Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Recommended Reading and a Giveaway! - THE HOMECOMING OF SAMUEL LAKE

I was lucky enough to get my hands on an advanced reading copy (ARC) of The Homecoming of Samuel Lake by Jenny Wingfield. If you haven't heard of this book yet, you will.

Regular readers of The Shellshank Redemption know I don't recommend books just to recommend them. So, if I'm talking about it here, it means something about it made me want to get copies for everyone I know - and for everyone I don't know! - and thrust it into their hands and make them stop whatever they're doing and read it. This is one of those books.

Here's what it has: a sharp, quick writing style softened by the down home voices of the characters. Laugh out loud lines. A character named Swan Lake. (Yes, I know. The idea made me want to roll my eyes at first. But here, it works. Trust me.) It's got a little boy who will break your heart and a group of people who will put it back together again. And a villain who will make you want to kill him with your own two hands. (There were times I wanted to throw the book across the room because I hated him so much and it was the only way I could think of to hurt him.)

Now, no way am I giving up my ARC of this book (again, regular readers knew that was never going to happen!)  BUT I am giving away one brand new copy of it to one of you. I won't be able to thrust it into your hands myself but I will do it via the postal service.

How to enter: leave a comment telling us about a book you love. It can be one from your past or a new one you stumbled upon. Or tell us about a book you can't wait to read. You have until midnight EST on Friday, July 15th. A name will be picked at random and announced some time that weekend.

Good luck!

[Disclosure: I occasionally receive review copies of books. I don't get paid, I only write the review if I choose and receipt of the book in no way influences the content of the review.]


  1. I'm alway up for a good read. I just finished the book, "The Land of Second Chances" by George Shaffner. The main character was a woman and I was impressed at how well George wrote in her voice. I liked it enough that I am going for his second novel.

  2. It's usually a good sign when you want to read more by that author, isn't it? :) My concern is will the second one be as good as the first one? I am thrilled - for the author and for myself! - when the second one turns out just as good, if not better. (I'm thinking Khaled Hosseini's THE KITE RUNNER and A THOUSAND SPLENDID SUNS - loved them both!)

  3. Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary. The best book ever, hands down.

  4. I just returned from vacationing in Savannah, GA. It's one of the most beautiful and historically rich places I have been. While I was there, I picked up a copy of "Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil." It's an older book, but being in Savannah made me want to know more about it. Even though it's a fiction work, it's based on true events. Can't wait to start reading it!!

  5. Jenny - I loved those Ramona books! I can't wait to get them for my niece when she gets older.

    Holly - I've heard so many things about that book over the years and yet I still haven't read it. Let us know how you like it!

  6. Hi Madeline,
    The Homecoming of Samuel Lake sounds like a great book I would love to read!
    I'm currently reading My Ruby Slippers: The Road Back to Kansas by Tracy Seeley. It's a fascinating memoir.
    And two books I recommend and love are Mudbound by Hillary Jordan and The Help by Kathryn Sockett.
    Donna V.

  7. Donna, I loved both THE HELP and MUDBOUND - I gave copies of those as gifts for birthdays and Christmas. If you enjoyed those two, you will love SAMUEL LAKE. :)

    (I believe Hillary Jordan has a new one coming out soon...)