Library Loot (22 March 2013)

 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library.

Oh how I adore library holds. With it I can get books from the other branches of my library system, or just wait patiently for my turn at an in-demand book. And they’re all sitting there ready for pick up and check out. And for free too (I say this because the Singapore library, the last I checked a few years ago, required a small fee for each request or hold). So I was pleased when I had just a few minutes to pop into the library and grab the holds off the shelf!

And yes, I seem to be binge-reading.

Fairest: Wide Awake (Fables) – Bill Willingham (Goodreads Author), Phil Jimenez (Illustrator)


New York Times bestselling, award-winning creator Bill Willingham presents a new series starring the female FABLES. Balancing horror, humor and adventure in the FABLES tradition, FAIREST explores the secret histories of Sleeping Beauty, Rapunzel, Cinderella, The Snow Queen, Thumbelina, Snow White, Rose Red and others.The first 6-issue tale follows the misadventures of Briar Rose immediately after the events of FABLES #107(collected in Fables Volume 16: Super Team), in which she was stolen away by the goblin army. Following this first collection, Willingham will serve as a consultant on all story arcs and introduce new writers from other mediums to the FABLES mythos.

The Last Council (Amulet #4)- Kazu Kibuishi
Eh, hate when this happens. I had put in holds for both book 3 and 4, and here’s 4, but 3 is not in sight!


Emily and her friends think they’ll find the help they need in Cielis, but something isn’t right. Streets that were once busy are deserted, and the townspeople who are left live in crippling fear. Emily is escorted to the Academy where she’s expected to compete for a spot on the Guardian Council, the most powerful Stonekeepers. But as the number of competitors gets smaller and smaller, a terrible secret is slowly uncovered–a secret that, if left buried, means certain destruction of everything Emily fights for.

Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me – Ellen Forney
First heard of this from Vasilly


Shortly before her thirtieth birthday, Forney was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Flagrantly manic and terrified that medications would cause her to lose creativity, she began a years-long struggle to find mental stability while retaining her passions and creativity.

Searching to make sense of the popular concept of the crazy artist, she finds inspiration from the lives and work of other artists and writers who suffered from mood disorders, including Vincent van Gogh, Georgia O’Keeffe, William Styron, and Sylvia Plath. She also researches the clinical aspects of bipolar disorder, including the strengths and limitations of various treatments and medications, and what studies tell us about the conundrum of attempting to “cure” an otherwise brilliant mind.

Darkly funny and intensely personal, Forney’s memoir provides a visceral glimpse into the effects of a mood disorder on an artist’s work, as she shares her own story through bold black-and-white images and evocative prose

Regeneration/The Eye in the Door/The Ghost Road – Pat Barker


In 1917 Siegfried Sasson, noted poet and decorated war hero, publicly refused to continue serving as a British officer in World War I. His reason: The war was a senseless slaughter. He was officially classified “mentally unsound” and sent to Craiglockhart War Hospital. There a brilliant psychiatrist, Dr. William Rivers, set about restoring Sassoon’s “sanity” and sending him back to the trenches. This novel tells what happened as only a novel can. It is a war saga in which not a shot is fired. It is a story of a battle for a man’s mind in which only the reader can decide who is the victor, who the vanquished, and who the victim. It is one of the most amazing feats of fiction of our time. Regeneration is the first novel in Pat Barker’s acclaimed World War I trilogy, which continues with The Eye in the Door and culminates in the 1995 Booker Prize-winning The Ghost Road.

Alif the Unseen – G. Willow Wilson
On the Woman’s Prize for Fiction long list


In an unnamed Middle Eastern security state, a young Arab-Indian hacker shields his clients—dissidents, outlaws, Islamists, and other watched groups—from surveillance and tries to stay out of trouble. He goes by Alif—the first letter of the Arabic alphabet, and a convenient handle to hide behind. The aristocratic woman Alif loves has jilted him for a prince chosen by her parents, and his computer has just been breached by the State’s electronic security force, putting his clients and his own neck on the line. Then it turns out his lover’s new fiancé is the head of State security, and his henchmen come after Alif, driving him underground.

