Sunday, August 01, 2010

August 2010 Highlights

1. Started Early, Took My Dog (Doubleday, 2010) / Kate Atkinson
2. Three Sisters (trans. from the Chinese by Howard Goldblatt and Sylvia Li-chun Lin) (Telegram Books, 2010) / Bi Feiyu
3. The Water Theatre (Alma Books, 2010) / Lindsay Clarke
4. The Old Romantic (Fig Tree/Penguin, 2010) / Louise Dean
5. Room (Picador, 2010) / Emma Donoghue
6. Homesick (Impress Press, 2010) / Roshi Fernando
7. City of Veils (Little, Brown, 2010) / Zoë Ferraris
8. Freedom (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2010) / Jonathan Franzen
9. The Jewel of St. Petersburg (Penguin Group USA, 2010) / Kate Furnivall
10. The Beauty of Humanity Movement (Knopf Canada, 2010) / Camilla Gibb

11. The Red Queen (Simon & Schuster, 2010) / Philippa Gregory
12. Oil On Water (Hamish Hamilton, 2010) / Helon Habila
13. Of Beasts and Beings (Simon & Schuster, 2010) / Ian Holding
14. The Finkler Question (Bloomsbury, 2010) / Howard Jacobson
15. Stella (trans. from the German by Anthea Bell) (Other Press, 2010) / Siegfried Lenz
16. I’d Know You Anywhere (William Morrow/HarperCollins Publisher, 2010) / Laura Lippman
17. The Golden Mean (first published by Random House of Canada in 2009) (Atlantic Books, 2010) / Annabel Lyon
18. All Men Are Liars (trans. from the Spanish by Miranda Frances) (Alma Books, 2010) / Alberto Manguel
19. The Good Daughters (Morrow/HarperCollins Publishers, 2010) / Joyce Maynard
20. A Cautious Approach (Hutchinson, 2010) / Stanley Middleton

21. Collusion (Harvill Secker, 2010) / Stuart Neville
22. Blind Man’s Alley (Doubleday, 2010) / Justin Peacock
23. The Summer of the Bear (Mantle, 2010) / Bella Pollen
24. Tigerlily’s Orchids (Hutchinson, 2010) / Ruth Rendell
25. And the Land Lay Still (Hamish Hamilton, 2010) / James Robertson
26. The Elephant’s Journey (trans. from the Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa) (Harvill Secker, 2010) / José Saramago
27. My Hollywood (Knopf Doubleday, 2010) / Mona Simpson
28. A Man in Uniform (Doubleday Canada, 2010) / Kate Taylor
29. Bitter in the Mouth (Random House, 2010) / Monique Truong
30. Sanctuary Line (McClelland & Stewart, 2010) / Jane Urquhart

31. Strangers at the Feast (Simon & Schuster, 2010) / Jennifer Vanderbes
32. Kehua! (Corvus, 2010) / Fay Weldon
33. The Sonderberg Case (trans. from the French by Catherine Temerson) (Knopf Doubleday, 2010) / Elie Wiesel
34. The Death of Donna Whalen (Hamish Hamilton Canada/Penguin Canada, 2010) / Michael Winter
35. Pictures of Lily (Corsair, 2010) / Matthew Yorke

First Novels
1. You Lost Me There (Riverhead, 2010) / Rosecrans Baldwin
2. Rocks in the Belly (Scribe Publications, 2010) / Jon Bauer
3. The Vintage and the Gleaning (Text Publishing, 2010) / Jeremy Chambers
4. Your Presence Is Requested at Suvanto (Jonathan Cape, 2010) / Maile Chapman
5. Stiltsville (HarperCollins Publishers, 2010) / Susanna Daniel
6. The Stuff That Never Happened (Crown Publishing, 2010) / Maddie Dawson
7. The Pleasure Seekers (Bloomsbury USA, 2010) / Tishani Doshi
8. My Last Duchess (Headline Review, 2010) / Daisy Goodwin
9. The Eden Hunter (Counterpoint, 2010) / Skip Horack
10. Serious Men (W.W. Norton, 2010) / Manu Joseph

11. Matterhorn (Corvus, 2010) / Karl Marlantes
12. The Butterfly Cabinet (Headline Review, 2010) / Bernie McGill
13. The Last Kestrel (Blue Door/HarperCollins, 2010) / Jill McGivering
14. Rich Boy (Twelve, 2010) / Sharon Pomerantz
15. Quilt (Myriad Editions, 2010) / Nicholas Royle
16. The Legacy (Atria, 2010) / Kirsten Tranter

1. Prose (trans. from the German by Martin Chalmers) (Seagull Books, 2010) / Thomas Bernhard
2. The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis (Hamish Hamilton, 2011) / Lydia Davis
3. Echoes (HarperCollins, 2010) / Laura Dockrill
4. New Stories from the South 2010: The Year’s Best (Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, 2010) / Amy Hempel (ed.)

