New Books I Am Looking Forward to Reading

Books I anticipate reading…

FC9781250295187The Dinner List by Rebecca Serle    (publication date – August 28, 2018)

If you could invite any five people—dead or alive—to dinner, who would you choose?

Preview:

“We’ve been waiting for an hour.” That’s what Audrey says. She states it with a little bit of an edge, her words just bordering on cursive. That’s the thing I think first. Not Audrey Hepburn is at my birthday dinnerbut Audrey Hepburn is annoyed.”

 

41pYhoGoKDL._SX324_BO1,204,203,200_Goodbye, Paris by Anstey Harris  (just published)

Preview:

“We were staying at David’s apartment in Paris the night the woman fell onto the Metro tracks.”

 

shopping-1Transcription by Kate Atkinson  (publication date – September 8, 2018)

Preview:

‘Miss Armstrong?  Miss Armstrong, can you hear me?’

She could although she didn’t seem able to respond.  She was badly damaged.  Broken.  She had been hit by a car.   It might have been her own fault, she had been distracted – she had lived for so long abroad that she had probably looked the wrong way when she was crossing Wigmore Street in the midsummer twilight.  Between the darkness and the daylight.

 

shopping-2  The Mermaid and Mrs. Hancock by Imogen Gower  (publication in USA – September 11, 2018)

One September evening in 1785, the merchant Jonah Hancock hears urgent knocking on his front door. One of his captains is waiting eagerly on the step. He has sold Jonah’s ship for what appears to be a mermaid.

Preview:

for in this world there is no achieving anything all alone. Cast in thy lot and share the purse. And this is why a prudent man does no business with drunks, with rakes, with gamblers, with thieves, or anybody with whom God might have cause to deal severely. You cast in your lot and you share his sin. And it is so easy for a little craft to be dashed against the rocks. So easy for cargo to settle five fathoms deep in the dark. Sailors’ lungs may brine and their fingers may pickle; all that protects them is God’s cupped hand.

What does God say to Mr Hancock? Where is the Calliope, whose captain has sent no word in eighteen months? The summer trails away. Every day the mercury drops. If she does not return soon she will not return, and the blame may well lie with him. What has he done, that might demand such punishment? Who will throw in their lot with his if they suspect him ill-favoured?

Somewhere a tide is turning. In that place where no land can be seen, where horizon to horizon is spanned by shifting twinkling faithless water, a wave humps its back and turns over with a sigh, and sends its salted whispering to Mr Hancock’s ear.

This voyage is special, the whisper says, a strange fluttering in his heart.

 

 

Five Books To Anticipate Reading in 2018

Five Books to Pre-Order for the New Year

Unknown Winter by Ali Smith – available in the United States on January 9th.

If you enjoyed Smith’s first book in this series, Autumn, she follows up with the second in her seasonal quartet – Winter.  In her keynote lecture for this year’s Goldsmiths Prize for innovative fiction, Ali Smith promised –  “The novel (Winter) matters because of Donald Trump.”  Smith’s second novel in the series is set in the aftermath of Trump’s election; Winter has “four people, strangers and family, {who}converge on a fifteen-bedroom house in Cornwall for Christmas…It’s the season that teaches us survival.”

9780812995664 White Houses by Amy Bloom – available in the United States February 13th

Historical fiction about the relationship between Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok, the Associated Press journalist who fell in love with the First Lady and moved into the White House with her and the President.  Hickok was Eleanor Roosevelt’s increasingly confidante, cheerleader and intimate partner.

34888106  The Black Painting by Neil Olson – available January 9th

A wealthy East Coast family faces the suspicious death of its patriarch and the unsolved theft of a self-portrait by Goya rumored to cause madness and death. Art in a mystery thriller.

9780735221925  The Maze at Windermere by Gregory Blake – available  January 9th

  1. Five parallel stories, from Colonial times to the present, set in Newport, Rhode Island.  Smith weaves lives into “a narrative odyssey that braids together three centuries of aspiration and adversity. A witty and urbane bachelor of the Gilded Age embarks on a high-risk scheme to marry into a fortune; a young writer soon to make his mark turns himself to his craft with harrowing social consequences; an aristocratic British officer during the American Revolution carries on a courtship that leads to murder; and, in Newport’s earliest days, a tragically orphaned Quaker girl imagines a way forward for herself and the slave girl she has inherited…(Kirkus)”

51EOygu5XjL._AC_US218_The Perfect Nanny by Leila Slimani – available January 9th

Winner of France’s Goncourt literary prize.   Set in an apartment in the upscale tenth arrondissement of Paris, the story “is a compulsive, riveting…exploration of power, class, race, domesticity, and motherhood (Publisher’s Weekly).”   Louise is the perfect nanny to two young children; she cleans, stays late whenever asked, and hosts children’s parties, but as the parents’ dependence on her increases, she has embedded herself so deeply in their lives that it now seems impossible to remove her.

 

 

 

 

Reminder List – Books to Read

  Whenever I discover a book I want to read, I find it on my iPhone, download a sample to remind myself to look for it in the library – and then promptly forget about it.  If the book has not yet been published in the United States, I need extra incentive to look for it again.

 Hoping to remember, here is my short list of books to read soon:

  • Ann Patchett’s Commonwealth
  • Maria Semple’s Today Will Be Different
  • Robert Seethaler’s A Whole Life
  • Margot Lee Shetterly’s Hidden Figures
  • A.L. Kennedy’s Serious Sweet

Currently, I am reading The Secret River by Kate Grenville.

What books do you have on your to do list?

 

 

Maggie O’Farrell’s This Must Be the Place

When one of my favorite place for books recommended Maggie O’Farrell’s This Must Be the Place, I decided to order it.  First, the library system, but the book must be too new since it has not caught the attention of the ordering queen. A book by the same title was in the system – by Kate Racculia published in 2010.

Next, to iBook – imagine my surprise to learn a third book has the same title: one by Anna Winger  published in 2009.  Last on the list is Maggie O’Farrell.  Irrelevant, but a song released in 1983 also has the name as well as a movie with Sean Penn in 2011.  Popular title.

Wondering what such a title could predict?

Winger’s debut novel tells of two people who find each other when they least expect it in a city haunted by history.  Racculia involves four eclectic boarders, Mona and her daughter, who find their quiet life upended by the arrival of a widower in the middle of a nervous breakdown.   O’Farrell’s book focuses on a marriage.

Unknown-2  Maggie O’Farrell is one of my favorite writers.  I found her with The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox, then sought out her Instructions for a Heatwave, and The Hand That First Held Mine (see my reviews below).

Now I have the sample of her latest book on my iPhone – a reminder to try the library again, but if it doesn’t appear when I’ve finished my latest library stack, I may have to just  just download it.  I have time; the book is due to be published in the United State on July 19th.

Have you read any of O’Farrell’s books?

Related Reviews: