Literary Junkies

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1. What are you reading right now? Tell us about it!
I just started On the Island by Tracey Garvis Graves. Someone at work recommended it and it has excellent reviews on Goodreads. Here’s their summary: When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family’s summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day. T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He’s almost seventeen and if having cancer wasn’t bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family – and a stack of overdue assignments – instead of his friends. Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.’s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island. Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter. Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.’s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.

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2. What books are on your bedside table at the moment?
I returned a bunch of books to the library today that I had read a chapter or two of and lost interest… So now, just On the Island and Lonely Planet’s New Orleans (for my upcoming Mardi Gras trip!!).

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3. Amazon recently released the 100 books to read in a lifetime. What did they miss that you would add?
They got a few right… A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah is my favorite on their list. I would add The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, and Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer.

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4. Are there any books being published in 2014 that you are anxiously awaiting? If so, what are they?
The Good Luck of Right Now by Matthew Quick, Uganda Be Kidding Me by Chelsea Handler, and Radiance of Tomorrow by Ishmael Beah.

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5. Name the next three books on your To Be Read list.
I have no idea! Usually I have a few lined up but not at the moment. The TBR list is long though!

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Top Ten Tuesday

toptentuesdayTop 10 Books That Will Make You Swoon

I don’t really “swoon” but these are ten books with great romances. 🙂

1. Tris and Four in the Divergent trilogy

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2. Melanie and Jared in The Host

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3. Edward and Bella in the Twilight series (don’t hate)

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4. The title characters in Eleanor & Park

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5. Pat and Tiffany in The Silver Linings Playbook

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6. R and Julie in Warm Bodies

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7. Daniel and Sophia in My Name Is Memory

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8. Anna and Etienne in Anna and the French Kiss

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9. Hazel and Gus in The Fault in Our Stars

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10. Charlie and Sam in The Perks of Being a Wallflower

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Book Review: The Lowland by Jhumpa Lahiri

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Summary from Goodreads: Growing up in Calcutta, born just fifteen months apart, Subhash and Udayan Mitra are inseparable brothers, one often mistaken for the other. But they are also opposites, with gravely different futures ahead of them. It is the 1960s, and Udayan–charismatic and impulsive–finds himself drawn to the Naxalite movement, a rebellion waged to eradicate inequity and poverty: he will give everything, risk all, for what he believes. Subhash, the dutiful son, does not share his brother’s political passion; he leaves home to pursue a life of scientific research in a quiet, coastal corner of America. But when Subhash learns what happened to his brother in the lowland outside their family’s home, he comes back to India, hoping to pick up the pieces of a shattered family, and to heal the wounds Udayan left behind–including those seared in the heart of his brother’s wife.

Verdict: 4 out of 5 stars. A good read that spanned at least 60 years! Beautiful writing but it took me a week or two to finish. The ending was perfect.

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Wiley Cash Book Signing

On Friday I went to Wiley Cash’s book reading and signing for This Dark Road To Mercy at Malaprop’s. Malaprop’s is an awesome independent bookstore in Asheville, NC that features great authors quite often! Wiley is a North Carolina native and graduated from UNCA (me too!). His first book was set in Madison County and his second in Gastonia. Apparently Malaprop’s has sold more of his books than any other bookstore!

I just read A Land More Kind Than Home last month and loved it so I was excited about this event. I got two of my coworkers to join me and we had a blast. Wiley was a great speaker, friendly, and hilarious. Not to mention great looking! We had a blast.

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I added This Dark Road To Mercy to my collection of signed books. Most I’ve had signed in front of me and met the authors (Khaled Hosseini at Malaprop’s and Veronica Roth, Ally Condie, Rae Carson, Carrie Ryan, Stephanie Perkins, Rachel Cohn, and David Levithan at YALLFest) but a few I’ve won in contests/promotions (Silver Linings Playbook, Gorgeous, and Timepiece). This is a recent obsession and I can’t wait to add more!

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