Stacked-Up Book Thoughts are my random notes about books I've read, movies I've watched, books I'm looking forward to, and events I hope to get to.
I've been working hard at editing lately, and that means more audiobooks than print books. My eyes are happy to let my ears take over in the evenings and weekends. I recently finished Rebecca Stead's Liar & Spy. It was my first Stead book, but I'm now adding her to my must-read list. I'll have a full review of the book soon. I'm in the middle of Fall of Giants, which is the initial book in Ken Follett's new Century Trilogy. It begins just before the start of World War I and follows families from a variety of nationalities and social classes. War has just begun, and I don't know yet who will survive.
Some of my most recent reviews for Audiofile magazine are now up on the website. Gail Tsukiyama's A Hundred Flowers is narrated by Simon Vance--need I say more? Another recommended title is The Mirrored World by Debra Dean, read by Yelena Shmulenson. Click the links to read my thoughts.
As you know I'm a big supporter of the Scholastic Mother-Daughter Book Club for middle grade readers. One of the selections this month is the multiple-award-winning Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan. This is the story of how a young girl copes with being transplanted from her well-off life in Mexico to working as a farm laborer in California during the Depression. I hope to review this one soon. For book clubs looking for a lighter read, the second selection is the first in Lisa Papademetriou's Confectionately Yours series, Save the Cupcake! Although this cute book includes recipes, its themes of friendship and family offer plenty to talk about. Remember that the book club site includes lots of resources for readers.
In case you missed them, I wrote about Love Slave by Jennifer Spiegel (fiction set in New York City), The Fine Color of Rust by P. A. O'Reilly (fiction set in rural Australia), and Aftermath by Rachel Cush (memoir) for the SheKnows Book Lounge. Click the links to read the articles.
We've been catching up on some old TV shows, but took the time to watch the latest Jesse Stone movie, Benefit of the Doubt. If you haven't watched this series, based on the books by Robert B. Parker and starring Tom Selleck, you're missing out.. We also watched We Need to Talk About Kevin, based on the book by Lionel Shriver and starring Tilda Swinton. Not that the movie wasn't good, but it was one that I truly didn't need to see. Creepy and scary--and not in a horror-flick kind of way.
In the Stacks
Three books from this month that I've been dying to read are Emma Straub's Laura Lamont's Life in Pictures, about Depression-era Hollywood; Sarita Mandanna's Tiger Hills, historical fiction set in southern India; and Kathleen Alcott's The Dangers of Proximal Alphabets, about three childhood friends whose insular world crumbles as they mature. The three novels are completely different, but I'm all about eclectic (one of my favorite words).