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Friday Finds -- Feb 12, 2010

Friday Finds

This meme is hosted by MizB at Should be reading. What great books did you hear about/discover this past week?

Believe it or not, I didn't find many books this week. But then I didn't visit any of my favorite blogs much either, curse my hectic week! I didn't hover in Goodreads either much this week, and I am definitely pining for some book and blogger love! I'm so sorry I haven't been visiting or commenting in your blogs lately, but I promise to do better next week. I *think* I may have got some of my important tasks under control, in which case, I would love to spend this weekend doing what I love best - blogging and reading!

So here's the few that I came across at the beginning of the week.

My finds

Brodeck by Philippe Claudel

I came across several interesting reviews of this book online. I first noticed it at We Be Reading. Kristen's review gripped me enough to want to read it!

Forced into a brutal concentration camp during a great war, Brodeck returns to his village at the war’s end and takes up his old job of writing reports for a governmental bureau. One day a stranger comes to live in the village. His odd manner and habits arouse suspicions: His speech is formal, he takes long, solitary walks, and although he is unfailingly friendly and polite, he reveals nothing about himself. When the stranger produces drawings of the village and its inhabitants that are both unflattering and insightful, the villagers murder him. The authorities who witnessed the killing tell Brodeck to write a report that is essentially a whitewash of the incident. 

As Brodeck writes the official account, he sets down his version of the truth in a separate, parallel narrative. In measured, evocative prose, he weaves into the story of the stranger his own painful history and the dark secrets the villagers have fiercely kept hidden.


 
Someone Knows my Name by Lawrence Hill

Some of my fellow readers in a Goodreads group read this book over the last week and recommended it. Seeing it touted by many compelled me enough to deem it a must-read!

Abducted from Africa as a child and enslaved in South Carolina, Aminata Diallo thinks only of freedom—and of the knowledge she needs to get home. Sold to an indigo trader who recognizes her intelligence, Aminata is torn from her husband and child and thrown into the chaos of the Revolutionary War. In Manhattan, Aminata helps pen the Book of Negroes, a list of blacks rewarded for service to the king with safe passage to Nova Scotia. There Aminata finds a life of hardship and stinging prejudice. When the British abolitionists come looking for "adventurers" to create a new colony in Sierra Leone, Aminata assists in moving 1,200 Nova Scotians to Africa and aiding the abolitionist cause by revealing the realities of slavery to the British public. This captivating story of one woman's remarkable experience spans six decades and three continents and brings to life a crucial chapter in world history.


The Recipe Club: A Tale of Food and Friendship by Andrea Israel, Nancy Garfinkel

I admit that the cover caught my eye first! It looked ... different! I noticed this book at Kathy's blog, Bermudaonion's Weblog. She has written a great review about the book and I couldn't really let it pass me by, could I?

Loyalty, loss, and the ties that bind. These are the ingredients of The Recipe Club, a "novel cookbook" that combines an authentic story of friendship with more than 80 delicious recipes.

Lilly and Val are lifelong friends, united as much by their differences as by their similarities. Lilly, dramatic and confident, lives in the shadow of her beautiful, wayward mother and craves the attention of her distant, disapproving father. Val, shy and idealistic—and surprisingly ambitious— struggles with her desire to break free from her demanding housebound mother and a father whose dreams never seem to come true.

In childhood, "LillyPad" and "ValPal" form an exclusive two-person club, writing intimate letters in which they share hopes, fears, deepest secrets—and recipes, from Lilly's "Lovelorn Lasagna" to Valerie's "Forgiveness Tapenade." Readers can cook along as the friends travel through time facing the challenges of independence, the joys and heartbreaks of first love, and the emotional complexities of family relationships, identity, mortality, and goals deferred.

The Recipe Club sustains Lilly and Val's bond through the decades, regardless of what different paths they take or what misunderstandings threaten to break them apart . . . until the fateful day when an act of kindness becomes an unforgivable betrayal.

Now, years later, while trying to recapture the trust they've lost, Lilly and Val reunite once more—only to uncover a shocking secret. Will it destroy their friendship, or bring them ever closer?

Comments

Cat said…
I have no finds this week :( - too busy. But I've just finished Someone Knows My Name and about to review it. Definitely a must read - its wonderful.
Aleksandra said…
I like your choices :)
Here are mine: http://my-book-obsession.blogspot.com/2010/02/friday-finds-4.html
I read Someone Knows my Name! Except here it's called The Book of Negroes. Same story, though. It was amazing - I hope you read it and enjoy it!

Emidy
Une Parole
Anonymous said…
Wow, Brodeck sounds eerie and mysterious...perfect for a winter day. Thanks for catching it!

My Friday Finds are over at bookwanderer!
Alayne said…
Great picks, Brodeck looks intense! My find is at The Crowded Leaf.
bermudaonion said…
Those all look good! I hope you like The Recipe Club as much as I did!
Aarti said…
Someone Knows My Name sounds fantastic! Thanks for bringing it to my attention.
Tales of Whimsy said…
I LOVE the cover of the first one :)
Alyce said…
Someone Knows My Name looks a bit different from my normal reading, but the description has caught my attention enough that I think I'll add it to my list of books to check out.
Anonymous said…
They all look interesting. I've been wanting to read The Recipe Club.
I liked The Recipe Club and tried a few recipes too that were good. The quality of the paper used was impressive too.
Athira said…
Cat, I hear ya! Life does get in the way sometimes. :-( Looking forward to your review of Someone knows my Name.

Aleksandra, Alayne, Vicki, Thanks! :)

Emidy, glad that you liked it. I'm looking forward to reading it!

bookwanderer, Brodeck does sound good!

Kathy, The Recipe Club does look like something I will like!

Aarti, you're welcome! Hope you'll enjoy it!

Juju, I like it too! It has a Band of Brothers-ish feel!

Alyce, hope you will like it!

Diane, that's nice to hear!

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