DIGGING INTO NEWER BOOKS…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s feature is a book I purchased in September 2019:  A Game for All the Family, by Sophie Hannah.  I love this author, so I simply must dust this one off!  It is a print volume on my TBR shelves.

Synopsis:  Pulled into a deadly game of deception, secrets, and lies, a woman must find the truth in order to defeat a mysterious opponent, protect her daughter, and save her own life in this dazzling standalone psychological thriller with an unforgettable ending from the New York Times bestselling author of Woman with a Secret and The Monogram Murders.

You thought you knew who you were. A stranger knows better.

You’ve left the city—and the career that nearly destroyed you—for a fresh start on the coast. But trouble begins when your daughter withdraws, after her new best friend, George, is unfairly expelled from school.

You beg the principal to reconsider, only to be told that George hasn’t been expelled. Because there is, and was, no George.

Who is lying? Who is real? Who is in danger? Who is in control? As you search for answers, the anonymous calls begin—a stranger, who insists that you and she share a traumatic past and a guilty secret. And then the caller threatens your life. . . .

This is Justine’s story. This is Justine’s family. This is Justine’s game. But it could be yours.

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What books are you rediscovering today?

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DUSTING OFF ANOTHER NEGLECTED BOOK…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s neglected book was purchased in October 2018:  A Well-Behaved Woman, by Therese Anne Fowler.

I purchased this book because I have enjoyed this author’s work…and I loved the blurb:

The riveting novel of iron-willed Alva Vanderbilt and her illustrious family as they rule Gilded-Age New York, written by Therese Anne Fowler, a New York Times bestselling author of Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald.

Alva Smith, her southern family destitute after the Civil War, married into one of America’s great Gilded Age dynasties: the newly wealthy but socially shunned Vanderbilts. Ignored by New York’s old-money circles and determined to win respect, she designed and built nine mansions, hosted grand balls, and arranged for her daughter to marry a duke. But Alva also defied convention for women of her time, asserting power within her marriage and becoming a leader in the women’s suffrage movement.

With a nod to Jane Austen and Edith Wharton, in A Well-Behaved Woman Therese Anne Fowler paints a glittering world of enormous wealth contrasted against desperate poverty, of social ambition and social scorn, of friendship and betrayal, and an unforgettable story of a remarkable woman. Meet Alva Smith Vanderbilt Belmont, living proof that history is made by those who know the rules—and how to break them.

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I hope to read this one soon.  I love this weekly event that inspires me to dust off those almost-forgotten books.

What have you found this week?

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ANOTHER BURIED TREASURE…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s forgotten book is from December 2017:  The Girl in Times Square, by Paullina Simons.

I picked this book to buy because I had heard good things about it, and I loved the blurb:

International bestselling author Paullina Simons delivers a riveting novel about a young woman whose search for her missing friend turns into a life-shattering odyssey.

The truth will change her forever.

Living in bustling New York City, Lily Quinn has plenty of distractions and is struggling to finish college as well as pay her rent. But that all pales in comparison when Amy, her best friend and roommate, disappears without a trace.

Spencer O’Malley, a cynical NYPD detective assigned to Amy’s case, immediately captures Lily’s attention. Though he is wary and wrestling with his own demons, he, too, is irresistibly drawn to Lily.

But fate has more in store for Lily than she ever expected. As she looks deeper into the mystery surrounding Amy’s disappearance, Lily finds answers she never imagined she’d find—answers that challenge everything she knows about her own life.

Lily’s search puts her on a collision course with tragedy and love, and gives her a glimpse into the abyss that swallowed her friend . . . until she faces a final confrontation with her own life-changing destiny.

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Why have I not read it yet?  I know that the 598 pages are a big part of it.  I am always reluctant to commit to the longer books, since I have so many others that are clamoring for my attention.  But I have to get over that!  I hope to do that soon.

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What books are you ignoring? 

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SEARCHING THE BACKLOG…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s feature is a book I purchased in June 2017.

Purity, by Jonathan Franzen.

I know why I haven’t yet read this one.  577 pages!  But sometimes we have to bite the bullet and read!

Here’s the synopsis:  Young Pip Tyler doesn’t know who she is. She knows that her real name is Purity, that she’s saddled with $130,000 in student debt, that she’s squatting with anarchists in Oakland, and that her relationship with her mother–her only family–is hazardous. But she doesn’t have a clue who her father is, why her mother chose to live as a recluse with an invented name, or how she’ll ever have a normal life.

