Penny's Picks

Penny McConnel has worked in bookstores for over 30 years. She lives in Norwich with her husband, Jim, and Penny spends as much time as she can get away with reading, gardening, and learning Italian.
penny   

 

All Four Stars (Hardcover)

$16.99
ISBN-13: 9780399162527
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Putnam Juvenile, 7/2014
What can an eleven-year-old girl -- who loves nothing more than cooking up great dishes and plans to be a great restaurant critic someday -- do when her parents say "no more cooking"? They also want her to make friends and spend more time playing on the computer. Gladys discovers that she can do what her parents ask and also be a restaurant critic while still in 6th grade. This is a wonderful book about listening to your parents, but also following your heart. In the end everyone wins.

$23.95
ISBN-13: 9781565129924
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 6/2014
This is a delightful memoir about a man and his cello. Goldman is Jewish and has an on and off again relationship with the cello and his religion. His growing interest in both of these subjects combine for a glimpse into the life of a very interesting man .This would be especially interesting to a musician who begins to play an instrument in earnest in later life.

Small Blessings (Hardcover)

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9781250040527
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: St. Martin's Press, 7/2014
Tom Putnam an English Professor who has a neurotic wife and a quirky and wonderful resident mother-in-law has just received a letter telling him he has a young son who is on his way for a visit. When his wife dies suddenly, his son arrives and Tom meets Rose, the lovely new bookseller at the campus bookstore; his life changes forever .A heartwarming story that reminds us that life can be wonderful and that there might be surprises down the road that we cannot imagine.

Florence Gordon (Hardcover)

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780544309869
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Houghton Mifflin, 9/2014
At last: a grown-up novel written with thoughts and ideas that understand there are intelligent people still reading novels today. Florence Gordon is a feisty writer of 75 years who does not suffer fools gladly. She is working on writing her memoir, but finds it difficult when her son and his family return to New York City bringing all kinds of problems with them. Florence would be happy to not have to become embroiled, but life will have it's own way. I found this to be a richly satisfying read.

$23.95
ISBN-13: 9781565129924
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 6/2014
This is a delightful memoir about a man and his cello. Goldman is Jewish and has an on and off again relationship with the cello and his religion. His growing interest in both of these subjects combine for a glimpse into the life of a very interesting man. This would be especially interesting to a musician who begins to play an instrument in earnest in later life.

Life Drawing (Hardcover)

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9781400068562
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House, 3/2014
This is an interesting novel with thoughtful characters. Agusta is an artist and Owen a writer. The couple has been living in the country for a few years, have no neighbors and enjoy their privacy. They count on each other to bounce their creative ideas around and when a new neighbor moves in next door their lives are upended with interesting complications. When boundaries are over stepped the novel moves in a direction that I did not see coming. Well written and provocative. I enjoyed this novel very much.

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780307594792
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf, 6/2014
This is one of those books that kept me thinking about the characters long after I finished the book. Frankie has returned to her family's summer place after many years working as an aid worker in Africa. Bud is the owner of the local newspaper. The two are drawn together when the community becomes unsettled after a rash of house fires and arson is suspected. Added to this is the recent Alzheimer’s diagnosis of Frankie's father. Not only is Miller an excellent storyteller, but she also knows people and writes very convincingly about family issues. This is a fine summer read.

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780802122643
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atlantic Monthly Press, 4/2014
If you are a Donna Leon fan, just buy the book. You cannot go wrong. If you are not yet a fan, buy the book, you cannot go wrong. Venice, Commissario Guido Brunetti. contemporary Italian culture and a mystery that revolves around books. Pure delicious reading indulgence!

Foreign Affairs (Paperback)

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9780812976311
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks, 11/2006
This wonderful novel is as timely today as when it was first released and won The Pulitzer Prize 30 years ago. In alternating chapters we meet Fred, a 29 year old English professor at a prestigious New England college, and Vinnie, a 54 year old professor also at the same college. They are not friends nor do they become friends, but they are both in London for the summer and each of them has a summer of discovery; about themselves, their relationships and their professions. This is a deliciously rich and satisfying novel.

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780984913664
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Spring Street Publishing, 8/2013
Consider me pleasantly surprised! "A Fine Romance" takes the reader on a delightful two month escape via The Queen Mary to the English countryside. Branch who is known for her hand lettered cookbooks complete with watercolor paintings has done one better with this memoir of the trip she took with her husband in 2012. Both gardeners and Anglophiles will enjoy this personal and colorful memoir. What better in this snowy Vermont weather than to curl up by the fire with a book about England in the springtime. A perfect companion to "Beatrix Potter's Gardening Life".

The Orchardist (Paperback)

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9780062188519
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper Perennial, 4/2013
This haunting and lyrical novel about a man heading toward old age and the young girl who comes into his life will stay with you for a long time. Living on an orchard in Washington state toward the end of the 20th century, Talmadge has been alone for most of his life, growing his apples and taking them to town to sell from the back of his wagon. One day two young and pregnant girls stumble into the orchard and everything changes. Coplin writes of the landscape of frontier Washington as if she had been born there. She is a young writer to watch for.

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780307377937
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Pantheon, 4/2014
Julia Glass’ newest offering is a delicious delight. For me, it was akin to spending a week with a group of people I had just met and wanted to learn more about. Kit Noonan is in his 40's. A father and husband, he is finally ready to search out the identity of the man who fathered him. What he discovers brings him not only a new family in all aspects of that word, but also a way to re-direct his professional life. With wonderfully interesting characters this is a rich and rewarding read. I crept through the past 100 pages not wanting it to end.

$23.00
ISBN-13: 9781400069545
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Random House, 4/2014
Several years ago Gail Caldwell gave us the lovely and intimate memoir, "Let's Take The Long Way Home" about her deep friendship with Carolyn Knapp. This insightful new memoir is another deeply engrossing read. When Caldwell was an infant she had polio. 50 years later a limp and increasing pain in her leg forced her to make a decision about the years ahead and possible surgery. This is not a woman to be slowed down. Her remarkably honest tale of how she copes amid her day to day life is like sitting down with an old friend and asking how her life is. Five stars again for Gail Caldwell.

$17.00
ISBN-13: 9781609450786
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Europa Editions, 9/2012
The first of a series by the amazing Italian writer Elena Ferrante, this story follows the deep and abiding friendship of two girls growing up on the edge of Naples in the 1950's. I was deeply drawn into the lives of both of the girls, as well as those of their families and neighbors. Naples was, and to a certain extent still is, a rough scrabble place and is very much another character in this beautifully evocative story of the lives of two friends.

Fin & Lady (Hardcover)

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780374154905
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Sarah Crichton Books, 7/2013
I love just about any book this woman writes. They are always smart, fun and deeply affecting. This is no different. Fin is an 11 year old boy who after the death of his mother goes to NYC to live with Lady, his glamorous half sister. At times it is difficult to know who is the adult. It is the 60's and much is going on in their lives including three suitors vying for the hand of Lady. If you want a book that does not force drama on you yet gives you total pleasure as well as something to think about, this is it!

$27.00
ISBN-13: 9781400069293
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Random House, 7/2013
Historical fiction at its best, written by a woman with extensive knowledge about Italy’s past and present. Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia has just been declared Pope Alexander at the end of the 15th century and has a voracious appetite to acquire power for himself and his four children. At the heart of the book is Lucrezia, who we meet at 12 years of age about to be married to the first of her three husbands. This novel reads like a contemporary story, but with the passion and history of well researched fact. I loved it!

$28.95
ISBN-13: 9781594631764
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Riverhead Hardcover, 5/2013
This is a better book than The Kite Runner and that is saying something. It is concerned not so much with the wars and troubles of the people of Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Taliban, but with the people of those areas. A multi-generational story that spans from Kabul to Paris, San Francisco and a small island in Greece. The plot follow a family watching their lives unfold and then in some cases fold back again. The characters are richly created and their stories both complex and heart-warming. This is a good book to sink into for summertime reading.

