zac have a difficult history of their own.

As long-held secrets unravel, and unexpected romance shines under the Northern Lights, can Christy and Alix find the courage to fight for the relationships they really want? And could this Christmas escape save the precious gift of each other’s friendship?

“I really am enjoying these holiday books I find in everyone’s mailboxes. Lapland is a place on my bucket list, so I hope this romance gives me some good details of places to visit if I ever get there.”

What books caught your eyes this week?

Mailbox Monday

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NorthPoleMailbox 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.

The winter weather is cold here, but now the meteorologist is now talking about 70 degree weather this weekend. The climate is definitely on the pre-winter rollercoaster. Most of our holiday shopping is done. Just my dad left as usual and the holiday exchange gift. Yes, my dad is always last on the list because he’s so hard to buy for. And he never gives any hints. I hope everyone is doing well. Happy reading this week.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

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

Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that weeks’ Mailbox Monday.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

VELVET:

The Mistletoe Murders by Laurinda Wallace at The Book Connection.

Gracie is ready to celebrate a traditional Deer Creek Christmas, but that would be too predictable. Her friend, Marci is opening The Mistletoe Bed-and-Breakfast after months of restoring the crumbling Victorian estate outside of the Western New York village. The grim history has captured the interest of the travel world and local residents. The house begins to reveal its macabre past on the cusp of the B & B’s opening, enmeshing Gracie and her husband, Marc into investigating crimes both past and present. Does evil still lurk under the Mistletoe?
“Still feeling like holiday cozy mysteries.”

Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson at Book Reviews by Linda Moore.

In present-day California, Eleanor Bennett’s death leaves behind a puzzling inheritance for her two children, Byron and Benny: a traditional Caribbean black cake, made from a family recipe with a long history, and a voice recording. In her message, Eleanor shares a tumultuous story about a headstrong young swimmer who escapes her island home under suspicion of murder. The heartbreaking tale Eleanor unfolds, the secrets she still holds back, and the mystery of a long-lost child, challenge everything the siblings thought they knew about their lineage, and themselves.
Can Byron and Benny reclaim their once-close relationship, piece together Eleanor’s true history, and fulfill her final request to “share the black cake when the time is right”? Will their mother’s revelations bring them back together or leave them feeling more lost than ever?
“So curious about this tradition.”

MARTHA:

The War Librarian by Addison Armstrong found at Book Reviews by Linda Moore.

The Paris Library meets The Flight Girls in this captivating historical novel about the sacrifice and courage necessary to live a life of honor, inspired by the first female volunteer librarians during World War I and the first women accepted into the U.S. Naval Academy.

Two women. One secret. A truth worth fighting for.

1918: Timid and shy Emmaline Balakin lives more in books than her own life. That is, until an envelope crosses her desk at the Dead Letter Office bearing a name from her past, and Emmaline decides to finally embark on an adventure of her own–as a volunteer librarian on the frontlines in France. But when a romance blooms as she secretly participates in a book club for censored books, Emmaline will need to find more courage within herself than she ever thought possible in order to survive.

1976: Kathleen Carre is eager to prove to herself and to her nana that she deserves her acceptance into the first coed class at the United States Naval Academy. But not everyone wants female midshipmen at the Academy, and after tragedy strikes close to home, Kathleen becomes a target. To protect herself, Kathleen must learn to trust others even as she discovers a secret that could be her undoing.

“I always check out books about books or libraries. This one caught my eye and interest.”

The Heights by Louise Candlish found at Silver’s Reviews.

The Heights is a tall, slender apartment building among warehouses in London. Its roof terrace is so discreet, you wouldn’t know it existed if you weren’t standing at the window of the flat directly opposite. But you are. And that’s when you see a man up there—a man you’d recognize anywhere. He may be older now, but it’s definitely him.

But that can’t be because he’s been dead for over two years. You know this for a fact.

Because you’re the one who killed him.

“Interestingly I was not so much drawn by the cover to this psychological thriller, but I was caught by the blurb.”

SERENA:

The War Librarian was also on my list, but here are two others.

The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood at Sam Still Reading.

As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding… six-pack abs.

Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.

“What is the science of love? Let’s see if these two scientists can figure it out.”

Every Day in December by Kitty Wilson at Reviews by Martha’s Bookshelf.

Belle Wilde loves December. Yes, she’s just lost her job and Christmas is not a good time to find yourself ‘financially challenged’. And yes, her parents are still going on about the fact that she really should have it all together by now. But Belle believes that in December, magic can happen.

