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Books, Books, Books! #MondayBlogs #amreading

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In a perfect world, I would spend as much time reading as I spend writing, or as much time writing as reading, depending on the day. Reading inspires me to write and often when I’m reading, I yearn to write. Reading also teaches me how to write. What is it about that first page, first paragraph, or even first sentence, that makes me want to curl up with the book for a long afternoon? What is it about that poem that makes me linger and read again as something tugs at my heart.

I’ve got books on my mind. A book of poetry, a memoir, and a novel to be exact.

A Book of Poetry

Earlier this week Nightingale & Sparrow published my review of Birdy Odell’s chapbook, Cemetery Music, which you can read here: I’m usually hesitant to review poetry because I feel rather ignorant about it. It was not my favorite genre when I was studying literature a few centuries ago. Now, however, thanks to poets like Merril D. Smith, Luanne Castle and Jane Dougherty, I often feel I can’t get enough of it. So when N&S put out a call for reviewers, I raised my hand.

Here’s a snippet from my review:

Anyone who has spent time in a cemetery, particularly ones where the dead have lain for centuries, will read Odell’s poems as those epitaphs etched into granite, sandstone, or marble, some so worn by time and weather that words seem β€œrubbed with the balm of love.”

Cemetery Music should be available soon (forthcoming December 10, 2019). Click here to read more about Birdy. I also hope you pick up a copy of her lovely chapbook. I definitely want a print copy because, included with her poems, are lovely “whimsical little birds with silly hates and balloons.”

A Memoir

Cinthia Ritchie’s new memoir, Malnourished: A Memoir of Sisterhood and Hunger, has arrived … at my house!! This is a long-awaited memoir, and I am so thrilled for Cinthia. I pre-ordered directly from Raised Voice Press (here’s the link) which, I believe, is why I received my copy before the official release date.

I am so excited to support Cinthia, one of my favorite peeps in my writing community. I fell in love with her through her first novel, Dolls Behaving Badly, and been looking forward to another opportunity to hold one of her books in my hands. If you don’t already know Cinthia, head over to her website here. Order Malnourished through your favorite local bookstore, through Indiebound, or directly through Raised Voice Press.

Here’s a snippet from the Prologue:

Memory is a funny thing, isn’t it, how it adds and subtracts, takes something as simple as watching a whale swim along the shore and mixes it up in your mind so that your sister is there beside you, even though she’s been dead for years. Still, this is what you remember: the wind and the smell of the marsh, the silver-blue tint of an Alaska twilight spreading the water, and beyond it all, the small and simple feel of your dead sister’s hand slipping inside of yours.

A Novel

By now anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock should know that Kevin Brennan recently released a new novel called Eternity Began Tomorrow. EBT is kind of a road trip/political thriller/romance-type novel. In other words, it has something for every kind of reader. Of course, I snatched up a copy, as I do with all of Kevin’s books, and wrote a review:

You’ll want to get a copy of your own, of course, and you can do so by clicking here. But stay tuned for more! I’ll be posting an interview with Kevin later this week, and you’ll learn all about what went into writing such a timely novel. While you’re waiting to read the interview, take advantage of EBT being yours for just 99 cents. Yup, when you click this Amazon link, you’ll find an offer you can’t refuse.

For more on Kevin, check him out here:


Thanks for reading! If you’re anything like me, you might be groaning at the thought of more books to add to your leaning tower of TBR. But, if you are anything like me, you’ll also be excited to find new books to buy and read.

And here’s your bonus gratuitous cat photo … The Three Amigos: Junior, my husband, and Maxine.

When your cats think of you as furniture …

Categories: Book Review Reading

Tagged as:

Marie A Bailey

Writer, blogger, knitter, cat lover, and introvert.

22 replies

  1. πŸ˜€ 😁 So glad your cats are comfortable on their furniture.
    I read your review! Nicely done! How cool that you responded to the call for reviewers.
    I’ve had my share of cemetery visits, some in other states. Grief is never easy. However, I once toured a cemetery in New Orleans.


    1. You imagine how hard I was laughing as Junior climbed onto Greg’s chest and proceeded to sit down. It looked like he was going to sit on Greg’s face … lol.
      I do like writing reviews. Poetry makes me nervous, though, so I was happy (relieved) that Birdy and N&S liked the review.
      You know, I like cemeteries and it’s definitely one thing when going through an old cemetery or one where ancestors you never met are buried. But a whole other thing when it’s one where people you loved are buried. ❀


  2. Thank you for including me! You know I’m also a big fan of Nightingale and Sparrow, and I plan to read Birdy’s book. I got some encouraging words on the manuscript I submitted to them, even though it wasn’t accepted.

    We’re definitely furniture for our cats. πŸ™‚


    1. Yes, I came across N&S through you, I think. I was so tempted to apply for one of their volunteer positions but, gee, the day job just takes up too much of my time πŸ˜‰ I hope you’ll submit to them again. I ordered a copy of their Nevermore issue and was pretty impressed by the layout and the size of their staff. Plus they are so nice … well, Juliette since she’s the only one I’ve had contact with so far.
      Speaking of being furniture for our cats, my husband often complains about how Maxine–our 16-year-old Tuxedo–is always following him around, waiting for an opportunity to get in his lap. She just wants the body heat but it’s hard to work on his laptop when he has a cat on his lap πŸ˜‰


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