Mailbox Monday – February 7, 2011

Welcome to this week’s edition of Mailbox Monday hosted this month by Sandra and Laura at Library of Clean Reads. Be sure to visit their blog today to get links to participants’ mailboxes and to leave your own link.

This week I found some wonderful books in my mailbox:

Meredith at Penguin/Viking sent me a finished copy of Separate Beds by Elizabeth Buchan (released in January). I don’t remember exactly when, but some time ago I read Buchan’s Revenge of the Middle Aged Woman and loved it. Buchan has a talent for creating believable (and funny) contemporary female characters…so when I was given the opportunity to get a copy of her latest work, I just could not say no. Separate Beds centers around Tom and Annie Nicholson – a couple who have finally seen their kids ousted from the family nest and are ready to enjoy their professional success and domestic security while finding their own separate space away from each other. But suddenly, Tom loses his “secure” job, their son Jake arrives on their doorstep with his infant daughter, and Annie’s mother-in-law needs a place to stay (with a stray dog in tow) when she can no longer afford her nursing home. No longer are separate beds viable in this now full to the bursting home – and Tom and Annie must either admit their marriage is over, or give their hearts another chance. Called “well-written, humorous, and poignant” by Library Journal, Separate Beds follow the joys and trials of a modern family.

Elizabeth Buchan is the author of several bestselling novels. Her short stories are broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and published in magazines. She reviews for the Sunday Times (UK) and has chaired the Betty Trask and Desmond Elliot literary prizes, and also been a judge for the Whitbread (now Costa) awards. Buchan lives in London with her family. Learn more about her and her work by visiting the author’s website.

Also from Penguin, an Advance Readers Edition of The Violets of March by Sarah Jio showed up in my mailbox. Due for release through Plume in May 2011, this debut novel centers around a woman named Emily who flees from New York City to Bainbridge Island in Washington State when her happy marriage disintegrates. At her Great Aunt Bee’s home she discovers a treasure – a red diary dated 1943 which has the power to heal the wounds of Emily’s heart. Sarah Pekkanen (The Opposite of Me) calls The Violets of Marcha gem of a book, perfect for reading on the beach or under a cozy quilt.” And Beth Hoffman (Saving CeeCee Honeycut) said it was “an enchanting story of love and betrayal.

Check out the Book Trailer:

Sarah Jio is a magazine writer in Seattle and has written hundreds of articles for national magazines and top newspapers such as Real Simple, Glamour, SELF, Redbook and others. She is also the health and fitness blogger for Glamour magazine. Jio has also appeared as a commentator on NPR’s Morning Edition. Learn more about Jio and her work by visiting the author’s website.

Sarah at St. Martin’s Press sent me a trade paperback edition of The Murderer’s Daughters by Randy Susan Meyers (paperback released February 1st). I’ve been wanting to read this book for some time, so I was happy to get a copy! This debut novel follows the lives of two sisters and “their journey to overcome the collateral damage of family violence.” Lulu and Merry Zachariah have been raised in the shadow of their mother’s murder and the imprisonment of their father for committing the crime. From the press release: “As one sister spends her life pretending her father is dead, the other feels compelled to help him, but both dread the day their father wins parole, and his freedom.” The novel explores the impact of domestic violence on children, sibling loyalty, redemption, and forgiveness.

Randy Susan Meyers was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. She currently resides in Boston with her husband and teaches writing seminars at the Grub Street Writers’ Center. Her short work has been published in literary magazines such as Fog City Review, Perigee: Publication for the Arts and the Grub Street Free Press. The Murderer’s Daughters is her first novel which is informed by her years of work with batterers, domestic violence victims, and at-risk youth impacted by family violence. Read more about Meyers and her work by visiting the author’s website.

Diane Saarinen from the Book Blog Tour Guide arranged to have Being With Animals: Why We Are Obsessed with the Furry, Scaly, Feathered Creatures Who Populate Our World by Barbara J. King sent to me from Doubleday (released in January). I couldn’t resist this book which is a fresh look at the human-animal relationship. King answers questions like Why are we compelled to share our lives with cats, dogs, fish, snakes, turtles and other domesticated creatures? Why, even in the most difficult of economic times, does the pet industry continue to thrive? Author Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson (When Elephants Weep) calls King’s book “remarkable” and “fascinating.”

Barbara J. King is a biological anthropologist and Chancellor Professor of Anthropology at the College of William and Mary. She has been to Kenya to study monkeys and has studied the great apes in captivity. She and her husband are involved in an effort to spay and neuter homeless cats in Virginia. She has published previous books: Evolving God and The Dynamic Dance. Learn more about King and her work by visiting the author’s website.

Did any great books arrive at YOUR house last week?

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  1. The Murderer’s Daughters seems to be a good one; I’ve read a lot of fantastic reviews on this one thus far. I’m looking forward to reading it. Enjoy your reading week! Here’s my Mailbox: Coffee and a Book Chick — Mailbox Monday…

    • RAnn on February 7, 2011 at 11:07

    Its nice to see romances written about middle-aged folks, not just the young. I’ll have to find Separate Beds

    • L Clare on February 7, 2011 at 11:09

    Lots of good books for you to enjoy 🙂

    • Pam on February 7, 2011 at 12:03

    I adore the cover of Violets. It looks like a good read, too, based on the trailer. Pretty stuff!

    • Mary on February 7, 2011 at 12:21

    Fantastic mailbox! I want to read “Violets”.

    • kaye on February 7, 2011 at 12:30

    Wow, Violets of March sounds wonderful! It’s going on my list. Have a great week and happy reading.

  2. Both Separate Beds and Violets look great to me. I’ll look forward to your reviews!

  3. They all look good, especially The Violets of March!

    • Wallace on February 7, 2011 at 16:22

    Separate Beds looks good to me! I’ll be looking forward to your review.

    • Staci on February 7, 2011 at 16:34

    Great mailbox…Murderer’s Daughters is amazing!

    • Elisabeth on February 7, 2011 at 17:26

    The quilt is gorgeous!

  4. All of these sound good to me — hope you enjoy them all!

    • zibilee on February 8, 2011 at 06:05

    I think I am getting The Murders Daughters from Library Thing this month, and I am rather happy that that was the one that was chosen for me. It sounds like you got a really good mix of things this week, and I look forward to hearing what you think of them all. Enjoy your reading!

    • Wendy on February 9, 2011 at 10:01

    Thank you to all who stopped by and commented on my mailbox!

    • Mystica on February 10, 2011 at 18:59

    Sorry the commenting got late. My week has been rather rushed. I like your mix of books so much. Enjoy the reading.

  5. Separate Beds and The Violets of March look like excellent books. I wish I had the time to review Violets of March.

    • Wendy on February 14, 2011 at 10:52

    Mystica: No need to apologize! Thanks for stopping by!

    Kate: I agree – they both look fun, don’t they?

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