Literary Quote of the Month

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies," said Jojen. "The man who never reads lives only one." - George R.R. Martin, A Dance With Dragons

Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Sunday Salon with a Wrap up of Reading and Reading Independently, Literally...

Welcome to the Sunday Salon! It's been a busy two weeks since I've gotten back from Savannah. Connecticut has been HOT and I've spent the last two weeks trying to stay cool and catch up on all my reading! So, here's what I finished, about to finish and in the reading pile...

First, I finished The Nine Fold Heaven by Mingmei Yip! What an incredibly fun read! I love Mingmei's writing style- it's light and airy, kind of dreamy and sprinkled with Chinese folklore. The stories she writes always have such depth that you might not notice right away because you are so into the characters that have become part of your life. Keep a look out for my review of The Nine Fold Heaven this week! Long story short is I really enjoyed it!

Next on the almost finished table is Bitter Blood by Jerry Bledsoe. It's a true crime novel that takes partly in place in Greensboro, NC, a place dear to my heart. I picked it as a book club book for two reasons. First, I've spent a lot of time in Greensboro, NC the last year and as everyone knew I was a voracious reader, they wanted to know if I had read about the gruesome murders that took place in town written about in Bitter Blood. I had not, so to the local bookstore I went. The second reason I picked it for the book club is, that most everyone in the group use to read murder mysteries and those types of books. The interesting thing that has happened over the years is that no one in the reading group reads much of that type of genre anymore. We kind of forced ourselves to read more "literature" and as time has passed (I think this year is the 9th year of the reading group?) our tastes have changed. One member in fact told me that he discovered that he didn't really like that type of book anymore. Reading groups can open up your reading horizons depending on the books you choose. I use to choose all the books for the group (and I enjoy all types of genres), but then suggested that we all take turns and pick books out. That suggestion opened up a floodgate of variety, made it fun for me to be surprised at what the next book was going to be and introduced new authors and subject matter. It also got the members more involved. I love our reading group and we always have a great time discussing our books. I always list our pick on the sidebar of this blog, so you can always check out what we're reading. And Bitter Blood? Well, I have enjoyed getting back to reading this genre, and Jerry Bledsoe really does his homework to cover the crimes with all the background and still make a good read that will have you turning those pages to see what's going to happen next. I'll be reviewing this the beginning of August.

Next on my reading plate is The Affairs of Others by Amy Grace Loyd. "Five years after her young husband’s death, Celia Cassill has moved from one Brooklyn neighborhood to another, but she has not moved on. The owner of a small apartment building, she has chosen her tenants for their ability to respect one another’s privacy. Celia believes in boundaries, solitude, that she has a right to her ghosts. She is determined to live a life at a remove from the chaos and competition of modern life. Everything changes with the arrival of a new tenant..." I have been dying to read this after so much great pre-release press! And thanks to the generosity of the folks at Macmillan, I am cracking the spine on this one today! (actually I cracked it already, but had to put it on hold to be polite to my other books!) Look for a review of The Affairs of Others coming soon... P.S. Don't you just love the cover?!

And this week on Chick with Books a return to talking about what's going on in the reading world. Sometimes we get wrapped up in just talking about the great books that are coming out, but there is so much more going on in the reading world and I've missed chatting about it on the blog. Like, what do you think about the J.K. Rowling admission that she wrote The Cuckoo's Calling? When it's initial release only sold 504 copies under Robert Galbraith, it then was revealed that J.K. actually wrote it,  and now the publisher is printing 300,000 copies (and I'm sure they will sell), what does that say about unknown writers? I have met "virtually" some great independent writers through my facebook page, (which has a link to a Chick with Books page...shameless promotion I know) and I am so impressed with their writing! These writers are publishing independently, digitally and paper, and silently making a surge in the reading community. I'll be highlighting some of these writers, and asking them to come aboard and tell us about their struggles and successes of publishing. Want to read a sample of one of them? ...

I talked to author Danielle Stewart after my trip Savannah, when I was beginning to organize a post on "Southern" fiction. She has begun this wonderful romance/suspense series called The Piper Anderson Series, and book one, Chasing Justice, which takes place in North Carolina, is FREE at all major digital retailers!!! (which includes Nook and Kindle). Here's a little about Chasing Justice from Goodreads...

Piper Anderson has been given a fresh start in the picturesque town of Edenville, North Carolina. But her plans of settling into a normal life are derailed when she witnesses a prominent judge in her community committing a violent assault. Running from her own past and fueled by a passion to make the judge answer for his crimes, Piper is forced to decide if she’ll play by the rules or achieve justice in her own way.

I've downloaded the book and am ready to dive in! The sample that I read showcases some great writing from Danielle, and brings to mind that you don't have to have a big name in publishing to be a wonderful writer. With the ever growing popularity of eBooks, these independent writers can satisfy your need to read. Stay tuned for more great writers and more about Danielle too! BTW, book two in Danielle's series just came out! It's called Cutting Ties and if you enjoyed book one, book two is a reasonable $2.99 right now for Nook or Kindle.

And speaking of eReaders... I think I've mentioned before how a special someone bought me my Nook HD for Christmas (yes, new hubby Jim!). I love it! BUT, all of a sudden Google has taken over my Nook! Look for my post next week on how Nook was supposedly saved by Google, but readers may have another opinion!

And how was your week?! Any bookish things happening in your neck of the woods? What great books have you discovered this week? And what do you think about independent writers? Have you tried any? I'd love to hear all about it!

Happy Reading... Suzanne


Joy Weese Moll (@joyweesemoll) said...

The Nine Fold Heaven has a gorgeous cover. Glad you liked it!

mingmei said...

Glad you like The Nine Fold Heaven! I'm finishing my new and sixth novel about China's most prominent embroiderer, to be published in 2014.

my read shelf:
Suzanne's book recommendations, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

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