We have had snow (big fluffy flakes), rain, fog, clouds, and sunshine this week and I am in the process of getting wet leaves up for the leaf pick-up next week. Himself is busy working on a short course he is teaching next week and eldest is off doing some yardwork for a friend. The dog has been getting into mischief and chasing squirrels and the cat keeps trying to sit on a keyboard, any keyboard as long as there is a person connected to it. I made a killer baked potato soup this week and read Snow White Must Die by Nele Neuhaus in one sitting (it was that good). Now I have to replicate the soup (I combined recipes and only can hope I took good enough notes) and wait two months before the second Neuhaus book comes out (Bad Wolf is due to be published January 21, 2014). I am also deep into The Spinoza Problem by Irvin D. Yalom. I have never heard of this author or his work before but I like the combination of psychiatry and philosophy in a novel. As anyone else read anything by this author?
HeavenAli has reminded me that I need to read Elizabeth Speller’s second mystery featuring her detective Laurence Bartram – a veteran of WWI. I enjoyed The Return of Captain John Emmett and want to read The Strange Fate of Kitty Easton. Now I may have to also add her new stand-alone novel The First of July (published as At Break of Day in England). Newly published, the novel follows four men through the battlefields of Normandy. While that possibly sounds grim, from what I remember of Speller’s writing, I think she can handle it with grace and from Ali’s review this seems to be the case. I will be watching for this one.
For those of you who were fascinating with the discovery of King Richard the Third’s grave earlier this year Lyn of I Prefer Reading recommends The King’s Grave: The Discovery of King Richard the III’s Lost Burial Place and the Clues That it Holds. This newly published work is written by the leader of the archeology team and the historian who inspired her work, Philippa Langley and Michael Jones. The authors alternate chapters going from the life of Richard in the 15th century and the modern day search for his final remains.
A second non-fiction book that caught my eye is reviewed by Swapna Krishna at her blog – The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History by Robert Edsel. George Clooney is making a movie of the book and Edsel also has a sequel just published in May – Saving Italy: The Race to Rescue a Nation’s Treasures from the Nazis. The Monuments Men documents a squad of allied men tasked with saving the culture of Europe during the War. It all sounds so fascinating as does the author, a businessman who became interested in the fate of Europe’s treasures in WWII and eventually made his hobby his career.
Finally, Stuck in a Book has a link to Amazon’s 100 Best Books of 2013. I have read one of them The Woman Upstairs by Claire Messud. I have 14 of them on my to-be-read list and I have heard of 36 more. That leaves 49 books – almost half the list that didn’t ring any bells in my head. I wonder how they chose their list?
Danielle of a Work in Progress has a great post with lots of photos of a juried exhibit which highlights the connection between art and books – handmade books by students from Canada and the US. I would love to see this in person.