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‘Waiting on’ Wednesday ~ January 14th

January 14, 2009

Jill at Breaking the Spine hosts Waiting on Wednesday. I’m actually posting 2 books this week. One I read as an ARC and can’t say enough good things about including I think it’ll be a big hit with book groups and it made my recommended list for 2008. The other I’m waiting for and should be in the mail to me any day (I think Jill actually posted this one a while back). This week’s pre-publication ‘can’t-wait-to-read’ selections are.


This is the one that made my recommended list for 2008:
hotelbitterandsweetjpgTitle: Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
Author: Jamie Ford
Random House web site for Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet
Publication date: January ’09
Historical/contemporary fiction

From Fantastic Fiction:
In the opening pages of Jamie Ford’s stunning debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, Henry Lee comes upon a crowd gathered outside the Panama Hotel, once the gateway to Seattle’s Japantown. It has been boarded up for decades, but now the new owner has made an incredible discovery: the belongings of Japanese families, left when they were rounded up and sent to internment camps during World War II. As Henry looks on, the owner opens a Japanese parasol.

This simple act takes old Henry Lee back to the 1940s, at the height of the war, when young Henry’s world is a jumble of confusion and excitement, and to his father, who is obsessed with the war in China and having Henry grow up American. While ‘scholarshipping’� at the exclusive Rainier Elementary, where the white kids ignore him, Henry meets Keiko Okabe, a young Japanese American student. Amid the chaos of blackouts, curfews, and FBI raids, Henry and Keiko forge a bond of friendship-and innocent love-that transcends the long-standing prejudices of their Old World ancestors. And after Keiko and her family are swept up in the evacuations to the internment camps, she and Henry are left only with the hope that the war will end, and that their promise to each other will be kept.

Forty years later, Henry Lee is certain that the parasol belonged to Keiko. In the hotel’s dark dusty basement he begins looking for signs of the Okabe family’s belongings and for a long-lost object whose value he cannot begin to measure. Now a widower, Henry is still trying to find his voice-words that might explain the actions of his nationalistic father; words that might bridge the gap between him and his modern, Chinese American son; words that might help him confront the choices he made many years ago.

Set during one of the most conflicted and volatile times in American history, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet is an extraordinary story of commitment and enduring hope. In Henry and Keiko, Jamie Ford has created an unforgettable duo whose story teaches us of the power of forgiveness and the human heart.


This is one that should be showing up in the mailbox any day now.
true-colorsjpgTitle: True Colors
Author: Kristin Hannah
Publication date: February ’09
Women’s fiction

From Ms. Hannah’s web site:
The Grey sisters have always been close. After their mother’s death, the girls banded together, becoming best friends. Their stern, disapproving father cares less about his children than about his reputation. To Henry Grey, appearances are everything, and years later, he still demands that his daughters reflect his standing in the community. Winona, the oldest, needs her father’s approval most of all. An overweight bookworm who never felt at home on the sprawling horse ranch that has been in her family for three generations, she knows that she doesn’t have the qualities her father values. But as the best lawyer in town, she’s determined to someday find a way to prove her worth to him. Aurora, the middle sister, is the family peacemaker. She brokers every dispute and tries to keep them all happy, even as she hides her own secret pain. Vivi Ann is the undisputed star of the family. A stunningly beautiful dreamer with a heart as big as the ocean in front of her house, she is adored by all who know her. Everything comes easily for Vivi Ann, until a stranger comes to town…

In a matter of moments, everything will change. The Grey sisters will be pitted against one another in ways that none could have imagined. Loyalties will be tested and secrets revealed, and a terrible, shocking crime will shatter both their family and their beloved town. True Colors is an unforgettable novel about sisters, rivalry, forgiveness, redemption—and ultimately, what it means to be a family.

  1. January 14, 2009 6:14 am

    Everything I’ve read about Hotel makes me think it’s going to be a huge hit. I can’t wait to read it.

  2. January 14, 2009 7:07 am

    I also read Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, and I can’t wait to start recommending it to people. I’m anxiously awaiting the Kristin Hannah book as she is one of my must read authors.

  3. January 14, 2009 6:55 pm

    I’m waiting for the new Kristin Hannah too. I read Firefly Lane last year (my first book by her) and loved it. It was one of my favorite reads in 2008.

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