Jan 13

Beautiful Books

Segment one of today’s podcast was inspired by an article about the discovery of a lost civilization in the Amazon. When Michael first saw the headlines, he immediately thought of The Lost City of Z, a book by David Grann that we’ve loved and recommended.  It’s wonderful when something that you’ve read makes you take notice of news and events beyond the pages of the book. This often happens to us with nonfiction, and often changes our level of interest in a topic.

In segment 2, we discuss some great books that were inspired by classic literature. Ann tells how a phobia interfered with her reading of Mary Reilly, a great novel by Valerie Martin that retells the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mister Hyde, through the eyes of a servant girl in Dr. Jekyll’s household. Michael talks about Dreamhouse, a novel set in current-day but with many parallels to Alice in Wonderland.

Mary Reilly by Valerie Martin Dreamhouse by Alison Habens

The classically-inspired theme carries through to segment 3, Two Books We Can’t Wait For You To Read. Michael talks about Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin, and Ann calls Bloodroot by Amy Greene “an Appalachian Wuthering Heights.”

Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin Bloodroot by Amy Greene

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We encourage you to write down or print out the title information and shop at your local bookstore. Titles link to LibraryThing, a social networking site that allows you to catalog your home library. LibraryThing also links to various online purchasing options. Here are the books from this post:

The Lost City of Z by David Grann, Doubleday hardcover
Mary Reilly by Valerie Martin, Vintage trade paperback
Dreamhouse by Alison Habens, Picador trade paperback
Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin, Delacorte Press hardcover
Bloodroot by Amy Greene, Knopf hardcover

(all information is for the U.S. editions).


photo credit: Beautiful Books by mollyeh11
  • I added Mary Reilly to my TBR list thanks to you two – I’m thinking about reading it along with the original book for Halloween this year. And I had just today added Alice I Have Been to my TBR, so it was fun to hear you two talk about it as well.

    As for the rats thing, Ann should never EVER read 1984 – I don’t remember much about that book but the rat scene has stayed with me ever since, and I don’t even have a rat phobia.

    One other thing – I’m having trouble with the new audio format. The show seems to skip quite often, or the sound cuts out. That happens whenever I listen to any podcast using that program (is it quicktime, or something else?). Is there another way to access the podcast rather than through the link on the blog? I really want to keep listening, but that skipping thing is driving me nuts. Thanks!

    • Thanks, Heather. I have not read 1984 and now I know why!

      Re: the audio player. Can you tell me if you have the same trouble with the older BOTNS podcasts? Anything before episode 58 should be in the old format. If need be, we can go back to that.

      A couple of questions: 1. Are you accessing the blog post through an RSS reader (Google reader, for instance), email, or by going to http://www.booksonthenightstand.com?

      2. do you see the “play” button to the left of the episode name? It’s kind of subtle — maybe too subtle. If you use that play button, it should just start playing.

      3. When you listen, does the Quicktime window open, or do you still see the blog post itself?

      I think if you download the file (or click on the link, not the play button) the the setting of which audio format to use (Quicktime, Real Player, etc.) is based on your choice on your computer, but it could be a problem with the player format. So let me know what your experiments tell you, and we’ll figure this out together. Thanks!

      • I just sent you an email rather than replying here – hope that’s ok!

  • I added Mary Reilly to my TBR list thanks to you two – I’m thinking about reading it along with the original book for Halloween this year. And I had just today added Alice I Have Been to my TBR, so it was fun to hear you two talk about it as well.

    As for the rats thing, Ann should never EVER read 1984 – I don’t remember much about that book but the rat scene has stayed with me ever since, and I don’t even have a rat phobia.

    One other thing – I’m having trouble with the new audio format. The show seems to skip quite often, or the sound cuts out. That happens whenever I listen to any podcast using that program (is it quicktime, or something else?). Is there another way to access the podcast rather than through the link on the blog? I really want to keep listening, but that skipping thing is driving me nuts. Thanks!

    • Thanks, Heather. I have not read 1984 and now I know why!

      Re: the audio player. Can you tell me if you have the same trouble with the older BOTNS podcasts? Anything before episode 58 should be in the old format. If need be, we can go back to that.

      A couple of questions: 1. Are you accessing the blog post through an RSS reader (Google reader, for instance), email, or by going to http://www.booksonthenightstand.com?

      2. do you see the “play” button to the left of the episode name? It’s kind of subtle — maybe too subtle. If you use that play button, it should just start playing.

      3. When you listen, does the Quicktime window open, or do you still see the blog post itself?

      I think if you download the file (or click on the link, not the play button) the the setting of which audio format to use (Quicktime, Real Player, etc.) is based on your choice on your computer, but it could be a problem with the player format. So let me know what your experiments tell you, and we’ll figure this out together. Thanks!

      • I just sent you an email rather than replying here – hope that’s ok!

  • I just read that the reason Brad Pitt has that nasty beard is because he’s about to start filiming on Lost City of Z. Great book BTW! And Alice I Have Been has been on my short list to read for many months now (I have an ARC.)

  • I just read that the reason Brad Pitt has that nasty beard is because he’s about to start filiming on Lost City of Z. Great book BTW! And Alice I Have Been has been on my short list to read for many months now (I have an ARC.)

  • I have the same compulsive behavior of “going down the rabbit hole” (or Google hole, for that matter) when I read, which is why it’s such a distraction for me to read beside a computer. I’m also always taking notes when I read, so that’s another distraction, but these are things I just can’t help but do.

    Thanks for talking about The Lost City of Z. I’ve seen it before, but now it sounds a lot more interesting to me 🙂

  • I have the same compulsive behavior of “going down the rabbit hole” (or Google hole, for that matter) when I read, which is why it’s such a distraction for me to read beside a computer. I’m also always taking notes when I read, so that’s another distraction, but these are things I just can’t help but do.

    Thanks for talking about The Lost City of Z. I’ve seen it before, but now it sounds a lot more interesting to me 🙂

  • Pingback: BOTNS Books Podcast #62: Found in Translation | Books on the Nightstand()

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