Saturday, August 2, 2014

July Book Haul

Nerdy Hello Kitty is my favorite.
Finding books to buy on Guam is a really difficult venture.  There are only two bookstores on-island, and they are just two locations of the same chain.

Not only are they both woefully small, but they aren't sufficiently stocked for someone who reads as widely as I do.  It also takes month for them to bring in new releases.  This isn't the oversight of the book store so much as them accurately assessing the population's reading activity.

People on Guam just don't read.  It's one of the most depressing realizations I've had since moving here.  Children don't read.  Adults don't read.  The libraries are either closed down or in disrepair.

Needless to say, I have to do the majority of my book buying online.  So, most of these came from Book Outlet, my obsession.  And a few of them came from an amazing friend who brought them back from the States.  Bless her heart.

Now onto the books:

I went on a Rainbow Rowell binge this month, and got all of her books.  I freaked out when I found Fangirl, Eleanor and Park, and Attachments on Book Outlet and bought them immediately.  I was preparing to order Landline, but my aforementioned friend brought it back for me.  I have now read all of Rowell's books, so if you are interested in seeing my thoughts on them, I have an entire post dedicated to her.

My friend also brought me Humans of New York, by Brandon Stanton and The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (a.k.a. J.K. Rowling).  I'm really glad to finally have Rowling's mystery book, and I will be reading that (and picking up Silkworm) in the near future.  I adore her as a writer, so I will buy anything she publishes.

Coraline is a really creepy and amazing children's book by Neil Gaiman.  I read it last year, but I needed to buy a copy.  However, I made a small mistake.  The version I bought is actually a graphic novel that has been adapted and illustrated by P. Craig Russell.  It's a cool concept, but I'm not crazy about the artistic style.  Even though I think it's an interesting addition to my shelves, I still need to pick up the original.

I've also previously read Wild Swans, by Jung Chang, and I loved it so much that I had to add it to my Chinese history collection.  If you are at all interested in Maoist China, the Cultural Revolution, or women in China, I recommend this to you.  It's an autobiography of three generations of Chinese women from pre-Communist China up to the 1980s.  Her account gets behind the State-sponsored propaganda and edited history books and lets the reader see the people behind every headline.  One of my favorite books!

The last book I bought is Demian, a Hermann Hesse novel.  This was a blind-buy.  I don't really know what it's about, and I haven't heard anything about it.  It just struck me as odd that I love his Siddhartha so violently yet have never read anything else by him.  I will mostly likely read this during Bout of Books 11 since it's short and will make for a good warm-up read.

Nine books in a month isn't bad.  It's better for my wallet, for sure.  I anticipate a larger haul for August, though.  Especially since I've already ordered nine books.  Oops.

What books have you added to your shelves this month?  I'd love to see what everyone else is buying.  Tell me in the comments below.