Monday, February 14, 2011

Mailbox Monday: Valentine's Day Edition

Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia at The Printed Page. It is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week. Mailbox Monday is currently on tour and is hosted by Library of Clean Reads for the month of February. In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren.

Joy for Beginners by Erica Bauermeister
At a festive, intimate dinner party in Seattle, six women gather to celebrate their friend Kate's recovery from cancer. Wineglass in hand, Kate strikes a bargain with them: to celebrate her new lease on life, she'll do the one thing that's always terrified her: white-water rafting. But if she goes, each of them will also do the one thing they always swore they'd never do-and Kate is going to choose their adventure, from getting a tattoo to learning to bake bread to reconciling with a former friend. Shimmering with warmth, wit, and insight, Joy for Beginners is a celebration of life: unexpected, lyrical, and deeply satisfying.

One of my favorite things about reading is that sometimes the right book comes to you at just the right time. For me, I think Joy for Beginners might be that book. My primary New Year's resolution for 2011 is to really embrace life, experience new things, and do a few things that scare me. I suspect I'll find some kind spirits in Joy for Beginners. I loved Erica Bauermeister's first novel, The School of Essential Ingredients, so I am doubly excited for this book. I received this for review from the publisher.

The Girl Who Would Speak for the Dead
The Girl Who Would Speak for the Dead by Paul Elwork
Emily Stewart is the girl who claims to stand between the living and the dead. During the quiet summer of 1925, she and her brother, Michael, are thirteen-year-old twins-privileged, precocious, wandering aimlessly around their family's estate. One day, Emily discovers that she can secretly crack her ankle in such a way that a sound appears to burst through the stillness of midair. Emily and Michael gather the neighborhood children to fool them with these "spirit knockings."

Soon, however, this game of contacting the dead creeps into a world of adults still reeling from World War I. When the twins find themselves dabbling in the uncertain territory of human grief and family secrets- knock, knock-everything spins wildly out of control.

I also received this for review from Putnam. It looks fantastic and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Paul Elwork is a local author. Hopefully this means there will be some nearby author events closer to the book's release date.

Birds of a Feather
Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
This is the second book in the Maisie Dobbs series. Last week there was a Groupon deal for a $20 Barnes & Noble gift card for $10. Since I knew I was going to be purchasing some books to round out both this series and the Lady Julia Grey Mysteries, I jumped on the deal. Maisie Dobbs was my favorite read last year and I'm looking forward to participating in the Maisie Dobbs Read-Along. I'm a bit behind, since today they're discussing the third book, Pardonable Lies, but I'll catch up.

Dark Road to Darjeeling
Dark Road to Darjeeling by Deanna Raybourn
With the fifth Lady Julia Grey book, The Dark Enquiry, coming out in mid-June, I thought it was time to get caught up with this series. I absolutely love these books and can't wait to dive into Dark Road to Darjeeling. Be looking for reviews of the entire Lady Julia Grey series at Bookish Ruth soon.

What books came into your home this week?


  1. I'm so glad to see you back on here!! I'm expecting Joy for Beginners as well and am really excited about it.

  2. I keep seeing that Groupon ad - I just wondered how legit they are. You've had no problems??

    Enjoy all your new books. Have a great week and happy Valentine's Day!

  3. They all sound good - especially the new Erica Bauermeister novel. It's on my wish list.
    I picked up the B&N groupon too - couldn't pass it up!

  4. You got some wonderful husband (a big mystery reader) loves the Maisie Dobbs books, and The Girl Who would speak for the dead sounds particularly good to me. Hope you enjoy them all :)

  5. Looks like you got some good reads...enjoy

  6. Oh, you got some great books! I also picked up an ARE of Bauermeister's latest and I am looking forward to it. Did you read her first book? It was very good!

  7. Kathy, thank you! I can't wait to hear your thoughts on Joy for Beginners. I want to read it now but keep telling myself that I should wait until a little closer to when I'll be reviewing it in June. (I may go ahead and read it and just schedule the post!)

    Kaye, both my mom and I bought the Groupon B&N deal and neither one of us had any problems. This was my first Groupon purchase and I won't hesitate to pick up another deal from them if something really appeals to me.

    Mary, I'm very excited about Joy for Beginners. I've cut my book spending way back from what it was two years ago, but I just couldn't pass up the Groupon deal!

    TheBookGirl, thank you! I love the character development in Jacqueline Winspear's books. So often mysteries are lacking in that area, but Winspear is particularly adept at creating an interesting plot without sacrificing character development.

    I browsed a bit of The Girl Who Would Speak for the Dead and I think it's going to be as good as it sounds.

    Serena, thanks! :)

    Wendy, I read and loved The School of Essential Ingredients so I'm very excited about Joy for Beginners. I'd love to see The School of Essential Ingredients as a film. Give it the right ensemble cast and I think it could be fantastic.

  8. here's mine

  9. Hi!

    I saw the link from the book blogs and thought that I would come check your blog out. Glad I did. There are some awesome reviews here, keep them coming.