Sunday, March 21, 2010

In My Mailbox (12)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme that talks about books that have been bought, swapped, received for review or borrowed from the library. In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren and was inspired by Alea at Pop Culture Junkie

For Review:

Dead End Gene Pool: A Memoir by Wendy Burden (Gotham Books, April 1, 2010)

Summary from Goodreads: In the tradition of Sean Wilsey's Oh The Glory of It All and Augusten Burrough's Running With Scissors, the great-great-great granddaughter of Cornelius Vanderbilt gives readers a grand tour of the world of wealth and WASPish peculiarity, in her irreverent and darkly humorous memoir.

For generations the Burdens were one of the wealthiest families in New York, thanks to the inherited fortune of Cornelius "The Commodore" Vanderbilt. By 1955, the year of Wendy's birth, the Burden's had become a clan of overfunded, quirky and brainy, steadfastly chauvinistic, and ultimately doomed bluebloods on the verge of financial and moral decline-and were rarely seen not holding a drink. In Dead End Gene Pool, Wendy invites readers to meet her tragically flawed family, including an uncle with a fondness for Hitler, a grandfather who believes you can never have enough household staff, and a remarkably flatulent grandmother.

At the heart of the story is Wendy's glamorous and aloof mother who, after her husband's suicide, travels the world in search of the perfect sea and ski tan, leaving her three children in the care of a chain- smoking Scottish nanny, Fifth Avenue grandparents, and an assorted cast of long-suffering household servants (who Wendy and her brothers love to terrorize). Rife with humor, heartbreak, family intrigue, and booze, Dead End Gene Pool offers a glimpse into the fascinating world of old money and gives truth to an old maxim: The rich are different

I don't read memoirs often, but this one looked interesting because the family is from New York.  And the cover is slightly odd, which can sometimes be a good thing.  I probably won't be posting a review for Dead End Gene Pool until the beginning of May. Thank you to Penguin and TLC Tours.

From the library:

Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause (Delacorte Press for Young Readers, 1997)

Summary from Goodreads: Vivian Gandillon relishes the change, the sweet, fierce ache that carries her from girl to wolf. At sixteen, she is beautiful and strong, and all the young wolves are on her tail. But Vivian still grieves for her dead father; her pack remains leaderless and in disarray, and she feels lost in the suburbs of Maryland. She longs for a normal life. But what is normal for a werewolf?

Then Vivian falls in love with a human, a meat-boy. Aiden is kind and gentle, a welcome relief from the squabbling pack. He's fascinated by magic, and Vivian longs to reveal herself to him. Surely he would understand her and delight in the wonder of her dual nature, not fear her as an ordinary human would.

Vivian's divided loyalties are strained further when a brutal murder threatens to expose the pack. Moving between two worlds, she does not seem to belong in either. What is she really--human or beast? Which tastes sweeter--blood or chocolate?

I loved The Silver Kiss by Annette Curtis Klause, so I looked for other books by her.  I had no idea that she had also written Blood and Chocolate.  It is about werewolves, that plus the amazing The Silver Kiss, leave me with very high expectations.

The Summer Before by Ann M. Martin  (Scholastic Press, April 1, 2010) - ARC from Library System List

Summary from Goodreads: Before there was the Baby-Sitters Club, there were four girls named Kristy Thomas, Mary Anne Spier, Claudia Kishi, and Stacey McGill. As they start the summer before seventh grade (also before they start the BSC), each of them is on the cusp of a big change. Kristy is still hung up on hoping that her father will return to her family. Mary Anne has to prove to her father that she's no longer a little girl who needs hundreds of rules. Claudia is navigating her first major crush on a boy. And Stacey is leaving her entire New York City life behind... order to find new friends in Stoneybrook, Connecticut.

The Summer Before . . . is a sweet, moving novel about four girls on the edge of something big - not just the Club that will change their lives, but also all the joys and tribulations of being twelve and thirteen.

I absolutely loved The Baby Sitters Club series when I was in 5th and 6th grade.  I devoured them, one after another.  When it was announced that BSC was getting a makeover and an update, I was excited.  At the library, our copies of BSC do get borrowed, but not that often.  The update will bring Kristy, Mary Ann, Claudia and Stacey into the 2000s and make them more relatable to todays tweens.  I'm in the middle of reading The Summer Before and it feels like stepping back in time and meeting with old friends.  The 10 year old in me was squeeing as I read the first few pages.  It is definitely has a more modern feel, but there is nothing specific that would date it. 

What's in your mailbox this week?


  1. Dead end Gene pool has an awesome cover!! It looks so interesting! I want to read blood and chocolate too! enjoy!

  2. Blood and Chocolate has been on my wishlist for a while now, but I've never gotten around to buying it. I am looking forward to your review :D

  3. You got an interesting variety of books this week. I was too old for the Babysitter's Club when they first came out but remember that they were popular. I may have to try a few of the new releases to see if they become popular again.

    I loved Blood and Chocolate when I read it.

    Here are my mailboxes this week: Inside of a Dog and Ms. Martin Teaches Media.

    Happy reading!

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. OMG, I used to love The Babysitters Club! Interesting books you got this week. Can't wait to see your reviews. :)

  6. Blood & Chocolate sounds really cool!

    Hope you enjoy them all! :D

  7. I liked Blood and Chocolate but I haven't read The Silver Kiss. I'll have to add that to my TBR list. I used to really enjoy the Babysitter's Club as a kid too. I'm glad the stories are still around but updated. I hope you enjoy Blood and Chocolate and your other books as well.

  8. You are going to love Blood and Chocolate! I enjoyed The Silver Kiss but I think B&C is much better. I was such a BSC fan as a kid, too. I am so glad that they're getting an update!

  9. Great books! I was obsessed with The Babysitter's Club when I was younger. :) I hope you enjoy your books and thanks for visiting my IMM.

  10. The first one sounds really really interesting! I remember always attempting to read The Babysisters Club but I could never finish it. I was more into scary novels. Now that I'm older... I hate scary novels lol.

    I gave you an award here!

  11. Blood and Chocolate looks fab! I'll be looking forward to your review of that one :o)

    Hope you have a fab week

  12. These look good! I remember the good ole days when I read the BSC (now I'm aging myself). I hope you enjoy all of these books! :)

  13. These look great! I've been thinking about getting Blood and Chocolate for a few years, and never remember to look at it when I go to the bookstore. Here's what I got this week: Not-Really-Southern Vamp Chick

  14. O
    I LOVE Blood and Chocolate.
    Hope you love it too :)


Thanks for commenting! Comments are like cookies; they should be made and shared often.

The Serpentine Library is an award free zone. I appreciate that you may want to pass along an award and I thank you for that. Blogging is about sharing a love for reading and books and I would like to make that this blog's first priority.


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