Saturday, June 9, 2007

So many books

Last weekend was Book Expo, which happens once a year and is typically dreaded by all involved, especially me and especially this year, because I was working for two companies all weekend. This meant a lot of running back and forth, plus a lot of smiling and pretending I'm nicer than I am. But I did get some good free books. Here's the list of what I picked up, along with a line--that I did not write--describing them and my comments--which I did write--in parentheses:

Chambermaid by Saira Rao: The devil holds a gavel...a wickedly entertaining debut novel about a young attorney's eventful year clerking for a federal judge. (That is so trying to play off The Devil Wears Prada. Lame.)

The Air We Breathe by Andrea Barrett: The exquisite, much-anticipated new novel by the author of Ship Fever, winner of the National Book Award. (This looks good. The back cover has words like "tragedy" "thwarted" "betrayal" and "cottages.")

Odd Mom Out
by Jane Porter: Can this ex-urbanite remain uniquely herself without alienating the inner circle of smug, cookie-cutter executive wives? (Oh my god, this sounds so bad. I must have been in a book collecting daze. This is screaming film adaptation, probably with Rachel McAdams or something.)

The What's Happening to My Body Book for Girls by Lynda Madaras: (This is the book my mom gave me when I was first learning about sex. She made me read it with her on vacation while everyone else got to go swimming. Still, I love this book. When I saw that they had a new edition, I had to get it.)

Beginners Greek
by James Collins: A delicious and irresistible romantic comedy in which true love begins on a New York to Los Angeles flight. (Well, suspend your disbelief, I guess, because who even talks to people on flights anymore? Doesn't everyone just put their headphones on and pretend to be really busy or unconscious? Plus, the people at this booth were basically shoving this book at anyone walking by. Not good.)

The Secret River
by Kate Grenville: "Magnificent...Grenville's psychological acuity, and the sheer gorgeousness of her descriptions of the territory being fought over, pulls us ever deeper into a time when one community's opportunity spelled another's doom." --The New Yorker (The only thing I want to say about this book is that the cover designer's name is Hoo Ha.)

The People's Act of Love by James Meek: "Doctor Zhivago...Anna Karenina...Lermontov's A Hero of Our Time...The People's Act of Love will remind you of all these books...Magnificent...heart-pounding." --Washington Post Book World (There's something I distrust about that many ellipses. Who knows what the Post really said? Maybe it was "Not magnificent...not heart-pounding." Hmmm?)

Halfway House
by Katharine Noel: With grace and precision, debut novelist Katharine Noel guides us through a world where love is imperfect, and where longing for an imagined ideal can both destroy one family's happiness and offer it redemption. (This looks good and it has a cool cover.)


Michele said...

Hey babe! So glad you are doing this!!!

Love you so much!


Amanda said...

I would just add that Elizabeth Gilbert said that The People's Act of Love is the book she would make her book club read if she had one, so might be worth checking out.

Go Sarah!!!

Krista said...

I really enjoyed reading about your reading of the book jackets collected at BEA. Your personal comments were amusing and mostly right. I'd like to bring to light that there are people who still enjoy meaningless conversations on airline flights. In fact, one could argue that many romances and interesting encounters can evolve from the airline conversation. That person, however, would not be me.

Jane Porter said...
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Book Cannibal said...

Really? The People's Act of Love? I picked up that galley two BEAs ago, read 50 pages or so, and gave up. Not that it wasn't good, it just wasn't as fantastic as I'd need it to be to read the whole thing. I'm surprised that they are giving it away again....