Books I can't wait to read!

I have usually read or marked to read several of the books making the Orange Prize short list, long before the long list is announced. 

I have read The Night Circus (well attempted, DNF), have a copy of The Submission on my iPod, and library holds for all the books listed below.

Long list for the Orange Prize: I'm eager to see what makes the short list on April 17.  Fans of Room (Emma Donaghue) will be pleased to see she has made the list with her new novel, The Sealed Letter.

Have you read any of these titles?  I can't wait to read them!

The Grief of Others: Is keeping a secret from a spouse always an act of infidelity? And what cost does such a secret exact on a family?

The Ryries have suffered a loss: the death of a baby just fifty-seven hours after his birth. Without words to express their grief, the parents, John and Ricky, try to return to their previous lives. Struggling to regain a semblance of normalcy for themselves and for their two older children, they find themselves pretending not only that little has changed, but that their marriage, their family, have always been intact. Yet in the aftermath of the baby's death, long-suppressed uncertainties about their relationship come roiling to the surface. A dreadful secret emerges with reverberations that reach far into their past and threaten their future.

The couple's children, ten-year-old Biscuit and thirteen-year-old Paul, responding to the unnamed tensions around them, begin to act out in exquisitely- perhaps courageously-idiosyncratic ways. But as the four family members scatter into private, isolating grief, an unexpected visitor arrives, and they all find themselves growing more alert to the sadness and burdens of others-to the grief that is part of every human life but that also carries within it the power to draw us together.


The Forgotten Waltz: A recollection of the bewildering speed of attraction, the irreparable slip into longing, that reads with breathtaking immediacy.

In a pleasant suburb of Dublin, in the winter of 2009, it has snowed. A woman recalls the trail of lust and happenstance that brought her to fall for "the love of her life." As the city outside comes to a halt, she remembers the days of their affair in one hotel room or another: long afternoons made blank by bliss and denial. Now, as the silent streets and the stillness and vertigo of the falling snow make the day luminous and full of possibility, she awaits the arrival on her doorstep of his fragile, twelve-year-old daughter, Evie.


The Submission: A jury gathers in Manhattan to select a memorial for the victims of a devastating terrorist attack. Their fraught deliberations complete, the jurors open the envelope containing the anonymous winner’s name—and discover he is an American Muslim. Instantly they are cast into roiling debate about the claims of grief, the ambiguities of art, and the meaning of Islam. Their conflicted response is only a preamble to the country’s.

His fiercest defender on the jury is its sole widow, the self-possessed and mediagenic Claire Burwell. When his selection leaks to the press, she finds herself under pressure from outraged family members and in collision with journalists, activists, opportunistic politicians, and fellow jurors.

The Translation of the Bones: Mary-Margaret O'Reilly is ready and willing to help out Father Diamond in the Sacred Heart church in Battersea. She may not be very bright, and she is sadly overweight, but she can certainly clean.

One day she decides to give the statue of Jesus a thorough and loving cleansing. But then something strange happens, and moments later she lies unconscious, a great gash in her head, blood on the floor. Word gets out that this strange happening is the opening of the statue's eyes and the flowing of blood from its head.

After she recovers, she goes back obsessively to the statue of Jesus. He has told her things, things she must act on, and urgently. But He has become remote and uncommunicative once again, and she is in despair. The act she decides on is a shocking one, and it will bring together the lives of the O'Reillys and the Morrisons in a way that will change their lives forever.

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