1. Skin, Inc.: Identity Repair Poems (Graywolf Press, 2010) / Thomas Sayers Ellis
2. Maggot (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2010) / Paul Muldoon
3. Waterloo Teeth (Carcanet Books, 2010) / John Whale

1. The Cross of Redemption: Uncollected Writings (ed. Randall Kenan) (Pantheon/Knopf Doubleday, 2010) / James Baldwin
2. Let’s Take the Long Way Home: A Memoir of Friendship (Random House, 2010) / Gail Caldwell
3. The Glamour of Grammar: A Guide to the Magic and Mystery of Practical English (Little, Brown, 2010) / Roy Peter Clark
4. Handing One Another Along: Literature and Social Reflection (eds. Trevor Hall and Vicki Kennedy) (Random House, 2010) / Robert Coles
5. The Voice That Thunders (The Harvill Press, 2010) / Alan Garner
6. A Mountain of Crumbs: A Memoir: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain (Windmill Books, 2010) / Elena Gorokhova
7. Mentor: A Memoir (Tin House Books, 2010) / Tom Grimes
8. The Heart of William James (ed. Robert Richardson) (Harvard University Press, 2010) / William James
9. Encounter: Essays (Faber & Faber, 2010) / Milan Kundera
10. Landfalls: On the Edge of Islam with Ibn Battutah (John Murray, 2010) / Tim Mackintosh-Smith

11. Hollywood: A Third Memoir (Simon & Schuster, 2010) / Larry McMurtry
12. What To Look for in Winter: A Memoir in Blindness (Jonathan Cape, 2010) / Candia McWilliam
13. Berlin at War: Life and Death in Hitler’s Capital, 1939-45 (Bodley Head, 2010) / Roger Moorhouse
14. The Black Nile: One Man’s Amazing Journey Through Peace and War on the World’s Longest River (Viking, 2010) / Dan Morrison
15. The Quest for Meaning: Developing a Philosophy of Pluralism (Allen Lane, 2010) / Tariq Ramadan
16. A Rift in Time: Travels with my Ottoman Uncle (Profile Books, 2010) / Raja Shehadeh
17. Bomber County (Hamish Hamilton/Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2010) / Daniel Swift
18. The Hare with Amber Eyes: A Family’s Century of Art and Loss (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2010) / Edmund De Waal


Anonymous Ju-Lian said...

Kate Atkinson is a lovely writer. I've been finding her books for RM17 in BookXcess, Amcorp Mall. Thanks for the highlights!

Monday, September 06, 2010 10:23:00 PM  
Blogger Eric Forbes said...

I must agree with you that Kate Atkinson is a lovely writer.

Of course, Atkinson did not start out writing crime fiction. She has come a long way since achieving literary success with her first novel, Behind the Scenes at the Museum, in 1995, a comic, poignant story of a dysfunctional middle-class English family and the dark secrets that punctuate the mundanity of their lives in grim, gritty Yorkshire. Ruby Lennox is one heck of a memorable character: perky, quirky, intelligent and pessimistic, a child struggling to make sense of the world around her and, in the process, exposing skeletons in the family closet.

Conversational and humorous in tone and light in touch, this novel gripped me from the moment I read the first sentence (“I exist! I am conceived to the chimes of midnight on the clock on the mantelpiece in the room across the hall.”) till the end. Atkinson is a very funny writer and she has succeeded in creating an eccentric cast of compelling characters coming to grips with the sheer bloody awfulness of life. There is no denying that much of her forte as a writer lies in her observational humour and narrative exuberance, also demonstrated in her next two novels: Human Croquet in 1997 and Emotionally Weird in 2000, as well as a collection of stories in 2002, Not the End of the World.

Atkinson’s recent novels, Case Histories in 2004), One Good Turn in 2006, and When Will There Be Good News in 2008, are quite a departure from her three novels, though equally good. Private investigator Jackson Brodie, a former police officer, is cast adrift in Cambridgeshire amidst death, intrigue and other misfortunes, bringing restorative truth to those wounded. Brodie is as nice as they come, though a tad bitter and cynical. A comic novelist, her books have been consistently entertaining. Atkinson continues her successful attempt at writing crime fiction with her latest, Started Earky, Took the Dog, where she brings Brodie back for another round of detective work.

If you have acquired a taste for Atkinson’s lively and conversational prose, wry observations and brilliant turns of phrase and metaphors (in her early novels), you will enjoy her crime stories.

Monday, September 06, 2010 11:48:00 PM  

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