Tuesday, December 08, 2009

a few new books

I'm a day late for Mailbox Monday, but I got some new books recently that I'd like to tell you about. A couple of weeks or so ago, H got a 10% coupon from The Book Depository, but I didn't. I probably order regularly enough that there was no need to entice me to shop. Luckily though H was willing to share, plus with the yen being strong he actually encouraged me to add a few books to his order. Of course I was only too happy to, and I seem to have been in an international mood. Here are the ones I got:

Metropole by Ferenc Karinthy
From the back cover: On his way to a linguists' conference in Helsinki, Budai finds himself in a strange city where he can't understand a word anyone says.
One claustrophobic day blurs into another as he desperately struggles to survive in this vastly overpopulated metropolis where there are as many languages as there are people. Fearing that his wife will have given him up for dead, he finds comfort in an unconventional relationship with the elevator-operator in the hotel.
A suspenseful and haunting Hungarian classic, and a vision of hell unlike any other imagined.
As someone who is fascinated by languages, I think this one sounds pretty interesting.

The Fox Woman by Kij Johnson
From the back cover: The Fox Woman in an achingly beautiful love story, a fable wrapped in smoke and magic set against the fabric of ancient Japan. A haunting novel of people who are trying to see through the illusions and confront the truth of who they are.
I've been wanting to get this one for a while. Just read Nymeth's glowing review to know why!

One World: A Global Anthology of Short Stories
From the back cover: A teenage Nigerian girl struggles to shed her cultural roots in the US...
An Inuit girl is rowed by her parents to the shore, unaware of the fate that awaits her...
A Filipina maid in Hong Kong gets entangled with her employer...
The lover of an African freedom fighter has to choose between fidelity and survival...
One World is a collection that speaks with the clarity and intensity of the human experience. The swift transition from story to story, from continent to contineent, from child's perspective to adult's: together, these evoke the complex but balanced texture of the world we live in. The diversity of subject, style and perspective results in vivid and poignant stories that will haunt the reader.
I stumbled upon this one while looking up another book (I don't remember for sure now but it might have been The Boat by Nam Le). I really should read more short stories and this collection, including stories by Jhumpa Lahiri (who I love), and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (who I still haven't read yet, the shame, but really want to), certainly added to the appeal.

The Unit by Ninni Holmqvist
From the inside flap: One day in early spring, Dorrit Weger is checked into the Second Reserve Bank Unit for biological material. She is promised a nicely furnished apartment inside the Unit, where she will make new friends, enjoy the state-of-the-art recreation facilities, and live the remaining days of her life in comfort with people who are just like her. [...] She is resigned to her fate and discovers her days there to be rather consoling and peaceful. But when she meets a man inside the Unit and falls in love, the extraordinary becomes a reality and life suddenly turns unbearable. Dorrit is faced with compliance or escape, and ... well, then what?
This one has been mentioned quite a bit in the book blogosphere and it sounds like a great dystopian story, and I do like a good dystopian novel. I'm glad to finally have a copy.

Comfort Living by Christine Eisner
From the inside flap: Learn how little it takes to introduce positive change into day-to-day living!
People talk about comfort foods - foods that not only satisfy an appetite, but also nourish the soul.  What about Comfort Homes and Comfort Lives?  Comfort Living: A Back-to-Basics Guide to a More Balanced Lifestyle introduces a new way for people to think about, create and live with their physical surroundings and daily routines.
Author Christine Eisner demonstrates that creating a balanced lifestyle doesn't have to be time-consuming, complicated or costly - and that living a good life is within easy reach.  In Comfort Living, there are no rules or mandates; just some very simple and practical tools, presented in a casual, contemporary and relevant way.
I received this one for review.  I don't usually read self-help or lifestyle books but I am interested in interior design, and since we moved this summer I wouldn't mind adding a few touches to our apartment to make it more comfortable.  And any hints on how to achieve a balanced lifestyle would be much appreciated.

I also received my very first Persephone book from my Persephone Secret Santa!  But I haven't opened it yet and I'll tell you about it next week. 

Have you got any new books recently?

Mailbox Monday is hosted by Marcia at The Printed Page.

The small print: Links in this post to Amazon (including book cover) or The Book Depository contain my Associates or Affiliates ID respectively.  Purchases made via these links earn me a small commission.  For more information visit my About Page.


  1. I am glad H was willing to share his coupon with you. :-)

    The books you've added to your TBR collection all sound so good. I've heard such great things about The Unit.

    I look forward to reading about what you got from you Persephone Secret Santa!

  2. Oh yay for your first Persephone!
    I was the lucky recipient of a copy of The Fox Woman from Nymeth and I can't wait to read it.

  3. Your books look great! The Unit is on my list because of so many bloggers along with Fox Woman because of Nymeth. Happy reading.

  4. One World looks like an interesting collection and I can't wait to hear what you think of The Fox Woman.

  5. Hi nat :D
    Enjoy "THE UNIT" as I mentioned earlier, I liked it a lot.

    P.S. I hope to participate more soon, have to take care of time consuming issues.

  6. Wendy - I know! I wish I could read all of them right now. And not that I really needed any more books but I'm glad he shared too. :)

    Claire - I'm really looking forward to reading The Fox Woman. I must fit it in sometime sooner rather than later. And now that I have my first Persephone, I'm already coveting practically the whole Persephone catalogue!

    Vasilly - Sounds like Nymeth has made a lot of us want to read The Fox Woman! :)

    Gavin - I'm looking forward to One World. I want to read more short stories next year plus I love reading internationally.

    Sylvie - So many people have loved The Unit. I can't wait to read it!
    I hope things are going well for you. I haven't been visiting other blogs lately either, no time, but hope to participate more soon myself.

  7. Can't wait to hear your thoughts on The Fox Woman. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did :)

  8. Nymeth - Well I think it sounds amazing. I'm really looking forward to it.


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