Sunday Salon – Hints of Spring

A good Sunday to you.  If you’d like to find out about Sunday Salon check out this link.

It seems that spring is on the way, we have crocuses coming up all over the yard, the lilacs are in bud and the quince is starting to bloom.  I am ready for warmth and sun.  January and February seemed unusually dark and gray and after weeks of no blue sky I begin to feel weighed down.

The sun was out yesterday, I got out and dug in the dirt a bit and ended up with very stiff fingers!  It is supposed to be sunny again today.  If so, I’ll take my books into the yard and sit in the sunlight.

This week I finished and reviewed two books, continued with War and Peace and have started two more books for the TBR Dare.  I am excited about both of them.  Annabel, a first novel by Kathleen Winter, is a book that was shortlisted for the 2010 Giller Prize and one that I ordered from Canada.  Books published in Canada and the UK are the ones that occasionally have me break my book buying ban.

I am glad I broke the ban because the US edition has a different cover and I hate it.  It is prurient and, like most things in the US, sexualizes the cover of the book in order to sell it.

Canadian cover

US cover

Is this really necessary?  Am I being a prude?  Having just started the novel it seems to me that the Canadian cover sets a perfect tone for the story.  As for as the US cover is concerned I am embarrassed by and for our publishing industry.  All I hope is that, if this cover does increase sales, Kathleen Winter receives proper compensation for her work.

Anyway, enough ranting.  I am also reading Kafka on the Shore, my first Murakami.  I tried reading The Wind-up Bird Chronicles a couple of years ago and could not get into it.  Kafka is drawing me in.

What about you?  What are your reading plans for today?  For this week?  Are there any new books that you are really excited about?

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22 Comments

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22 responses to “Sunday Salon – Hints of Spring

  1. It was a particularly difficult winter, wasn’t it? Still trying to shake off the funk but have done as you have and dug in the dirt and felt the warmer breezes and beginning to see the light. Enjoy all of those wonderful reads out in the sun today. And you are not a prude. That cover is intended for nothing but marketing purposes, and even though I have not read the book, feel that it could not be justly serving the content.

  2. ew, I really don’t like the US cover to that book. I probably wouldn’t read it, to be honest. Not that I am doing very well reading it with the Canadian cover… I recently read my first Murakami, too. I chose Norwegian Wood and it was really quite good. I am not sure what I am going to read by him next…

    • It is interesting, some people are finding themselves drawn in by the US cover, which is a good thing, I think. I’m shaken up by and enjoying the Murakami, which is a bit confusing, but fun:)

  3. I just bought Annabel too…and I am eager to read it. I agree – the cover is not good (I like the Canadian cover better)…although I will say, that it caught my eye in the store. I immediately thought (and not in a good way) “What is THAT book???” Luckily, I read the book jacket and that is what got me to buy it. I’m looking forward to your review :)

    • Others are saying they are being drawn in by the US Annabel cover, which is a good thing, I think. Have a great week, Wendy.

  4. I love that the internet makes it possible to find a book in different cover varieties…a cover really should represent what you are about to encounter inside.

    • Thanks for your comment! I like being able to find different covers published in different countries and wonder why the publishers made those choices. Who are their target audiences?

  5. I’m just like Wendy when it comes to the US Cover of Annabel. The cover is pretty interesting and I had to glance at it twice when I first saw it. The cover is what sold me on the book. I wasn’t sure if the character was a boy or a girl. Books with unusual covers make me more willing to buy the book. Something about unusual covers tell me that the inside may be just as different.

    • Other people have said the same thing, Vasilly, and if they are picking up and reading the book that is a good thing:) I think it is interesting comparing different covers from different places and wondering why they were chosen, who the targeted audience is. You know the story:)

  6. I need to get back to War and Peace. Thank you for the reminder.

  7. Totally agree with you on the cover of Annabel in that I like the cover of the one you have much more. Though I do have to admit that the US cover did draw me in and make me want to know more about the book. I’m guilty of falling for sexual marketing :/

    It made me smile to picture you digging in the dirt today :) Hope you enjoyed it! And hooray for crocuses popping up!! I think they’re such adorable flowers.

    Oh and Gavin!!!! You won a book on my blog :D Send me your address if you don’t mind so I can get it out to you!

    • Thanks for the giveaway, Chris! I can’t wait to see Bayou 2. I’m glad the US cover drew you to Annabel, it is a wonderful book. I think you would like it:)

  8. I totally agree with you about the book cover. What the hell? If I were the author (and I am assuming she had nothing to do with it) I would be livid. I have both Wind Up Bird and Kafka here at home, but have yet to read either. I really want to love him.

    • It’s interesting, Sandy. Some people are saying the US cover of Annabel drew them to pick up the book, which is a good thing, I guess. I’m enjoying the Murakami, but it is very odd and surreal. Have a good week!

  9. Wow! Those are wildly different covers! I agree with you … the U.S. version is a bit over-the-top. It doesn’t even seem like the same book.

    And I’ve been seeing some flowers trying to poke their heads out! I’m ready to greet them … if only the cold wind would stop!

    • The Annabel covers are really different, aren’t they, but the book is just wonderful. I started it last night. You’ve got cold wind, we’ve got gray skies and rain (again). I just keep hoping that spring is right around the corner.

  10. I spent the whole weekend cleaning up the yard of sticks and stuff, trimming a few bushes and digging up rocks. It was windy but felt so good to be outside. I have a few jonquils poking up through the mulch close to the house but the crazy johnnyjumpups are blooming! so wonderful.
    I am planning on reading Wind-up for my first Murakami for a readalong in June and am so looking forward to experiencing this author. I hope I like the book.

    • I haven’t seen johnny-jumpups yet, but just love them! The Murakami is, well, different. I hope to write up my thoughts by the end of the week. Thanks so much for your comment.

  11. I like the Canadian cover of the book better as well. The U.S. version sort of creeps me out.

  12. Hey- as Mr. Harrison once sng- Here Comes the Sun (and about time!). And ya, I prefer the Canadian cover too.

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