New Arrivals

New Arrivals

Hello, friends! I hope you’ve had a lovely week despite the scary and tough events we’ve faced in the world. These are the books that have come to me in the mail to cheer me up and I’m proud to say that every single purchase was inspired by reading a blog post or on a recommendation from a blogger. Here they are:

Gaudy Night by Dorothy Sayres & Miss Pym Disposes by Josephine Tey –  Inspired by Vicki.

Mariana by Monica Dickens – Inspired by Teresa.

Loving and Giving by Molly Keane – Inspired by Ali.

Black Narcissus by Rumer Godden – Inspired by Nicola.

High Rising by Angela Thirkell – Inspired by Katrina, and Lisa, who is a great Thirkell fan.

Thanks for leading me to some exciting books!


Here are a couple of interesting links that I came across this week:

Wondering what Mary Stewart book to read first or to read next? Here is a quiz that will help you decide!

Can you believe there is a Barbara Pym doll??

What are the characteristics of a good historical novel?

I should have a pretty hefty New Arrivals report for you next time because it was my birthday on Wednesday and oh did I treat myself! Books will be arriving by the armload!

Have a beautiful weekend.

**If you haven’t heard – Mary Stewart Reading Week will be September 15-22, 2013**

New Arrivals


I find new books making their way into my home despite my plans to stop spending so much money on them! Here’s what’s arrived lately:

The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher by Kate Summerscale – This is my book club’s April read. I’ve wanted to read it for a while as I’ve seen such positive reviews and I think it will make for a great discussion.

Frost in May by Antonia White – I recently came across this nice article about Virago books which includes a list of the author’s top 10 modern classics. Frost in May is on the list and sounds intriguing. I love to read anything set in a convent school. Kate O’Brien’s The Land of Spices is one of my favorites.

The Briefcase by Hiromi Kawakami – Stu at Winstonsdad’s Blog wrote a really lovely review of this back in January and it’s been on my mind ever since. I rarely read translated fiction and this seems like the kind of book that I will like no matter what language it was originally written in.

Death of a Hollow Man by Caroline Graham – I’ve read a few books in the Inspector Barnaby series and really enjoyed them. These books have been famously made into the Midsomer Murders TV show, but I find the books to be more subtle and intelligent than the adaptation and I’d like to read all seven in the series.

The Hare with Amber Eyes by Edmund De Waal – I tried to read this about a year ago and just couldn’t get into it, but I saw a copy in our library book sale for a $1 and couldn’t pass it up. The subject is fascinating so I think I will enjoy it at the right time.

The Echoing Grove by Rosamond Lehmann – I didn’t enjoy the last Lehmann book I read (A Note in Music), but I’m willing to give her another try because I loved Invitation to the Waltz. This is also on the list mentioned above of the top 10 Virago Modern Classics.

An Academic Question by Barbara Pym – Another addition to my Barbara Pym collection. I now own nearly all of her books. I’m reading along with the Librarything VMC group as they celebrate Barbara Pym’s centenary this year. An Academic Question is the book for November.

Thanks for all of your feedback on my last post! I really appreciate your insight, kind comments and suggestions. I am going to keep Gudrun’s Tights going and just do the best I can with posting and keeping up with comments. Thank you so much for the encouragement.

Would anyone be interested in participating in a Mary Stewart reading week in August or September? Her books are so fun and I would love to see them celebrated.

Have a great weekend!

Recent Arrivals

I’ve received a few treats in the mail lately, some really exciting books that I’m so happy to add to my library.

A Place of Greater Safety by Hilary Mantel – I’ve seen lots of positive posts on this in the blogosphere and since I love Wolf Hall, I thought I would give it a try. I didn’t realize it was so chunky (748 pp.!)

Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell – I’ve still never finished a book by Elizabeth Gaskell, but 2013 will be the year I do.

City of the Mind by Penelope Lively – I’m not really sure why I bought this. It popped up on my Amazon page and was on sale so I think I thought , ‘Why not?’ Has anyone read it?

Brightness by Elizabeth Jenkins – I loved The Tortoise and the Hare so much that I want to read another novel by Jenkins. They are surprisingly hard to find; this copy of Brightness is from 1964 and is slightly battered, but I was so happy to get it.

Crampton Hodnet & A Few Green Leaves by Barbara Pym – A couple of novels from one of my new favorite authors. I have a goal to read all of her books – I think I have 6 to go.

The Oaken Heart by Margery Allingham – Lisa wrote about this back in the spring and I really became enchanted with it. Copies are a bit more than I really like to pay for books, but it has stuck in my mind all this time so I finally decided to buy it. I’m really looking forward to this one!

The Ivy Tree by Mary Stewart – I want to read all of Stewart’s novels, too, and this is the latest addition to my growing collection.

What treats have you received lately?

Welcome, Beauties!

Hello, all! How has your week been? I felt more stressed than usual this week, but today I am off from work and looking forward to my four day weekend. I have lots of reading planned as I realized that I have to read 11 more books by January 1 if I want to reach my goal of reading 50 books in 2012. 11! I am not a very fast reader so I have concerns that I will not be able to read that many in such a short amount of time, but I will give it my all and have fun trying!

One of the best parts of my week was coming home to packages, lovely packages that held beautiful new books. I received 4 new titles from the Penguin English Library, a Muriel Spark, an Elizabeth Bowen (who I’m eager to try after reading this post), a Virago and a title I found on this list. I love welcoming fresh, gorgeous books into my library – a completely justifiable expense, in my opinion!

What do you have planned for the weekend? Have you received any exciting packages lately?

Have a splendid weekend!



After a couple of months of not buying or mooching very many books I suddenly have books in the mail. I think one of the small pleasures of life is to come home from work and find packages waiting in my mailbox. Divine! So here is what I’ve recently received:

The Dark Tide by Vera Brittain ~ I’ve never read anything by Brittain or know very much about her, but I found this Virago for a good price on Amazon and snatched it up. The plot appeals to me.

Gigi by Colette ~ This was on my Bookmooch wish list and I thought it might be a possibility for Paris in July so I hurriedly requested it.

The Professor’s House by Willa Cather ~ I am an ardent admirer of My Antonia and have always meant to read more Cather.  I’ll add this to my collection of her books to read “someday”.

Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys ~ Earlier this year I read two of Rhys’ novels and a biography of her and am really intrigued by her as a woman and as a writer. I want to read her masterpiece sometime later this year.

I’ve got a couple more books on their way and then I need to stop. I already cringe at the thought of packing up my library for my move later on this summer and shouldn’t keep adding to the stacks when I really should be purging!

Have you received anything in the mail lately? Have you read any of these titles?