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, February 28, 2010

The Sunday Salon... The Blogoversary Wrap-up, Books with Buzz and National Women's History Month

Winter comes visiting...
It's been a wintery week here in Connecticut. Above is a photo of a visitor to my yard the other morning. It was so beautiful outside, but I am so tired of snow! It does give me an excuse to stay inside and read... (I can always make an excuse for reading- no snow necessary!)

The Blogoversary Celebration has been so much fun! Thank you to everyone who stopped by and sent their Congrats! And thank you for everyone joining in on the celebrations by entering the great giveaways and following Chick with Books! There have been almost 350 entries in all the giveaways! There's still time to enter the BIG ROMANCE Giveaway, The Power of Half memoir giveaway, The Man Who Loved Books Too Much, Alice I Have Been giveaway, The Kindle Book Gift Certificate giveaway, and the BIG Historical Fiction giveaway!

I've been reading a great book this week, thanks to the author Bernice L. McFadden who sent it to me. It's called Sugar, and it is filled with wonderful characters and an amazing story. Bernice had read on Chick with Books that I enjoyed The Help by Kathryn Stockett and thought that I would enjoy her book too. The timeframe of Sugar is the same as The Help- when segregation is at its height, but where most of the action takes place in the homes where the domestics worked in The Help, the story of Sugar takes place in the black community. The story starts with a horrendous murder of a young black girl whose murder makes profound changes in the young girls mother, Pearl. 15 years later Pearl is still grieving for her daughter when a young prostitute, Sugar, moves next door to Pearl. Their unlikely friendship changes them both. I loved this book! Rich characters and great storytelling! Read my review in early March. (*and there's going to be a special giveaway thanks to Bernice!) *P.S. This Book is Kindle Ready!

This week was also a week for some interesting new books... Here are a couple of the Books with Buzz this week...

The Surrendered by Chang-rae Lee... From Publishers Weekly, It's a harrowing tale: bleak, haunting, often heartbreaking. The Surrendered bursts with drama and human anguish as it documents the ravages and indelible effects of war. June Han is a starving 11-year-old refugee fleeing military combat during the Korean War when she is separated from her seven-year-old twin siblings. Eventually brought to an orphanage near Seoul by American soldier Hector Brennan, who is still reeling from his father's death, June slowly recovers from her nightmarish experiences thanks to the loving attention of Sylvie Tanner, the wife of the orphanage's minister. But Sylvie is irretrievably scarred as well, having witnessed her parents' murder by Japanese soldiers in 1934 Manchuria. These traumas reverberate throughout the characters' lives, determining the destructive relationship that arises between June, Hector and Sylvie as the plot rushes forward and back in time, encompassing graphic scenes of suffering, carnage and emotional wreckage. Powerful, deeply felt, compulsively readable and imbued with moral gravity, the novel does not peter out into easy redemption. This book has gotten a lot of amazing praise! Penguin Group has a wonderful interview with Chang-rae on their website along with a readers guide. The Surrendered will be released March 9th. I look forward to reading it!*P.S. This Book is Kindle Ready!

The Night Fairy by Laura Amy Schlitz... What would happen to a fairy if she lost her wings and could no longer fly? Flory, a young night fairy no taller than an acorn and still becoming accustomed to her wings -- wings as beautiful as those of a luna moth -- is about to find out. Wh
at she discovers is that the world is very big and very dangerous. But Flory is fierce and willing to do whatever it takes to survive. This book is charming. Written for young readers age 7 - 11, this will also capture your heart. The front cover is beautiful, with the book title in a silver foil. Inside their are beautiful illustrations by Angela Barrett. Oh, and the author Laura Amy Schlitz is a Newberry Medal Winner! I have this on my nightstand, so look for a full review soon...

Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez... Wench eloquently plunges into a dark period of American history, chronicling the lives of four slave women—Lizzie, Reenie, Sweet and Mawu—who are their masters' mistresses. The women meet when their owners vacation at the same summer resort in Ohio. There, they see free blacks for the first time and hear rumors of abolition, sparking their own desires to be free. A story that raises provocative questions of power and freedom, love and dependence. This book is based on an actual resort! And it's gotten wonderful reviews. I love historical fiction and thanks to Danielle of Harper Collins, I just received this in the mail! It was released in early January. Look for my review later in the month... *P.S. This Book is Kindle Ready!

And speaking of month... March is National Women's History Month! This year celebrates the 30th anniversary of the celebration, which started as a week celebration in 1980, until 1987 when the United States Congress declared March National Women's History Month! This years theme is Writing Women Back into History. You can find out more at the National Women's History Project website.

I hope you've found something to peek your reading interests here! What have YOU been reading?! Share your reading picks here! Happy Reading... Suzanne


Alyce said...

Wow! It looks like you've got a lot going on at your blog right now! :)

I hadn't realized that March was National Women's history month. I'll have to be sure to fit in some good reads by women authors next month.

I love the photo of the dear btw. It's beautiful!

rhapsodyinbooks said...

Gorgeous picture! I just got Sugar also, so I am looking forward to reading it.

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Alyce!
Yes, it certainly was a busy week! I'm already busy thinking of some great women author's to highlight!

I'm glad you liked my deer photo! I have a whole family that hang out usually. We have a fenced in yard in the very back of the house for BJ, but sometimes the deer come jumping in to enjoy the grass "on the other side"! :D

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi rhapsody!
You will love Sugar! When I read the opening scene I didn't know what to expect, but Pearl and Sugar are wonderful characters and the murder kind of takes a back seat to the story... for a while! Let me know what you think!

Esme said...

What fantastic book-I am going to put each one of these on my wish list. You should also read Someone Knows my Name-I reviewed it this month-I am sure you would enjoy it-It was incredible.

PS Penelope never gets in trouble with her sweet little face. She and her brother have so many toys to play with-it always amazes me when they go for a cord.

Harvee (Book Dilettante) said...

The deer looks so comfortable and at home in the snow. Wish I could be like that. Also hoping for an end to winter. You have some good books to read for Women's History Month.
I used to read women writers, mystery writers, almost exclusively but am now branching out into crime fiction that includes more male writers!

Looking forward to your review of Chang Rae's book.

Esme said...

Thank you for your comment-I like this photo of the deer in the snow.

Helen's Book Blog said...

What a beautiful photograph of your backyard visitor. I spent four years in Connecticut at Connecticut College so know what you mean about the snow. At least in New London there was more rain than snow.

Anonymous said...

These sound like awesome reads! I am reading Outlaw Bride by Jenna Kernan. This has been a really good read, i am really enjoying it. A lot of our snow is gone now and I hope we are through for the years. I can see some of the grass again and I hope its stays that way. I am so ready for spring.

Suzanne Yester said...

Thanks Esme!
Someone Knows My Name sounds like an amazing story! And you did a great job of reviewing it! Thanks for stopping by and sharing that book! And sharing a hello!

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Harvee!
Yes, I wish I enjoyed the snow as much as the deer too! There actually was a family of about 12 laying down and relaxing earlier today too! Spring can't come soon enough for me!

And I guess I never realized that most of your reviews were for books written by women writers! I become too absorbed in your great recommendations without paying too much attention on the gender of the writer. :D

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Helen!
I think the coastal towns in CT got hit harder than I did this time! So in New London you may not have seen even the bark of the trees! :)

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Virginia!
Jenna Kernan is a great writer! I haven't read Outlaw Bride though, so I'm writing it down for the TBR list! Her writing could melt snow! I'm glad you are enjoying it and thanks for sharing it here!

Esme said...

I thought you would like it. Enjoy.

(Diane) Bibliophile By the Sea said...

Suzanne.....lovely nature shot. I love deer, despite my Lyme disease :(

You had an amazing week/month; great books/great reviews.

Suzanne Yester said...

Hi Diane!
Sorry to hear about your Lyme disease! How awful! I hope you are getting treatment! It seems like so many people I know have it. I was treated for it myself 2 years ago....

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