Rory Walters hates December. Whilst it looks like his life is together, he’s still reeling from a winter’s night five years ago when his life changed forever. Now back at home, he’s certain that this will be yet another Christmas to endure rather than enjoy.

But as midnight on December 31st draws closer, Belle and Rory’s time together is coming to an end. With a little help from a Christmas miracle could Belle find the one thing she really wants underneath the mistletoe?

“This is the year for me where holiday books are a good read for me. I’m not a big holiday book reader, but there’s something appealing about magic fixing it all.”

What books caught your eyes this week?

Mailbox Monday

3 Comments

Mailbox 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.

This week has been a busy week with our second COVID shot for our daughter and the mild headache and inability to use a computer for a day or so. She’s over it and ready to get on with life. I don’t blame her. I’ll be scheduling our booster shots soon. In other news, part of my reading slowdown must be tied to my eyesight. My latest eye appointment has moved me into some stronger lenses. Hopefully, this will improve my reading pace.  How is everyone else doing?

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

1 Comment

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

Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that weeks’ Mailbox Monday.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

VELVET:

A Nancy Drew Christmas by Carolyn Keene at Reviews by Martha’s Bookshelf.

Nancy finds herself a Christmas mystery in this super special eighteenth book of the Nancy Drew Diaries series, a fresh approach to the classic mystery series.

Nancy Drew’s dad surprises her with a trip to a beautiful New England ski resort for Christmas break. Nancy is so excited. What could be better than a whole week of skiing and five-star dining?

But no vacation can go smoothly when Nancy is involved. On her very first run down the slopes, Nancy hits a bad patch of ice and takes a serious tumble. A doctor sends her back to the hotel in a cast and mandates twelve days of bed rest. That means no long car trips back to River Heights and twelve days of sitting around. Luckily, there’s still the five-star dining and beautiful views.
Just hours into her convalescence, Nancy witnesses something very suspicious through another hotel room window. And when she presses the concierge she learns there have been mysterious break-ins throughout the hotel. It’s clear someone has been going into guest’s rooms but, as far as anyone can tell, nothing has been taken. Nancy can’t resist-she has to investigate. Only trouble is, she’s still bed bound.

Taking some cues from Home Alone’s Kevin McCallister, Nancy devises some clever schemes to get her investigating done from her bed. But for all her plans, Nancy still can’t find the source of the break-ins. Or the purpose. What’s worse the mood of the hotel has turned decidedly un-merry. People are leaving in droves and the jolly hotel owner is worried about the hotel’s success.

With all the odds stacked against her, can Nancy solve this crime in time to save Christmas? Or is this one Yuletide she’ll wish to forget?

“Holiday classic YA female sleuthing mystery would be good cozy time reading.”

Wish You Were Here by Jodi Picoult at The Burgeoning Bookshelf.

In the breathtaking beauty of the Galapagos Islands, Diana will learn who she really is, and the person she wants to become, in Jodi’s deeply moving novel about the resilience of the human spirit.
Diana O’Toole is perfectly on track. She will be married by thirty, done having kids by thirty-five, and move out to the New York City suburbs, all while climbing the professional ladder in the cutthroat art auction world. She’s not engaged just yet, but she knows her boyfriend Finn, a surgical resident, is about to propose – days before her thirtieth birthday. Right on time.
But now she is stranded, alone on what was planned to be a romantic idyll with Finn. Unfortunately, Finn is trapped thousands of miles away, and Diana is on one of the world’s most beautiful islands with no food, no luggage, and no place to stay, forced to test her personal limits to survive.
Struggling to find her feet, Diana gradually connects with a local family when a teenager with a secret opens up to her. As Diana helps her fight her demons she learns more about herself, and about the islands of Galapagos, where Darwin developed his theory of evolution. The dramatic and sometimes dangerous terrain reflects Diana’s own experiences, her new relationships and growing awareness that she too is evolving into someone quite different.
A near-death experience brings Diana abruptly back to familiar city surroundings, where she tries to pick up the threads of her old life. Has she changed or have the people around her? Diana is no longer prepared to be just a follower, at work or in her relationships. She breaks down years of estrangement with her mother, takes the initiative in her career, and looks at Finn through new eyes.
“Curious to see the evolution of this character.”

SERENA:

The Forest of Stolen Girls by June Hur at vvb32 Reads.

Hwani’s family has never been the same since she and her younger sister went missing and were later found unconscious in the forest, near a gruesome crime scene. The only thing they remember: Their captor wore a painted-white mask.

To escape the haunting memories of this incident, the family flees their hometown. Years later, Detective Min—Hwani’s father—learns that thirteen girls have recently disappeared under similar circumstances, and so he returns to their hometown to investigate… only to vanish as well.