Enter the Germans. A glancing encounter with a German peace activist leads Pip to an internship in South America with The Sunlight Project, an organization that traffics in all the secrets of the world–including, Pip hopes, the secret of her origins. TSP is the brainchild of Andreas Wolf, a charismatic provocateur who rose to fame in the chaos following the fall of the Berlin Wall. Now on the lam in Bolivia, Andreas is drawn to Pip for reasons she doesn’t understand, and the intensity of her response to him upends her conventional ideas of right and wrong.

Purity is a grand story of youthful idealism, extreme fidelity, and murder. The author of The Corrections and Freedom has imagined a world of vividly original characters–Californians and East Germans, good parents and bad parents, journalists and leakers–and he follows their intertwining paths through landscapes as contemporary as the omnipresent Internet and as ancient as the war between the sexes. Purity is the most daring and penetrating book yet by one of the major writers of our time.

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I am hoping to read this one soon.  I have read two other books by this author.

What books have you overlooked?

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A REDISCOVERED BOOK…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s neglected book is an oldie!  I purchased it in March 2014, and when I started reading it, I was not loving it.  But then something happened!  This week, HBO began showing a miniseries based on the book, and they renamed it The Undoing.  I am enjoying the series, so I started reading the book.  I am still reading it, and I am on page 238!

The Undoing (Previously Published as You Should Have Known), by Jean Hanff Korelitz

Description:  Grace Reinhart Sachs is living the only life she ever wanted for herself. Devoted to her husband, a pediatric oncologist at a major cancer hospital, their young son Henry, and the patients she sees in her therapy practice, her days are full of familiar things: she lives in the very New York apartment in which she was raised, and sends Henry to the school she herself once attended.

Dismayed by the ways in which women delude themselves, Grace is also the author of a book You Should Have Known, in which she cautions women to really hear what men are trying to tell them. But weeks before the book is published a chasm opens in her own life: a violent death, a missing husband, and, in the place of a man Grace thought she knew, only an ongoing chain of terrible revelations. Left behind in the wake of a spreading and very public disaster, and horrified by the ways in which she has failed to heed her own advice, Grace must dismantle one life and create another for her child and herself.

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I do believe I will actually finish it this time!  What book have you rediscovered today?

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ANOTHER NEGLECTED BOOK…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s forgotten book is from a favorite author and was purchased in September 2017!  The Summer That Made Us, by Robyn Carr, should have been an instant read…but other books, distractions, etc. 

The description pulls me in today, just as it did when I added it to my shelves:

Mothers and daughters, sisters and cousins, they lived for summers at the lake house until a tragic accident changed everything. The Summer That Made Us is an unforgettable story about a family learning to accept the past, to forgive and to love each other again.

That was then…

For the Hempsteads, two sisters who married two brothers and had three daughters each, summers were idyllic. The women would escape the city the moment school was out to gather at the family house on Lake Waseka. The lake was a magical place, a haven where they were happy and carefree. All of their problems drifted away as the days passed in sun-dappled contentment. Until the summer that changed everything.

This is now…

After an accidental drowning turned the lake house into a site of tragedy and grief, it was closed up. For good. Torn apart, none of the Hempstead women speak of what happened that summer, and relationships between them are uneasy at best to hurtful at worst. But in the face of new challenges, one woman is determined to draw her family together again, and the only way that can happen is to return to the lake and face the truth.

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I am pulling it forward on my Kindle!  What have you rediscovered today?

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A BOOK OVERLOOKED…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today I scrolled through my 2019 purchases, and found a book I bought in September that I have been meaning to read: The Dutch House, by Ann Patchett.

I don’t know why I haven’t read it yet…it is not a lengthy book.  So I will commit to it…soon!

Here’s what drew me in:

At the end of the Second World War, Cyril Conroy combines luck and a single canny investment to begin an enormous real estate empire, propelling his family from poverty to enormous wealth. His first order of business is to buy the Dutch House, a lavish estate in the suburbs outside of Philadelphia. Meant as a surprise for his wife, the house sets in motion the undoing of everyone he loves.

The story is told by Cyril’s son Danny, as he and his older sister, the brilliantly acerbic and self-assured Maeve, are exiled from the house where they grew up by their stepmother. The two wealthy siblings are thrown back into the poverty their parents had escaped from and find that all they have to count on is one another. It is this unshakeable bond between them that both saves their lives and thwarts their futures.