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780374278328
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 6/2013
Eck and Winterrowd began sharing their lives with each other over 40 years ago. Early on they created North Hill, a garden of exceptional beauty on their farm in Southern Vermont, which they have written about in previous books. The two of them traveled extensively, bringing back to their home in Vermont things of beauty for the kitchen and home as well as collecting seeds and finding types of cattle and poultry that appealed to them to raise at North Hill. But above all they ate and they ate well; primarily from the very extensive vegetable garden that they had been cultivating at North Hill. This delightful book addresses not only how to grow a variety of beans or raise a Scottish Highland calf by bottle, but how to cook said beans or just about any other fruit or vegetable that could be grown at North Hill. Sadly Winterrowd died in 2010, and Eck was left to carry on alone on the property that they most lovingly had created over the years. To Eat is a beautifully written testimony to two lives well lived and loved. This is a special book and I loved it!

All That Is (Hardcover)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9781400043132
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Knopf, 10/2012
I believe James Salter to be one of the finer writers around and am sad that he, along with Ward Just, has never become as famous as I think they both deserve. Philip Bowman is just starting out in his career after WW2 and finds a job as a book editor in NYC. He stays in the world of publishing throughout his career and in so doing becomes a fixture in that world of privilege, book deals, and conversations about the finer things of life. There is often a woman (and is there is always sex), but love eludes him until..... This is a fine, thoughtful and beautifully written novel.

A Map of Tulsa (Paperback)

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9780142422595
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Penguin Books, 3/2013
Jim Praley is back in Tulsa for his summer break after his freshman year in college. He meets a somewhat mysterious young woman and the summer is off at a fast pace. This is a thoughtful novel that asks the questions that a young man in love for the first time would be thinking about. As a woman past middle age, I found the novel to be provocative as well as entertaining. Perhaps our worries and concerns do not change as we age, but that we see them with different eyes.

See Now Then (Hardcover)

$24.00
ISBN-13: 9780374180560
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 9/2012
Is this the book I hate to love, or the book I love to hate? Find out for yourself. I think that you will be struck by the anger and the audacity of Kincaid and yet, I believe you will be astonished by the writing and her insights into not only a marriage but perhaps what it is to live a life.

$24.95
ISBN-13: 9781400042715
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Knopf, 2/2013
Wow Wow Wow!  I finished this book and wanted to start it all over again.  It is that good.  Ms. Zarin is a poet who lives in NYC.  Her writing draws you in with interesting structure as well as a poetical rhythm.  Her insightful perspectives on her life and surroundings landed on the page and had me saying, "Well, now that makes sense.”  The book has a way of introducing a thought or an idea and giving the reader the opportunity to go further with it on their own.  New York City and the people and businesses therein feature largely in this very fine memoir.  Highly recommended.

$13.95
ISBN-13: 9781616201708
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2/2013
This is a sweet novel, perfect for a winter's reading. An Italian American family confronts its past, present and maybe the future in the present day suburbs of  Wilmington, Delaware. A potential trip to their ancestral village in Italy brings up the past and allows the entire family to look at their lives. Family trumps all in this beautifully told novel.

$24.95
ISBN-13: 9781611457445
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Arcade Publishing, 9/2012
I read this in one sitting and it is the best book that I have read all summer!! Vera who is trying to come to terms with something that has happened to her daughter is stripping the wallpaper off the walls of the old New England farmhouse that her sister has just bought. As she gets to the last layers she discovers handwriting and ultimately reads the story of a young woman who lived in the house in 1919. Another room yields different writing from a woman in the 60's. Ultimately the stories of all three connect and give Vera insights into her own life. Walter Wetherell who will be reading at The Norwich Bookstore on November 14, is truly one of our finest writers!

