My talented friends keep writing books and my pride knows no bounds. Be the first to EMAIL me at hank [at] hankstuever [dot] [com] and let me know which book you want — I’ve got FOUR copies of each title; one per customer. (Sorry, emails only. No tweet replies, no Facebook replies; and be aware that comments on this blog go to a spam filter first, so that’s the slowest way possible to win.)
First up is Curtis Sittenfeld’s fantastic new novel, Sisterland. (UPDATE, 7:18 p.m.: Sisterland copies are all gone. Sorry!) Here’s my review, via Goodreads …
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I was sent a bound galley of this novel back in March and DEVOURED it; have been waiting closer to release date (next month) so that I can open my can of high praise. Curtis Sittenfeld has done it again, but she has also pushed her work in a different direction. “Sisterland” melds her talent for interior narration and deep, perfect descriptions of everyday life (relationships, friendships, private disappointments, sex and marriage, parenting, family) with the idea/notion of the sort of unsolved mysteries of paranormal/supernatural that might lure a whole new kind of reader. It’s not a book about ESP superpowers or ghosts or anything like that, not really — just enough to set this novel apart from the author’s other work. As always, it’s a book about a woman with a series of doubts and inhibitions. This novel was well worth the wait, I think; take time to step back and admire the precision of the writing. Be sure to also read “American Wife” and “Prep.”
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Next up is the debut novel from my Washington Post colleague Monica Hesse, called Stray. (UPDATE: 7:30 p.m.: ALL COPIES HAVE BEEN WON.) There’s a sequel already coming. American publishers have really missed the first boat here — this is the British edition, because the British are always so much better at finding the next, new thing. Perfect for the YA in your life or the people who just dig reading YA fiction. (Perfect for any sentient being who isn’t hooked up to a virtual reality life machine, really.) Here’s my Goodreads review …
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The most productive features writer at the Washington Post’s Style section (and I should know!) somehow found time to also write this absorbing, sleek novel about a future where the answer to a surfeit of neglected/abused/abandoned children is to hook them up to a virtual-reality “perfect childhood” represented by one boy’s life. Then some of them escape before their cut-off date. It’s a great, suspenseful read, but also heartbreaking in parts.
So don’t delay! These won’t last long. UPDATE: ALL GONE! THANKS.