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


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mailbox Monday (Aug 29, 2011)

 Mailbox Monday's host for August is Staci at Life in the Thumb. In My Mailbox is hosted Sundays at The Story Siren. Please visit these posts and take a look at what packages everybody else got this week! 

The Winters in Bloom
by Lisa Tucker
Every marriage has three stories: the husband's, the wife's -- and the one they create together.
Kyra and David Winter are happier than they ever expected to be.  They have a comfortable home, stable careers, and a young son, Michael, whom they adore.  Though everyone who knows the Winters considers them extremely overprotective parents, both Kyra and David believe they have good reasons for fearing that something will happen to their little boy.  And then, on a perfectly average summer day, it does, when Michael disappears from his own backyard.  The only question is whose past has finally caught up with them:  David feels sure that Michael was taken by his troubled ex-wife, while Kyra believes the kidnapper must be someone from her estranged family, someone she betrayed years ago.
As the Winters embark on a journey of time and memory to find Michael, they will be forced to admit these suspicions, revealing secrets about themselves they've always kept hidden.  But they will also have a chance to discover that it's not too late to have the family they've dreamed of; that even if the world is full of risks, as long as they have hope, the future can bloom.
Lyrical, wise, and witty.  The Winters in Bloom is an enchanting, life-affirming story that will surprise readers and leave them full of wonder at the stubborn strength of the human heart.
A Thousand Lives
by Julia Scheeres
In A Thousand Lives, New York Times bestselling memoirist Julia Scheeres recounts the chilling story of the Peoples Temple members who followed Jim Jones to Guyana.  They went for the promise of a better life, yet the Jonestown community that started as a Utopian dream soon devolved into a terrifying work camp run by a madman, ending in the mass murder-suicide of 913 members in November 1978.
A Thousand Lives gives voice to the people who followed Jim Jones to Guyana -- including an English teacher from Colorado, elderly African American sisters raised in Jim Crow Alabama, a troubled young black man from Oakland, and a working-class father and his teenage son.  Each went for different reasons -- some were drawn to Jones for his progressive attitudes toward racial integration, others were dazzled by his claims to be a faith healer.  But once in Guyana, Jones's mental imbalance and substance abuse quickly overcame the idealistic spirit of the community.  Scheeres chronicles the disturbing path that Jim Jones led his congregants down, piecing together rare firsthand interviews with the diaries, letters, and tapes collected by the FBI after the massacre.
Scheeres's own experiences at a religious rehabilitation camp in the Dominican Republic, detailed in her remarkable debut memoir Jesus Land, allowed her to gain the trust of survivors who had never spoken about their experiences on the record before.  Vividly written and impossible to forget, A Thousand Lives is a story of blind loyalty and daring escapes, of corrupted ideals and senseless, haunting loss.
Living Beyond Your Feelings
Controlling Emotions So They Don't Control You
by Joyce Meyer
The average person has 70,000 thoughts every day, and many of those thoughts trigger a corresponding emotion.  No wonder so many of us often feel like we're controlled by our emotions.  Our lives would be much improved if we controlled them.
In Living Beyond Your Feelings, Joyce Meyer examines the gamut of feelings that human beings experience.  She discusses the way the brain processes and stores memories and thoughts, and then -- emotion by emotion -- she explains how we can manage our reactions to those feelings.  In doing so, she gives the reader a toolbox for managing the way we react to the onslaught of feelings that can wreak havoc in our lives.
In this book, Joyce blends the wisdom of the Bible with the latest psychological research and discusses:
  • The four personality types and the influence of each on one's outlook.
  • The impact of stress on physical and emotional health
  • The power of memories
  • The influence of words on emotions
  • Anger and resentment
  • Sadness, loss, and grief
  • Fear
  • Guilt and regret
  • The power of replacing reactions with pro-actions
  • The benefits of happiness
In Living Beyond Your Feelings, Joyce gives you the tools to live beyond emotions, make proactive choices, and regain control of your life.
Grace for the Good Girl
by Emily P. Freeman
You're strong. You're responsible.  You're good.  But. . .