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9781742374079
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Allen & Unwin Academic, 9/2012
First off, I have to admit that I love almost anything Italian and I have long enjoyed De Blasi's books. This memoir about the friendship between De Blasi and Antonia,i whom she met when Antonia was in her early 80's in the wilds of Tuscany. Although they spar at first meeting, it is apparent to both that they are kindred spirits and after many long walks through the countryside scavenging for herbs and wild edibles, Antonia begins to recount her history to De Blasi with particular attention to the war years. Both are fascinating women, each with secrets as well as passions. Their stories will stay with you, as will the recipes at the end of the book.

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9780312655464
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Minotaur Books, 8/2012
What can I say? Another wonderful mystery in the Armand Gamache series.. This one taking place in a fictional monastery in Quebec. Two dozen brothers live there in peace and silence, spending much of their time chanting Gregorian Chants. No one is admitted to the monastery to hear the music in person, yet their music is known throughout the world through the recordings of their CD's. Amidst the quiet, a murder occurs, and Gamache and Jean-Guy Beauvoir must be allowed into the building and grounds to find out who the murderer is. A truly great read!

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780399157752
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Putnam Adult, 8/2012
Thirty-six year old Gal Garner is a California high school biology teacher who has had kidney disease for most of her life and is on the waiting list for yet another kidney. Gal's passion is her roses. In her greenhouse she is cross-pollinating various specimens with the hope of creating a brand new variety of rose. A loner, Gal has earned the reputation of being like her roses, a somewhat prickly individual. Her students do well, but Gal expects much of them and of others. One day, Riley, her teenaged niece, arrives unexpectedly on her doorstep and Gal's life is forever changed as both Gal and Riley have things to learn from each other. The telling of how this happens is wonderfully revealed with warmth, compassion and understanding of the quirks of both main characters.

Cascade (Hardcover)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780670026029
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Viking Adult, 8/2012
Desdemona Hart Spaulding, a promising young artist, is newly married in the town of Cascade, Massachusetts when she meets a fellow artist who stirs within her thoughts and feelings that she does not feel for her husband. It is 1935 and the residents of Cascade are waiting to hear if their town will be chosen to be flooded to create a reservoir. O'Hara writes convincingly about both art and the temperament of an artist as well as with an accepting understanding of human frailties. In short she has beautifully and successfully created a world that I now miss. Look for an event with this author on September 26th, 2012.

Elza's Kitchen (Paperback)

$14.00
ISBN-13: 9781608197699
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Bloomsbury USA, 6/2012
This lovely novel is even better than Fitten's first, Valeria's Last Stand. Elza is a 45-year-old Hungarian woman living in a sizeable city and running her own successful restaurant. As the novel begins Elza is dissatisfied with her life but unsure of what to do. What she does and how she does it surprises even herself and provides a delightful story for the reader.

Rules of Civility (Paperback)

$16.00
ISBN-13: 9780143121169
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books, 7/2012
A delicious novel about a group of young people in Manhattan whose stories tell about a time gone by and the amazing lives lived in the city circa 1938. Katey, a 25-year-old secretary from Brooklyn, finds herself involved in the upper echelons of New York society. She likes it and at the same time remains true to her values as she moves through a fast paced period both in her work and in her personal life. This is a story about a time gone past. Towles writes eloquently about the paths we take while looking back at the paths not taken. I loved it!

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780670023400
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Viking Adult, 1/2012
In 1963, the summer of her 13th year, Florine's mother disappears from the small coastal town in Maine where they live. Over the next few years Florine discovers what family and home mean to her in this wonderful coming of age story that is appropriate for not only adults but also teens over 15. The well written and sensitive story made me nostalgic for not only my naive youth but also for a place in which I never lived.

$23.00
ISBN-13: 9780374288976
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Sarah Crichton Books, 4/2012
This is Terry Tempest Williams at her best. When Women Were Birds is a very personal memoir about Terry's mother and the journals that she left to Terry when she died. When Terry opened them, she discovered that all of the journals were empty. Not a word on a page. It took many years before Terry was able to try to understand what this meant. The result is this wonderfully lyrical, meditative and always thought provoking book. Five Stars!! (Also available in Audio book.)

