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HAPPY SPRING 2013!Gardens, flowers, celebrations of beginnings
and endings, graduations, celebrations of
Mothers, celebrations of Dads, and April is also
Poetry Month, reminding us once again about
the magic and beauty of a poem as it cascades
over us like a waterfall of imagination. Former
Children’s Poet Laureate, and Greenwich’s
own, Mary Ann Hoberman enchanted us last
year with Forget-Me-Nots: Poems to Learn by
Heart. You took up Mary Ann’s challenge and
bought a poetry book for your children, or for
your family, and perhaps rekindled the old-fashioned tradition of
learning poetry by heart, something I cherished growing up!
And this year Caroline Kennedy picks up the gauntlet with her Poems to Learn by Heart, illustrated with striking water-color paintings by Jon Muth. Each section is preceded by Caroline’s thoughtful introduction, reflecting her own family’s engagement with and enjoyment of poetry. I have always loved the feel of those words in my mouth!
Also on my mind this spring is Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead (reviewed in this newsletter) by Sheryl Sandberg. The Diane’s Divas are placing this book right beside Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this spring. Sheryl and Betty, side-by-side — I rather like that! And what a graduation gift or inspirational gift for all those amazing young women with dancing eyes and endless imaginations we see at Diane’s Books every day! And last but not least, this spring brings us two brand-new parenting books that must be on every family book shelf — I Am So The Boss Of You (reviewed in this newsletter); and Bébé Day By Day: 100 Keys to French Parenting. WHAT A SPRING!
And the icing on the Diane’s Books Spring Cake is an intimate evening with author Joshua Henkin, Monday, April 15 at 6 p.m. Bring yourselves, bring your book group! Joshua (The World Without You) is one of our bright young literary stars and he has already won numerous literary awards. WE ARE EXCITED TO HOST JOSHUA HENKIN, so join us for the magic of words!
I will close with a recent quote from an op-ed piece, As Time Goes Bye, by Maureen Dowd: “Digital platforms are worthless without content. They’re shiny sacks with bells and whistles but without content, they’re empty sacks. It’s not about pixel versus print. It is not about how you’re reading. It is about what you are reading.” And do I have a book for you! LET’S TALK BOOKS!
HAPPY SPRING TO ALL AND, AS ALWAYS, HAPPY READING AND HAPPY READING OUT LOUD!
The Great Deformation: The Corruption
of Capitalism in America
by David Stockman
Greenwich’s own David Stockman, one of the key architects of the Reagan Revolution, proffers his intellectual analysis of the corruption of capitalism in America. Defying right- and left-wing boxes, Stockman provides a catalog of corrupters and defenders of sound money, fiscal rectitude and free markets. Among them, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Nixon, Greenspan, Ben Bernanke, George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Then, by contrast, he also traces a parade of statesmen who championed balanced budgets. Regardless of your political persuasion, The Great Deformation is the must read of Spring 2013! $35.00
Inspired Family Homes
by Cindy Rinfret
Another Greenwich star, award-winning designer Cindy Rinfret now gives her audience a glimpse into “quintessentially Greenwich” homes that have been and still are traditionally stately and elegant. But Cindy adds a new chapter, a new style, a “young traditional style.” These are homes that are designed for comfort, for family living, for children and dogs. These inspired family homes have spaces for gracious entertaining and for boisterous family life. Gorgeous photographs! $55.00
Book 1: Habits Of The House
Book 2: Long Live The King
by Fay Weldon
DOWNTON ABBEY FANS REJOICE! Booker Prize-finalist Fay Weldon, creator of the pilot for Upstairs, Downstairs and herself the daughter of a Downton Abbey-like housekeeper, pens (of course!) a glorious fictional trilogy of life and love in a great house in London in 1899. Waltz into the world of the Earl of Dilberne, Lord Robert, a gambler secretly facing a serious financial crisis while trying to manage the affairs of his famous estate, Belgrave Square. Love, secrets and mistresses — you will adore living in Belgrave Square! Habits Of The House is the first book, and the second, Long Live The King, is due in May. This trilogy will be gloriously completed in December with The New Countess. And I know that you will be anxiously awaiting that installment! Glorious storytelling! Don’t miss it! Delectable! PERFECTION! $24.99