Determined to find her father and solve the case that tore their family apart, Hwani returns home to pick up the trail. As she digs into the secrets of the small village—and reconnects with her now estranged sister—Hwani comes to realize that the answer lies within her own buried memories of what happened in the forest all those years ago.

After her father vanishes while investigating the disappearance of 13 young women, a teen returns to her secretive hometown to pick up the trail in this second YA historical mystery from the author of The Silence of Bones.

“Sometimes you need a good mystery.”

The German Wife by Debbie Rix at Silver’s Reviews.

Germany, 1939: Annaliese is a doctor’s wife, living in an elegant grey stone house with ivy creeping over the balcony. But when her husband is ordered to work at the Dachau labour camp, her ordinary life is turned upside down by the horrors of war. And Annaliese finds herself in grave danger when she dares to fight for love and freedom…

America, 1989: Turning the pages of the newspaper, Annaliese gasps when she recognizes the face of a man she thought she’d never see again. It makes her heart skip a beat as a rush of wartime memories come back to her. As she reads on, she realizes the past is catching up with her. She must confront a decades-old secret – or risk losing everything…

Germany, 1942: Annaliese’s marriage is beginning to crumble. Her husband, Hans, has grown cold and secretive since starting his new job as a doctor at Dachau. When a tall, handsome Russian prisoner named Alexander is sent from the camp to work in their garden, lonely Annaliese finds herself drawn to him as they tend to the plants together. In snatched moments and broken whispers, Alexander tells her the truth about the shocking conditions at the camp. Horrified, Annaliese vows to do everything she can to save him.

But as they grow closer, their feelings for each other put them both in terrible danger. And when Annaliese falls pregnant she has to make an impossible decision between protecting herself and saving the love of her life…

“Yes, I cannot pass these WWII books by.”

MARTHA:

ThisGoldenStateThis Golden State by Marit Weisenberg found at Kait Plus Books.

The Winslow family lives by five principles:
1. No one can know your real name.
2. Don’t stay in one place too long.
3. If you sense anything is wrong, go immediately to the meeting spot.
4. Keeping our family together is everything.
5. We wish we could tell you who we are, but we can’t. Please—do not ask.
Poppy doesn’t know why her family has been running her whole life, but she does know that there are dire consequences if they’re ever caught. Still, her curiosity grows each year, as does her desire for real friends and the chance to build on something, instead of leaving behind school projects, teams, and crushes at a moment’s notice.

When a move to California exposes a crack in her parents’ airtight planning, Poppy realizes how fragile her world is. Determined to find out the truth, she mails in a home DNA test. Just as she starts to settle into her new life and even begins opening up to a boy in her math class, the forgotten test results bring her crashing back to reality.

Unraveling the shocking truth of her parents’ real identities, Poppy realizes that the DNA test has undone decades of careful work to keep her family anonymous—and the past is dangerously close to catching up to them. Determined to protect her family but desperate for more, Poppy must ask: How much of herself does she owe her family? And is it a betrayal to find her own place in the world?

“The premise of this drew my eye. I want to know the secrets.”

The Last Checkmate by Gabriella Saab found at Silver’s Reviews.TheLastCheckmate

Maria Florkowska is many things: daughter, avid chess player, and, as a member of the Polish underground resistance in Nazi-occupied Warsaw, a young woman brave beyond her years. Captured by the Gestapo, she is imprisoned in Auschwitz, but while her family is sent to their deaths, she is spared. Realizing her ability to play chess, the sadistic camp deputy, Karl Fritzsch, decides to use her as a chess opponent to entertain the camp guards. However, once he tires of exploiting her skills, he has every intention of killing her.

Befriended by a Catholic priest, Maria attempts to overcome her grief, vows to avenge the murder of her family, and plays for her life. For four grueling years, her strategy is simple: Live. Fight. Survive. By cleverly provoking Fritzsch’s volatile nature in front of his superiors, Maria intends to orchestrate his downfall. Only then will she have a chance to evade the fate awaiting her and see him punished for his wickedness.

As she carries out her plan and the war nears its end, she challenges her former nemesis to one final game, certain to end in life or death, in failure or justice. If Maria can bear to face Fritzsch—and her past—one last time.

“This sounds good… and heart-wrenching.”
What books caught your eyes this week?

Books That Caught Our Eye

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At Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that weeks’ Mailbox Monday.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

MARTHA:

The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood found at The Infinite Curio.

As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding…six-pack abs.

Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.

“I totally needed some lighter reading this week and this cover and blurb caught my eye.”