When Alif discovers The Thousand and One Days, the secret book of the jinn, which both he and the Hand suspect may unleash a new level of information technology, the stakes are raised and Alif must struggle for life or death, aided by forces seen and unseen. With shades of Neal Stephenson, Neil Gaiman, Philip Pullman, and The Thousand and One Nights, Alif the Unseen is a tour de force debut—a sophisticated melting pot of ideas, philosophy, religion, technology and spirituality smuggled inside an irresistible page-turner

Heidegger’s Glasses – Thaisa Frank
For the Postal Reading Challenge


Heidegger’s Glasses opens during the end of World War II in a failing Germany coming apart at its seams. The Third Reich’s strong reliance on the occult and its obsession with the astral plane has led to the formation of an underground compound of scribes –translators responsible for answering letters written to those eventually killed in the concentration camps. Into this covert compound comes a letter written by eminent philosopher Martin Heidegger to his optometrist, a man now lost in the dying thralls of Auschwitz. How will the scribes answer this letter? The presence of Heidegger’s words–one simple letter in a place filled with letters–sparks a series of events that will ultimately threaten the safety and well-being of the entire compound. Part love story, part thriller, part meditation on how the dead are remembered and history is presented, with threads of Heidegger’s philosophy woven throughout, the novel evocatively illustrates the Holocaust through an almost dreamlike state. Thaisa Frank deftly reconstructs the landscape of Nazi Germany from an entirely original vantage point”

What was lost – Catherine O’Flynn
For What’s in a Name 6


“Green Oaks: two hours outside the banks today. Nothing to note except short man walking about unaware of 4-foot length of toilet paper stuck to his shoe.”

Kate Meaney, a precocious 10-year-old, is no ordinary sleuth. Notebook in hand, Kate is always on the lookout for suspicious characters and their dodgy doings. And when spunky little Kate disappears, suspicion is cast on an acquaintance of hers: 22-year-old Adrian Palmer. Though never officially charged, the shadow of doubt drives Adrian out of town, and the mystery of the missing Kate remains unsolved.

Twenty years later, Adrian’s younger sister Lisa, who works at a music shop in a local mall, continues to receive the occasional missive from Adrian. And things continue apace until the image of a young girl appears on the mall’s security camera. In short order, the weight of keeping secrets is too much to bear: Adrian returns to town, and a childhood friend of Kate’s reveals a long-held clue to her last known hours.

Prepare to be tickled by Kate, but don’t expect a wholesome detective story suitable for younger readers. For while the fate of the endearing Kate drives this tale, O’Flynn’s narrative also exposes the dark underbelly of the British underclass.

And I went a little crazy with the e-books!

A Prayer for Owen Meany – John Irving

It’s been quite a while since I’ve read anything by Irving.



John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany is the inspiring modern classic that introduced two of the author’s most unforgettable characters, boys bonded forever in childhood: the stunted Owen Meany, whose life is touched by God, and the orphaned Johnny Wheelwright, whose life is touched by Owen. From the accident that links them to the mystery that follows them–and the martyrdom that parts them–the events of their lives form a tapestry of fate and faith in a novel that is Irving at his irresistible best

Hyperion – Dan Simmons

I loved Simmons’ The Terror. And I think I’m kinda loving Hyperion too.



On the world called Hyperion, beyond the law of the Hegemony of Man, there waits the creature called the Shrike. There are those who worship it. There are those who fear it. And there are those who have vowed to destroy it. In the Valley of the Time Tombs, where huge, brooding structures move backward through time, the Shrike waits for them all. On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth on a final voyage to Hyperion seeking the answers to the unsolved riddles of their lives. Each carries a desperate hope—and a terrible secret. And one may hold the fate of humanity in his hands.


The Year of Pleasures – Elizabeth Berg


In this rich and deeply satisfying novel by the beloved author of The Art of Mending, and Open House, a resilient woman embarks upon an unforgettable journey of adventure, self-discovery, and renewal.

Betta Nolan moves to a small town after the death of her husband to try to begin anew. Pursuing a dream of a different kind of life, she is determined to find pleasure in her simply daily routines. Among those who help her in both expected and unexpected ways are the ten-year-old boy next door, three wild women friends from her college days, a twenty-year-old who is struggling to find his place in the world, and a handsome man who is ready for love.


For wee reader, who likes collecting the mail, pretending to cook and bake, and has a deep deep love for most forms of transportation





What did you get from the library this week?



  1. Holy cats, you have a lot of great books this week 🙂 I didn’t do a Library Loot post today. For one, it’s Bloggiesta weekend and I’m *trying* to get things done. The second reason is that I only grabbed ONE library book this week (gasp!) The book I checked out was Marbles! LOL, great minds think alike 😉


  2. Oh! So many of these are on either my longtime TBRs, faves, or on my current stacks (well, from your choices, not from wee reader’s…not sure we have the same reading taste heehee). Enjoy! (I picked up Alif a couple of days ago too!)


  3. Yay for Marbles! I hope you enjoy it. Fairest is a recent read and it’s pretty good. My kids found Millie Waits for the Mail to be a hilarious read. Happy reading.


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