I decided to give away not one or two but eight books as part of my end of summer contest. I've attempted to compile a pretty eclectic mix of books so hopefully there's a little something for everyone.
The books include the following.
1. Ian McEwan's On Chesil Beach
A little about it: The year is 1962. Florence, the daughter of a successful businessman and an aloof Oxford academic, is a talented violinist. She dreams of a career on the concert stage and of the perfect life she will create with Edward, the earnest young history student she met by chance and who unexpectedly wooed her and won her heart. Edward grew up in the country on the outskirts of Oxford where his father, the headmaster of the local school, struggled to keep the household together and his mother, brain-damaged from an accident, drifted in a world of her own. Edward’s native intelligence, coupled with a longing to experience the excitement and intellectual fervour of the city, had taken him to University College in London. Falling in love with the accomplished, shy and sensitive Florence – and having his affections returned with equal intensity – has utterly changed his life.
Their marriage, they believe, will bring them happiness, the confidence and the freedom to fulfill their true destinies. The glowing promise of the future, however, cannot totally mask their worries about the wedding night. Edward, who has had little experience with women, frets about his sexual prowess. Florence’s anxieties run deeper: she is overcome by conflicting emotions and a fear of the moment she will surrender herself.
From the precise and intimate depiction of two young lovers eager to rise above the hurts and confusion of the past, to the touching story of how their unexpressed misunderstandings and fears shape the rest of their lives, On Chesil Beach is an extraordinary novel that brilliantly, movingly shows us how the entire course of a life can be changed – by a gesture not made or a word not spoken.
2. Susane Colasanti's Waiting for You
A little about it: Derek is clearly the boy Marisa has been waiting for, but there's just one problem. He has a girlfriend. Nash, Marisa's neighbor and childhood friend, is totally geeked out, with zero boyfriend potential. So of course Nash wants to take his friendship with Marisa to the next level.
Beyond her boy drama, Marisa is also dealing with overcoming a major problem from her past, a family that's falling apart, and a best friend who won't stop talking to sketchy guys online. Only the anonymous DJ, who has the school hooked on his underground podcasts, seems to get what Marisa's going through. But she has no idea who he is...or does she?
3. Stieg Larsson's The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
A little about it: Cases rarely come much colder than the decades-old disappearance of teen heiress Harriet Vanger from her family's remote island retreat north of Stockholm, nor do fiction debuts hotter than this European bestseller by muckraking Swedish journalist Larsson. At once a strikingly original thriller and a vivisection of Sweden's dirty not-so-little secrets (as suggested by its original title, Men Who Hate Women), this first of a trilogy introduces a provocatively odd couple: disgraced financial journalist Mikael Blomkvist, freshly sentenced to jail for libeling a shady businessman, and the multipierced and tattooed Lisbeth Salander, a feral but vulnerable superhacker. Hired by octogenarian industrialist Henrik Vanger, who wants to find out what happened to his beloved great-niece before he dies, the duo gradually uncover a festering morass of familial corruption—at the same time, Larsson skillfully bares some of the similar horrors that have left Salander such a marked woman. Larsson died in 2004, shortly after handing in the manuscripts for what will be his legacy.
4. Gregory McGuire's Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
A little about it: When Dorothy triumphed over the Wicked Witch of the West in L. Frank Baum's classic tale, we heard only her side of the story. But what about her arch-nemesis, the mysterious witch? Where did she come from? How did she become so wicked? And what is the true nature of evil? Gregory Maguire creates a fantasy world so rich and vivid that we will never look at Oz the same way again. Wicked is about a land where animals talk and strive to be treated like first-class citizens, Munchkinlanders seek the comfort of middle-class stability and the Tin Man becomes a victim of domestic violence. And then there is the little green-skinned girl named Elphaba, who will grow up to be the infamous Wicked Witch of the West, a smart, prickly and misunderstood creature who challenges all our preconceived notions about the nature of good and evil.
5. Anna Godbersen's The Luxe
To read what it's about, see here.
6. A SIGNED, Hardcopy of Jennifer Weiner's Fly Away Home
A little about it: When Sylvie Serfer met Richard Woodruff in law school, she had wild curls, wide hips, and lots of opinions. Decades later, Sylvie has remade herself as the ideal politician’s wife—her hair dyed and straightened, her hippie-chick wardrobe replaced by tailored knit suits. At fifty-seven, she ruefully acknowledges that her job is staying twenty pounds thinner than she was in her twenties and tending to her husband, the senator.
Lizzie, the Woodruffs’ younger daughter, is at twenty-four a recovering addict, whose mantra HALT (Hungry? Angry? Lonely? Tired?) helps her keep her life under control. Still, trouble always seems to find her. Her older sister, Diana, an emergency room physician, has everything Lizzie failed to achieve—a husband, a young son, the perfect home—and yet she’s trapped in a loveless marriage. With temptation waiting in one of the ER’s exam rooms, she finds herself craving more.
After Richard’s extramarital affair makes headlines, the three women are drawn into the painful glare of the national spotlight. Once the press conference is over, each is forced to reconsider her life, who she is and who she is meant to be.
7. A recently-published soft-cover book of your choosing!
8. A SIGNED copy of Theo Nestor's How to Sleep Alone in a King-Size Bed
A little about it from Publishers Weekly: A full-time mom and a part-time professor at the nearby University of Washington, Nestor had been married 12 years, raising two children with the man she loved. Then one afternoon, she discovered her husband had been using her bank card. He had a gambling problem, and she'd already warned him, if it started again, it would end their marriage. They agreed to have a good divorce, but Nestor had no idea how to reimagine her life as a single mother. As Nestor moves through what she's told are the three stages of divorce—shock/denial, adjustment and acceptance—she discovers she's a lot more resilient than she'd ever thought. She has good parenting instincts and some solid friends. With cheerfully self-deprecating humor, Nestor shares her divorce process, always giving generous credit to the family and friends who helped her, and in her telling she offers hope that if that's what readers are facing, they, too, can manage.
Check back on September 9 for a Q & A with the author! And for a sneak peak into the book, see here. You can learn more about Nestor on her blog and Website.
How it works:
-First place winner will get to choose TWO books.
-Second place winner will pick their fav choice of the remaining books and on and on down the line until all eight are taken
Rules:-You must be a follower of my blog.
-To enter, simply find my picture under the "followers" list (page 2 of "followers), click on it, and send me an email, writing "super contest giveaway" in the subject line.
-An extra entry will be added for every friend you refer to who signs up as a follower (just make sure they mention you in their email entry).
-An extra entry will be added if you spread the love via Facebook, your blog, or Twitter (just send the link where you've posted it to me so I know).
-Contest closes at 5 pm EST, September 16.