Nature abhors a vacuum, and so, apparently, does my mailbox. After going empty the week before, my mailbox was stuffed to overflowing last week, giving me quite a list for Mailbox Monday.
Mostly I have Hawthorne Books & Literary Arts to thank for my bounty. Hawthorne is a Portland-based, independent publisher specializing in literary fiction and narrative non-fiction.
They sent me five books they thought would appeal to my list-oriented reading habits because all are prize-winners or nominees. All are in Hawthorne's trademark cool bindings: taller and skinnier than a typical trade paperback and featuring "acid-free papers; sewn bindings that will not crack; heavy, laminated covers with double-scored French flaps that function as built-in bookmarks." They are as gorgeous on the outside as they are interesting on the inside.
Soldiers in Hiding by Richard Wiley (PEN/Faulkner winner; new introduction by Wole Soyinka)
Leaving Brooklyn by Lynn Sharon Schwartz (nominated for the PEN/Faulkner; new introduction by Ursula Hegi)
Saving Stanley: The Brickman Stories by Scott Nadelson (Oregon Book Award winner; Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award)
The Well and the Mine by Gin Phillips (Discover Award winner; introduction by Fannie Flagg)
Clown Girl by Monica Drake (Independent Publishers Book Award winner; introduction by Chuck Palahniuk)
In addition to the Hawthorne books, I had another nice surprise last week -- a review copy of Jim Harrison's new novella troika, The Farmer's Daughter. I shamelessly begged Grove Press for a review copy because Harrison is one of my all-time favorites. I am quite excited that my efforts paid off.
Now, the price I pay for all this publisher largess is that all six books are going straight onto my Guilt List. I had better get cracking.