Friday, October 16, 2009

Friday Finds

Share your Friday Finds at Should be Reading. Friday Finds are the great books you heard about, read about or discovered and added to your TBR list this past week?

Sunflowers by Sheramy Bundrick
A novel of Vincent Van Gogh, Sheramy Bundrick’s Sunflowers is an arresting and beautiful tale of a young French prostitute’s passionate, doomed relationship with a troubled artist. Vividly evoking a bygone time and place, Bundrick brings her characters to breathtaking life as she seamlessly blends historical fact with riveting speculation. A story that will captivate readers of Susan Vreeland and Karen Essex, and admirers of Tracy Chevalier’s New York Times bestseller Girl with a Pearl Earring, Sheramy Bundrick’s exceptional debut, Sunflowers, will linger long in the mind like a breathtaking landscape or an exquisite portrait done in oils.

"I'd heard about him but had never seen him, the foreigner with the funny name who wandered the countryside painting pictures."

From a talented new author comes a poignant and haunting novel of creation and desire, passion and madness, art and love.

A young prostitute seeking temporary refuge from the brothel, Rachel awakens in a beautiful garden in Arles to discover she is being sketched by a red-haired man in a yellow straw hat. This is no ordinary artist but the eccentric painter Vincent van Gogh—and their meeting marks the beginning of a remarkable relationship. He arrives at their first assignation at No. 1, Rue du Bout d'Arles, with a bouquet of wildflowers and a request to paint her—and before long, a deep, intense attachment grows between Rachel and the gifted, tormented soul.
But the sanctuary Rachel seeks from her own troubled past cannot be found here, for demons war within Vincent's heart and mind. And one shocking act will expose the harsh, inescapable truth about the artist she has grown to love more than life.

I have always liked Vincent Van Gogh's art work very much. I read a wonderful review of this book in I'm very excited about this book and can't wait to read it!


Unfinished Desires by Gail Godwin

Set in a small town in the mountains of North Carolina, Unfinished Desires is a complex and deeply affecting story of friendship, loyalty, redemption, and memory.
The ninth grade class of Mount St. Gabriels, an all girls Catholic School, is strong willed (some might say "notorious"). Leading the pack is the unforgettable Tildy Stratton, the undisputed queen bee of the class, who quickly befriends Chloe Starnes, a day student recently taken in by her uncle following her young mother's mysterious death. The passionate friendship fills a void for each girl, and the headstrong Tildy soon has Chloe and the whole class enacting her vision for a play based on the colorful founding story of the school.
What happens the night of the play will profoundly affect the course of many of the lives involved, including that of the girls' teacher, a young nun, as well as the school's matriarch, Mother Suzanne Ravenel. Fifty years later, she will still relive that night in 1951, trying to reconcile past and present, and reaching back even further to her own senior year at Mt. St. Gabriel's, where the roots of a tragedy are buried.

Gail Godwin is an author my mother used to read. She gave me my first book by this author to read, A Mother and Two Daughters. I really enjoyed this book and over the years I have read several other books By Gail Godwin so I was very happy to see that she had a new one this year.


  1. Thank you for the suggestions. I love how writers and filmmakers continue to grow if blessed to do so as opposed to flitty jobs that rely on your body/youth rather than your mind.

    Gail Godwin is one to be looked at.

  2. I saw a review of Sunflowers over at Jennifer's Literate Housewife. It sounds wonderful! All I know about the guy is the ear thing, and I would love to know more.

  3. You have me wanting to read Sunflowers.

  4. Thanks for the reading tips. i'll add them to my list.

    I stopped by from Willoughby's Cocktail Party. Nice to meet you. I'll be back again soon.

  5. Both of these sound good, Amy. I hope you will get a chance to read them!

  6. These both sound good Amy. I really like the cover on Sunflowers.

  7. I got Sunflowers this week and it looks so good! I can't wait to read it.

  8. Thanks for sharing! Now I want to rush out and get both these books!

  9. I've been seeing "Sunflowers" all over the place, I really want to read it!

  10. I am so sorry it's taken me so long to get here. I realized that ever since my husband left his job (he's going to be starting a new one after taking an exam in the next week or so) my schedule has gone out the window. I need to get myself up in the morning and get on-line while he is still sleeping. I love spending time with him, of course, but I'm missing being here!!

    Clarity: Hello! Gifted fimmakers and writers are a blessing to us all. I'm always thankful for and in awe of those who commit to independant films which pay little to everyone involved (these are the people working because they love what they are doing) but are often the best out there.
    I haven't read a book by Gail Godwin in a long time but she's a very good writer and I have always enjoyed her books and she is also a link to my mom so I definitely treasure her work.

    Sandy: I am familiar with some of his paintings from seeing them in the Met and various other NYV museums but otherwise the ear thing is all I know too. I hate not knowing more so when I read a couple of reviews of this book I was intrigued. I will read it and soon. I must have art & artists on my mind because just before I saw the reviews for this book, I was think I should re-read The Agony & The Ecstasy by Irving Stone, an excellent novel about Michelangelo Buonarroti. I highly recommend it!

    Guatami tripathy: Sunflowers are beautiful. When we first moved to this apartment, the garden in the back yard was filled with beautiful, huge sunflowers planted by one of the tenants. I took it as a good sign! I'm not familiar with Waiting for Columbus, so thank you for highlighting it. I will check it out soon!

  11. Esme: Then I am in wonderful company. I wonder if it's a good book for a group read? I'll try to remember to look into that. Oh, brain, don't fail me now!

    Joanna: Thank you for visiting, I adore Willoughby's blog & think her cocktail party idea is brilliant. I am very behind in my visits but I promise to stop by your blog soon. I think I have visited you before! (I seem to be suffering from memory issues with my old age...bear with me please! lol)

    Literary Feline: Me too! My TBR list grows by leaps and bounds as does my actual book pile. A few weeks ago I started stacking books I want to read soon on my night table. My dear oblivious husband apparently didn't hear me the few times I said I need to get a shelf by my bed to hold all these books. But suddenly last night, he looked over to my side of the room and exclaimed, "Holy cow!" ran over and took half the books off the stack telling me that he was afraid one of the cats might knock them over or they might fall, knock me in the head giving me a concussion. He gets a little dramatic sometimes(!) but at least he finally noticed what I have been trying to tell him!! So, anyway, I have a feeling if I try to buy two more books he might ban me from book buying and browsing all together!

    Dar: So do I! I think the cover is the first thing that attracted me to the review & it turns out the book sounds great too! Thank you for stopping by, Dar!

    Bermudaonion: I hope you enjoy the book! I look forward to your thoughts on it!

    Pesky Cat Designs: Thank you, I'm glad you like the write-ups. Let me know if you do happen to read them! What are you reading now?
    Enjoy this lovely weather!

    Jen: Me too! Suddenly it's everywhere it seems. Sometimes I like to wait when a book is being read by everyone. But for some reason, Sunflowers has me in it's grip! If you read it soon, I hope you enjoy it!

  12. I just saw the question you posted above today. I am reading After Dark by Haruki Murakami. It is taking me forever to finish since I have been so busy in my handbag studio and at a part-time outside job.

    Wishing you a great weekend Amy!