BookCase.Club is a monthly book subscription box offering different genres: Children’s, Young Adult, Mystery/Thriller, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Romance, and Historical/New Age/Contemporary Fictopm. Each box contains 2 hand-picked books, except for the Children’s box which includes 3 books. It costs $9.99 per month, making it one of the most inexpensive book subscriptions out there.
This is the review of Surprise-Me Fiction, a new offering that includes two engaging debuts and stand-alone fiction titles which may include historical, family saga, new age, literary, and contemporary.
When you sign up, you’ll pick the genre.
The books were wrapped with a tissue paper featuring the BookCase Club logo and social media handles.
Everything in my box!
Moonglow by Michael Chabon ($12.98)
Following on the heels of his New York Times bestselling novel Telegraph Avenue, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Chabon delivers another literary masterpiece: a novel of truth and lies, family legends, and existential adventure—and the forces that work to destroy us.
In 1989, fresh from the publication of his first novel, The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, Michael Chabon traveled to his mother’s home in Oakland, California, to visit his terminally ill grandfather. Tongue loosened by powerful painkillers, memory stirred by the imminence of death, Chabon’s grandfather shared recollections and told stories the younger man had never heard before, uncovering bits and pieces of a history long buried and forgotten. That dreamlike week of revelations forms the basis for the novel Moonglow, the latest feat of legerdemain from Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Chabon.
Moonglow unfolds as the deathbed confession of a man the narrator refers to only as “my grandfather.” It is a tale of madness, of war and adventure, of sex and marriage and desire, of existential doubt and model rocketry, of the shining aspirations and demonic underpinnings of American technological accomplishment at midcentury, and, above all, of the destructive impact—and the creative power—of keeping secrets and telling lies. It is a portrait of the difficult but passionate love between the narrator’s grandfather and his grandmother, an enigmatic woman broken by her experience growing up in war-torn France. It is also a tour de force of speculative autobiography in which Chabon devises and reveals a secret history of his own imagination.
From the Jewish slums of prewar South Philadelphia to the invasion of Germany, from a Florida retirement village to the penal utopia of New York’s Wallkill prison, from the heyday of the space program to the twilight of the “American Century,” the novel revisits an entire era through a single life and collapses a lifetime into a single week. A lie that tells the truth, a work of fictional nonfiction, an autobiography wrapped in a novel disguised as a memoir, Moonglow is Chabon at his most moving and inventive.
The back of the book has all praises for Michael Chabon who is a known Pulitzer Prize-winning author.
The synopsis is printed on the flap of the dust jacket and sparks interest to its readers.
The fact that it was a novel disguised as a memoir or a memoir disguised as a novel was a bit disturbing for me. Its story is bizarre but most definitely, Chabon is a genius writer. He is such a good writer for creating this mid-boggling piece.
It’s difficult to summarize the book at once since the story is not linear at all. Its complexity runs deep and the narrative layers make one compel whether it has parts pertaining to an autobiographical novel but I must say that “Moonglow” is one of the best novels I have read in years. Chabon’s grandfather has shown a painful lesson that there are things that simply cannot be fixed because it’s not meant to be. It is both sad and beautiful at the same time.
In her sweeping debut, Diane C. McPhail offers a powerful, profoundly emotional novel that explores a little-known aspect of Civil War history—Southern Abolitionists—and the timeless struggle to do right even amidst bitter conflict.
On a Mississippi morning in 1859, Emily Matthews begs her father to save a slave, Nathan, about to be auctioned away from his family. Judge Matthews is an abolitionist who runs an illegal school for his slaves, hoping to eventually set them free. One, a woman named Ginny, has become Emily’s companion and often her conscience—and understands all too well the hazards an educated slave must face. Yet even Ginny could not predict the tangled, tragic string of events set in motion as Nathan’s family arrives at the Matthews farm.
A young doctor, Charles Slate, tends to injured Nathan and begins to court Emily, finally persuading her to become his wife. But their union is disrupted by a fatal clash and a lie that will tear two families apart. As Civil War erupts, Emily, Ginny, and Emily’s stoic mother-in-law, Adeline, each face devastating losses. Emily—sheltered all her life—is especially unprepared for the hardships to come. Struggling to survive in this raw, shifting new world, Emily will discover untapped inner strength, an unlikely love, and the courage to confront deep, painful truths.
In the tradition of Cold Mountain, The Abolitionist’s Daughter eschews stereotypes of the Civil War South, instead weaving an intricate and unforgettable story of survival, loyalty, hope, and redemption.
Words of praises from other authors commending both the author and the story are listed on the back of the book.
The flap of the dust jacket contains the outline and sets the tone and mood of the story.
McPhail has written poetically a very dramatic story that depicts topics revolving around family violence, murders, war, slavery in an intriguing yet relatable narration. It is very moving and heartfelt. It is an American classic novel that’s difficult to forget.
Despite lots of negative depictions in the story, this is a wonderful historical fiction with its captivating plot on slavery and oppression and life’s perspective towards love and loss.
This month’s Surprise-Me Fiction offering of BookCase Club has laid down a reality check and a few life lessons that’s hard to forget. Both writers are masters of their own craft especially in their story-telling ability to bring the characters to life, it’s like they are so real! The two books in this month’s box are both family-centered. I’m impressed by how the box was curated and the titles were chosen. BookCase Club never disappoints with their boxes and I always look forward to the new books I will get, it saves me the time to spend choosing which title to read next!
Have you tried BookCase.Club? What are you currently reading?