Set over the course of five decades, The Dutch House is a dark fairy tale about two smart people who cannot overcome their past. Despite every outward sign of success, Danny and Maeve are only truly comfortable when they’re together. Throughout their lives they return to the well-worn story of what they’ve lost with humor and rage. But when at last they’re forced to confront the people who left them behind, the relationship between an indulged brother and his ever-protective sister is finally tested.

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What books have you been ignoring/neglecting/overlooking?

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INTRIGUING BOOK FROM THE BACKLOG…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today I found an unread book purchased in May 2018:  The Smell of Other People’s Houses, by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock, published in February 2016.

The title and the blurb intrigued me, and I fully intended to read it.  Let’s take another look at the description:

This deeply moving and authentic debut set in 1970s Alaska is for fans of Rainbow Rowell, Louise Erdrich, Sherman Alexie, and Benjamin Alire Saenz. Intertwining stories of love, tragedy, wild luck, and salvation on the edge of America’s Last Frontier introduce a writer of rare talent.

Ruth has a secret that she can’t hide forever. Dora wonders if she can ever truly escape where she comes from, even when good luck strikes. Alyce is trying to reconcile her desire to dance, with the life she’s always known on her family’s fishing boat. Hank and his brothers decide it’s safer to run away than to stay home—until one of them ends up in terrible danger.

Four very different lives are about to become entangled. This unforgettable William C. Morris Award finalist is about people who try to save each other—and how sometimes, when they least expect it, they succeed.

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Now I must move it forward!  What do you think?  Has anyone read it?

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LET’S CURL UP WITH A NEGLECTED BOOK…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Another day of searching through the pages of this blog, trying to find a book I have neglected that I really need to give another opportunity to be a favorite.

I found Miss You, by Kate Eberlin, purchased in April 2017.

I knew immediately why it was still unread:  453 pages.  Not that I don’t read books with more than 300 pages, but if I don’t have a history with the author, I might push it aside for a bit.

Well, a bit has turned into more than three years!  Enough already.

The description was one that drew me in, so let’s take another look at it:

“TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.” Tess can’t get the motto from her mother’s kitchen knickknack out of her head, even though she’s in Florence on an idyllic vacation before starting university in London.

Gus is also visiting Florence, on a holiday with his parents seven months after tragedy shattered their lives. Headed to medical school in London, he’s trying to be a dutiful son but longs to escape and discover who he really is.

A chance meeting brings these eighteen-year-olds together for a brief moment—the first of many times their paths will crisscross as time passes and their lives diverge from those they’d envisioned. Over the course of the next sixteen years, Tess and Gus will face very different challenges and choices. Separated by distance and circumstance, the possibility of these two connecting once more seems slight.

But while fate can separate two people, it can also bring them back together again.

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So…up it goes on the list.  Let’s hope I find my bliss in these pages.  What unread book did you find this week?

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ANOTHER BOOK HIDING OUT ON MY SHELVES…

It is time for another search of our TBR shelves/piles for those sadly neglected books from the past.  Carole’s Random Life in Books is hosting this event.

Today’s book from the backlog hasn’t been hiding out that long:  this one was purchased in September 2019. I have been eager to read it, but kept setting it aside, waiting for the right time to dive into it.

Elevator Pitch, by Linwood Barclay

Description:It all begins on a Monday, when four people board an elevator in a Manhattan office tower. Each presses a button for their floor, but the elevator proceeds, non-stop, to the top. Once there, it stops for a few seconds, and then plummets.

Right to the bottom of the shaft.

It appears to be a horrific, random tragedy. But then, on Tuesday, it happens again, in a different Manhattan skyscraper. And when Wednesday brings yet another high-rise catastrophe, one of the most vertical cities in the world—and the nation’s capital of media, finance, and entertainment—is plunged into chaos.

Clearly, this is anything but random. This is a cold, calculated bid to terrorize the city. And it’s working. Fearing for their lives, thousands of men in women working in offices across the city refuse to leave their homes. Commerce has slowed to a trickle. Emergency calls to the top floors of apartment buildings go unanswered.

Who is behind this? Why are they doing it? What do these deadly acts of sabotage have to do with the fingerless body found on the High Line? Two seasoned New York detectives and a straight-shooting journalist must race against time to find the answers before the city’s newest, and tallest, residential tower has its ribbon-cutting on Thursday.

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What books have you set aside and/or neglected?  Enjoy!

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