Saturday, December 17, 2016

The Black Friday Haul: Fiction Edition

Stacking the Shelves is hosted by Tynga’s Reviews. I get to show off all the books I’ve gotten recently. I went a little nuts on Black Friday. Here are the novels I got:

The 19th Wife – David Ebershoff

It is 1875, and Ann Eliza Young has recently separated from her powerful husband, Brigham Young, prophet and leader of the Mormon Church. Expelled and an outcast, Ann Eliza embarks on a crusade to end polygamy in the United States. A rich account of her family’s polygamous history is revealed, including how both she and her mother became plural wives. Yet soon after Ann Eliza’s story begins, a second exquisite narrative unfolds–a tale of murder involving a polygamist family in present-day Utah. Jordan Scott, a young man who was thrown out of his fundamentalist sect years earlier, must reenter the world that cast him aside in order to discover the truth behind his father’s death. And as Ann Eliza’s narrative intertwines with that of Jordan’s search, readers are pulled deeper into the mysteries of love, family, and faith.

Black Dove, White Raven – Elizabeth Wein

Emilia and Teo's lives changed in a fiery, terrifying instant when a bird strike brought down the plane their stunt pilot mothers were flying. Teo's mother died immediately, but Em's survived, determined to raise Teo according to his late mother's wishes—in a place where he won't be discriminated against because of the color of his skin. But in 1930s America, a white woman raising a black adoptive son alongside a white daughter is too often seen as a threat. 
Seeking a home where her children won't be held back by ethnicity or gender, Rhoda brings Em and Teo to Ethiopia, and all three fall in love with the beautiful, peaceful country. But that peace is shattered by the threat of war with Italy, and teenage Em and Teo are drawn into the conflict. Will their devotion to their country, its culture and people, and each other be their downfall or their salvation?

The Heart Goes Last – Margaret Atwood

Living in their car, surviving on tips, Charmaine and Stan are in a desperate state. So, when they see an advertisement for Consilience, a ‘social experiment’ offering stable jobs and a home of their own, they sign up immediately. All they have to do in return for suburban paradise is give up their freedom every second month – swapping their home for a prison cell. At first, all is well. But then, unknown to each other, Stan and Charmaine develop passionate obsessions with their ‘Alternates,’ the couple that occupy their house when they are in prison. Soon the pressures of conformity, mistrust, guilt and sexual desire begin to take over.

The Witch of Blackbird Pond – Elizabeth George Speare

Orphaned Kit Tyler knows, as she gazes for the first time at the cold, bleak shores of Connecticut Colony, that her new home will never be like the shimmering Caribbean island she left behind. In her relatives' stern Puritan community, she feels like a tropical bird that has flown to the wrong part of the world, a bird that is now caged and lonely. The only place where Kit feels completely free is in the meadows, where she enjoys the company of the old Quaker woman known as the Witch of Blackbird Pond, and on occasion, her young sailor friend Nat. But when Kit's friendship with the "witch" is discovered, Kit is faced with suspicion, fear, and anger. She herself is accused of witchcraft!

The Unintentional Time Traveler – Everett Maroon

Fifteen-year-old Jack Bishop has mad skills with cars and engines, but knows he’ll never get a driver’s license because of his epilepsy. Agreeing to participate in an experimental clinical trial to find new treatments for his disease, he finds himself in a completely different body—that of a girl his age, Jacqueline, who defies the expectations of her era. Since his seizures usually give him spazzed out visions, Jack presumes this is a hallucination. Feeling fearless, he steals a horse, expecting that at any moment he’ll wake back up in the clinical trial lab. When that doesn't happen, Jacqueline falls unexpectedly in love, even as the town in the past becomes swallowed in a fight for its survival. Jack/Jacqueline is caught between two lives and epochs, and must find a way to save everyone around him as well as himself. And all the while, he is losing time, even if he is getting out of algebra class.

We Are Unprepared – Meg Little Reilly

Ash and Pia's move from Brooklyn to the bucolic hills of Vermont was supposed to be a fresh start—a picturesque farmhouse, mindful lifestyle, maybe even children. But just three months in, news breaks of a devastating superstorm expected in the coming months. Fear of the impending disaster divides their tight-knit rural town and exposes the chasms in Ash and Pia's marriage. Ash seeks common ground with those who believe in working together for the common good. Pia teams up with "preppers" who want to go off the grid and war with the rest of the locals over whom to trust and how to protect themselves. Where Isole had once been a town of old farm families, yuppie transplants and beloved rednecks, they divide into paranoid preppers, religious fanatics and government tools. 

Have you read any of these? What did you think?


  1. I haven't read any but hope you enjoy them all!!

  2. Hi, AJ!

    I haven't read any of these books! I've heard good things about Margaret Atwood recently, though admittedly have only read one of her works myself. And I think? I've seen We Are Unprepared floating around the blog block in the last few weeks, though I don't think I've heard much about the book itself yet.

    Thanks so much for sharing with us! Here's my Stacking the Shelves post, if you're interested in checking it out. No worries or pressure if you're not, though! Either way, I hope you enjoy your newest bookish acquisitions, and have a great rest of your weekend!

  3. A lot of your books are new to me. They do look interesting. I hope you love all of your new books.

    Grace @ Books of Love

  4. I've only heard of The Witch of Blackbird Pond. I actually have it sitting on my bookshelf, waiting to be read. You got a lot of really interesting books this week.

    Happy reading!
    Here's my STS

  5. What a great selection of books this week! :-) I hope you love them when you get around to reading them.

  6. I haven't read any of them, but The Heart Goes Last seems interesting.

    It seems like most of these deal with relocating of some kind.

  7. The Heart Goes Last sounds really good. Happy reading!
    Krystianna @ Downright Dystopian

  8. I usually get lots of books and dvds around the Black Friday sales but this year was pretty I just grabbed some Game of Thrones stuff instead! I had a nose around your blog and see you read Indie books...yea! I think most of what I read now is Indie and I can't get enough of it. Oh and your dogs are gorgeous! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  9. I really liked The Nineteenth Wife and Witch of Blackbird Pond. (My 1970s Scholastic Books edition had a cover that made it look like a romance novel, so I was always embarrassed to read it in public.) I'm eager to read more Wein after finishing Code Name Verity, and Atwood is always interesting, if not always easy to read. I just heard of The Unintentional Time Travel the other day, and the last book on your list is new to me. Looks like a great haul! This was my first year buying books this way, and I got a good stack for the classroom.

  10. The 19th Wife is a wonderful book! I hope that you like it as much as I did. As for Margaret Atwood, I have only read one book by her, and it was just a couple of weeks ago, and I would read anything by her right now.

  11. A+ haul! Liking the Margaret Atwood and Everette Maroon ;)

  12. Nice Haul! I haven't heard of a lot of these before, but I am familiar with The Heart Goes Last although I haven't read it yet. Sounds like a really good read :D

  13. The Heart Goes Last is really good - different, but classic Atwood! I hope you enjoy it! :D