Archive for February 2007

Don’t Forget: Northfield Reads! on Sunday

February 16, 2007

torch-display.JPGNow, I know you wouldn’t forget. But maybe someone out there might not be thinking as clearly as he or she otherwise might given that lately the weather has been cold enough to freeze the mind. So just in case, here’s a reminder that Cheryl Strayed, author of the critically acclaimed novel Torch, will appear at 7 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 18, at the Northfield Arts Guild as part of the Northfield Reads! communitywide book club.

Click here for more information about the book or to order a signed copy.

Hope to see you at the NAG!


A Garden of Great Deals

February 15, 2007

remainder2.JPGI mentioned the other day that I read one of my favorite authors, thanks to the bargain tables at River City Books. They ordered such a great batch of remainders recently that I have to go back to that well.

John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, ten years later followed that national bestseller with City of Fallen Angels, an intimate look at the “magic, mystery, and decadence” of the city of Venice and its inhabitants. Says the Wall Street Journal of “Fallen Angels”: “Berendt has given us something uniquely different … Thanks to [his] splendid cityportrait, even those of us far from Venice can marvel.”

I have also been marveling at the price: Just $7.98 in hardcover.

Picking Out a Lovely Book

February 14, 2007

Have you met a more lovey-dovey bird than this one? I think not. On a day like today I like to pull out a book, maybe some poetry, and read to Mrs. Raven. One can pick up any number of titles about love, romantic and otherwise, to get into the spirit of the day. One recommendation, new in paperback, is Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman’s Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia by Elizabeth Gilbert.

From the publisher’s description:

love.JPGThis beautifully written, heartfelt memoir touched a nerve among both readers and reviewers. Gilbert tells how she made the difficult choice to leave behind all the trappings of modern American success (marriage, house in the country, career) and find, instead, what she truly wanted from life. Setting out for a year to study three different aspects of her nature amid three different cultures, Gilbert explored the art of pleasure in Italy and the art of devotion in India, and then a balance between the two on the Indonesian island of Bali. By turns rapturous and rueful, this is a wise and funny author whom Booklist calls Anne Lamott’s hip, yoga- practicing, footloose younger sister.

Something’s Always on Sale

February 13, 2007

staff-pix-feb.JPGJohn Steinbeck for 25 percent off? This new novel looks intriguing, especially at this price. Hey, is that a great CD on sale? And a DVD, too? That’s right, customers at River City Books are aghast at the latest installment of the monthly staff picks, which I recently took a snapshot of (click on the pic for a larger view) and which readers are gobbling up 25 percent off retail. Classics. New reads. Music. Movies. You never know what you’re going to find in the staff picks section (located near history and poli sci in case you haven’t been). You just know you’re going to get a great deal.

This Book Sense Pick is ‘Deep’

February 12, 2007

storm.jpgI was just catching up with a copy of the latest installment of the Book Sense picks and it reminded me that Lincoln Child has a new book out. Child, of course, appeared at River City Books in 2006 and treated a crowd to a terrific event. Often he writes his thrilling tales with a writing partner. But, as he told those of us lucky enough to attend that night, he was in the process of completing a solo novel. He even read a few pages from that book, Deep Storm, which just made a Book Sense pick for February:

“Peter Crane, an ex-Navy doctor, is urgently summoned to a remote oil platform in the North Atlantic, where he is faced with unexplained sicknesses in an archaeological project called Deep Storm, located far underneath the ocean. While Crane is told that the lost continent of Atlantis has been discovered, he also realizes that the true scope of the project includes much more. Throw in saboteurs, military zealots, and heart-pounding action and you have a great read.” -Linda Rae Erickson, Mysterious Galaxy Books, San Diego, Calif.

For a gratis copy of all Book Sense picks, stop by River City Books.

New Bargains in the House

February 9, 2007

remainder1.JPGOne good thing about being knocked off your feet is the fact that there’s time for reading. Luckily for me, I had browsed River City Books’ remainder tables prior to shutdown. Recently, they got fresh batches of bargain books and I was especially excited to see a collection of short stories from one of my very favorite writers — Women With Men by Richard Ford — that was on sale for the miniscule price of $3.98. Here’s a guy with a Pulitzer and Pen Faulkner award on his mantel. I didn’t find this collection as engrossing, say, as Independence Day or The Lay of the Land, but to me Ford is like pizza — some batches are better than others, but it’s never bad. And, hey, that’s just one of many new titles worth checking out.

Digging Out From Under

February 8, 2007

young.jpgMy sincerest apologies. I have been under the weather and, to be frank, I am still climbing back to as close to normal as I get. So the updates have been slow. I have gotten behind. This has caused you anxiety. I am sorry. So sorry.

In my absence the River City Books fiction book club met and discussed Housekeeping by Marilyn Robinson, a book I read thinking I might be able to make the meeting. But alas. If you haven’t checked out this early work by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Gilead, I highly recommend it.

The club also made its March selection — When All the World was Young, a memoir by Barbara Holland. A publisher-produced blurb about this book: “Mixing tales of an autocratic stepfather, a brilliant, reclusive mother, and a houseful of siblings with jump-rope rhymes and dangerous sled runs, teachers both wise and weird, and a child’s-eye view of war, Holland gives readers a unique and sharp-eyed look at history and the world of childhood as it used to be.”

I’ll keep trying to play catch up. You keep throwing an extra log on the fire.