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780307592736
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Knopf, 3/2012
This is a wonderful memoir of a young woman who decides at the age of 26 ,when her life seems to have hit a dead end, to hike by herself on the Pacific Crest Trail from Southern California to the Washington/Oregon border. She has never done anything remotely like this and makes several mistakes along the way, but she ultimately makes it! Her story is told with care, candor and delight. I loved it!

Waiting for Sunrise (Hardcover)

$25.99
ISBN-13: 9780061876769
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Harper, 4/2012
Vienna, 1913. A young British stage actor travels to Vienna in cure of psychotherapy for a sexual problem. He falls in love with a questionable woman setting off a series of events including espionage for the British government during WWI. Boyd, the author of many wonderful novels including, A Good Man in Africa and Any Human Heart always writes a though provoking book. Waiting For Sunrise addresses the powers of deception and asks how far we will go to protect our secrets.

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780802120236
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Atlantic Monthly Press, 4/2012
Okay, I am an unabashed fan!! Leon can almost do no wrong in my eyes, but truthfully her books just get better and better. It almost does not matter what the plot is, as what her fans want to read about is Venice, Inspector Guido Brunetti's family, food & wine, and the wonderful observations and ideas that the author conveys through the telling of her story. This is Leon's 21st book in the series and if you have not read her, start now with one of her earlier ones. You will not be disappointed.

Restoration (Paperback)

$14.99
ISBN-13: 9780062065650
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Ecco, 2/2012
This is a fun take off of the wonderful memoir written by Iris Origo about the Val D'Ocia during WW 2. A large Italian villa sheltering children and partisans, the lovely English owner whose husband is missing, a mystery surrounding a work of art that is hidden on the property and the war is getting closer and closer. All the necessary ingredients for a cold night's read.

$26.99
ISBN-13: 9780062064226
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Harper, 1/2012
I truly loved this book. It is set in Scotland in the early 1960's and tells the tale of an orphan girl who is taken to Scotland to live with relatives. Circumstances send her to a boarding school where although a student she is also a servant. Gemma learns her strengths which come to serve her when she takes a job as an Au Pair in the Orkney Islands and falls in love with her boss. Shades of Jane Eyre yes, but a modern tale, well written, and delightful.

The Marriage Plot (Hardcover)

$28.00
ISBN-13: 9780374203054
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 10/2011
Three recent graduates of Brown spend their first year out of college thinking about what to do next. Two of the men are in love with the same woman and she is confused about her own feelings about life in general. Eugenides never writes the same book twice and as we have long waited for this one, I am pleased to say he does not disappoint. He is so talented at communicating his ideas and thoughts into fiction. He is probably one of the finest novelists writing today.

Stoner (Paperback)

$14.95
ISBN-13: 9781590171998
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: NYRB Classics, 6/2006
Published in 1965 and reissued in 2003, this is a brilliant story of the life of William Stoner who was born in 1891 to a farming family in Missouri. Stoner became a college professor and his life held many disappointments for him ending with his quiet death from cancer. It sounds so depressing and although it is on one level, more importantly it is a soulful account of a life. The writing is seamless and I came away feeling as if I had intimately known and cared for this man.

By Nightfall (Paperback)

$15.00
ISBN-13: 9780312610432
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Picador, 8/2011
I found this to be a deeply insightful, provocative novel. Peter, a 44 year old art dealer in confronted by his sudden love (or is it lust) for his 23 year old brother in law who is a charming druggie. Soho, the art world, relationships, parenting and a look at what life brings after the first decades of adulthood. A fine read by the author of The Hours.

$24.00
ISBN-13: 9780802119919
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Atlantic Monthly Press, 9/2011
Lily Tuck's new novel is a gem. Sitting beside the body of her husband who has died unexpectedly while she was making dinner. Nina spends the whole night sitting on their bed with his body remembering their marriage of 43 years; the early years as well as the highlights; the good and the difficult. Written with understanding and honesty by a woman who clearly understands relationships and all of the intimacies and secrets that go along with marriage, this is a novel to be savored.