POETRY! Stardines Swim High
Across The Sky And Other Poems
Written by Jack Prelutsky Illustrated by Carin Berger
April is Poetry Month, and do we have a treat for you! Jack Prelutsky, the nation’s first children’s poet laureate, takes our imagination to a whole new level! Pay attention now! The Earth now has a group of “imaginary” new species — Stardines, Fountain Lions, Slobsters, Magpipes, to name a few — all introduced to you in verse. Jack Prelutsky worked in close collaboration with fine artist Carin Berger, who conducted considerable field forays in preparing Prelutsky’s imaginary specimens for exhibition. Here’s to poetry! Here’s to endless imagination! $17.99
Pluto’s Secret: An Icy World’s
Tale of Discovery
Written by Margaret Weitekamp with
David Devorkin Illustrated by Diane Keld
In association with the Smithsonian Natural Air and Space Museum comes this nonfiction picture book for children that is enchanting, exciting, funny and informative. For ages 7 and up, as well as the entire family, Pluto’s Secret is written by a curator of the museum — are children’s books exciting or what? Pluto, of course, is endlessly fascinating, enigmatic and exciting because people, especially children, have been baffled as to why it is no longer classified as a planet. And now we have the answer! We love non-fiction wrapped in an exciting story — we call it narrative non-fiction — and our Diane’s Books children are loving this new approach to non-fiction as much as we are. I LOVE THIS BOOK! $16.95
HISTORY! THOSE ANGRY DAYS: Roosevelt, Lindbergh and America’s Fight Over World War II 1939-1941 by Lynne Olson The historian/author who exhilarated us with Citizens Of London now tackles a subject no one has written about. Set stateside during the time when Hitler’s troops overwhelmed Europe while the United States watched from the sidelines, Olson describes the vicious internal struggle that tore this country apart. Fabulous history!
GOLF! WALKING WITH JACK: A Father’s Journey to Become His Son’s Caddie by Don J. Snyder The result of a long-standing promise, this duo had promised each other that someday son Jack would play on the pro golf tour and his father Don would walk beside him as his caddie. Years later, Don left the comfort of his home to learn how to caddie from the Scots!
BASEBALL! MICKEY AND WILLIE: Mantle and Mays, The Parallel Lives of Baseball’s Golden Age by Allen Barra This acclaimed sportswriter has been following Mickey and Willie’s stories for decades, exposing the uncanny parallels between two of the game’s greatest. What their fans may not have known was that these two legends also shared a close, personal friendship.
HISTORICAL FICTION! A CHAIN OF THUNDER: A Novel of the Siege of Vicksburg by Jeff Shaara The second installment in this fabulous trilogy takes us to Vicksburg with Union General Major Ulysses S. Grant and his crucial showdown with Lt.-Gen. John
HISTORICAL FICTION! A CHAIN OF THUNDER: A Novel of the Siege of Vicksburg by Jeff Shaara The second installment in this fabulous trilogy takes us to Vicksburg with Union General Major Ulysses S. Grant and his crucial showdown with Lt.-Gen. John Pemberton’s Confederate Army. GREAT HISTORY!
CHILD OF VENGEANCE by David Kirk Gordon loves it! This is a bold and vivid historical epic of feudal Japan, based on the real life exploits of the legendary samurai Musashi Miyamoto. Japan in the late 16th century was a land in turmoil and this rich and absorbing epic explores the complexities of one young man’s quest while capturing a turning point in Japanese history.
LAUGH OUT LOUD FUNNY! INSANE CITY by Dave Barry Pour a nice glass of wine and come to Miami with Seth, a soon-to-be groom, and watch as he tries to put the last-minute pieces together for the big day with his fancy bride. But, wait! Oh, no! He’s lost his tuxedo, the ring, even the hotel where he is staying! Don’t miss these hilarious Dave Barry antics!
CRIME! ANDY GROSS! NO WAY BACK Diane’s Books celeb author hits one way out of the park as he takes on Mexico and the drug cartels. The U.S. is playing both sides in the war on drugs. Gross parachutes into this hell and reminds us of truth, honesty, innocent victims and the horrors of a worldwide enterprise that is out of control. Congratulations, Andy! The crime hit of spring 2013!
HARLAN COBEN! SIX YEARS We love Harlan Coben! But this time we meet a Harlan we have not seen before! Six years have passed since Jake Fisher watched Natalie Avery walk out of his life and marry someone else. A psychological thriller that will keep you guessing until the last page! A masterpiece of modern suspense!
