Friday, February 5, 2021

New Books on the Horizon

An update: I have a number of books in transit to my wilderness abode. And I have some at home I'm still reading. I'm nearing the end of Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati (1998), a great saga of the early U.S. republic, set in northern New York State. Still enjoying it immensely. But I have 250 pages left to go.  I would have been well finished by this time (10 days), but I'm waist-deep in a number of writing projects, most relating at this time to family history research.



New Books in the House and Books in Transit:  I have purchased Land by Simon Winchester, and it's due to arrive on Monday at the post office. (Books take over 10 days to arrive these days, not as in days of yore, when books would arrive inside of three days. I miss that nearly instant gratification. Alas!) Amazon used to deliver to the house, but no longer, or not at present. We have Prime, we're paying for home delivery, but for what it's worth, it's evidently no longer worth home delivery. Have you had this experience since Christmas? (And what's the matter with me? Don't I know there's a war on?)

In January I received a shipment of two hardcover books that sound like they might hit the spot. The first is The House on Vesper Sands by Paraic O'Donnell, which I was stunned to learn was first published in the UK in October 2018. That's a huge publication gap! It's set in Victorian London and looks as though it will have plenty of mystery and atmosphere.  The second is a (new one-volume biography of Graham Greene, The Unquiet Englishman: A Life of Graham Greene by Richard Greene. I'm fascinated by GG's life, but found the older, standard three-volume biography a bit too much to manage. I hope to read more of Greene's novels and stories this year as well. 


 

Then I made an impulse purchase of a something new that's very gothicky. Couldn't help myself, and I had a credit waiting to be used, so I bought Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse, which has just been published.


 



 




 

11 comments:

  1. All of those books sound interesting, and I will be waiting to hear what you think of them. I am interested in reading something by Simon Winchester, having read how well Cath likes his books. But haven't decided what and when, since I already have so many books lined up. The biography of Graham Greene sounds good, but I need to read more books by him before I read about him.

    Most of the books I have ordered since 2021 began have been used books via ABEbooks so they take a good bit of time to arrive anyway. One of the books I ordered in December was very delayed and I worried it was lost, but it finally came.

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    1. Hi Tracy,
      I'm so glad your ABE books arrived safely. I've had so much trouble in the past year with sellers on Abebooks. I purchase a copy that's Very Good or better and end up with a disastrously poor copy of a book that arrives from a seller who lives thousands of miles away from the seller I bought the book from. I have gone so far as to exchange email with the so-called seller, but even then, when I am assured of a fine book, I receive a miserably tattered book for which I was assured would be "Very Good." I have given up with Abe for the time being.
      How has your experience been within the past year? (Prior to last year, my experiences were very good.)

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  2. Judith, I bet "Land" is awesome. I have the audio of the Sanatorium, it sounds deliciously creepy.

    BTW, My son lives out in the woods and although they still get Amazon deliveries with Prime - it takes at least a week or more for them. We are still lucky, suburbs but still next day delivery (except books) on most everything as we have an Amz warehouse about 10 miles away. Enjoy all you new reads.

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    1. Hi Diane,
      I'm looking forward to The Sanatorium. I do hope it will be dripping with Gothic creepiness. I'm in the mood!
      Thanks so much for your input about Amazon Prime. I think I need to call them, because post office delivery is Not what we're paying for.
      And thanks, yes, I will enjoy! And the same to you!

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  3. I hope you enjoy 'Land' Judith, funnily enough a long-term internet friend (24 years but a FB friend these days) who's a science professor at a uni in NJ pounced on that one too. Myself I ordered The Map that Changed the World as my next SW read. But for my Kindle, which I didn't really want to do but the hardbacks were a bit pricey. I shall keep an eye out in charity shops once we have been 'released'.

    Hmmm, I 'think' I brought The House on Vesper Sands back from the library a year or two ago and took it back unread. I do remember it was one of those books that a lot of people on Goodreads and blogs were reading.

    And I really must address my almost complete lack of reading of Grahame Green. I've only read Travels with my Aunt which is not typical of his writing I suspect. I bet that biography will be excellent. What did I read recently where someone was on a plane to Russia back in the 1950s and Grahame Greene was on the plane? I can't remember. Whoever it was thought it confirmed the fact that he was a spy.

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    1. I think I'll enjoy Land, because since owning 27 acres here and caring about it so, I've become what I consider to be "very territorial." We have a very wealthy neighbor who thinks nothing of encroaching on his neighbors' property--cutting down trees, making trails with landscaping equipment. He knows me well enough now not to try any of that B.S. with me, but it makes me realize how I, back in the day, would have thought nothing about pulling out a rifle and shooting at anyone who encroached or poached on my land. So I'm very interested in this book! I welcome foot travelers on our land--but it's the evil-doers who I loathe.
      I believe that Graham Greene was "an informant," in the areas where he travelled--in southeast Asia in particular, as I recall. He had a very interesting life, I think.

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  4. My brother (and grandmother before him) loves Graham Greene. Although he just had a birthday, I think I need to purchase that bio for him. He really doesn't like fiction any more. I find this odd. Do you know anyone who suddenly decided only nonfiction is worth reading? Of course, I don't mind what people read so long as they read but it amuses me he wants me to encourage his boys to read history and they prefer Rick Riordan.

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    1. Actually, I have encountered this puzzling phenomenon among a number of people over the years, who deliberately decide to no longer read fiction and read only nonfiction. I love both, so this stance has always puzzled me. Still I don't think it's a great idea to try to impose this on other people. For one thing, it won't work because thank goodness, people will read what they like, and that's that!

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  5. I really need to read Into the Wilderness--I got a copy after reading so many rave reviews, and there it sits, on my shelf, year after year. Maybe this year...in the mood for a long, compelling historical fiction.

    I enjoy Simon Winchester's books, and Land looks really good. It's going on the wish list.

    Happy reading!

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  6. I put the Sanatorium on reserve at the library. It looks like it will take months to reach me so plenty of time for you to read it and tell me if I will enjoy.

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  7. I am now reading Phyllis Whitney! Funny coincidence but mine is one of her juvenile mysteries that I suddenly had a yen for.

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