“I will pass quickly over this period, for I am afraid that if I look at it closely, I shall revive memories that are too painful. Even now I feel overwhelmed as I think of Anne’s happy laugh, of her kindness to me. My conscience troubles me so much at these moments that I am obliged to resort to some expedient like lighting a cigarette, putting on a record, or telephoning to a friend. Then gradually I begin to think of something else. But I do not like having to take my refuge in forgetfulness and frivolity instead of facing my memories and fighting them.” (p. 115)
“A transporting and brilliant comic novel narrated by an unforgettable woman, an autistic savant whose idiosyncrasies prove her greatest gifts.”
“The internationally beloved story of a precocious teenager’s attempts to understand and control the world around her, Francoise Sagan’s Bonjour Tristesse is a beautifully composed, wonderfully ambiguous celebration of sexual liberation, at once sympathetic and powerfully unsparing.”
Gretchen Waters is most famous for her book Tammyland-a “honky-tonk Eat, Pray, Love,” a memoir about her divorce and her admiration for Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn, and Dolly Parton. When Gretchen dies falling on a set of stone steps outside of a library, everyone thinks it was an accident or a botched mugging. Jami, Gretchen’s best friend from college, certainly has no reason to suspect foul play. That is, until she becomes Gretchen’s literary executor. Gretchen’s latest manuscript is much darker than Tammyland-ostensibly about her favorite classic male country singers, it’s really about a murder in her family that haunted her childhood. From beyond the grave Gretchwen opens up a wsinister new world through her writing, and suddenly her death seems suspicious. And then Jamie finds herself in danger as well…
The Heart is A Lonely Hunter tells an unforgettable tale of moral isolation in a small southern mill town in the 1930’s. Richard Wright was astonished by McCullers’s ability to “rise above the pressures of her environment and embrace white and black humanity in one sweep of apprehension and tenderness.” Hers is a humanity that touches all who come to her work, whether for the first time, or as so many do, time and time again.”
“Taking us back in history to a place where autopsies were blasphemous, coffee was an exotic drink, dried toads were the recommended remedy for the plague, and the devil was as real as anything, The Hangman’s Daughter brings to cinematic life the sights, sounds, and smells of seventeenth-century Bavaria, telling the engrossing story of a compassionate hangman who will live on in readers’ imaginations long after they’ve put down the novel.”
I’m looking forward to reading Bonjour Tristesse for the Paris in July challenge, and The Hangman’s Daughter for Carl’s R.I.P. which will begin in September. Find other Mailbox entries here.