Sunday Summary – Dec. 27

 

There was very little reading over the past week. We shared wonderful Christmas celebrations with relatives and friends. Santa left me a new Scrabble game (Scrabble Scramble) and Lost in Austen (dvd). Our daughters will leave for their city this morning and the house will be very quiet. I think everyone is looking forward to getting back to their routine. I know I need to get back to regular exercise – did I really eat all those cookies???
 
 
Check out the giveaway of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters. It ends on Dec. 28th.
 
 
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Nely awarded me the Beautiful Blogger award. Thanks for thinking of me, Nely! This award asks the recipient to tell 7 things about myself and to pass it on to 7 bloggers. Here’s a link to another post where I wrote a similar list. I want to leave the award open to any blogger who’d like to participate.

Giveaway – Sense & Sensibility & Sea Monsters

Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

The New York Times and international best seller Pride and Prejudice and Zombies captured the imaginations and brains of readers worldwide and has been translated into 20 languages. Now, comes a new tale of romance, heartbreak, and tentacled mayhem! Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters (Quirk Books; September 15, 2009; $12.95) by Jane Austen and Ben H. Winters expands the original text of Austen’s beloved novel with all-new scenes of giant lobsters, rampaging octopi, two-headed sea serpents, swashbuckling pirates, and other seaworthy creatures.

Editor Jason Rekulak explains the choice of sea monsters for this highly anticipated literary mash-up:

Sea Monsters allowed us to draw inspiration from so many rich and diverse sources—most obviously Jules Verne novels and Celtic mythology, but also Jaws, Lost, Pirates of the Caribbean, even SpongeBob Squarepants! I think Pride and Prejudice and Zombies fans were counting on us to deliver something original.”

With Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, Quirk Classics has also developed a new Austen to monster ratio. Instead of featuring 85% of Austen’s work and 15% new text as in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters features 60% Austen and 40% additional monster chaos! Most importantly, this new Quirk Classic stays true to Austen’s original novel…

You can check out the book trailer here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_jZVE5uF24Q

Here’s an excerpt:

Chapter 1
by Jane Austen and Ben H. Winters,
Authors of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

The family of Dashwood had been settled in Sussex since before the Alteration, when the waters of the world grew cold and hateful to the sons of man, and darkness moved on the face of the deep.

The Dashwood estate was large, and their residence was at Norland Park, in the dead centre of their property, set back from the shoreline several hundred yards and ringed by torches.

The late owner of this estate was a single man, who lived to a very advanced age, and who for many years of his life had a constant companion and housekeeper in his sister. Her death came as a surprise, ten years before his own; she was beating laundry upon a rock that revealed itself to be the camouflaged exoskeleton of an overgrown crustacean, a striated hermit crab the size of a German shepherd. The enraged creature affixed itself to her face with a predictably unfortunate effect. As she rolled helplessly in the mud and sand, the crab mauled her most thoroughly, suffocating her mouth and nasal passages with its mucocutaneous undercarriage. Her death caused a great change in the elderly Mr. Dashwood’s home. To supply her loss, the old man invited and received into his house the family of his nephew Mr. Henry Dashwood, the legal inheritor of the Norland estate, and the person to whom he intended to bequeath it.

By a former marriage, Henry had one son, John; by his present lady, three daughters. The son, a steady, respectable young man, was amply provided for by the fortune of his mother. The succession to the Norland estate, therefore, was not so really important to John as to his half sisters; for their mother had nothing, and their fortune would thus depend upon their father’s inheriting the old gentleman’s property, so it could one day come to them.

The old gentleman died; his will was read, and like almost every other will, gave as much disappointment as pleasure. He was neither so unjust, nor so ungrateful, as to leave his estate from his nephew — but Mr. Dashwood had wished for it more for the sake of his wife and daughters than for himself or his son — and to John alone it was secured! The three girls were left with a mere thousand pounds a-piece.

Henry Dashwood’s disappointment was at first severe; but his temper was cheerful and sanguine, and his thoughts soon turned to a longheld dream of noble adventure.The source of the Alteration was unknown and unknowable, but Mr. Dashwood held an eccentric theory: that there was discoverable, in some distant corner of the globe, the headwaters of a noxious stream that fed a virulent flow into every sea, every lake and estuary, poisoning the very well of the world. It was this insalubrious stream (went Henry Dashwood’s hypothesis),which had affected the Alteration; which had turned the creatures of the ocean against the people of the earth; which made even the tiniest darting minnow and the gentlest dolphin into aggressive, blood-thirsty predators, hardened and hateful towards our bipedal race; which had given foul birth to whole new races of man-hating, shape-shifting ocean creatures, sirens and sea witches and mermaids and mermen; which rendered the oceans of the world naught but great burbling salt-cauldrons of death. It was Mr. Dashwood’s resolution to join the ranks of those brave souls who had fought and navigated their way beyond England’s coastal waters in search of those headwaters and that dread source, to discover a method to dam its feculent flow.

