Monday, January 17, 2011

Mailbox Monday ~ January 17th



Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house during the previous week. Original host was Marcia at The Printed Page, but now on blog tour, with Rose City Reader is hosting during the month of January.  (3) new books this week:



  • Major Pettigrew's Last Stand; Helen Simonson (gift card purchase; so many of you are to blame for this one): -
    In her charming debut novel, Simonson tells the tale of Maj. Ernest Pettigrew, an honor-bound Englishman and widower, and the very embodiment of duty and pride. As the novel opens, the major is mourning the loss of his younger brother, Bertie, and attempting to get his hands on Bertie's antique Churchill shotgun—part of a set that the boys' father split between them, but which Bertie's widow doesn't want to hand over. While the major is eager to reunite the pair for tradition's sake, his son, Roger, has plans to sell the heirloom set to a collector for a tidy sum. As he frets over the guns, the major's friendship with Jasmina Ali—the Pakistani widow of the local food shop owner—takes a turn unexpected by the major (but not by readers). The author's dense, descriptive prose wraps around the reader like a comforting cloak, eventually taking on true page-turner urgency as Simonson nudges the major and Jasmina further along and dangles possibilities about the fate of the major's beloved firearms. This is a vastly enjoyable traipse through the English countryside and the long-held traditions of the British aristocracy.
  • Sing You Home; Jodi Picoult (Simon and Schuster) - color me excited about this one - Popular author Picoult tackles the controversial topic of gay rights in her latest powerful tale. When music therapist Zoe Baxter’s latest pregnancy ends in a stillbirth, her husband Max decides he can’t handle any more heartbreak and leaves her. As she picks up the pieces of her life, Zoe is surprised to find herself falling for a school counselor who happens to be a woman. While Zoe is finding happiness with Vanessa, Max falls off the wagon and is helped by a pastor from his brother’s evangelical church. Vanessa and Zoe wed in Massachusetts, and Vanessa offers to carry one of the fertilized embryos Zoe and Max stored. Excited by the prospect of being a mother, Zoe goes to Max to get him to release the embryos to her and is shocked when he instead sues her for custody of them, backed by his church. Told from the perspectives of all three major characters, Picoult’s gripping novel explores all sides of the hot-button issue and offers a CD of folk songs that reflect Zoe’s feelings throughout the novel.
  • The Shadow of What We Were; Luis Sepulveda  -
    SepĂșlveda packs more than three decades of Chilean history into this lean and darkly humorous novel. Three aging revolutionaries—Cacho Salinas, Lolo Garmendia, and Lucho Arancibia—reunite to pull off one final, spectacular heist, gathering in a hideout to await the arrival of the Shadow, a legendary Robin Hood–type anarchist. As the comrades with their graying beards, thinning hair, and chubby physiques wait, they revisit the past and ruminate on losses: after Pinochet's coup, Cacho and Lolo fled to Europe, while Lucho, whose brothers were murdered by the regime, stayed and endured torture that has left him brain damaged. Meanwhile, and unbeknownst to the trio, the Shadow lies dead on the sidewalk, struck down by a freak accident. Although the narrator frequently runs away with the story, trailing off into history lessons, SepĂșlveda maintains a high level of suspense as the police investigate the Shadow's death, and Cacho, Lolo, and Lucho decide whether to go through with their plan, turning their collective sorrows into a celebration of the resilience of the human spirit.
     
    Hope you received some terrific books this week as well.

32 comments:

  1. I am really interested in that new Piccoult book! Hope they are all wonderful reads!

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  2. Hope you enjoy Major Pettigrew!

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  3. Your last book the author is new to me. Your other books sound really good.

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  4. Those all look like great books, but especially the Jodi Picoult one! Her books are hit or miss for me personally, so hopefully this one is a hit for you. Looking forward to your review!

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  5. My local indie bookstore promotes Major Pettigrew, so I gave it to my sister for Christmas. I sure hope it's good. I'm just a little bit jealous of the new Picoult title. Enjoy!

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  6. I've heard great things about Major Pettigrew. You've got a nice mailbox. Enjoy!

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  7. Everyone is reading Major Pettigrew. Argh, must get this book.

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  8. I need to get to Major Pettigrew (I have it) as I've heard great things about it. Enjoy!

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  9. You won't be sorry about Major Pettigrew, I listened to it on audio and really enjoyed it. I think you will enjoy it too! The other 2 look good also.

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  10. I sure hope you enjoy Major Pettigrew as much as my niece and I did. Have a great week, Diane and enjoy your new reads.

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  11. I am not huge Jodi Piccoult fan,but the Pettigrew book sounds like fun.Going to my TBR.

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  12. Oh, I'm so excited about the new Jodi Picoult! She always manages to write about the most timely issues...with intriguing twists.

    I hope it's an e-book soon, because my shelves are almost out of space!

    Here's my Monday:

    (click on my name)

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  13. wow, Picoult does like wading to some controversial topics sometimes, doesn't she? Sounds interesting.
    And everyone seems to have read Major Pettigrew, except me.

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  14. Great mailbox. I can't wait to hear what you think of the new Jodi Picoult book.

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  15. Nice selection of books you received. Especially Jodi's! I HEART her. I'm definitely looking forward to reading Sing You Home when it's released in March.

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  16. The Shadow of What We Were looks like a great read, and I also really hope you enjoy Major Pettigrew. You got some really nice books there and I look forward to seeing your thoughts on them!

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  17. One of my tripmates on my recent vacation was reading Major Pettigrew and raved about it - hope you enjoy it!

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  18. Nice mailbox! I'm one of the few who haven't read Picoult yet,but this might be one I would give a try to.

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  19. here's mine http://tributebooksmama.blogspot.com/2011/01/mailbox-monday-hunters-and-prey.html

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  20. Have a great week of reading. I've got Major Pettigrew on my want to read list. My local bookstore highly recommends it.

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  21. I'm hoping to get Picoult's book too!! Enjoy! and Major Pettigrew is one that I MUST read this year!

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  22. Majot Pettigrew sounds charming and wonderful. I've read a lot of reviews for this book and will definitely read it one day.

    I also received Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult and I'm looking forward to it!

    And The Shadow of What We Were sounds riveting!

    Great books! Enjoy!
    ~ Amy

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  23. I've heard so many good things about the Major Pettigrew book. I hope you enjoy all of those you got this week!

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  24. You received some good ones this week :) I am looking forward to the new Picoult, and I have wanted to read Major Pettigrew for some time, and just haven't gotten around to it.

    enjoy your week reading!

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  25. This is what I call a great range of reads.

    Enjoy them all. Major Pettigrew now that's the one I've been dying to read most.

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  26. I have not had very good luck with Jodi Picoult but I'll be looking forward to your review. Maybe I'll be convinced to give her another try! :)

    Enjoy your loot!

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  27. You got some wonderful books! Major Pettigrew's last stand is on my wishlist!

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  28. I have heard nothing but good things about Major Pettigrew. I am going to have to get that one.

    Thanks for participating in Mailbox Monday!

    Rose City Reader

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  29. Ah ... the new Picoult book. I wondered what her "issue" would be. I will probably end up reading it at some point ... I always do.

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  30. I have to read Piccoult on of these days!

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  31. Hi Diane, I have heard of the first book in your list although I haven't read it. Happy reading!

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  32. Looking forward to your review of the Picoult book. Happy reading!

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