The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

A Little Blog of Books has a review of one the Kirkus Prize Finalists for Fiction, The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters.

A Little Blog of Books

The Paying GuestsI feel very spoilt having two of my favourite authors publish new books this summer. First, ‘Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage‘ by Haruki Murakami and now ‘The Paying Guests’ by Sarah Waters. Set in London shortly after the First World War, unmarried Frances Wray and her widowed mother have fallen on hard times and are forced to rent out rooms at their home in Camberwell. Frances becomes increasingly close to their young and modern “paying guests”, Leonard and Lilian Barbour. However, her relationship with Lilian soon triggers an unexpected and violent chain of events.

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Finalists for the Kirkus Prize

The Kirkus Prize awards $50,000 to winners of the fiction, nonfiction, and young reader’s categories.  The Kirkus Reviews is an 81 year old magazine that reviews over 7,000 books a year.  It has been an integral part of the publishing since its founding.  Kirkusreviews.com is a fabulous source of reviews on brand news books in numerous genres.  Here are this years finalists:

Fiction:

The Blazing World by Siri Hustvedt

Euphoria by Lily King

All Our Names by Dinaw Mengestu

Florence Gordon by Brian Morton

The Remedy for Love by Bill Roorbach

The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters

Non-Fiction:

Can’t We Talk about Something More Pleasant?: A Memoir by Roz Chast

Jonathan Swift: His Life and His World by Leo Damrosch

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History by Elizabeth Kolbert

The Lagoon: How Aristotle Invented Science by Armand Marie Leroi

Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, translated by Arthur Goldhammer

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption by Bryan Stevenson

Young Readers’ Literature:

El Deafo written and illustrated by Cece Bell

The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus by Jen Byrant and illustrated by Melissa Sweet

The Key That Swallowed Joey Pigza (Joey Pigza Books) Joey Pigza by Jack Gantos

The Story of Owen

The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E.K. Johnson

The Freedom Summer Murders by Don Mitchell

Aviary Wonders Inc. Spring Catalog and Instruction Manual written and illustrated by  Kate Samworth

 

The Lives of Others by Neel Mukherjee

A Little Blog of Books and Other Stuff has a review of Neel Mukherjee’s book The Lives of Others which was shortlisted for this year’s Man Booker Prize. The Little Blog describes the book as “an ambitious and richly detailed family saga” of three generations of Indian family in 1967 Calcutta. The Little Blog states that the book “deserves it place” on the Booker shortlist. Check out The Little Blog’s review.

A Little Blog of Books

The Lives of OthersShortlisted for this year’s Man Booker Prize, ‘The Lives of Others’ by Neel Mukherjee tells the story of twenty-one year old Supratik Ghosh who has left his comfortable family home in Calcutta/Kolkata to join the Communist Party of India. Set primarily in 1967, the story alternates between Supratik’s new life as a Naxalite activist and guerilla fighter working in the rice fields of West Bengal and the everyday lives of the relatives he has left behind. 

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We Were Liars: Too Unbelievable For Fiction?

The Misfortune of Knowing has a book review of We Were Liars by E. Lockhart. A.M.B. says that the book is in some ways a direct homage to King Lear and Wuthering Heights, but with more plot holes. Check out The Misfortune of Knowing.

The Misfortune Of Knowing

We Were LiarsE. Lockhart’s We Were Liars begins ominously: “Welcome to the beautiful Sinclair family. No one is a criminal. No one is an addict. No one is a failure.” The Sinclairs are attractive, wealthy, and messed up. Seventeen-year-old Cadence Sinclair Eastman, the eldest grandchild of Tipper and Harris Sinclair, is giving away her belongings, one by one, except for her well-used library card. When she was 15, something terrible happened to her—and to her family—but she can’t remember it, and no one will tell her the truth.

Sadly, someone on the Internet under the guise of being a “book reviewer” told me what happened to Cadence (without a “spoiler alert”). Already knowing the twist—and feeling rather uncomfortable about it—I wouldn’t have read this novel had it not been the latest selection for Katie’s Fellowship of the Worms.* I decided to join in the read-along to assess how well Lockhart pulled off…

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