Ah...what a world at the moment! It's day eleven of quarantine for me. I started quarantining before most people because after I did my last Junior League thing, I had a massive migraine and once recovered just chilled at home and accidentally started quarantine before the U.S. really seemed to grasp the impact of how serious this all was going to be.
I don't know what everyone is doing. I'm working to the best of my ability, cleaning my house, reading and watching TV. I'm going to try some new recipes and see what shakes out but trying to stay calm, stay inside and hopefully not catch Covid-19. It's really scary!
At the moment I'm listening to the Bear Brook podcast, the Yacht Rock Podcast and I just finished Derry Girls on Netflix (amazing!). Tonight I'm hoping to start the new Miss Fisher's movie. So Bear Brook is a state park and the podcast is a narrative look at the investigation that took place about various murders that took place there. I might not be describing it well but I'll see if I can find the trailer and place it under the break. I'll see if I can find more info about any of what I mentioned. I'm trying to find things to do in my downtime that take my mind off the pandemic. I couldn't reach one of my Chinese friends for a while (mostly because they weren't traveling to a place where they could access internet out of the firewall their government set up) so it was hard to know if they were okay or not (they're okay but lost family).
I have the Book Drop subscription through cratejoy but you can get it through their own storefront. So here's the information: The Book Drop is a book subscription from Bethany Beach Books (located in Delaware), a independent bookstore. They ship internationally as well. They have eight different categories, which includes children, YA and other genres. I've been getting the "Books for Tea" but have been musing changing things up for awhile. The "Books for Tea" is geared towards historical, contemporary or literary genres. I tend to normally avoid them for mysteries, but the choices that The Book Drop picks have been palatable. It gets me out of my normal routine. The books are paperbacks with either a signed bookplate and author's note or just an author's note/reading guide.
The price kinda fluctuates on the book and the shipping (around $4 for U.S., more for international). But mine average $25 or less...usually less. Shipping is prompt. I got my book before the twentieth for this month (their states shipping day). So, while these aren't my normal picks I want to note that I have enjoyed them and they have brought me out of my comfort zone. It's a lovely subscription.
Also of note, if you don't have an indie bookstore near you, Bethany Beach Books is shipping books purchased through their online store. Other indie's are doing this as well. I also know libraries are working to provide services as well. It's worth checking out.
December 2019-Books for tea subscription
So this is December 2019's Book Drop. I received a book (wrapped in tissue paper), a reading guide from the author/publisher, a butterfly bookmark and two pamphlets that detail what books are coming out next month. I really love these types of pamphlets, my local indie also has them in store and I peruse them every month.
The little card talks about why the book was chosen. AZH are the initials of the curator of The Book Drop. I'm going to transcribe what the card says below:
The Kennedy family has always fascinated me. I think for many readers, most fall into one of two categories: either you know a ton about the Kennedy family from living during that time period or reading other books about the family or like me, you've always been intrigued by them in a type of mythical way but don't really know anything about them. The Kennedy Debutante is a historical novel about Kathleen "Kick" Kennedy, JFK and RFK's sister. It is an engrossing, riveting re-imagined story based on true events and it is so, so good! Happy reading!
The reading guide included is also in the back of the book. It features 16 questions, probably really useful for book clubs. Sadly, every book club I've joined has had a meteoric failure. I'm not sure I can transcribe them...even though they're on the image and were sent. I don't have any agreement with the publisher...what I can do is link to the publisher website. It has an excerpt (print) and audio that might be of interest.
The author of this book, Kerri Maher, has written another historical fiction book about Grace Kelly. Kelly was an American actress that married the Prince of Monaco and then became Princess Grace. These books are based on research Maher did and then created a semi-fictional story about their life. I hope I explained that well. For instance, I'm not sure Kick Kennedy left a overly-detailed diary on all her thoughts so Maher fills in what she thinks could have happened.
The captivating novel following the exploits of Kathleen “Kick” Kennedy, the forgotten and rebellious daughter of one of America’s greatest political dynasties.
Kick Kennedy is a real person, who did marry the future Duke of something or another. She was friends with one of the Mitfords, who have managed to show up in several books I've read recently. I think Kick is one of the more interesting Kennedy figures, sadly not as well known to many people. I'm less interested in the British aristocracy. I've met enough to find them...dull.
I mean, it's not fair to label a whole group of people dull. But like...they're not that interesting as a whole to me. I think for historical book set in England, I'm more interested in spies in Elizabethan England. So, to be fair...it's on me there.
I have read December's book, but not January's. I liked December's book quite well. It was my favorite of the Mitford adjacent books I read all during that time but I ended up passing it along to my friend who likes this type of book more than me.
January 2020-BOOKS FOR TEA SUBSCRIPTION
So January's book is by Gwen Florio. I haven't yet read this one but it does sound good. This month I received a signed bookplate and an author's note. The note on the card reads:
I am so excited about the book for a few reasons. One, anything that is compared to A Thousand Splendid Suns has my attention and two, the author, Gwen Florio, is from Delaware! I didn't realize she was from Delaware until after I had already selected Silent Hearts so it was such a pleasant surprise, especially since she also filled me in on the fact that she is currently writing a novel set on the Eastern shore (of Maryland/Delaware/Virginia AKA Delmarva, AKA where our store, Bethany Beach Books, is located!). I hope you enjoy Silent Hearts as much as I did! Enjoy! -AZH
The tiny amount of damage on the bottom corner of the book was caused by me. I dropped it when I was having a migraine aura and just couldn't seem to figure out how to place it on my TBR stack. It's not really noticeable in the picture but I didn't want it to look like I received it that way.
Below, the two trailers for Miss Fisher and the Crypt of Tears and Derry Girls, season 1. Derry Girls is set at the end of the Troubles (I think?) in Derry, Northern Ireland. It's about a group of four teens from there who attend Catholic School and a boy from England (the wee English fellow) who transfers to their school. It's a comedy but does talk about things that happen (bombings, police searches, catholic/protestant clashes, and IRA issues). The Miss Fisher movie is based off a kick starter and shows what happened after the series ended. Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries is an Australian murder mystery series based off books by Kerry Greenwood. It's set in 1920's Australia and is really cute. The books are lovely and about the level of cozy mystery I can read before tearing my hair out. It was in the theatres although not one near me as far as I can tell. Acorn TV (which I have a subscription to through Prime) has the distribution rights and dropped it this week.
The Derry Girls trailers have cursing in it. It doesn't bother me, but I work from home so I thought I should mention that in case it was necessary.
The Bear Brooks podcast has a little intro video. Warnings wise, this deals with a real multiple murder case. So if that's disturbing, that's something to note. The video below is not graphic and just gives a bit of a hint of the whole case. It's one of those cases that seem to really grip people's attention.