Book Haul #2: Commas, a Circus, the Hound, and Others

I did a bit of traveling in Pennsylvania during the last week of March to Pittsburgh, for work, and to Philadelphia, a belated birthday gift to myself. Apart from the time away from home and the fun I had, what’s awesome about these two trips is that I GOT NEW BOOKS!! Here they are:

Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen by Mary Norris
Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen by Mary Norris

First up is Mary Norris’ Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen, which I acquired at the annual American Copy Editors Society conference that was held in Pittsburgh. I’ve wanted this book ever since I first read of it and, being the book lover that I am, I annoyed everyone around me by constantly talking about it.

I was elated when I saw on the conference’s program that Norris was a speaker for one of the sessions, and I became even more excited when we were told that 40 early release copies would be signed and available for purchase after the session (this was in late March and the book was published on April 6). You bet I was one of the first ones in line to get a copy. I was so overjoyed, I didn’t know what to say to Norris when I met her other than that I’ve enjoyed reading her articles. As is characteristic of her, she signed my book with a pencil. I didn’t see what type it was but I bet it was a No. 1 pencil.

The Chronicle of Secret Riven by Ronlyn Dominique
The Chronicle of Secret Riven by Ronlyn Domingue

My job gets a lot of books from publishers so the book editor usually places the ones she’s done with or don’t need on a table for the rest of us to grab. It’s one of the reasons why I love my job. Shortly after returning from Pittsburgh, I walked by the book table and saw two stranded books waiting on me. I forgot what the other one was (I abandoned it on the table) but I grabbed The Chronicle of Secret Riven by Ronlyn Domingue because the title sounded cool and familiar. Plus the summary on the back cover had the words “fairy tale,” “hidden forest,” and “magical libraries” in it which convinced me to adopt the book. While reading the text on the back cover, I realized that I had acquired the second book in a series called the Keeper of the Tales Trilogy. The first book is The Mapmaker’s War, which I have heard of before and seen in stores. Obviously, I HAVE to purchase it soon to maintain the series.

The Hound vinyl figure by Funko
The Hound vinyl figure by Funko

After a hectic work week, I ran away to Philadelphia for Good Friday weekend for a brief respite. While gallery hopping in the historic district with a friend (art galleries are open late on the first Friday of the month), we happened upon a comic bookstore and had to go in. It’s there that I was swayed to buy the cute little action figure of the Hound, from the Game of Thrones TV show (A Song of Fire and Ice book series). Bad as he is, the Hound is one of my favorite characters. He comes off as evil because his experiences made him a monster…and also people’s perception. I like the toy. It’s eyes are as dead as the Hound is inside most times.

Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Later, my friend and I went to the BOOKSTORE which I was elated about because I had been on a book-buying ban for the month of March for Lent. (I gave myself a waiver for Norris’ book. I saw that as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to acquire a book early and get it signed.) We went to Barnes & Noble because I had COUPONS!! 😀 Two of them! Actually, after such a long time spent not buying books, I was overwhelmed once I got to the bookstore and could not make up my mind. Wisely, my friend decided to wait me out by sitting in B&N’s cafe.

Meanwhile, I wandered the store searching for books I placed on my TBR list and wondering if I really wanted them or not. In the end, I gave my friend one of the coupons to make my decision easier: I only had to purchase one book. So since I’ve always told myself that I would one day get Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, I went ahead and grabbed it from one of those “Great Books to Purchase” (or summin’ like that) tables. My friend got Life of Pi by Yann Martel. I supplemented my measly book with the National Geographic magazine because the Mona Lisa is on the front and I wanted to know what that’s about, and Traditional Home‘s Color issue. Actually, it was a toss up between Traditional Home and TIME magazine’s issue on Mark Twain but Traditional Home won because it costs less and I don’t like Mark Twain much.

And that’s it for this book haul. I apologize for the poor picture quality. I do not have a camera and had to use what I had — my iPad. You can expect a review of Norris’ book soon. I began reading it as soon as I got it and have just completed it.

So what books have you recently acquired or completed?

8 thoughts on “Book Haul #2: Commas, a Circus, the Hound, and Others

  1. Some of the books I’ve enjoyed this year and added to my collection :
    Slaughterhouse five – kurt vonnegut
    A thousand pieces of gold -adeline yen mah
    The road to oxiana – Robert Byron
    Soul mountain – Gao xingjian
    Hotel Honolulu – Paul theroux
    In xanadu – William dalrymple
    Woods woman – anne labastille
    Travels – Michael Crichton
    2003 – the best American essays
    A walk in the woods – bill bryson
    THANKS once again for your wonderful posts, happy reading 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Steve! And that’s a nice set of books you’ve acquired. I like the Best American essays series. I was tempted to buy the 2014 one last week.


      1. The best American essays 14 will contain some excellent writing I’m sure. Is there a specific contributor to 14 that caught your attention?
        For me, essays 03 was a safe bet that didn’t disappoint.


        1. I didn’t have anyone specific in mind. I just wanted the most recent issue. The copy I have on my bookshelf is the Best American Essays of the Century, which I think came out in 1991.


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