$25.00
ISBN-13: 9780345525543
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Ballantine Books, 8/2011
I could not put this book down! 18 year old Victoria Jones has been a ward of the state of California for her entire life and has just gone out into the world on her own. For a brief period when she was ten, Victoria lived with Elizabeth who grew grapes and flowers. She learned from Elizabeth the Victorian language of flowers; anger for Peony, levity for Delphinium, frugality for Chicory and hundreds of others. It is this knowledge that leads Victoria to the recognition that she can help people with the flowers she chooses for them and she soon has a busy business as a florist. But before she can truly become whole she has to confront her past and reconcile it with her present. This is a great read.

$15.99
ISBN-13: 9780385739542
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Wendy Lamb Books, 7/2011
How To Build A House by Reinhardt is one of my favorite novels for Young Adults and this is even better. Drew is a loner with no friends her own age until she meets a boy named Emmett in the alley behind her mothers cheese store. Against all odds they become friends and both learn what being a true friend really means.

The Astral (Hardcover)

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780385530910
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Doubleday, 6/2011
The author of "The Great Man," one of my all time favorite novels, has returned two books later with a story about Harry Quirk, a 58-year-old floundering poet whose marriage has ended. Does he fight for it, does he accept the inevitable, or does he flounder for awhile? As Harry rides his bike through Brooklyn, wondering what he really wants and needs both for himself and in a partner, we come to value and admire what has driven him in the past and what he is learning about how to move into the future. It is, for me, a rare thing to discover a writer who can write about the opposite sex with such clarity and truth. Kate Christensen succeeds.

$26.00
ISBN-13: 9780374256326
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2/2011
Dickey, the author of several books about gardening, has once again given us a delightful account of her house, her plants and how she created her garden of 30 years. She does not shy away from mistakes, but tells about them so the reader can possibly avoid making the same ones. The book is written for anyone who loves gardens and the deliciously crazy act of creating a garden. At the end, she offers some tips to others like her who are aging and want to continue gardening right up to the end. Dickey has a wonderful ability to laugh at herself and go right ahead with what is important; be it tearing out that red rose or putting in a new border.

Rules of Civility (Hardcover)

$26.95
ISBN-13: 9780670022694
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Viking Adult, 7/2011
A delicious novel about a group of young people in Manhattan whose stories tell about a time gone by and the amazing lives lived in the city circa 1938. Katey, a 25-year-old secretary from Brooklyn, finds herself involved in the upper echelons of New York society. She likes it and at the same time remains true to her values as she moves through a fast paced period both in her work and in her personal life. This is a story about a time gone past and Towles writes elegantly about the paths we take and looks back at the paths not taken. I loved it!

$14.95
ISBN-13: 9780547370545
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Mariner Books, 3/2011
A marriage is coming to the end in Edinburgh after the wife has an affair. A mother and a professor she is trying to come to terms with her situation as she writes a biography of the French writer George Sand whose life seems to parallel her own. Good writing and an intriguing plot make this paperback original a fine read.

$14.00
ISBN-13: 9780312570606
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 days
Published: Picador, 4/2011
This is a very witty, smart, insightful short novel by a writer whose work I have long admired. The protagonist, a poet is spending the summer in a small town in the Midwest after her husband of over 30 years decides to take a "pause" from their marriage. Times with her mother, the young woman next door and phone calls with her daughter offer the poet the chance to decide what her future holds. This was a delicious read from start to finish.

$25.95
ISBN-13: 9780307377425
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Pantheon, 4/2011
This is a strong novel about two people who were a couple from the ages of 15 to 22 who have not seen each other since until they encounter each other in Rome 36 years later. He suggests that they take daily walks in the city. As they talk on their walks and through flashbacks we learn not only who they were when young, but who they have become. This is a well written and thoughtful novel.