New on the Shelves…

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By Lisa | Filed in New Books | No comments yet.

This came in while I was out of town and I can’t wait to start on this one: All by Adriana Trigiani

starsAdriana Trigiani, the New York Times bestselling author of the blockbuster epic The Shoemaker’s Wife, returns with her biggest and boldest novel yet, a hypnotic tale based on a true story and filled with her signature elements: family ties, artistry, romance, and adventure. Born in the golden age of Hollywood, All the Stars in the Heavens captures the luster, drama, power, and secrets that could only thrive in the studio system—viewed through the lives of an unforgettable cast of players creating magic on the screen and behind the scenes.

In this spectacular saga as radiant, thrilling, and beguiling as Hollywood itself, Adriana Trigiani takes us back to Tinsel Town’s golden age—an era as brutal as it was resplendent—and into the complex and glamorous world of a young actress hungry for fame and success. With meticulous, beautiful detail, Trigiani paints a rich, historical landscape of 1930s Los Angeles, where European and American artisans flocked to pursue the ultimate dream: to tell stories on the silver screen.

The movie business is booming in 1935 when twenty-one-year-old Loretta Young meets thirty-four-year-old Clark Gable on the set of The Call of the Wild. Though he’s already married, Gable falls for the stunning and vivacious young actress instantly.

Far from the glittering lights of Hollywood, Sister Alda Ducci has been forced to leave her convent and begin a new journey that leads her to Loretta. Becoming Miss Young’s secretary, the innocent and pious young Alda must navigate the wild terrain of Hollywood with fierce determination and a moral code that derives from her Italian roots. Over the course of decades, she and Loretta encounter scandal and adventure, choose love and passion, and forge an enduring bond of love and loyalty that will be put to the test when they eventually face the greatest obstacle of their lives.

Anchored by Trigiani’s masterful storytelling that takes you on a worldwide ride of adventure from Hollywood to the shores of southern Italy, this mesmerizing epic is, at its heart, a luminous tale of the most cherished ties that bind. Brimming with larger-than-life characters both real and fictional—including stars Spencer Tracy, Myrna Loy, David Niven, Hattie McDaniel and more—it is it is the unforgettable story of one of cinema’s greatest love affairs during the golden age of American movie making.

 

A Book Lover’s Holiday

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By Lisa | Filed in Commentary | No comments yet.

 

open book

Ever dream of retiring and running a bookstore? Apparently, a lot of people do and there’s a bookshop in Scotland that will let you try the dream on for size. There’s a great article in The Independent.

The Open Book shop in  Scotland’s “national book town” of Wigtown has been listed on room-letting website AirBnB offering wordy holidaymakers the chance to work a 40-hour week selling books and customising the store with their “own stamp”.

Now, I don’t know that I would want to spend my vacation working, but it’s a charming idea.

 

Quotables

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By Lisa | Filed in Quotables | No comments yet.

“At one magical instant in your early childhood, the page of a book—that string of confused, alien ciphers—shivered into meaning. Words spoke to you, gave up their secrets; at that moment, whole universes opened. You became, irrevocably, a reader.”

Alberto Manguel, Argentine-born writer and essayist

Hot Guys with Books

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By Lisa | Filed in Hot Guys with Books | No comments yet.

yum

New on the Shelves…

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By Lisa | Filed in New Books | No comments yet.

More new books – this time, a legal thriller. (Love those!) From Kevin Egan, The Missing Piece:

missingThe Salvus Treasure is a fabulous hoard of ancient Roman silver, worth a total of seventy million dollars. Uncovered decades ago under disputed circumstances, the treasure has been claimed by various parties, some of whom will stop at nothing to secure full ownership of its riches. People have died–and killed–to possess all fourteen pieces of silver.

The legal battle over who truly owns the treasure finally leads to the New York County Courthouse in Lower Manhattan. But as teams of high-priced lawyers wrangle over provenance and witnesses, a shocking act disrupts the trial…and a crucial piece of evidence goes missing.

