My Week in Books: November 21-27

My Week in Books

Welcome to my weekly Saturday feature here at Erin Reads, where I highlight new books that have entered my life, what I’ve been reading, and what’s happened on Erin Reads over the past week.

New Acquisitions

Last week I shared books I’d purchased; today I have some books to show you that I didn’t have to buy. Note: when, in the video, I say GoodReads First Look program, I really mean First Reads.

If you’re not a vlog person, here’s a summary of the books I talked about. If you watched the vlog, you’ll probably find the rest of this section pretty redundant! Titles link to GoodReads summaries.

From the library:

From the LibraryThing Early Reviewers and GoodReads First Reads programs:

  • Stranger Here Below by Joyce Hinnefeld: A novel about two women who meet in college in the 1960s and the women in their families. I’ve already started this one, so expect a review soon!
  • A Cup of Friendship by Deborah Rodriguez: From the author of Kabul Beauty School, this novel, also set in Afghanistan, will be coming in January 2011.
  • The Heroine’s Bookshelf by Erin Blakemore: This slim volume features twelve literary heroines and the authors who created them. Perfect for a year-long reading challenge or project, perhaps?

Won, gifted, and received for review:

  • The Emerald Atlas by John Stephens: The start of a new YA/middle grade series that I received for review.
  • Packing for Mars by Mary Roach: Jill from Fizzy Thoughts was kind enough to send her copy of this new nonfiction title my way. It will be my first Mary Roach book, and I’m looking forward to it. Thanks, Jill!
  • Hush by Eishes Chayil: I won an ARC of this new YA novel from Stacked, who spoke highly of it.
  • Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart: I won a signed copy of this new novel from Nonesuch Book. I’ve heard it’s quirky in a good way and am looking forward to seeing what all the fuss is about.

Read This Week

This week I continued plugging away at The Black Book by Orhan Pamuk and finally reached the end! I’ll be talking about it next week. For lighter reading, I’ve started Stranger Here Below by Joyce Hinnefeld, a new acquisition I mentioned in my vlog for this week. I need to get going on The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis as well!

On audio, I finally finished up Homer’s The Odyssey (finally!) as well as Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok. I started listening to Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork, which I read about on The Zen Leaf. I’m only a couple of hours in, but so far I’m enjoying it.

Erin Reads Recap

  • I started the week with a Sunday Salon post about my struggle to define “classic” for myself in preparation for my upcoming classics project. I’d love to hear other thoughts on the topic, so please feel free to add yours!
  • On Monday I reviewed Death with Interruptions by Jose Saramago. I fell in love with Saramago’s creativity and unique writing style, and this book immediately became one of my favorites.
  • Tuesday I posted my third check-in for The Odyssey readalong. Only one week left!
  • I reviewed Burning Valley by Phillip Bonosky on Wednesday. The novel, written in the 1950s, is about immigrant steel workers in western Pennsylvania, where I now live. I enjoyed the book and learned a lot.
  • Thursday, because I was spending time with my family for Thanksgiving, I talked about one of my favorite childhood authors: Roald Dahl. I reviewed The Witches on audio and talked about the Roald Dahl Audio Collection, which my siblings and I loved as kids.
  • Finally, yesterday, I wrapped up my audiobook miniseries by talking about some of my favorite classics on audio.

Your Turn!

How was your reading week? Do tell!

Join the Conversation


  1. Oh gosh I hadn’t even heard Deborah Rodriguez had a new book coming out!! I loved Kabul Beauty School and I really want to read this one now! Thanks for letting me know. 🙂

  2. where do you find the time!??!? i barely blogged this week but did manage to listen to 7!! audio books on my drive back and forth to florida last week. the books were pretty crummy, just contemp fiction that i didn’t have to concentrate too hard on, but i’m in need of something good now.

    as for mary roach–i read her book about dead people (maybe stiff? i can’t remember) and it was quite educational! hope you enjoy this new one, i’m off to research it. 🙂 have a great week!

    1. I listen to audiobooks pretty much all the time, so that helps! I don’t think I’ve ever made it to 7 in one week, though!! That’s awesome! Time does go faster with audiobooks, doesn’t it? I tend to enjoy “crummy” books more on audio, somehow. They can certainly be easy to listen to.

      I think the Roach book about dead people is Stiff. That’s the one I was planning to start with, but since I ended up with Packing for Mars, I’ll start there instead!

    1. I loved it! I’m so glad you recommended the audio, because if you hadn’t, I’d never have picked it up. My thoughts should be up later this week. Thanks for the recommendation!

  3. I look forward to reading your review on Stranger Here Below. I just read the summery on Goodreads and it looks very interesting. And I’ll have a closer look for Eishes Chayil’s Hush (it reminds me about The Chosen by Chaim Potok which I read and loved very much some time ago).
    Have a nice week !

    1. My review of Stranger Here Below should be up shortly! It wasn’t what I expected, but it was really good. If I end up liking Hush, I’ll look into The Chosen!

    1. I’m looking forward to reading Packing for Mars! I have a feeling I’ll want to read her others. I’ve heard only good things.

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