IAN RANKIN! STANDING IN A DEAD MAN’S GRAVE On the 20th anniversary of Rankin’s first American publication comes a novel bursting with the vitality and suspense that made its author one of crime fiction’s biggest names. This is the triumphant return of John Rebus and the story is a riveting story of sin, redemption and revenge. This delicious piece of crime fiction re-unites Rebus and Rankin!
DEBUT CRIME! GHOSTMAN by Roger Hobbs A brand-new protagonist who is a chameleon, even a ghost at times, and should remind avid crime readers of the iconic Jack Reacher! The Ghostman is in his mid-30s and completely off the grid. He is summoned by an old friend to sort out a casino robbery in Atlantic City and within a few hours a private jet is whisking him away to New Jersey, right into a spectacular mess, with FBI agents waiting for him! AN EASY 10!
LITERARY! A DUAL INHERITANCE by Joanne Hershon I am dazzled! The first literary novel I have read since Rules Of Civility that even comes close to that achievement! Meet Ed and Hugh, both of whom are attending Harvard in 1963. Separated by class, worlds apart, they are also strangely and indelibly connected.
THE IMPOSTER BRIDE by Nancy Richler In the wake of World War II, a young, enigmatic woman named Lily arrives in Montreal on her own, expecting to be married to a man she has never met. Nancy, the granddaughter of Mordecai Richler, one of Canada’s literary giants, tells us this imposter’s tale in glorious, beautiful prose. GORGEOUS!
ESCAPE! THE FEVER TREE by Jenny McVeigh In the late 1800s, London-born Frances Irvine, 19, embarks for South Africa and the Diamond Rush in search of a new life, a new future, a new home and possibly an arranged marriage. Amy Einhorn is the esteemed editor of this delicious escape!
THE ASHFORD AFFAIR by Lauren Willig I inhaled this book and fell in love with Addie! It all starts with her arrival in Kenya in 1926, unwed but almost engaged. She’s there to see Bea, her beloved yet estranged cousin, and Addie is determined to revive their friendship before she moves on to the next chapter in her life. Be prepared to read this in one glorious sitting!
HISTORICAL FICTION! Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald by Therese Anne Fowler We are revisiting the zany and timeless love affair/marriage of author F. Scott Fitzgerald and his beautiful Zelda. This fabulous novel takes a new tack by re-imagining the tumultuous life of Zelda Fitzgerald, who in Fowler’s hands is larger than life and fascinating!
PARIS: The Novel by Edward Rutherford From the grand master of the historical fiction novel comes a dazzling portrait of Paris. Rutherford’s novel moves back and forth in time, across centuries, from the building of Notre Dame, to the chaos of the French Revolution, and all the way to the 21st century. Magnifique!
HONOR by Eli Shafak The author of Bastard Of Istanbul now takes us deep into the lives of Turkish immigrants in London and their struggle to honor family and culture in a strange land. A great bookend to Bastard Of Istanbul. POWERFUL!
BIOGRAPHY! NANCY: The Story of Lady Astor by Adrian Fort Joan Gray’s Spring Pick! Here is her beautiful review: “Nancy examines Lady Astor, one of five Langhorne sisters of Virginia. It focuses on her political life and ascent as the first woman in Parliament, her marriage to Waldorf Astor as well as her life at Cliveden. This is a serious political book!” Joan adds that Nancy is every bit a great read for guys who love history, too!
PARENTING! I AM SO THE BOSS OF YOU: An 8 Step Guide to Giving Your Family The “Business” by Kathy Buckworth This Canadian award-winning author writes the most important parenting book that has crossed my desk in years. Do you go democratic or hover like a helicopter? Do you take a tiger-ish approach or something more hands-off like French parents? Buckworth imagines a world where politics and practices rule the home front and Mom and Dad are definitely in charge! A must for all parents, please!
INSPIRATIONAL! LEAN IN: Women, Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg Simply fabulous! Sandberg, the COO of Facebook, gave an electrifying lecture in 2010 describing how women unintentionally hold themselves back in their careers. Her speech, which became a phenomenon, encouraged women to “sit at the table,” seek challenges, take risks and pursue goals with gusto. Perfect for graduates, too! The Diane’s Divas love it!
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