Monday, March 30, 2009

Saying Thank You

Blogging about books doesn't make money - but one of the perks is that bookshops/publishers/distributors/authors are very generous in giving me copies.

I've been a bit lazy blogging about donated books in the past, but am going to try to turn over a new leaf - and if I haven't time, energy or brain space to actually review them - at least I can feature them and let you know what's out there. Follow the links to find out more about each title.

The stack above came from distributor Pansing who are incredibly kind to me! Topping the pile is Mario Vargos Llosa's Bad Girl in which one of the masters of postmodernism takes possession of the plot of Flaubert's Madam Bovary, and makes it entirely his own. (Reviewed here by The New York Times).

Several of the books are historical novels. There's Ken Follet's historical epic World Without End, a sequel to his best-seller Pillars of the Earth, which takes place in the same cathedral city. The China Lover by Ian Burma is set in the movie industry in Shanghai during World War II and in postwar Tokyo. While The Lost Army by Valerio Massimo Manfredi is another historical novel - this time exploring the darker side of the Greek conquest. Narrated by a female camp follower the book tells of the katàbasis (return) of the Greek mercenaries of Xenophon's famed 'Anabasis'.

The two books that interest me most are Crime, in which Irvine Welsh tackles the topic of paedophile rings. It is hailed as a return to form for the author and Neal Stephenson's Anathem, shortlisted for this year's Hugo awards. The latter is set in the far-future on an Earth-like planet, Arbre, where scientists, philosophers and mathematicians—a religious order unto themselves—have been cloistered behind concent (convent) walls. It's a huge read - almost 1,000 pages, but looks fascinating. (I'm debating with myself - do I have the stamina to make this climb?)

At the bottom of the pile is a book I really will treasure - William Shakespeare on the Art of Love : The Illustrated Edition of The Most Beautiful Love Passages in Shakespeare's Plays and Poetry. It is also a stunning edition, bound in green silk, printed on quality paper and filled with photos and reproductions of paintings. I'd say that it would be the perfect Valentine's gift, but then you'd have to wait till next year to buy it for your sweetheart.


If there's anyone out there who would like to write a review for their own or this blog on any of these books, do let me know!

29 comments:

Amir Muhammad said...

The NYT reviewer is, or has been, quite a bad girl herself.

bibliobibuli said...

huh?

Amir Muhammad said...

She wrote a book about it, as people nowadays do.

bibliobibuli said...

oh yes. and that book was in the pile from dina i gave away saturday.

btw are you having your KLAB thingy again? i have some books to donate.

Amir Muhammad said...

Yes we are! Donations are much appreciated. The dates are 9 & 10 May.

Moja Amin™ said...

It's must be lucky to be you! ahaha!
Ehem. Sorry for eavesdropping, what KLAB is?
(a booksale eh?)

Sooooo sorry I interrupt!

bibliobibuli said...

LOl you have as much right to be here as Amir! i was talking about the KL alternative bookfair which he organised at central market last year, along with a book giveaway

Moja Amin™ said...

Ooooowh! Hahaha. Thank you, thank you.
So, will he organizing it again that again this year? please keep me updated with booksale in your blog please. Those pricey books really, really burning a hole in my parents' pocket and PTPTN account. Hahaha!

Thanks, Sharon!

Anonymous said...

You lucky girl! World Without End and also The China Lover!

- Poppadumdum

Ms Ulat Buku said...

Wow free books! I'd love some of those myself! Anyway Sharon, I think you're doing a GRAND job at keeping us updated with the happenings in the book worms world. I always look forward to reading your post.

bibliobibuli said...

if you guys would like a title and are prepared to write about it ....

Moja Amin™ said...

if you guys would like a title and are prepared to write about it ....

anddddd????

hahahaha

bibliobibuli said...

the catch is you need to post up your comments about it when you've read it!

Kama said...

ayo, sharon.. you write (review) lah. I want to read only..lol

another book fair? this is good news... plse keep us posted, tq..

Chet said...

Ken Follett's World without End was removed from the Scribd site at the request of M. Bhaskar/Pan Macmillan. But some of his other books are still there.

Aravind Adiga's The White Tiger is still on the site.

On a different note, can I borrow The China Lover?

Baronhawk said...

Dear Sharon,

Anathem sounds scrumptious!

Any reviewer or you yourself already up for that. Else I might take a gander at it if you would be kind enough to allow it to be.

Do let me know.

From upon the broken shores,

Hazlan.

p.s. Chet is on the trail again. Into the breach they go! Chet and Sharon! To fight the online pirates' ken.

bibliobibuli said...

that one already swiped shortly before, Chet.

v sorry.

baronhawk - sure. shall i bag it up and leave it at raman's shop?

lil ms d said...

wahhey 9 & 10th may. where will klb be held?

Amir Muhammad said...

same place, but now we are on the top floor!

Baronhawk said...

Dear Sharon,

Yes, if you would be so kind. I can pick it up I suppose.

Do give me a tinkle when you do.

Mobile: 012 - 315 8917
email: hazlan.zakaria@gmail.com

Or I can swing by any place in Bangsar to pick it up after work.

P.S. how shall I identify myself... at Raman's shop? Wear a red rose upon my lapel? ha ha ha ha.

By the way, I am already in the life that is not your first. Biding my time and festering my soul's anguish. I shall seek ye out in time in my giant robot. Ha ha

Thanks!

From upon the broken shores,

Hazlan

Drachen said...

Talking about giving away books, would anyone happen to have a copy of "Shiokari Pass" by Ayako Miura that they want to get rid of?

Ms Ulat Buku said...

I'm in for free books and reviewing them. Where can I sign up?

bibliobibuli said...

i've got reviewers for anatheum and china lovers. i'm reading the irvine walsh. so choose one of the others.

christinejalleh said...

An alternative book fair? Sounds interesting. I know about alternative music - alternative books are new to me!

Has anyone mooched "Bad Girl" off of you yet???

bibliobibuli said...

not yet. want to review it? can pass it to you (silverfish is my usual drop off point)

Ms Ulat Buku said...

Alamak... looks like I'm too late. What's left is Manfredi and Shakespeare huh? I'll pass for this time Sharon. Thanks anyway. :)

christinejalleh said...

Sigh, all the fun's in Kay El!

Unless you can mail it to Pee Nang, I'll have to let this baby go...

Anonymous said...

Rm800 (and counting!) is still money, Bib. What do you mean it doesn't make money ? :D

Anonymous said...

'Tis better to be vile than vile esteemed'

How true that is.

'I am that I am, and they that level
at my abuses reckon up their own'

Still relevant after 500+ years.