Sunday, November 15, 2020

Bookshelf Traveling: New Books

I am participating in the Bookshelf Traveling meme. It was originated by Judith at Reader in the Wilderness, and is now hosted by Katrina at Pining for the West.

This time I am looking at newly purchased books. Saturday morning we had a fun trip to Chaucer's Books, a local bookseller. Before that we had been ordering and picking up using curbside pickup occasionally. The bookstore has been open for a few weeks, but this is the first visit we have made. The usual precautions are taken: masks required and social distancing, a limited number of people in the store at one time, and use of hand sanitizer on entering the store.

I had a list of books to look for and I already knew that they should have the books on their shelves (based on their website). 

Here are the books I bought:


Fortune Favors the Dead by Stephen Spotswood. This debut novel just came out in October 2020. I rarely purchase a book in the same year it is published, except in some cases when it is an author I already read and try to keep up with. But I read this article at Shotsmag: "Stephen Spotswood - Fortune Favours the Dead - The Inspiration." It inspired me to go out and buy the book as soon as possible. Why? Because the author expressed a fondness for Rex Stout's Nero Wolfe series and because the series is described at Kirkus Reviews as a "provocative gender-flipping of Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin." And I like the cover too.


Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier and Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

These are two classics on my list for the Classics Club. I wanted to have a copy on hand for when the mood hits and I wanted to be assured that the print size was adequate. So many classics have tiny print. So I needed to see them in person.

The edition of Little Women that I picked is a Penguin Classics Deluxe edition with an introduction, a glossary, some brief contextual essays, and some letters and illustrations.



Around the World in 80 Trees by Jonathan Drori with illustrations by Lucille Clerc 

I first read about this book at Still Life, With Cracker Crumbs.

Though more than 60,000 species of trees exist, the 80 selected by Drori were selected to illuminate the diversity of trees across continents. As such, the reader gets a snapshot look at would otherwise be too much information for anyone but an expert to contend with. The species are organized by location, making the book feel like a trip around the world in more ways than one as the reader hops from country to country. Occasional footnotes connect certain species with similar properties so the reader has the option to explore the species through what they have in common rather than geographic location.

Though not a book that most would sit down and read cover-to-cover (unless you really, really love trees!), the short vignettes that make up the book create a visually pleasing and easy to read volume full of botanical and cultural information.

This description from a book review at American Forests.

The illustrations are gorgeous. My father loved trees (and birds) and he would have loved to sit and savor this book.


16 comments:

Clothes in Books said...

Fortune Favors the Dead was sure to attract your attention with that description! I hadn't heard of it so just looked it up and it sounds really promising, I am tempted.
Rebecca and Little Women are two wonderful books. I feel as you do: these days print size is of increasing importance. I don't think you are a Kindle fan, but it does have the huge advantage that you can have the print any size you want.

TracyK said...

I hope that Fortune Favors the Dead lives up to my expectations, Moira.

Both Rebecca and Little Women are a bit longer than I like to read on the Kindle, although I had considered that as a fallback. My biggest problem with the Kindle now is that I cannot read later in the evening, and that is my usual reading time.

pattinase (abbott) said...

MY book group read Rebecca this month. I am anxious to see how they liked it. Read it for the third time and liked it more than ever.

TracyK said...

That is encouraging, Patti, that you liked it more than ever. I cannot remember for sure if I ever read it, but I know the story (at least from the 1940 movie).

Cath said...

I too think that cover of Fortune Favors the Dead is stunning! And perhaps next year I might reread Rebecca... it must be all of 50 years since I read it. Love getting new books, I had one delivered today, The Count of Monte Cristo. That will be my long classic read for next year probably.

Rick Robinson said...

I try to avoid “gender flipping”. What’s the point? That last one sounds interesting.

TracyK said...

Cath, I love getting new books too, but I have done entirely too much of that lately. Of course we did skip the book sale this year so I still probably have less books coming in than in previous years.

Oh my goodness, The Count of Monte Cristo is very long. That is about the same length as Les Miserables. I will wait and see what you think of it.

TracyK said...

Rick, Around the World in 80 Trees should be a very good read, and I love illustrated books so that is a bonus.

Cath said...

Tracy, I was thinking The Count of Monte Christo was about seven or eight hundred pages. Nooooo.... it's about twelve hundred. You could use it as a murder weapon. I think I must be insane....

TracyK said...

Your comment cheered me up this morning, Cath. Twelve hundred pages is a challenge, but doable if you are enjoying the story. It gets a lot of five star reviews.

Margot Kinberg said...

I like it that you include classics with the other books you've chosen, Tracy. Just because a book is considered 'classic' doesn't mean it's an excellent book, but I think you've chosen some good 'uns.

TracyK said...

Margot, Rebecca and Little Women are two very different books set in very different times and places, and I am looking forward to both. I wish Little Women wasn't quite so long (about 450 pages in my edition).

Katrina said...

I love Rebecca, Little Women, Nero Wolfe and trees, so this seems like a great selection to me. I'll be very interested to read what you think of Rebecca as I've seen some comments from younger women who didn't like it, it might be a generational thing or maybe an anti male thing.

TracyK said...

Katrina, I am glad you liked Little Women, that one I am less certain of but I have had so many recommendations that it is very good. I probably read Rebecca when I was young but if so, my reactions could be entirely different now.

Susan said...

I adore LITTLE WOMEN! I read REBECCA for the first time this year and I just didn't love it. I found it long and boring and filled with unlikable characters. I know lots of people love it, but I'm not one of them, LOL.

TracyK said...

I will be reading LITTLE WOMEN soon, Susan. I hope I like Rebecca better than you did.