Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Library Loot - Oct 27, 2010

Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they've checked out from the library.  If you'd like to participate, just write up your post - feel free to steal the button - and visit the above 2 blogs to see who has the Mr. Linky this week. Don't forget to check out what others are checking out!

I haven't done a Library Loot post since March!  Doesn't mean I haven't been checking out books though!

The Quilter's Apprentice by Jennifer Chiaverini (An Elm Creek Quilts Novel - 1)

When Sarah McClure and her husband, Matt, move to Waterford, Pennsylvania, she hopes to make a fresh start in the small college town.  Unable to find a job both practical and fulfilling, she takes a temporary position at Elm Creek Manor helping its reclusive owner, Sylvia Compson, prepare her family estate for sale after the death of her estranged sister.  Sylvia is also a master quilter and, as part of Sarah's compensation, offers to share the secrets of her creative gifts with the younger women.

During their lessons, the intricate, varied threads of Sylvia's life begin to emerge.  It is the story of a young wife living through the hardships and agonies of the World WAar II home front; of a family torn apart by jealousy and betrayal; of misunderstanding, loss, and a tragedy that can never be undone.  As the bond between them deepens, Sarah resolves to help Sylvia free herself from remembered sorrows and restore her life -- and her home -- to its former glory.  In the process, she confronts painful truths about her own family, even as she creates new dreams for her future.

Just as the darker sections of a quilt can enhance the brighter ones, the mistakes of the past can strengthen understanding and lead the way to new beginnings.  The powerful debut novel by a gifted storyteller, The Quilter's Apprentice tells a timeless tale of family, friendship, and forgiveness as two women weave the disparate pieces of their lives into a bountiful and harmonious whole.

The Lemon Tree: An Arab, a Jew and the Heart of the Middle East by Sandy Tolan

In 1967, Bashir Khairi, a twenty-five-year-old Palestinian, journeyed to Israel with the goal of seeing the beloved old stone house with the lemon tree behind it that he and his family had fled nineteen years earlier.  To his surprise, when he found the house he was greeted by Dalia Eshkenazi Landau, a nineteen-year-old Israeli college student, whose family fled Europe for Israel following the Holocaust.  On the stoop of their shared home, Dalia and Bashir began a rare friendship, forged in the aftermath of war and tested over the next thirty-five years in ways that neither could imagine on that summer day in 1967.  Sandy Tolan brings the Israeli Palestinian conflict down to its most human level, suggesting that even amid the bleakest political realities there exist stories of hope and reconciliation.

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

In a garden surrounded by a tall fence, tucked away behind a small, quiet house in the smallest of towns, is an apple tree that is rumored to bear a very special sort of fruit.  In this luminous debut novel, Sarah Addison Allen tells the story of that enchanted tree, and the extraordinary people who tend it. . .

The Waverleys have always been a curious family, endowed with peculiar gifts that make them outsiders even in their hometown of Bascom, North Carolina.  Even their garden has a reputation, famous for its feisty apple tree that bears prophetic fruit, and its edible flowers, imbued with special powers.  Generations of Waverleys tended this garden.  Their history was in the soil.  But so were their futures.

A successful caterer, Claire Waverley prepares dishes made with her mystical plants -- from the nasturtiums that aid in keeping secrets and the pansies that make children thoughtful, to the snapdragons intended to discourage the attentions of her amorous neighbor.  Meanwhile, her elderly cousin, Evanell is known for distributing unexpected gifts whose uses become uncanilly clear.   They are the last of the Waverleys -- except for Claire's rebellious sister, Sydney, who fled Bascom the moment she could, abandoning Claire, as their own mother had years before.

When Sydney suddenly returns home with a young daughter of her own, Claire's quiet life is turned upside down -- along with the protective boundary she has so carefully constructed around her heart.  Together again in the house they grew up in, Sydney takes stock of all she left behind, as Claire struggles to heal the wounds of the past.  And soon the sisters realize they must deal with their common legacy -- if they are ever to feel at home in Bascom -- or with each other.

Every Move She Makes by Beverly Barton

As the pampered daughter of one of Spring Creek's most  prestigious southern families, Ella Porter has lived her entire life on the straight-and-narrow.  And being "good" has kept Ella safe and sane -- until now.  Suggestive yet ominous letters have been arriving at her office with alarming frequency.  Letters that remind her of the disturbing ones she used to get from Reed Conway -- the hellraiser she kenw from childhood -- after her father prosecuted him for murder.  Now Reed's been released from prison, and though Ella finds herself wanting to believe his claims of innocence, she's getting closer that a "good girl" ever should to a man with such a bad reputation.

Reed Conway is on a mission: to find out who really murdered his stepfather.  But someone wants to interfere -- someone determined to send Reed right back to prison for a brand-new crime.  They've made it look like he's still a threat to Ella Porter and her family, when the truth is, the more he sees Ella, the more he wants her.  But his attempt to prove his innocence have put both their lives in jeopardy. .. .Because whoever is stalking Ella will stop at nothing -- including murder. . .


Beth(bookaholicmom) said...

I loved The Quilter's Apprentice but haven't read any more of the series. I really need to read more of the series and Garden Spells too.

bermudaonion said...

Ooh, Garden Spells sounds really good! I'll be watching for your review.

Claire (The Captive Reader) said...

The Lemon Tree looks really intriguing! I might have to check that out myself.

Enjoy your loot!

Just Mom said...

I read The Lemon Tree a few years ago. I went into it hoping it would give me a better understanding of the conflict in the Middle East but I must confess, although I enjoyed the book, I am still confused! I came across it again recently at my mom's - I had passed it on to her. I am considering stealingit back and rereading. I'll look forward to hearing what you think.

LC said...

Garden Spells looks interesting! I will have to addd it to my to-read list.



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