Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Swag to the 4th Power

Miss Timmins' School for Girls: A Novel
Miss Timmins School for Girls by Nayana Currimbhoy

From Amazon:

A murder at a British boarding school in the hills of western India launches a young teacher on the journey of a lifetime
In 1974, three weeks before her twenty-first birthday, Charulata Apte arrives at Miss Timmins' School for Girls in Panchgani. Shy, sheltered, and running from a scandal that disgraced her Brahmin family, Charu finds herself teaching Shakespeare to rich Indian girls in a boarding school still run like an outpost of the British Empire. In this small, foreign universe, Charu is drawn to the charismatic teacher Moira Prince, who introduces her to pot-smoking hippies, rock ‘n' roll, and freedoms she never knew existed.
Then one monsoon night, a body is found at the bottom of a cliff, and the ordered worlds of school and town are thrown into chaos. When Charu is implicated in the murder—a case three intrepid schoolgirls take it upon themselves to solve—Charu's real education begins. A love story and a murder mystery, Miss Timmins' School for Girls is, ultimately, a coming-of-age tale set against the turbulence of the 1970s as it played out in one small corner of India.

Silver Sparrow
Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones

From the author's website

With the opening line of Silver Sparrow, “My father, James Witherspoon is a bigamist,” Tayari Jones unveils a breathtaking story about a man’s deception, a family’s complicity, and the teenage girls caught in the middle.
Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon’s families– the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode when secrets are revealed and illusions shattered. As Jones explores the backstories of her rich and flawed characters, she also reveals the joy, and the destruction, they brought to each other’s lives.
At the heart of it all are the two girls whose lives are at stake, and like the best writers, Jones portrays the fragility of her characers with raw authenticity as they seek love, demand attention, and try to imagine themselves as women.

Donatella Cooks
Donatella Cooks by Donatella Arpaia
From Amazon

Dubbed "the hostess with the mostest" by Zagats, Donatella Arpaia is a ubiquitous and striking presence on the national food scene. Literally raised in the business, she knows precisely what makes a guest feel welcome, whether in one of her wildly popular restaurants or one-on-one in her home. Yet every day she meets would-be home cooks—sophisticated, confident, successful women with discriminating palates—whose confidence evaporates at the kitchen door.
For these discerning diners, Donatella has written Donatella Cooks, a sassy, spirited guide to cooking and entertaining with flair. Writing with humor, wit, and practicality, she covers every element of a great evening, from super simple yet delectable food to the perfect music, drinks, and d├ęcor. Her foolproof recipes are brimming with bold flavor yet so easy to prepare even novice cooks can pull them off without breaking a sweat. Whether it’s a romantic dinner for two or a cocktail gala for dozens, Donatella Cooks has the winning formula for the perfect evening.

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