Tuesday, August 3, 2010

It's Tuesday ~ How the Heck Did I Miss These Books?

Has anyone read these (3) books I obviously missed until now?

 


Begun in 1981, this slender, unpretentious, lyrical and deeply moving novel by the president emeritus of Amherst College was more than two decades in the making. The year is 1987, and octogenarian Robert MacIver is alone, in failing health and debilitated with grief over his wife's recent death, hiding out in the dead of winter in a remote, unheated Cape Cod house "older than the Republic." Shocked into confronting the seriousness of his plight when the timbers of the front porch collapse under his weight, he retreats back inside the house and realizes that he wants to live out his remaining days—however few in number—with dignity. Thus resolved, he formulates his Ten Commandments for Old Men Waiting, the seventh of which is "Work every morning." And so he decides to write a short story about an infantry company in "No Man's Land" in WWI, which will draw on the interviews he conducted with victims of poison gas that he used for his first book, the well-received oral history Voices Through the Smoke. Pouncey's novel thus becomes a story within a novel; and MacIver's story is elegantly juxtaposed with his memories from his own long life. Pouncey's first book is proof that sometimes greatness comes slowly and in small packages.



The End of Manners; Francesca Marciano

Maria Galante and Imo Glass are on assignment in Afghanistan: outgoing Imo to interview girls who have attempted suicide to avoid forced marriage to older men; and shy, perfectionist Maria to photograph them. But in a culture in which women shroud their faces and suicide is a grave taboo, to photograph these women puts everyone in danger. Before the assignment is over, Maria is forced to decide if it's more important to succeed at her work —and please Imo—or to follow her own moral compass. The End of Manners is a story of friendship and loyalty, of the transformative power of journeying outside oneself into the wider world.




Like Trees, Walking; Ravi Howard

The town of Mobile, Alabama, in the summer of 1981, when headlines were dominated by the Atlanta child killings, awakens to find a black youth hanging from a neighborhood tree. Sixteen-year-old Roy Deacon, son of the local black funeral director, offers the first-person narrative of his brother Paul's discovery of the body of a friend and classmate, and the town's struggle to reconcile the lynching with any notions that its black residents have of racial progress. Paul has managed to escape the expectations that he will go into the family business, seven generations long. The burden falls all the heavier on Roy, whose distaste doesn't outweigh his strong sense of duty. Looking back 22 years after the event, Roy wrestles with the memory of the lynching at a turning point in the life of the town and his family. Based on the true story of one of the last recorded lynchings in the U.S., Howard's debut novel offers a subtle and stirring look at the complexities of racial hatred and family obligations.

13 comments:

  1. Haven't heard of any of these (hence, I missed these too!) - but they sound great.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I haven't heard of any of these, either! That last one sounds like something I'd really like. I had a moment like this last week when I walked into a bookstore for the first time in awhile. I've become so accustomed to getting my new book fix on the internet (and I'm trying really hard not to purchase any new books for right now) that I've avoided bookstores. However, last week I found myself going through the new arrivals at my local store & being amazed at just how many I hadn't heard of. I think we get in a bubble almost of only seeing the ones that are being promoted with blog tours, and I wonder how many great books we're missing. Sigh.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The End of Manners looks really good. I had not ever heard of these books either, so great picks!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I am really interested in Like Trees Walking. It looks like something i will enjoy.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Those are all new to me. Like Tress, Walking sounds really good to me, since I lived in Alabama in 1981.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have not read any of the books, but a couple of them sound exceptional. Enjoy.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Haven't heard of these. Sounds good.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Like pretty much everyone else, I have not heard of these but am intrigued by them, especially Like Trees, Walking

    ReplyDelete
  9. I haven't read any of these, but all three sound good. Love this feature! =)

    ReplyDelete
  10. I missed these as well, Diane. There are so many books to learn about! I learned about one yesterday, and posted about it today. :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. I haven't heard of any of these either but they sure sound intriguing. Especially the Howard book. A lynching in 1981? Seriously?

    ReplyDelete
  12. yes, Mari....Yankees lost tonight...yay Actually my husband is going to NY to see the game tomorrow with his son and grand kids. They told him he COULD NOT wear his Red Sox or Philles hats...LOL

    ReplyDelete
  13. I missed them too but added Like Trees, Walking to my wish list

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for taking the time to visit and double thanks for any comments. If you ask a question in your comments, I will try to reply to it here, or by email if your settings allow me to do so. Thank again for visiting.

(I apologize for the word verification, spammers spoil it for all sadly.)