We have the first day of Spring (March 20 for those of you who lost track somewhere in a drift), St. Patrick’s Day (March 17), and of course the wildly popular Adopt a Rescued Guinea Pig Month (all month). I am a sucker for any holiday that requires nothing from me.
But of course, what is exciting us most is New Book Goodness coming your way (and ours!). This March comes in with three debut novels and goes out with an offering from an author with 16 under his belt.
The Tiger’s Wife by Tea Obreht has to be the one book that I am looking the most forward to. Natalia Stefanovi is a young physician who, upon hearing of her grandfather’s death leaves her unnamed Baltic country to go and claim the possessions of her grandfather and to try to discover why he died so far from home. This is the spring board for her to remember not only her grandfather but his stories as well. These stories are of his life during World War II and the village he grew up in. Obreht was one of the New Yorker’s 20 under 40 and this is her debut novel.
The Oracle of Stamboul by Michael Davis Lukas is also a debut novel. In 1877 in the town of Constanta on the Black Sea two Tartar midwives appear moments before the birth of Eleonora whose mother sadly does not survive the delivery. The midwives feel that she is the fulfillment to a prophesy and to be sure Eleonora proves to be a child prodigy. When she and her father go to Stamboul for his rug business , she is introduced to a world that is rich with possibilities and treachery. This is a wonderful grown up fairy tale.
Cleaning Nabakov’s House by Leslie Daniels introduces us to Barb Bennett who is going through the divorce from hell. After losing her children she moves into a house once lived in by Vladimir Nabokov where she finds a set of index cards which seem to have the plot of an unfinished novel by Nabokov about Babe Ruth. In the process of trying to get them evaluated she meets up with a whole new set of friends who enable her to move forward with her life. This debut has been described as “goofy” , “brilliant” and “hysterical”.
Rodin’s Debutante by Ward Just introduces us to Lee Goodell, a boy growing up in a small town outside of Chicago during the Great Depression. A bust by Rodin inspires him to move to Chicago and become a sculptor. When a knife attack puts a pause in his plans he learns that an education can be more than what you learn in the traditional ways. Ward Just is one of those really quietly great writers whose novels captivate and resonate long after the last page is turned.
We wish you Happy Spring, St. Patrick's and, of course, Homeless No More Guinea Pigs!