The missing piece is a silver urn worth at least five million dollars. Now the race is on to discover what became of the urn…before the Salvus Treasure claims more lives.

 

The Hugo Awards and their aftermath

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By Lisa | Filed in Commentary | No comments yet.

If you haven’t been following the controversy swirling around this year’s Hugo Awards, there’s a great article over at Wired that explains it all. Definitely recommended reading. I don’t read as much science fiction as I used to, sadly, but I still use the Hugo Awards to guide some of my choices. I don’t want to see them hijacked for someone’s political agenda.

And big kudos to George R. R. Martin for stepping up and handing out some heartfelt awards to the authors who withdrew their names.

Quotables

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By Lisa | Filed in Quotables | No comments yet.

Now, here’s the mark of a very limited mind:

I don’t read books by people who have betrayed the Motherland.

Vladimir Putin, president of Russia

Hot Guys with Books

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By Lisa | Filed in Hot Guys with Books | No comments yet.

un hombre

New on the Shelves…

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By Lisa | Filed in New Books | One comment

This one comes from my local library. I heard a bit about it on the radio and was so intrigued I ran right to my computer and requested it: My Grandfather Would Have Shot Me: A Black Woman Discovers Her Family’s Nazi Past by Jennifer Teege:

grandfatherWhen Jennifer Teege, a German-Nigerian woman, happened to pluck a library book from the shelf, she had no idea that her life would be irrevocably altered. Recognizing photos of her mother and grandmother in the book, she discovers a horrifying fact: Her grandfather was Amon Goeth, the vicious Nazi commandant chillingly depicted by Ralph Fiennes in Schindler’s List—a man known and reviled the world over.

Although raised in an orphanage and eventually adopted, Teege had some contact with her biological mother and grandmother as a child. Yet neither revealed that Teege’s grandfather was the Nazi “butcher of Plaszów,” executed for crimes against humanity in 1946. The more Teege reads about Amon Goeth, the more certain she becomes: If her grandfather had met her—a black woman—he would have killed her.

Teege’s discovery sends her, at age 38, into a severe depression—and on a quest to unearth and fully comprehend her family’s haunted history. Her research takes her to Krakow—to the sites of the Jewish ghetto her grandfather “cleared” in 1943 and the Plaszów concentration camp he then commanded—and back to Israel, where she herself once attended college, learned fluent Hebrew, and formed lasting friendships. Teege struggles to reconnect with her estranged mother Monika, and to accept that her beloved grandmother once lived in luxury as Amon Goeth’s mistress at Plaszów.

Teege’s story is cowritten by award-winning journalist Nikola Sellmair, who also contributes a second, interwoven narrative that draws on original interviews with Teege’s family and friends and adds historical context. Ultimately, Teege’s resolute search for the truth leads her, step by step, to the possibility of her own liberation.

New on the Shelves…

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By Lisa | Filed in New Books | No comments yet.

This week in New on the Shelves, I’ve got the final installment in Gillian Philip’s Rebel Angel series, Icefall:

icefallDeath stalks Seth MacGregor’s clan in their otherworld exile. Kate NicNiven is close to ultimate victory, and she is determined that nothing will keep her from it. Not even the thing that took her soul: the horror that lurks in the sea caves. But Kate still needs Seth’s son Rory, and his power over the Veil. And she’ll go to any lengths to get him. Seth’s own soul is rotting from the wound inflicted by Kate, and survival for his loved ones seems all he can hope for. But might a mortal threat to his brother’s daughter force him to return to his own world to challenge Kate? And will Rory go with him? Because Rory suspects there’s a darkness trapped in the Veil, a darkness that wants to get out. But only one Sithe knows how near it is to getting its way: Seth’s bound lover, the witch Finn. Nobody gets forever. But some are willing to try…
From critically acclaimed author Gillian Philip, Icefall is the final installment in the Rebel Angels series.