In order to prevent myself from whittling on about every single book due to be released this year, I thought it best to make it a window shopping post so that I can reduce the list down to books I would like to purchase (no doubt I will end up buying them all, I need them, they’re educational..) There are certainly a lot of treats in store for readers this year! from the 150th birthday’s of Alice in Wonderland and WB Yeats, to the revealing of undiscovered Charlotte Bronte material, in a new biography in anticipation of her 200th birthday in 2016. The 2015 literary calendar is quickly being characterised as enchanting and compelling throughout. Let’s just say my ‘during-the-holidays-to-be-read-pile’ is going to be compellingly tall this year…
The Story of Alice by Robert Douglas Fairhurst (Non-Fiction) Publisher: Harvill Secker Release Date: 2 April 2015
For 150 years, Alice in Wonderland has travelled the cultural landscape and continues to do so. I am super excited for this release, especially seeing as I am currently studying Nineteenth Century literature AND Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is on my required reading list. You see I actually have to buy this book… because I always do my secondary reading.
The Story of Alice promises a compelling read, documenting the secret story of the complex Charles Dodgson and his ‘dream-child’ Alice Liddell. Viewing Wonderland as a necessary refuge for Lewis Carroll or ‘Charles Dodgson’ Douglas supposedly traces the cultural landscape of the tale that still after 150 years has more riddles, metaphors, and questions for us. Not that I always judge a book by its cover, but, the cover for this book is adorable, I imagine it will charm my bookshelf perfectly…
Delicious Foods by James Hannaham Publisher: Little Brown and Company Release date: 17th March 2015
“Held captive by her employers-and by her own demons-on a mysterious farm, a widow struggles to reunite with her young son in this uniquely American story of freedom, perseverance, and survival.
Darlene, once an exemplary wife and a loving mother to her young son, Eddie, finds herself devastated by the unforeseen death of her husband. Unable to cope with her grief, she turns to drugs, and quickly forms an addiction. One day she disappears without a trace.
Unbeknownst to eleven-year-old Eddie, now left behind in a panic-stricken search for her, Darlene has been lured away with false promises of a good job and a rosy life. A shady company named Delicious Foods shuttles her to a remote farm, where she is held captive, performing hard labor in the fields to pay off the supposed debt for her food, lodging, and the constant stream of drugs the farm provides to her and the other unfortunates imprisoned there.”
If the synopsis (from amazon.com) is anything to go by, this book will be a perfect Easter read. What can be better that spending Easter getting to know three characters and becoming gripped in a tale that explores the bond between a mother and a son, themes of forgiveness and compassion, and a harrowing, haunting voice to lead the way? well, personally, not much could be better than that in my eyes! I do love a book that delivers terror, tears, and triumph and I have a feeling this will provide all three quite beautifully.
Spinster: Making a Life of One’s Own by Kate Bodick (Non-Fiction) Publisher: Crown Release Date: April 21 2015
“Refreshingly bold and incisive… As Bolick traces her evolution into a woman unapologetic for her choices and unafraid of her own personal freedom, she also reclaims the derogatory word ‘spinster’ for all females, married or not… A sexy, eloquent, well-written study/memoir.” –Kirkus Reviews [starred]
So the theme to my summer will be ‘Girl Power’. I can picture the scene, a warm summer afternoon, a beach, a mojito, and Kate Bodick at the top of my reading list neatly stacked beside my oversized beach bag…
In her revolutionary memoir, journalist Kate Bodick explains her decisions and choices to fashion her life according to her terms. She explains why she, like 100 million American women, remain unmarried, and with that, remain utterly fulfilled. I am excited to see if and how Kate Bodick responds and argues with the mythology that suggests marriage, happiness, and fulfilment are a package deal, and perhaps, she will succeed in beginning to debunk this long-standing social myth.
The First Bad Man by Miranda July Publisher: Schribner Release Date: 13 January 2015
“Here is Cheryl, a tightly-wound, vulnerable woman who lives alone, with a perpetual lump in her throat. She is haunted by a baby boy she met when she was six, who sometimes recurs as other people’s babies. Cheryl is also obsessed with Phillip, a philandering board member at the women’s self-defense nonprofit where she works. She believes they’ve been making love for many lifetimes, though they have yet to consummate in this one.
When Cheryl’s bosses ask if their twenty-one-year-old daughter, Clee, can move into her house for a little while, Cheryl’s eccentrically ordered world explodes. And yet it is Clee—the selfish, cruel blond bombshell—who bullies Cheryl into reality and, unexpectedly, provides her the love of a lifetime.” (amazon.com)
So this was released today! and although I have been known to wait outside a bookshop way before it opens in order to secure the purchase of a highly anticipated title (David Nicholls, David Nicholls, and, David Nicholls again) this was not one of those times. Sorry Miranda I do not know you very well yet but I promise I’ll go insane for any future titles. Fan girlling out of the way… and on with the details.
This is Miranda July’s first novel and I’m hoping her voice will be as dazzling as I imagine. Again, with the girl power theme, this book explores the female mind, motherhood, and sexuality and I have a feeling July’s voice will be an important and refreshing one and this may even be the greatest novel of the year. I will report back.