58807372._sx318_Afloat in Venice (Monkey’s Great Adventures #1) by Tina Wilson found at The Burgeoning Bookshelf.

Monkey can’t wait to use his new camera in Venice… but along the way he discovers something more precious than sight-seeing!

Monkey, an endearing soft toy, finds himself in all sorts of scrapes where he learns about himself and the world around him. In this first book in the Monkey’s Great Adventure series, Afloat in Venice, Monkey is entranced by a “magical floating city that seems to grow straight out of the sea.”

This book includes original music composed by the highly acclaimed, Matt Ottley and an additional version specifically narrated for the visually impaired.

Heartwarming and unique, this series brilliantly captures the innocence of childhood and will be enjoyed by all ages.

“I collected monkeys in my youth so this naturally caught my eye. I like that the characters are knitted as Dot shared in the review… and it comes with a CD.”

VELVET:

The Raffles Affair by Vicki Virtue at Sam Still Reading.

Fresh from a gruelling three-month assignment in East Africa, beautiful former MI6 agent Victoria West arrives at Raffles Hotel in Singapore to attend her friend’s wedding. But Victoria’s plans for a relaxing break end abruptly with news the groom has been kidnapped. Warned not to contact the police, Victoria sets out to find him. But in this glamorous setting nothing is quite what it seems. 
 
As the deadline to pay the ransom draws near, events take a deadly turn. Victoria suspects murder. But which of the wedding guests did it? They all have a motive… and a talent for lying. With time fast running out, Victoria must untangle the web of domestic squabbles, red herrings and false alibis before it is too late.
 
“Feeling like arm-chair traveling to Singapore.”
 

 
It’s been four years since seventeen-year-old Ruth set eyes on her fiancé. 
 
After surviving near-starvation, revolution and a long trip across the stormy ocean, she can’t help but wonder: Will Abraham still love her? Or has America changed him?
 
Nowhere’s as full of change as 1909 New York. From moving pictures to daring clothes to the ultra-modern Triangle Shirtwaist Factory where she gets a job, everything exhilarates Ruth. When the New World even seems to rejuvenate her bond with Abraham, she is filled with hope for their prospects and the future of their war-torn families.
 
But when she makes friends and joins the labor movement—fighting for rights of the mostly female workers against the powerful factory owners—she realizes she might be the one America is changing. And she just might be leaving Abraham behind.
 
“Liking the historical immigrant story vibe.”

SERENA:

The Romanov Empress by C.W. Gortner at Drey’s Library.

Narrated by the mother of Russia’s last tsar, this novel brings to life the courageous story of Maria Feodorovna, one of Imperial Russia’s most compelling women, who witnessed the splendor and tragic downfall of the Romanovs as she fought to save her dynasty in its final years.

“I absolutely loved Gortner’s other books.”

 

Peril by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa from An Interior Journey.

The transition from President Donald J. Trump to President Joseph R. Biden Jr. stands as one of the most dangerous periods in American history.

But as # 1 internationally bestselling author Bob Woodward and acclaimed reporter Robert Costa reveal for the first time, it was far more than just a domestic political crisis.

Woodward and Costa interviewed more than 200 people at the center of the turmoil, resulting in more than 6,000 pages of transcripts—and a spellbinding and definitive portrait of a nation on the brink.

This classic study of Washington takes readers deep inside the Trump White House, the Biden White House, the 2020 campaign, and the Pentagon and Congress, with vivid, eyewitness accounts of what really happened.

Peril is supplemented throughout with never-before-seen material from secret orders, transcripts of confidential calls, diaries, emails, meeting notes and other personal and government records, making for an unparalleled history.

It is also the first inside look at Biden’s presidency as he faces the challenges of a lifetime: the continuing deadly pandemic and millions of Americans facing soul-crushing economic pain, all the while navigating a bitter and disabling partisan divide, a world rife with threats, and the hovering, dark shadow of the former president.

“We have much to do in this winter of peril,” Biden declared at his inauguration, an event marked by a nerve-wracking security alert and the threat of domestic terrorism.

Peril is the extraordinary story of the end of one presidency and the beginning of another, and represents the culmination of Bob Woodward’s news-making trilogy on the Trump presidency, along with Fear and Rage. And it is the beginning of a collaboration with fellow Washington Post reporter Robert Costa that will remind readers of Woodward’s coverage, with Carl Bernstein, of President Richard M. Nixon’s final days.

“Political history interests me, no matter what it is. The last election was a bit frightening, especially given the riots at the Capitol…something that’s hard to forget.”

What books caught your eye this week?