In My Mailbox: 7/25

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by The Story Siren. You can find more information about it here.

Last week I told you that I was going to split the books I received the last weeks into two posts. This is part two, which features books I did not receive as birthday gifts, but bought or acquired in another manner.

In My Mailbox 25-07

Remember last time I mentioned seeing Nada Surf in Utrecht and how I came across a book sale and bought 40 books? Well, last week I accompanied my boyfriend to Amsterdam to see Nada Surf again for his birthday. Amsterdam has several bookstores that sell only English books. It is my definition of heaven.Why? Because normally when I enter a bookstore in the Netherlands, there is only a small section that has English books and it is hard to find the titles I’m looking for. When entering these stores however, they have display upon display of books I saw featured on blogs, book I know I would like to read sometime. Unfortunately the prizes at the Waterstones’ shop are unbelievably high (think double of what buying online or buying in a regular Dutch bookshop would cost) and so I moved on to an outlet store with only English books. I couldn’t believe my luck!  Sadly, I had to carry these books for the rest of the day and take them with me to the concert and so I settled on buying just 5:

The Plot Against America – Philip Roth: I am not at all sure if I’m going to like this book, but I heard so much about it a few years ago. Plus, I would like to give alternative history a try sometime.

Being Emily – Anne Donovan: A coming of age story about a girl from Glasgow that finds her escape in the books of Emily Brontë.

Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons: I have heard nothing but praise for this book in the book blogging community. I am very happy that I’m finally going to be able to read this.

Half of a Yellow Sun – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: I have Purple Hibiscus on my TBR pile already, which both Ana and Amy have praised. I couldn’t help but buy this one as well when I saw it for this prize. I expect to fall in love with Adichie’s writing and I trust ana and Amy blindly, so I fully expect to love this when I get around to reading it.

The Night Watch – Sarah Waters: Apparantly, this is not the best Waters has ever written. But I didn’t know that yet when I picked it up. I have never read anything by Waters and I love the thought of finally owning a book by her.

I didn’t buy the other 3 books that are displayed on the pictures:

The Heart of the Night - Judith Lennox: I won this through a twitter competition of The Hanbury Agency. I read All My Sisters by Lennox a couple of years ago and I remember that I enjoyed it a lot.

Cider With Rosie – is another book I was on the lookout for through a review of Bina. I found it on bookmooch.

The Constant Liberal: Phyllis Bottome - Pam Hirsch was sent to me for review by Gavin from Quartet books.

22 responses to “In My Mailbox: 7/25

  1. Lovely selection Iris – I’m glad you took the opportunity to buy a good selection while you could. I rather liked The plot against America – it was an intriguing proposition that I think he played out well. I loved Half of a yellow sun – a very strong novel with multiple points of view from some excellently drawn characters. I’ve read two Sarah Waters – The night watch and The little stranger. She’s a good writer, but I liked The night watch better, partly because I’m fascinated by WW2 and partly because of its intriguing structure. AND I really must read Cold Comfort Farm – so I’ll look forward to your review.

  2. I actually really disagree about The Night Watch not being one of Sarah Waters’ best. I think it’s absolutely brilliant, and I loved it only slightly less than Fingersmith, my absolute favourite. It warms my heart to see you got that, Half of a Yellow Sun AND Cold Comfort Farm :D You have so much great reading ahead of you.

  3. The Night Watch IS her best book! :D I loved the reverse chronology of the narrative.
    Really hope you´ll enjoy Cider with Rosie, and all the others. You got some amazing books! I´ve only seen Nada Surf once, but sadly there was no booksale nearby :D

  4. Wonderful choices! And I’ll add to the reassurances that The Night Watch is excellent. I suspect a lot of the disappointment comes from it being different from her other books. I thought it was quite good. And I also love Cold Comfort Farm and enjoyed The Plot Against America.

  5. More reassurance probably isn’t needed on this front, but I agree with Teresa and Bina and Ana that The Night Watch is very very good. It’s not as tightly plotted as Fingersmith, but it’s beautifully written and the structure Waters has chosen works really well.

  6. Cold Comfort Farm is a great book. I know you’ll enjoy it.

  7. Great selection of books! I’m especially interested to hear your thoughts on Half of a Yellow Sun :) I need to finish the book already because I really loved what I read so far.

  8. One of these days I will get my hands on a copy of Half a Yellow Sun. What wonderful books you got!

  9. Cold Comfort Farm is great! “Something nasty in the wood shed” (you’ll find out).

    Half of a Yellow Sun is forgettable but a good read. I learned a lot about Nigeria (and yes, forgot a lot, again, too).

  10. I’ve actually heard good things about Night Watch. Maybe not as good as Affinity and Fingersmith, but still good. Half of a Yellow Sun is a beautiful book. Hope you enjoy these!

  11. The Plot Against America is excellent – hope you enjoy it too!

  12. The Plot Against America is great! It’s the only Roth I’ve read, but I really enjoyed it, so hope you do too.

    Half of a Yellow Sun is fantastic as well, if a little scary and thought-provoking. It’s slightly despondent, and it just makes you feel really really weird about the way the world works.

    As for The Night Watch : not my favourite Waters, but if you’ve not read anything else by her, maybe it’s worth a try? I think I was biased as I was expecting it to live up to some of her better ones (i.e. Fingersmith).

    I haven’t read the others but hope you enjoy them nonetheless.

  13. Hooray for Cold Comfort Farm! I just discovered it this year and completely fell in love!

  14. wonderful selection of books and some great writers ,i love roth ,plot against america is very good ,all the best stu

  15. I have to agree with your other commenters–I thought the Night Watch was excellent, too. I’ve loved everything by Sarah Waters I’ve read, though, so maybe I’m biased. It was such a clever way of storytelling. I need to go back and read it again someday. I think my favorite is The Little Stranger–just a tad bit more than Fingersmith. I hope you enjoy it! I have that Lennox book coming too–have been waiting for the Book Depository to release my order!

  16. Nice haul, Iris. I have a few of those on my shelves at home too. Haven’t read any of them yet though – sigh, so many books to read!

  17. What a great bunch of books! I’ve had Half a Yellow Sun for ages, and still haven’t read it! Well, I have many books that I’ve owned for ages and not read. I really should just limit myself to just the books that I need to read, rather than continuing to pick up new things all the time. Sigh. I suppose it’s a happy position for us to be in though, right?

    How was your concert? :)

  18. Good selection. I also have Half of a Yellow Sun in my pile to read.

  19. I also thought The Night Watch is brilliant and it is probably my favourite of Waters’ books. However, I do have the Fingersmith to re-read to see what I missed out the first time round. And I also have Half of a Yellow Sun as I’m very curious about Adichie. Looks like you’re going to be very busy reading through your splendid haul!

  20. Half of a Yellow Sun is excellent! I also haven’t read Sarah Waters but have recently purchased a copy of The Night Watch because it was on sale. Also, I have a feeling her least popular books are the ones I will likely enjoy the most..

  21. Awesome! Looks like you need to take more trips to Amsterdam! I am going to have to read Cold Comfort Farm someday. I just saw people raving about it on Nymeth’s blog! Enjoy!

  22. Don’t despair, Sarah Waters is a fantastic writer and The Night Watch is one of my favourites :)

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