Book of the Month March 2017 Subscription Box Review + Coupon

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Book of the Month Club is a monthly book subscription box. Each month, their panel of Judges selects 5 books, which they announce on the first of the month, and members have six days to decide which book (or books) they would like to receive. One book per month is included in the membership fee, and members can purchase up to two additional books each month for $9.99 per title. The monthly price is $14.99 per month, $11.99 per month on a year-long subscription.

DEAL: Use the following links to grab a Book of the Month Deal

Marlena: A Novel by Julie Buntin ($19.45)

An electric debut novel about love, addiction, and loss; the story of two girls and the feral year that will cost one her life, and define the other’s for decades. Everything about fifteen-year-old Cat’s new town in rural Michigan is lonely and off-kilter, until she meets her neighbor, the manic, beautiful, pill-popping Marlena. Cat, inexperienced and desperate for connection, is quickly lured into Marlena’s orbit by little more than an arched eyebrow and a shake of white-blond hair. As the two girls turn the untamed landscape of their desolate small town into a kind of playground, Cat catalogues a litany of firsts―first drink, first cigarette, first kiss―while Marlena’s habits harden and calcify. Within the year, Marlena is dead, drowned in six inches of icy water in the woods nearby. Now, decades later, when a ghost from that pivotal year surfaces unexpectedly, Cat must try to forgive herself and move on, even as the memory of Marlena keeps her tangled in the past.Alive with an urgent, unshakable tenderness, Julie Buntin’s Marlena is an unforgettable look at the people who shape us beyond reason and the ways it might be possible to pull oneself back from the brink.Judge Stephanie Ortiz says this:

This is easily one of those read-in-one-sitting books, but I encourage you to take it slower and savor Buntin’s expert depiction of an intoxicating young friendship.

XX,

Steph

Just reading the jacket on this book had me near tears. I think everyone has had a friendship that has impacted their life for better or worse and has made them who they are today. Personally, I love stories of young friendship because there is an innocence and raw honesty that disappears as we grow older and have more life lessons under out belts.

Exit West: A novel by Mohsin Ham ($13.68)

In a country teetering on the brink of civil war, two young people meet—sensual, fiercely independent Nadia and gentle, restrained Saeed. They embark on a furtive love affair, and are soon cloistered in a premature intimacy by the unrest roiling their city. When it explodes, turning familiar streets into a patchwork of checkpoints and bomb blasts, they begin to hear whispers about doors—doors that can whisk people far away, if perilously and for a price. As the violence escalates, Nadia and Saeed decide that they no longer have a choice. Leaving their homeland and their old lives behind, they find a door and step through. . . .

Exit West follows these remarkable characters as they emerge into an alien and uncertain future, struggling to hold on to each other, to their past, to the very sense of who they are. Profoundly intimate and powerfully inventive, it tells an unforgettable story of love, loyalty, and courage that is both completely of our time and for all time.

Judge Leigh Haber has these words for us:

Mohsin Hamid may have launched a new sub-genre of fiction with his new novel–the migrant love story. How To Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia is bold, timely and gorgeously written. Turn off MSNBC and settle in.

Leigh

I think the note was misplaced as the title in it is not the same as the book I received. I’m not a huge love story fan but the realism of the description makes me want to dive into this novel. It seems to me there might be a huge lesson to be learned from stepping out of my normal comfort zone.

Dead Letters: A Novel by Caite Dolan-Leach ($14.16)

Ava Antipova has her reasons for running away: a failing family vineyard, a romantic betrayal, a mercurial sister, an absent father, a mother slipping into dementia. In Paris, Ava renounces her terribly practical undergraduate degree, acquires a French boyfriend and a taste for much better wine, and erases her past. Two years later, she must return to upstate New York. Her twin sister, Zelda, is dead.

Even in a family of alcoholics, Zelda Antipova was the wild one, notorious for her mind games and destructive behavior. Stuck tending the vineyard and the girls’ increasingly unstable mother, Zelda was allegedly burned alive when she passed out in the barn with a lit cigarette. But Ava finds the official explanation a little too neat. A little too Zelda. Then she receives a cryptic message—from her sister.

