Welcome 2021

Best of 2020

So the big news is that I broke my ankle on December 2nd in three places and am forced to stay off my feet for three months!  I have been trying to figure out a way to slow down.  Being forced to stay off my feet wasn't how I imagined it but I will take what I get and get the most of it.  One of the first tasks I did was to work diligently in restocking both stores and meticulously choosing favorite books from last year and years past to stock on our shelves for both the Winter Park and Winter Garden stores.

January is a time to reflect and to look back and find last year's best books and to find books that are coming out in 2021. One of my favorite things to do is write reviews. I am starting my blog again with reviews, highlights, interviews, and everything else for the bibliophile in all of us. I started to methodically catalog the best books of 2020. I plan to narrow this very long list and come up with a manageable selection of books to read, review, interview the authors, and share on this blog.  I couldn't believe how many great books are out there to read. The list below is going to be on our shelves in January. You will notice that we have included videos from interviews we had and some from Southern Bookseller's Reader Meets Writer Series and the JCC Partnership Series virtual events in 2020. Also, as part of my search to find all these books, I went through a dozen best and prize winners for 2020. Look at the lists too by clicking here.

On January 1st I began my three-month journey of reading as many books as I can and talk about them while I am recovering from a broken foot forcing me to stay off my feet for three months. I have already started by reading this months Subscription and reviewing it, The Push by  Ashley Audrain  Here is my review:

The Push, a debut novel, is a psychological thriller that tells the tales of three generations of women who have been abused and are passing on their traumas to each other. The unsettling reality that Blythe finds herself in is her inability to know what a good mother is or how to become a good mother. She doesn’t have the confidence to trust her instincts.  So, when she finally had her daughter, Violet, nothing seems to be the way it should, but how can she truly know. This book makes you think about how fragile mother-daughter relationships are and where struggles between them originated. 

Blythe is trying to change the abuse sequences, but her husband is dismissive and provides no support. Thankfully she has a clue what it means to be a loving mother by her relationship with a neighbor growing up who could see her for the beautiful child she was.  Kirkus Review wrote, “A finely wrought psychological study of motherhood and inherited trauma…not for the faint of heart; it offers no easy answers.”  All I can say is that it has been a long time since the very last paragraph changed the entire book for me.  I read this book in one sitting.

Today I am on day two of reading the 1474 page book, A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth.  I calculated what needs to happen to finish this book in a month.  I have to read at least 50 pages a day give or take.  The decision to finally sit down and read this book is akin to a spiritual journey where I am using the book to teach me the art of slowness and patience. Let's see how it goes.