The Handmaid’s Tale
by Margaret Atwood (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) is $1.99
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff and It’s All Small Stuff: Simple Ways To Keep The Little Things From Taking Over Your Life
The Handmaid’s Tale is not only a radical and brilliant departure for Margaret Atwood, it is a novel of such power that the reader will be unable to forget its images and its forecast.
Set in the near future, it describes life in what was once the United States, now called the Republic of Gilead, a monotheocracy that has reacted to social unrest and a sharply declining birthrate by reverting to, and going beyond, the repressive intolerance of the original Puritans. The regime takes the Book of Genesis absolutely at its word, with bizarre consequences for the women and men of its population.
The story is told through the eyes of Offred, one of the unfortunate Handmaids under the new social order. In condensed but eloquent prose, by turns cool-eyed, tender, despairing, passionate, and wry, she reveals to us the dark corners behind the establishment’s calm facade, as certain tendencies now in existence are carried to their logical conclusions.
The Handmaid’s Tale is funny, unexpected, horrifying, and altogether convincing. It is at once scathing satire, dire warning, and tour de force. It is Margaret Atwood at her best.
by Richard Carlson (Hyperion) is $2.24
Water for Elephants: A Novel
Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and It’s All Small Stuff tells you how to keep from letting the little things in life drive you crazy. In thoughtful and insightful language, author Richard Carlson reveals ways to calm down in the midst of your incredibly hurried, stress-filled life.
You can learn to put things into perspective by making the small daily changes Dr. Carlson suggests, including advice such as “Choose your battles wisely”; “Remind yourself that when you die, your ‘in’ box won’t be empty”; and “Make peace with imperfection”. With Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff… you’ll also learn how to:
* Live in the present moment
* Let others have the glory at times
* Lower your tolerance to stress
* Trust your intuitions
* Live each day as it might be your last
With gentle, supportive suggestions, Dr. Carlson reveals ways to make your actions more peaceful and caring, with the added benefit of making your life more calm and stress-free.
by Sara Gruen (Algonquin Books) is $1.99
An atmospheric tale of life and love in a Depression-era traveling circus.
Nonagenarian Jacob Jankowski reflects back on his wild and wondrous days with a circus. It’s the Depression Era and Jacob, finding himself parentless and penniless, joins the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth. There he meets the freaks, grifters, and misfits that populate this world. Jacob introduces us to Marlena, beautiful star of the equestrian act; to August, her charismatic but twisted husband (and the circus’ animal trainer); and to Rosie, a seemingly untrainable elephant.
Beautifully written, with a luminous sense of time and place, Water for Elephants tells of love in a world in which love’s a luxury few can afford.