. . . as day fades to dusk, you begin to feel the familiar fog of anxiety, the weight and pressure of holding it together and of longing left unmet.  Good girls sometimes feel that the Christian life means doing hard work with a sweet disposition.  We tend to focus only on the things we can handle, our disciplined lives, and our unshakable good moods.
But what would happen if we let grace pour out boundless acceptance into our wornout hearts and undo us?  If we dared to talk about the ways we hide, our longing to be known, and the fear in the knowing?
In Grace for the Good Girl, Emily Freeman invites you to release your tight hold on that familiar, try-hard life and lean your weight heavy into the love of Jesus.  With an open hand, a whimsical style, and a heart bent brave toward adventure, Emily encourages you to move from your own impossible expectations toward the God who has graciously, miraculously, and lovingly found you.
Death in the City of Light
by David King
Death in the City of Light is the true story of the hunt for Marcel Petiot, a respectable physician by day and brutal serial killer by night in Nazi-occupied Paris.  Petiot was charged with twenty-seven grisly murders, though his victims -- many of whom were Jews seeking to escape the Nazis -- may have numbered in excess of one hundred.  Petiot was not only skilled at evading detection and capture, he was also expert at dismembering his victims beyond any chance of identification.  The investigation was led by commissaire Georges-Victor Massu of the Homicide Squad (himself the partial inspiration for Georges Simenon's Maigret), who became entangled with a cast of captivating characters leading him through the shadowy world of the Gestapo, gangsters, nightclub owners, Resistance fighters, pimps, prostitutes, spies, and other nefarious figures of the Parisian underground.
This is a gripping story of adventure, glamour, intrigue, and abhorrent decadence on the eve of disaster.  It is also an empowering tale of men and women braving great dangers to reveal the horrors of the Nazi regime.
Le Freak
by Nile Rodgers
Today’s pop music—genre-crossing, gender-bending, racially mixed, visually stylish, and dominated by dance music with global appeal—is the world that Nile Rodgers created. In the 1970s and 1980s, he wrote and produced the songs that defined that era and everything that came after: “Le Freak,” “Good Times,” “We Are Family,” “Like a Virgin,” “Modern Love,” “I’m Coming Out,” “The Reflex,” “Rapper’s Delight.” Aside from his own band, Chic, he worked with everyone from Diana Ross and Madonna to David Bowie and Duran Duran (not to mention Mick Jagger, Debbie Harry, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Michael Jackson, Prince, Rod Stewart, Robert Plant, Depeche Mode, Paul Simon, Peter Gabriel, Grace Jones, Bryan Ferry, INXS, and the B-52’s), transforming their music, selling millions of records, and redefining what a pop song could be.
But before he reinvented pop music, Nile Rodgers invented himself. He was born into a mixed-race, bicoastal family of dope-fiend bohemians who taught him everything he needed to know about love, loss, fashion, art, music, and the subversive power of underground culture. The stars of the scene were his glamorous teenage mom and heroin-addicted Jewish stepfather, but there were also monkeys, voodoo orishas, jazz cats, and serial killers in the mix. By the time he was sixteen, Nile was on his own, busking through the sixties, half-hippie and half–Black Panther. He jammed with Jimi Hendrix, rocked out at Max’s Kansas City, toured with Big Bird on Sesame Street’s road show, and played in the legendary Apollo Theater house band behind history’s greatest soul singers. And then one night, he discovered disco.
During pop’s most glamorous and decadent age, Nile Rodgers wrote the biggest records and lived behind the velvet rope—whether he was holding court in the bathroom stalls at Studio 54, club hopping with Madonna, or scarfing down White Castle burgers with Diana Ross. Le Freak is the fascinating inside story of pop and its tangled roots, narrated by the man who absorbed everything in his topsy-turvy life—the pain and euphoria and fear and love—and turned it into some of the most sparklingly ebullient pop music ever recorded. Nile Rodgers is a brilliant storyteller who gives readers the surprising behind-the-scenes tales of the songs we all know, and lovingly re-creates the lost outsider subcultures—from the backstreets of 1950s Greenwich Village to the hills of 1960s Southern California to the demimonde of New York’s 1970s and 1980s discos and clubs—that live on in his music and in the throbbing, thriving world of pop he helped to set in motion.
Eleanor Roosevelt's Life of Soul Searching and Self Discovery
by Ann Atkins

