Book Talk: *The Girl Who Was On Fire”, edited by Leah Wilson

Book Talk: *The Girl Who Was On Fire”, edited by Leah Wilson

The Girl Who Was on Fire: Your Favorite Authors on Suzanne Collins’ Hunger Games TrilogyLeah Wilson, editor/various contributorsSmart Pop (2011), Paperback (ISBN 1935618040 / 9781935618041)Literary essays, 224 pagesSource: PublisherReason for reading: Personal interest Book description, from the publisher’s website: “Katniss Everdeen’s adventures may have come to an end, but her story continues to blaze in the hearts of millions worldwide.In The Girl Who Was on Fire, thirteen YA authors take you back to Panem with […]

Book Talk: *Happens Every Day*, by Isabel Gillies

Book Talk: *Happens Every Day*, by Isabel Gillies

Happens Every Day: An All-Too-True StoryIsabel Gillies (Twitter)Scribner (2009), Hardcover (ISBN 1439110077 / 9781439110072)Memoir, 272 pagesSource: received secondhand from another bloggerReason for reading: personal Opening lines: “One late August afternoon in our new house in Oberlin, Ohio, my husband, Josiah, took it upon himself to wallpaper the bathroom with pictures of our family.” Book description, from the publisher’s website: Isabel Gillies had a wonderful life—a handsome, intelligent, loving husband who was a professor; two glorious […]

(Audio)Book Talk: *American on Purpose*

(Audio)Book Talk: *American on Purpose*

American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriot Craig Ferguson (Twitter) Read by the author It Books (HarperCollins) (2010), Paperback, 288 pages (ISBN 0061998494 / 9780061998492) (Audio edition 0061961450 / 9780061961458) Source: Purchased audiobook Reason for reading: Personal Book description, from the publisher’s website: “In American on Purpose, Craig Ferguson delivers a moving and achingly funny memoir of living the American dream as he journeys from the mean streets of Glasgow, Scotland, to […]

Shelf Awareness review: *Kindred Spirits* by Sarah Strohmeyer

Shelf Awareness review: *Kindred Spirits* by Sarah Strohmeyer

Kindred Spirits Sarah Strohmeyer Dutton Adult (2011), Hardcover (ISBN 0525952225 / 9780525952220) Fiction, 304 pages The following review was originally published in Shelf Awareness for Readers (7/12/2011 edition) and is reprinted with permission. One of the things that keeps long-term relationships interesting is that there are always new things to discover about the other person. The Ladies’ Society for the Conservation of Martinis, which grew out of a PTA meeting postmortem, learns this after the […]

(Audio)Book Talk: *Bossypants*, by Tina Fey

(Audio)Book Talk: *Bossypants*, by Tina Fey

Bossypants Tina Fey read by the author Reagan Arthur Books (2011),  Hardcover (ISBN 9780316056861 / 0316056863) (Audio edition 1609419693 / 9781609419691) Memoir/essays, 288 pages Source: Purchased audiobook Reason for reading: Personal Book description, from the publisher’s website: “Before Liz Lemon, before ‘Weekend Update,’ before ‘Sarah Palin,’ Tina Fey was just a young girl with a dream: a recurring stress dream that she was being chased through a local airport by her middle-school gym teacher. She […]

Book Talk: *Silver Sparrow*, by Tayari Jones

Book Talk: *Silver Sparrow*, by Tayari Jones

Silver Sparrow Tayari Jones Algonquin Books (2011), Hardcover (ISBN 1565129903 / 9781565129900) Fiction (contemporary), 352 pages Source: Publisher Reason for reading: Everyday I Write the Book’s summer Book Club Opening Lines: “My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist. He was already married ten years when he first clamped eyes on my mother. In 1968, she was working the gift-wrap counter at Davison’s downtown when my father asked her to wrap the carving knife he had […]

Book Talk: *Anthropology of an American Girl*, by Hilary Thayer Hamann (TLC Book Tour)

Book Talk: *Anthropology of an American Girl*, by Hilary Thayer Hamann (TLC Book Tour)

Anthropology of an American Girl: A Novel Hilary Thayer Hamann (Facebook) (Twitter) Spiegel & Grau (2010), Edition: Revised, Hardcover (ISBN 9780385527149 / 0385527144) Fiction, 624 pages Source: Publisher, via TLC Book Tours in support of the paperback release Reason for Reading: blog tour, personal wishlist Opening lines: “Kate turned to check the darkening clouds and the white arc of her throat looked long like the neck of a preening swan. We pedaled past the mansions […]