Alas! A quarter mile off the coast of Sussex, Mr. Dashwood was eaten by a hammerhead shark. Such was clear from the distinctive shape of the bite marks and the severity of his injuries, when he washed up on the shore. The cruel beast had torn off his right hand at the wrist, consumed the greater portion of his left leg and the right in its entirety, and gouged a ragged V-shaped section from Mr. Dashwood’s torso.

His son, present wife, and three daughters stood in stunned desolation over the remains of Mr. Dashwood’s body; purpled and rockbattered upon the midnight sand, bleeding extravagantly from numerous gashes — but unaccountably still living. As his weeping relations watched, astonished, the dying man clutched a bit of flotsam in his remaining hand and scrawled a message in the muddy shore; with enormous effort he gestured with his head for his son, John, to crouch and read it. In this final tragic epistle, Mr. Dashwood recommended, with all the strength and urgency his injuries could command, the financial well-being of his stepmother and half sisters,who had been so poorly treated in the old gentleman’s will. Mr. John Dashwood had not the strong feelings of the rest of the family; but he was affected by a recommendation of such a nature at such a time, and he promised to do everything in his power to make them comfortable. And then the tide swelled, and carried away the words scrawled in the sand, as well as the final breath of Henry Dashwood.

The above is an excerpt from the book Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters by Jane Austen and Ben H. Winters. The above excerpt is a digitally scanned reproduction of text from print. Although this excerpt has been proofread, occasional errors may appear due to the scanning process. Please refer to the finished book for accuracy.

Copyright © 2009 Jane Austen and Ben H. Winters, authors of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters

Author Bios
Jane Austen, coauthor of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, is coauthor of the New York Times best seller Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which has been translated into 17 languages and optioned to become a major motion picture. She died in 1817.

Ben H. Winters, coauthor of Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters, is a writer based in Brooklyn.

For more information please visit www.BenHWinter.com and www.quirkclassics.com
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Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters


Giveaway
(giveaway now closed)

I have one copy to give away
courtesy of Anna at FSB Associates

* Leave your email in a comment
* Open to US (stateside) residents
Giveaway ends: 8pm (eastern) Dec. 28


Mailbox Monday – Dec. 21

 

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week (checked out library books don’t count, eBooks & audio books do). Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists. Mailbox Monday is hosted at The Printed Page. Click the covers for book info.

 

From Goodreads First Reads:
 
Truly, Madly: A Novel

Sunday Summary – Dec. 20

What a week! Sadly, not much reading. Good thing the one book I read was good! The review will be posted later. I’ve been baking Christmas cookies – several of the neighbors exchange, love that. Shopping is mostly done but the gifts need to be wrapped. I’ll do that over the next few days. One of my daughters helped get the Christmas card created yesterday so I’ll be getting them ready for mailing today. I took iTunes up on their gift of free holiday tunes. It’s a great mix. Anyone else get them?

This week’s Waiting on Wednesday pick was Paganini’s Ghost by Paul Adam and my Friday Find was Searching for Pemberley by Mary Lydon Simonsen

I suspect that there won’t be much in the way of reading next week. Maybe a book that came in the mail yesterday – Truly, Madly by Heather Webber.
Paganini's Ghost: A MysterySearching for PemberleyTruly, Madly: A Novel


Waiting on Wednesday – Dec. 16




This title will be released on January 5, 2010
Hardcover – 288 pages
Minotaur Books
Paganini's Ghost: A Mystery

Paganini – showman, womanizer, dazzling virtuoso – is one of the most charismatic characters in the history of classical music. His violin, il Cannone (the Cannon), is now kept in Genoa, Italy, where it is played only once every two years in a sold-out concert by the winner of an international competition.

This year, though, a Parisian art dealer is found dead in his hotel room the day after the concert. In his wallet is a scrap of sheet music, torn from a page that belongs to the competition’s winner. But how did the dead man get hold of it? And why?

Detective Antonio Guastafeste asks violin maker Gianni Castiglione to help him navigate the curious world of classical musicians, their priceless instruments, and the unsavory dealers who prey upon them. Together, Antonio and Gianni must unravel another mystery that has gone unanswered for over a century, one that may hold the answer to the modern-day murder.

Filled with remarkable history and musical lore, Paganini’s Ghost plays at a breathtaking tempo that will keep you reading until the very last page.

Mailbox Monday – Dec. 14

 

 

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week (checked out library books don’t count, eBooks & audio books do). Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists. Mailbox Monday is hosted at The Printed Page.
Click the covers for book info.
 
From Random House for review:
 
The Secret of Everything
 
 
 
 
 
 
From Amazon:
 
Local Knowledge
 
Real Life & Liars
 
East Hope
 
Rewriting Monday