Noble cause?
Have a dream that needs direction?
Whatever the scale of your rendezvous with destiny, the fact remains it is up to you to live it.  Eleanor's story is a 'do it yourself' guide that shows us how to:
  • Persevere in the face of betrayal, critics and exhaustion
  • Leverage media tools to educate the public
  • Discern core issues behind the raucous babble
  • Forge friendships for just causes and personal support
  • Maintain a noble heart in times of trouble
From a childhood plagued with drunks and drama queens, Eleanor must now discard her dependency on Franklin and face off with her grand dame mother-in-law.  Refusing to cave in to society's rules, Eleanor's exuberant style, wavering voice and lack of Hollywood beauty are fodder for the media.
First Lady for thirteen years, Eleanor redefines and exploits this role to a position of power.  Using her influence she champions for Jews, African Americans and women.
Living through two world wars Eleanor witnesses thousands of graves, broken bodies and grieving families.  After visiting troops in the Pacific she says: 

"If we don't make this a more decent world to live in I don't see how we can look these boys in the eyes."

She defies a post-war return to status quo and establishes the Universal Declaration of Human Rights within the U.N.  She earns her way to being named "First Lady of the World."

The audacity of this woman to live out her own destiny challenges us to do the same.  After all, it's not about Eleanor.  HER STORY is history.  HER LIFE shows us how to live.

Welcome to Fred
by Brad Whittington

Mark Cloud has his doubts. He's not sure if he'll ever feel at home in Fred, Texas. He's not sure that he can work up the nerve to declare his love to the girl of his dreams. He's not sure he will survive another ride with Darnell Ray, Terror of the Back Roads. And he's not really sure he buys the whole God thing. Which is an uncomfortable position for the son of a Baptist preacher.

This award-winning novel is a moving and hilarious tale set against the vibrant backdrop of the 1960s and rural America. It is the timeless and classic story of Everyteen in the hands of a master storyteller.

In the Brief Eternal Silence
by Rebecca Melvin

Enter into the world of the Duke of St. James in Victorian England, 1863. . .Lizzie Murdock has heard of this Duke, derisively known as merely 'St. James' in an ironic twist to the title he holds versus his lifestyle known to be anything but saintly. The fact that he is rich and once considered 'the catch of the decade' holds no attractions for her.When he offers her an astounding proposal, she is more offended than flatteredand vows to rebuff his determined advances. Little does she know that their continued sparring over her future will lead to the revelation that he believes he won't be sharing in it for very long. "I simply believe there is a very good possibility that you shall become a widow at an extremely young age," he tells her. "Now doesn't that make the prospect of marrying me much more pleasant?" With those words, Lizzie is sucked into his world, a world where one would expect to find a self-centered man enjoying privilege and ease, but where instead she finds a man of uncommon character fighting for his life and prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice for those he loves.With her involvement will come consequences that neither of them can foresee,and an arranged proposal meant to flush out evil produces much more until their very survival will depend upon their love for each other.

Hard Whispers
by Pamela Martin and Carl Henegan

After recently graduating from college, Pamela Graham, heir to the Graham publishing empire, sets off to fulfill a humanitarian goal of volunteering at a russian orphanage.  When Pamela impulsively takes one of the children out of the country to avoid an otherwise grim future, she inadvertently sets in motion a series of dark events.  While evading the Russian authorities by flying to Spain, she meets a biologist from Maryland who reveals a sinister American government conspiracy.  This knowledge takes her on a time-sensitive race to survive long enough to expose the truth before the clock runs out for a vast number of unsuspecting victims.  A gripping saga of covert government action, classism, and modern espionage, Hard Whispers runs at full speed with a spellbinding intensity that dances on the edge of reality.

The Venus Fix (ebook)
by M.J. Rose
As one of New York's top sex therapists, Dr. Morgan Snow sees everything from the abused to the depraved. From high-profile clients with twisted obsessions to courageous survivors, the Butterfield Institute is the sanctuary to heal battered souls.

Morgan Snow's newest patient is a powerful, influential man — secretly addicted to watching Internet Web cam pornography. He's not alone in his desires. She's also working with a group of high school teenagers equally and dangerously obsessed with these real-time fantasies.

Fantasies that are all too accessible.

Then the women start dying online, right in front of their eyes.

Now it's all about murder.

What books came home to you this week?


bermudaonion said...

I got a couple of the same books. A Thousand Lives should be fascinating. Enjoy!

Susan (Reading World) said...

Lots of books and so many sound so good! Eternal Silence caught my attention. Happy reading!

Mystica said...

Nice mixed mailbox. Always the best. Enjoy them all.

Patricia said...

The Joyce Meyer book sounds like a great book. Thanks for sharing your mailbox finds.

RAnn said...

I'm going to have to put Winters in Bloom on my list

Tribute Books Mama said...

Saw a few I would put on my tbr list, enjoy!

Beth(bookaholicmom) said...

A Thousand Lives sounds intriguing! I have seen it in quite a few mailboxes this week! Winters in Bloom sounds good as well.

Kristin (Book Sniffers Anonymous) said...

Nice set of books this week. Death in the City of Light looks like a good book.
Happy reading,
Book Sniffers Anonymous


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