This month, I have a new batch of books to read -- all relatively new both to publication and to my collection:
→ HOUSE OF DOORS by Chaz Brenchley - Last year at FOGcon I met Chaz, learned that he was a delightful person with many books to his name (and other names -- he publishes under several), and was afraid to buy any in case I didn't like them. This year at the convention while hanging out with him again, I was encouraged by his friends to give his writing a try, and this book was recommended as a good starting place for me. I bought it, but was still nervous until I heard Chaz give a reading from ROTTEN ROW and was relieved at its excellence. I don't know anything about HOUSE OF DOORS, other than that it's scary, and since I rarely get to start a novel with no foreknowledge of the plot, I'm going to maintain that experience.
→ THE GILLY SALT SISTERS by Tiffany Baker - I enjoyed Baker's first novel, THE LITTLE GIANT OF ABERDEEN COUNTY, so I was excited to learn that she had a new release. I was even more excited to learn that it's about family secrets, a particular thematic interest of mine, and that it's set in Massachusetts, where I grew up.
→ GATHERING OF WATERS by Bernice L. McFadden - As I mentioned when I purchased the book, I read about it on the blog White Readers Meet Black Authors. The story revolves around a real historical event, the murder of Emmett Till, which I'm interested to learn more about through the story.
→ THE BUDDHA IN THE ATTIC by Julie Otsuka - This was a gift from a relative, and I hadn't heard of it previously, but it was a National Book Award finalist. The story follows a group of Japanese "picture brides" brought to San Francisco in the early 1900s. This is another piece of history that I'm curious about.
Good Stuff Out There:
→ At Beyond the Margins, Julie Wu explains How to Fix a Flat (Novel Scene) in Three Easy Steps: "You have a vague sense that your scene is still pointless.... But you can’t cut the whole scene because it has such important backstory, such beautiful writing, and incredible insight into war, womanhood, and the human condition."