Friday Finds #49 – September 2nd-16th

Friday Finds is originally featured at Should Be Reading and showcases the books I have discovered during the weeks and added to my Goodreads TBR. In the weeks of September 2d-16th, I’ve discovered the following books and added them to my Goodreads TBR:

Romance

“Vinegar Girl” by Anne Tyler

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Shakespeare’s controversial comedy The Taming of the Shrew sees wilful, independent Katherina transformed into a willing, obedient wife to Petruchio. It is one of Shakespeare’s most re-visited plays, with adaptations including Cole Porter’s Kiss Me, Kate and teen flick 10 Things I Hate About You.

When Anne Tyler’s Kate discovers her father’s plot to marry her off to his brilliant, awkward lab assistant Pyotr so he can stay in the country, she is furious. Kate is no pushover, but the question remains whether she will be able to resist the two men’s touchingly ludicrous campaign to win her round

“Better” by S. Walden

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For Cadence Miller, the fast track to adulthood proves intimidating and frustrating. She’s a little girl lost—abandoned by her family and uncertain of her future. She doesn’t think she “fits” anywhere. She’s eighteen. She wants to be older. And the result is both comical and heartbreaking.

Mark Connelly will do anything to provide Cadence a stable, loving home—to be her protector. But he’s just as broken and lost, and his heart won’t let go of his past so easily. He knows he should share his secret with Cadence. He should trust that she’ll understand. But what if she doesn’t? What if their love doesn’t grow stronger?

 

Contemporary

“Where’d You Go, Bernadette” by Maria Semple

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Bernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she’s a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she’s a disgrace; to design mavens, she’s a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.

Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette’s intensifying allergy to Seattle—and people in general—has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands. A trip to the end of the earth is problematic.

To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents, secret correspondence—creating a compulsively readable and touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter’s role in an absurd world.

“Smart Girls Get What They Want” by Sarah Strohmeyer

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Gigi, Bea, and Neerja are best friends and total overachievers. Even if they aren’t the most popular girls in school, they aren’t too worried. They know their real lives will begin once they get to their Ivy League colleges. There will be ivy, and there will be cute guys in the libraries (hopefully with English accents)! But when an unexpected event shows them they’re missing out on the full high school experience, it’s time to come out of the honors lounge and into the spotlight. They make a pact: They will each take on their greatest challenge—and they will totallyrock it.

Gigi decides to run for student rep, but she’ll have to get over her fear of public speaking—and go head-to-head with gorgeous California Will. Bea used to be one of the best skiers around, until she was derailed. It could be time for her to take the plunge again. And Neerja loves the drama club but has always stayed behind the scenes—until now.

These friends are determined to show the world that smart girls really can get what they want—but that could mean getting way more attention than they ever bargained for. . .

 

Mystery

“False Impressions” by Sandra Nikolai

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Montreal ghostwriter Megan Scott falls under police suspicion when her husband and a female companion are found murdered. In what a Québec detective calls a crime of passion, startling evidence surfaces to implicate Michael Elliott, a young investigative reporter who’d rather rub elbows with scumbags than live the posh lifestyle he inherited.

Clutched out of her comfort zone, Megan is flung into Michael’s dark world of criminal investigation. As they make a last-ditch attempt to prove their innocence, an elusive enemy closes in and threatens their lives. Who wants them out of the way and why?

 

Non-fiction

“London Under: The Secret History Beneath the Streets” by Peter Ackroyd

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London Under is an atmospheric, imagina­tive, oozing short study of everything that goes on under London, from original springs & streams & Roman amphitheaters to Victorian sewers, gang hideouts & modern tube stations. The depths below are hot, warmer than the surface. This book tunnels down thru the geological layers, meeting the creatures, real & fictional, that dwell in darkness: rats & eels, mon­sters & ghosts. When the Underground’s Metropolitan Line was opened in 1864, guards asked for permission to grow beards to protect themselves from sulfurous fumes, & named their engines after tyrants—Czar, Kaiser, Mogul—even Pluto, god of the underworld. To go under London is to penetrate history, to enter a hid­den world. As Ackroyd writes: “The vastness of the space, a 2nd earth, elicits sensations of wonder & of terror. It partakes of myth & dream in equal measure.”

 

And finally – the book I’ve been waiting for for almost FIVE YEARS. The conclusion to my favourite series in the entire world. Thank God I’m a Spanish speaker! Take me back to The Cemetery of Forgotten Books!

“El Labirinto de los Espiritus” by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

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“El laberinto de los espíritus”, es el desenlace de la saga de “El Cementerio de los Libros Olvidados” que se inició en 2001 con “La Sombra del Viento” y continuó en 2008 con “El Juego del Ángel” y en 2011 con “El Prisionero del Cielo”.

Elevadas por la crítica internacional a la categoría de clásico contemporáneo, las novelas de El Cementerio de Los Libros Olvidados se han convertido en uno de los universos literarios más apasionantes del nuevo siglo, y Carlos Ruiz Zafón en el escritor español más leído en todo el mundo después de Cervantes.

What are your Friday Finds for this week? Have you read any of mine? Are you as excited for “The Labyrinth of Spirits” as I am? Gimme a shout!

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