Just as Ava suspected, Zelda’s playing one of her games. In fact, she’s outdone herself, leaving a series of clues about her disappearance. With the police stuck on a red herring, Ava follows the trail laid just for her, thinking like her sister, keeping her secrets, immersing herself in Zelda’s drama and her outlandish circle of friends and lovers. Along the way, Zelda forces her twin to confront their twisted history and the boy who broke Ava’s heart. But why? Is Zelda trying to punish Ava for leaving, or to teach her a lesson? Or is she simply trying to write her own ending?

Featuring a colorful, raucous cast of characters, Caite Dolan-Leach’s debut thriller takes readers on a literary scavenger hunt for clues concealed throughout the seemingly idyllic wine country, hidden in plain sight on social media, and buried at the heart of one tremendously dysfunctional, utterly unforgettable family.

Judge Sarah Weinman says:

Caite Bolan-Leach’s debut suspense thriller is a wonderfully clever, emotionally resonant story of a young woman’s scavenger hunt to figure out if her dead twin in, in , fact, alive.

-Sarah Weinman

Thrillers are my favorite genre of books, movies, and television. I am so excited to read this, from the jacket alone I can tell there will be mystery, intrigue and a splash of love. I can’t wait to see if the novel will make me wait to figure out the truth before the end or just blow my mind because I was on the wrong track the entire way.

All Grown Up: A Novel by Jami Attenberg

Who is Andrea Bern? When her therapist asks the question, Andrea knows the right things to say: she’s a designer, a friend, a daughter, a sister. But it’s what she leaves unsaid—she’s alone, a drinker, a former artist, a shrieker in bed, captain of the sinking ship that is her flesh—that feels the most true. Everyone around her seems to have an entirely different idea of what it means to be an adult: her best friend, Indigo, is getting married; her brother—who miraculously seems unscathed by their shared tumultuous childhood—and sister-in-law are having a hoped-for baby; and her friend Matthew continues to wholly devote himself to making dark paintings at the cost of being flat broke.

But when Andrea’s niece finally arrives, born with a heartbreaking ailment, the Bern family is forced to reexamine what really matters. Will this drive them together or tear them apart? Told in gut-wrenchingly honest, mordantly comic vignettes, All Grown Up is a breathtaking display of Jami Attenberg’s power as a storyteller, a whip-smart examination of one woman’s life, lived entirely on her own terms.

Laia Garcia  has this unsigned note to us:

A book for the women who are warned, but persist. Not unscathed, but undeterred

 A strong female character that is trying to figure out who she is without letting the past or her family define her, I can’t wait to read this book. There must be an amazing lesson to be learned from these characters.

The Stranger In the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit ($15.49)

Many people dream of escaping modern life, but most will never act on it. This is the remarkable true story of a man who lived alone in the woods of Maine for 27 years, making this dream a reality—not out of anger at the world, but simply because he preferred to live on his own.

In 1986, a shy and intelligent twenty-year-old named Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the forest. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even through brutal winters, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store edibles and water, and to avoid freezing to death. He broke into nearby cottages for food, clothing, reading material, and other provisions, taking only what he needed but terrifying a community never able to solve the mysterious burglaries. Based on extensive interviews with Knight himself, this is a vividly detailed account of his secluded life—why did he leave? what did he learn?—as well as the challenges he has faced since returning to the world. It is a gripping story of survival that asks fundamental questions about solitude, community, and what makes a good life, and a deeply moving portrait of a man who was determined to live his own way, and succeeded.

Judge Liberty Hardy says:

As a Maine Native, I can assure you that the winters here are brutal. So I absolutely had to know how someone could spend 27 winters alone in the Maine woods. It seemed impossible! The Stranger in the Woods in my new favorite work of nonfiction, and I hope you love it as well.

Liberty

I spent the first 14 years of my life in a rural town in Maine and have actually heard this story before by word of mouth. I am so excited to read the words of the North Pond Hermit from his own point of view. I can’t imagine spending 27 minutes out in the winter let alone 27 years, this book may be passed around the family so we can all enjoy it.

BOTM is amazing…bringing a splash of so many different genres to my door in one very heavy box (the add-ons are a must if you read a lot!). I love that each book is hard-covered and I could hear the binding stretch when I opened the cover. It’s awesome to get a little bit of insight into the book from the judges, plus it’s such a personal touch. I am so ready to neglect my household chores and curl up with a book or five.

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