Book Talk: *Nerd Do Well,* by Simon Pegg

Book Talk: *Nerd Do Well,* by Simon Pegg

Nerd Do Well: A Small Boy’’s Journey to Becoming a Big Kid Simon Pegg (Twitter) Gotham (2011), Hardcover (ISBN 1592406815 / 9781592406814) Nonfiction/memoir (mostly), 368 pages Source: ARC from publisher, via TLC Book Tours Reason for reading: Blog tour, known writer (although not known for books), guilty-pleasure genre Opening lines: “It was never my intention to write an autobiography. The very notion made me queasy. You see them congesting the bookshop shelves at Christmas. Rows […]

Book Talk: *A Canticle for Leibowitz*, by Walter M. Miller Jr. (Faith & Fiction Roundtable)

Book Talk: *A Canticle for Leibowitz*, by Walter M. Miller Jr. (Faith & Fiction Roundtable)

A Canticle for Leibowitz  Walter M. Miller Jr. Eos (2006), Paperback (0060892994 / 9780060892999) (Reprint: original publication date 1959) Science/speculative fiction, 352 pages Source: Purchased Reason for reading: Faith and Fiction Roundtable discussion Opening lines: “Brother Francis Gerard of Utah might never have discovered the blessed documents, had it not been for the pilgrim with gilded loins who appeared during that young novice’s Lenten fast in the desert.” Book description: Winner of the 1961 Hugo […]

Book Talk at BlogHer.com: *Girl in Translation*, by Jean Kwok

Book Talk at BlogHer.com: *Girl in Translation*, by Jean Kwok

In the early 1900s, my mother’s family made a journey from the south of Italy to New York City. They found work in the factories and homes in the tenements, and many of them never ventured much further after that. Most of the women – my great-aunts – went to work in the factories of the city’s garment district, where they spent their adult lives producing clothing. Decades later, Kimberly Chang and her mother made […]

Book Talk: *Faith*, by Jennifer Haigh (TLC Book Tour)

Book Talk: *Faith*, by Jennifer Haigh (TLC Book Tour)

Faith: A Novel Jennifer Haigh Harper (May 2011), Hardcover (ISBN 0060755806 / 9780060755805) Fiction, 304 pages Source: ARC from publisher, via TLC Book Tours Reason for reading: Blog tour, personal interest (known author) Opening lines*: “Here is a story my mother has never told me. “It is a day she’s relived a thousand times, the 21st of June, 1951, the longest day of that or any year. A day that still hasn’t ended, as some […]

Book Talk: *Planting Dandelions*, by Kyran Pittman

Book Talk: *Planting Dandelions*, by Kyran Pittman

Planting Dandelions: Field Notes From a Semi-Domesticated Life Kyran Pittman (blog) Riverhead (2011), Hardcover (ISBN 1594488002 / 9781594488009) Nonfiction/memoir, 256 pages Source: ARC from publisher (pub date April 2011) Reason for reading: review, personal interest, Memorable Memoirs Reading Challenge Opening lines (from the Introduction)*: “I jumped the white picket fence. Not in the way the story usually begins, with the hero breaking out, busting loose, setting off across the wild world in search of her […]

Book Talk: *The Wilder Life*, by Wendy McClure

Book Talk: *The Wilder Life*, by Wendy McClure

The Wilder Life: My Adventures in the Lost World of Little House on the Prairie Wendy McClure Riverhead Hardcover (2011) (ISBN 1594487804 / 9781594487804) Nonfiction (memoir/literature), 352 pages Source: ARC from publisher (pub date 4/14/11) Reason for reading: Review copy; 24-Hour Readathon, Spring 2011 Opening Lines: “I was born in 1867 in a log cabin in Wisconsin and maybe you were, too. We lived with our family in the Big Woods, and then we all […]

Book Talk: *The Uncoupling*, by Meg Wolitzer (TLC Book Tour)

Book Talk: *The Uncoupling*, by Meg Wolitzer (TLC Book Tour)

  The Uncoupling Meg Wolitzer Riverhead Hardcover (2011), Hardcover (ISBN 159448788X / 9781594487880) Fiction, 288 pages Source: Publisher, via TLC Book Tours Reason for reading: blog tour Opening Lines: “People like to warn you that by the time you reach the middle of your life, passion will begin to feel like a meal eaten long ago, which you remember with great tenderness. The bright points of silver. The butter in its oblong dish. The corpse […]

Book Talk: *Skipping a Beat*, by Sarah Pekkanen

Book Talk: *Skipping a Beat*, by Sarah Pekkanen

Skipping a Beat: A Novel Sarah Pekkanen Washington Square Press (2011), Edition: Original, Paperback (ISBN 1451609825 / 9781451609820) Fiction, 352 pages Source: purchased e-book (Kindle) (ASIN B0043RSK94) Reason for reading: personal Opening Lines: “When my husband, Michael, died for the first time, I was walking across a freshly waxed marble floor in three-inch Stuart Weitzman heels, balancing a tray of cupcakes in my shaking hands. “Shaking because I’d overdosed on sugar—someone had to heroically step […]