In January, Mailbox Monday is being hosted by Rose City Reader.
I received three books in the mail last week. The first is very nice hardcover memoir written by Annie Proulx called Bird Cloud. From Simon and Schuster's website, the description reads:
"Bird Cloud" is the name Annie Proulx gave to 640 acres of Wyoming wetlands and prairie and four-hundred-foot cliffs plunging down to the North Platte River. On the day she first visited, a cloud in the shape of a bird hung in the evening sky. Proulx also saw pelicans, bald eagles, golden eagles, great blue herons, ravens, scores of bluebirds, harriers, kestrels, elk, deer and a dozen antelope. She fell in love with the land, then owned by the Nature Conservancy, and she knew what she wanted to build on it—a house in harmony with her work, her appetites and her character, a library surrounded by bedrooms and a kitchen.
Proulx's first work of nonfiction in more than twenty years, Bird Cloud is the story of designing and constructing that house—with its solar panels, Japanese soak tub, concrete floor and elk horn handles on kitchen cabinets. It is also an enthralling natural history and archaeology of the region—inhabited for millennia by Ute, Arapaho and Shoshone Indians— and a family history, going back to nineteenth-century Mississippi riverboat captains and Canadian settlers.
Proulx, a writer with extraordinary powers of observation and compassion, here turns her lens on herself. We understand how she came to be living in a house surrounded by wilderness, with shelves for thousands of books and long worktables on which to heap manuscripts, research materials and maps, and how she came to be one of the great American writers of her time. Bird Cloud is magnificent.
The other two books I received were my LT Secret Santa gifts. I'm a die-hard Margaret Atwood fan so I was very pleased to receive The Robber Bride. The second book is What Was Lost by Catherine O'Flynn. This is one of those titles that I'm sure I've seen before but I don't know where. It looks very interesting though and I'm looking forward to reading both books.
I've found that doing the annual Secret Santas are loads of fun but also a bit stressful. On the one hand it was exciting to search for and then choose a couple of books for my Santee and on the other the wait to find out if s/he would like what I chose is a bit nerve-wracking. This year was exceptionally bad in that regard since the packages of books for LT's SantaThing were quite late and even now many people are still waiting for their books to arrive!
Regardless, thanks to my Santa for choosing books that I know I will enjoy!