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Latest Acquisitions

I checked in at the Musing Mondays blog, which is the host for a weekly book meme or blogging prompt. Here is this week’s prompt:

Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s). What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!

SFO 1176

I was randomly browsing without my written list and found some amazing titles over the weekend.

A Dangerous Fortune by Ken Follett is about a tragedy that hit an exclusive boarding school in 19th century. I have always savored thriller with an academic setting and the recent The Secret History has compounded that. Spiraling circle of treachery entwine many lives. This can be a Palm Springs pool read.

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton. By fluke I have bypassed her through high school AP English and college literature courses. Other than her random essays included in a reader I have not read any of her novels. I feel my inner voice egging me on to buy this one. It’s a nice copy of Barnes and Noble Classics for just $8.

The Uninvited Guests by Sadie Jones. I had mixed feelings about this because of the cover with a girl dressed in Victorian-style outfit with white gloves. But NPR, Washington Post, and New York Times all endorse it so it really can’t be that dismal. It’s set in a country manor that later has no choice but to accommodate surviving passengers from a rail accident. Sounds interesting. But there is something spooky about how docile the strangers are, and Jones builds momentum toward some (I am feeling) disturbing revelations. I’m reading it now and loving it!

The Velvet Rage by Alan Downs PH.D. This is a must read for gays because we all grew up in a straight world the result is the internalization of shame.

13 Responses

  1. I read Pillars of the Earth a couple of years back and really enjoyed it. I’ve been meaning to dip back into the ken Follett, but haven’t done so yet. I’ll look forward to seeing what you think of A Dangerous Fortune.

    • I thought Follet did a great job of creating characters I passionately cared about or hated in ‘Pillars of the Earth’. I have his ‘Jackdaws’ on my to-read shelf but that is an entirely different setting (WWII). ‘A Dangerous Fortune’ sounds quite intriguing!

      • I have the sequel of Pillars but have yet delved into it. It’s another daunting tome! Follett is a very adroit story-teller and I have found myself rapt at every turn of the page. A Dangerous Fortune has an academic setting and the story will span three generations, full of political intrigue and murder, I’m thrilled.

    • He’s the first author that comes in mind if I need a good story.

  2. I read The Uninvited Guests last year, and was not expecting what the book gave me. I went in thinking it was a mystery. If I had know what the book was really about before I read it, not sure I would have. Which is a shame because it was a really interesting book on so many levels.

    • I wasn’t expect the twist of the story, at least not that kind of story! Sadie Jones is a good writer but I wish she would have pursued the story of young Smudge and her Great Undertaking, and the clash between passengers and the household.

  3. Ken Follett is a wonderful storyteller…I loved Pillars of the Earth and World Without End. Historical and epic and emotional! I do remember the reviews of The Uninvited Guests and am interested, although I’m not totally sure what it is about. Something spooky? I need more info!

    • Ken Follett and Pat Conroy are in the same category to me–authors of great story-driven novels. I’ll take either one of them with me if I have to travel long-haul.

      The Uninvited Guests is not exactly what I expected it to be, although it’s a good read.

  4. Interesting list. Fascinated by your Follet selection. Read only one of his books (night over water? or so).

    • It was a random browse at the store. Sometimes I just leave the book list at home and see what grabs my attention at the bookstore. The result is always an interesting mix of books that are entirely different.

  5. All of your reads are appealing to me but I am most interested in the Follett book. This could be a good airplane book for my trip to Germany in early June.

  6. I read Pillars of the Earth last year and watched the TV series after that. I have 4 Ken Follets on my TBR shelf / Kindle waiting for me to get to them. Here’s my musing:http://daystarz.wordpress.com/2013/04/01/author-binge-ing/

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