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Holiday Wish List

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A list of the books I would love to curl up with over the holidays. Some holiday themed short stories from Connie Willis to start. Louise Penny's first book because who wouldn't want to spend Christmas in Three Pines and winter is a good time to reread the entire series from the beginning. Janet Evanovich's latest because Stephanie Plum feels like an old friend and we are due for a catch up. Bring Up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel - my real wish is for the next book in the series, The Light and the Mirror but since it's not in print yet I'll have to settle for rereading the second book in anticipation. And lastly, News of the World - something brand new to me which sounds like a delightful and engrossing read.

    Miracle, and Other Christmas Storie

    The winner of multiple Hugo and Nebula Awards, Connie Willis capture the timeless essence of generosity and goodwill in this magical collection if Christmas stories. These eight tales-two of which have never before been published-boldly reimagine the stories of Christmas while celebrating the power of love and compassion. This enchanting treasury includes: "Miracle," in which a young woman's carefully devised plans to find romance go awry when her guardian angel shows her the true meaning of love "In Coppelius's Toyshop," where a jaded narcissist finds himself trapped in a crowded toy store at Christmastime "Epiphany," in which three modern-day wisemen embark on a quest unlike any they've ever experienced "Inn," where a choir singer gives shelter to a homeless man and his pregnant wife-only to learn later that there's much more to the couple than meets the eye And more

    Bring Up the Bodies

    Winner of the Man Booker Prize 2009 'Lock Cromwell in a deep dungeon in the morning,' says Thomas More, 'and when you come back that night he'll be sitting on a plush cushion eating larks' tongues, and all the gaolers will owe him money.' England, the 1520s. Henry VIII is on the throne, but has no heir. Cardinal Wolsey is his chief advisor, charged with securing the divorce the pope refuses to grant. Into this atmosphere of distrust and need comes Thomas Cromwell, first as Wolsey's clerk, and later his successor. Cromwell is a wholly original man: the son of a brutal blacksmith, a political genius, a briber, a charmer, a bully, a man with a delicate and deadly expertise in manipulating people and events. Ruthless in pursuit of his own interests, he is as ambitious in his wider politics as he is for himself. His reforming agenda is carried out in the grip of a self-interested parliament and a king who fluctuates between romantic passions and murderous rages. From one of our finest living writers, Wolf Hall is that very rare thing: a truly great English novel, one that explores the intersection of individual psychology and wider politics. With a vast array of characters, and richly overflowing with incident, it peels back history to show us Tudor England as a half-made society, moulding itself with great passion and suffering and courage.

    News of the World

    National Book Award Finalist-Fiction It is 1870 and Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd travels through northern Texas, giving live readings to paying audiences hungry for news of the world. An elderly widower who has lived through three wars and fought in two of them, the captain enjoys his rootless, solitary existence. In Wichita Falls, he is offered a $50 gold piece to deliver a young orphan to her relatives in San Antonio. Four years earlier, a band of Kiowa raiders killed Johanna's parents and sister; sparing the little girl, they raised her as one of their own. Recently rescued by the U.S. army, the ten-year-old has once again been torn away from the only home she knows. Their 400-mile journey south through unsettled territory and unforgiving terrain proves difficult and at times dangerous. Johanna has forgotten the English language, tries to escape at every opportunity, throws away her shoes, and refuses to act "civilized." Yet as the miles pass, the two lonely survivors tentatively begin to trust each other, forging a bond that marks the difference between life and death in this treacherous land. Arriving in San Antonio, the reunion is neither happy nor welcome. The captain must hand Johanna over to an aunt and uncle she does not remember-strangers who regard her as an unwanted burden. A respectable man, Captain Kidd is faced with a terrible choice: abandon the girl to her fate or become-in the eyes of the law-a kidnapper himself. Exquisitely rendered and morally complex, News of the World is a brilliant work of historical fiction that explores the boundaries of family, responsibility, honor, and trust.

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