Blog: Guest Bloggers | SIMA

Thanks to my friend Katie of wonderful one times one for contributing this guest post!

PJ and I met in orientation on our first day of working at Penguin Publishing in New York.  Little did we know, we would be sitting next to each other in the same department for the next year.  Our lives, since then, have moved strangely in very similar directions.  We both married someone named J (the initial for the same name) and they have similar careers that throw our worlds upside down most of the time. PJ very kindly asked me to do a guest post while she is off gallivanting in Italy on a well-deserved honeymoon.  In the spirit of where we first met so many years ago, here is a quick Fall Books Round-Up.


~ The House at Sugar Beach: In Search of a Lost African Childhood by Helene Cooper (Simon & Schuster, $25)

What it’s about: A memoir by a New York Times reporter who returns to her African birthplace — Liberia — where she grew up in a 22-room mansion. Cooper describes her aristocratic family’s escape to the USA after her world collapsed in a bloody coup.

Check out the front-page review of Cooper’s new book in the New York Times Book Review.

~ Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution and How it Can Renew America By Thomas L. Friedman (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $27.95)

What it’s about: The New York Times columnist offers his ideas on the environment and global climate change.

~ Yesterday’s Weather by Anne Enright (Grove Press, $24.00)

What it’s about: Winner of the 2007 Man Booker Prize, Anne Enright’s novel The Gathering went on to become a national best seller acclaimed for its electrifying prose and haunting emotional resonance. Now, in Yesterday’s Weather, Enright presents a series of deeply moving glimpses into a rapidly changing Ireland: a land of family and tradition, but also, increasingly, of organic radicchio, cruise-ship vacations, and casual betrayals.  (via Amazon)

Check out the review of Enright’s new book in the New York Times Book Review.

~ Acedia & me: A Marriage, Monks, and A Writer’s Life by Kathleen Norris (Riverhead Books, $25.95)

What it’s about: The author of The Cloister Walk describes her struggle with acedia, a soul-weary indifference.


~ The Wordy Shipmates By Sarah Vowell (Riverhead, $25.95)

What it’s about: The author of Assassination Vacation examines how our Puritan past shapes today’s political and cultural climate.

~ The Development By John Barth (Houghton Mifflin, $23)

What it’s about: Linked stories about the lives of retirees living in a gated community.


~ The Hour I First Believed by Wally Lamb (Harper, $29.95)

What it’s about: It’s tough to sum up a 739-page Wally Lamb novel — his first in a decade — in a few words. But this story of Caelum Quirk, a cynical English teacher, and his third wife, a school nurse, begins with the horrific 1999 Columbine shootings. From there, Lamb unravels the complicated tale of Caelum and his family secrets.

~ Annie Leibovitz at Work By Annie Leibovitz (Random House, $40)

What it’s about: The photographer shares the inspiration behind her most famous pictures.

~ And the Hippos Were Boiled in Their Tanks By William S. Burroughs (Grove Press, $24)

What it’s About: A previously unpublished tale of drugs, murder and bohemian New York by the legendary Beat writers.

~ A Thousand Splendid Suns By Khaled Hosseini (Riverhead Trade, $16.00) — comes out in paperback.

Full disclosure — Katie works for Putnam/Riverhead Books.  Unless otherwise noted, the synopses of these titles were take from the USA Today.

(image by another friend, krissy webster)