Welcome to another Monday from the Interior, in which we share about the books we received in the mail (or bought), and talk about our bookish week, past and future.
Mailbox Monday for March is hosted by Anna, at Diary of an Eccentric.
What Are You Reading? is led by Sheila, at Book Journey.
All of my books this week were purchased or downloaded by me.
1. Good-Bye and Amen, by Beth Gutcheon
Beth Gutcheon’s critically acclaimed family saga Leeway Cottage was a major achievement: a vivid and moving tale of war and marriage and their consequences that enchanted readers. Good-bye and Amen is the next chapter for the family of Leeway Cottage, the story of what happens when those most powerful people in any family drama, the parents, have left the stage.The complicated marriage of the gifted Danish pianist Laurus Moss to the provincial American child of privilege Sydney Brant was a mystery to many who knew them, including their three children. Now, Eleanor, Monica, and Jimmy Moss have to decide how to divide or share what Laurus and Sydney have left them without losing one another.Secure and cheerful Eleanor, the oldest, wants little for herself but much for her children. Monica, the least-loved middle child, brings her youthful scars to the table, as well as the baggage of a difficult marriage to the charismatic Norman, who left a brilliant legal career, though not his ambition, to become an Episcopal priest. Youngest and best-loved Jimmy, who made a train wreck of his young adulthood, has returned after a long period of alienation from the family surprisingly intact but extremely hard for his sisters to read.Having lived through childhoods both materially blessed and emotionally difficult, with a father who could seem uninvolved and a mother who loved a good family game of “let’s you and him fight,” the Mosses have formed strong adult bonds that none of them wants to damage. But it’s difficult to divide a beloved summer house three ways and keep it too. They all know what’s at stake-in a world of atomized families, a house like Leeway Cottage can be the glue that keeps generations of cousins and grandchildren deeply connected to one another. But knowing it’s important doesn’t make it easy.
2. Blue Monday, by Nicci French
Frieda Klein is a solitary, incisive psychotherapist who spends her sleepless nights walking along the ancient rivers that have been forced underground in modern London. She believes that the world is a messy, uncontrollable place, but what we can control is what is inside our heads. This attitude is reflected in her own life, which is an austere one of refuge, personal integrity, and order.
The abduction of five-year-old Matthew Farraday provokes a national outcry and a desperate police hunt. And when his face is splashed over the newspapers, Frieda cannot ignore the coincidence: one of her patients has been having dreams in which he has a hunger for a child. A red-haired child he can describe in perfect detail, a child the spitting image of Matthew. She finds herself in the center of the investigation, serving as the reluctant sidekick of the chief inspector.
Drawing readers into a haunting world in which the terrors of the mind have spilled over into real life, Blue Monday introduces a compelling protagonist and a chilling mystery that will appeal to readers of dark crime fiction and fans of In Treatment and The Killing.
3. The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett (downloaded free!)
Mistress Mary is quite contrary until she helps her garden grow. Along the way, she manages to cure her sickly cousin Colin, who is every bit as imperious as she. These two are sullen little peas in a pod, closed up in a gloomy old manor on the Yorkshire moors of England, until a locked-up garden captures their imaginations and puts the blush of a wild rose in their cheeks; “It was the sweetest, most mysterious-looking place any one could imagine. The high walls which shut it in were covered with the leafless stems of roses which were so thick, that they matted together…. ‘No wonder it is still,’ Mary whispered. ‘I am the first person who has spoken here for ten years.'” As new life sprouts from the earth, Mary and Colin’s sour natures begin to sweeten. For anyone who has ever felt afraid to live and love, The Secret Garden‘s portrayal of reawakening spirits will thrill and rejuvenate. Frances Hodgson Burnett creates characters so strong and distinct, young readers continue to identify with them even 85 years after they were conceived. (Ages 9 to 12)
WHAT ARE YOU READING?
Let’s join Sheila and gang to chat about our reading and blogging. Participating in this event and visiting lots of blogs along the way can help each of us to find more great books to add to our stacks. As if we need more!
This week, I had some fun on the blogs. I pondered some questions in Serendipity? Fate? Choice?
Then I created my February Reading Wrap-up. I had a pretty good reading month, despite the shortness of it.
On one of my writing blogs, I excerpted from my WIP Defining Moments, in Life Changing Moments.
Since I haven’t been as focused on my writing lately (it’s editing/tweaking time!), I wrote A Writing Journey — What Drives Us?
Finally, today I did my kick-off post for Bloggiesta: It’s Coming, It’s Coming! Bloggiesta!
Now for the books! Click titles for reviews:
7th Heaven, by James Patterson/Maxine Paetro (Women’s Murder Club) (Quick and riveting)
Marilyn Monroe, by Barbara Leaming (A very sad, detailed read)
WHAT’S UP NEXT?
Click titles or book covers to find out more….
Still Reading: Alice in Bed, by Cathleen Schine, and so far, it’s kind of unusual, but it’s drawing me in.
1. Gossip, by Beth Gutcheon (Amazon Vine Review)
2. Lots of Candles, Plenty of Cake, by Anna Quindlen (Amazon Vine)
3. The Effect of Living Backwards, by Heidi Julavits (From my TBRs)
And that’s it for this week! What are you reading and blogging about? Come on by and share!