The Week in Books #68

Up next!

The week in books! Starting on a new stack very soon as this week I jumped ahead and read The Prophets, then dove into the newly released Peaces by Helen Oyeyemi, then came back to the final book on my previous stack. Also a few new ones thanks to Indigo’s spring Boxing Day sale 🥊

1. The Prophets by Robert Jones, Jr. Wow wow wow. This whole book is poetry. It took me a minute to get into the story but right from the first sentence the words themselves were gorgeous. Very powerful, very beautiful novel.

Isaiah was Samuel’s and Samuel was Isaiah’s. That was the way it was since the beginning, and the way it was to be until the end. In the barn they tended to the animals, but also to each other, transforming the hollowed-out shed into a place of human refuge, a source of intimacy and hope in a world ruled by vicious masters. But when an older man—a fellow slave—seeks to gain favor by preaching the master’s gospel on the plantation, the enslaved begin to turn on their own. Isaiah and Samuel’s love, which was once so simple, is seen as sinful and a clear danger to the plantation’s harmony.

With a lyricism reminiscent of Toni Morrison, Robert Jones, Jr., fiercely summons the voices of slaver and enslaved alike, from Isaiah and Samuel to the calculating slave master to the long line of women that surround them, women who have carried the soul of the plantation on their shoulders. As tensions build and the weight of centuries—of ancestors and future generations to come—culminates in a climactic reckoning, The Prophets masterfully reveals the pain and suffering of inheritance, but is also shot through with hope, beauty, and truth, portraying the enormous, heroic power of love.

Penguin Randomhouse

2. Peaces by Helen Oyeyemi. This is the brand new novel from prolific writer Oyeyemi (the eighth book of hers I read, of a total nine available I believe) As I anticipated, it’s a surreal journey from start to finish. Often when I’m reading her novels I have no idea what is happening but that’s kind of the fun. I liked this one a lot.

When Otto and Xavier Shin declare their love, an aunt gifts them a trip on a sleeper train to mark their new commitment–and to get them out of her house. Setting off with their pet mongoose, Otto and Xavier arrive at their sleepy local train station, but quickly deduce that The Lucky Day is no ordinary locomotive. Their trip on this former tea-smuggling train has been curated beyond their wildest imaginations, complete with mysterious and welcoming touches, like ingredients for their favourite breakfast. They seem to be the only people onboard, until Otto discovers a secretive woman who issues a surprising message. As further clues and questions pile up, and the trip upends everything they thought they knew, Otto and Xavier begin to see connections to their own pasts, connections that now bind them together.

A spellbinding tale from a star author, Peaces is about what it means to be seen by another person–whether it’s your lover or a stranger on a train–and what happens when things you thought were firmly in the past turn out to be right beside you.

Penguin Randomhouse
11/12 ✅

On to the last of this stack, The Goldfinch. It’s sooo long. Wish me luck!

New books! Seriously I need to stop but when books are on sale I can’t restrain myself. I picked up these three: The Gilded Ones, The Push and The Jigsaw Man. How do I afford so many books, you ask? I have a whole bunch of hacks actually that can save you money. I shop at Indigo (Chapters) because it is a Canadian book shop and they are large enough to offer quite a lot of perks. For this stack of three books I paid about $46.00 CAD. My tricks:

1. Install the Honey app (click this link to give me referral rewards!) and use it to navigate to the Indigo website. This earns you points that can be exchanged for gift cards to put towards future purchases. It also automatically searches for coupon codes and tries them at checkout to save you money.

2. Become an Indigo Plum member to save 10% off everything and get FREE SHIPPING. You also earn points that can be exchanged for discounts on future purchases.

3. Look for books that are marked down (they feature an author monthly that you save 25% on, and also give up to 40% off top books and bestsellers) and/or special offers that give you bonus points (usually preorders or anticipated releases).

4. Look for coupon codes to use at checkout. They change from time to time but I’ve had the most success with codes that offer 10% off orders of $50 or more. I google Chapters Coupon or Indigo Coupon and try a few codes to see if I can get one that works. Sometimes one works for a few purchases before it stops being valid.

I picked three books on sale for $20, $20 and $15, then saved 10% as a member, earned free shipping as a member, and an additional 10% for a purchase of $50 or more with a coupon code. I also collected Honey gold AND Indigo points that can be traded in for future gift cards (I’ve already earned a $10 Honey card and put it towards more books haha). So the final totals were more like $16, $16, and $12. Every little bit of savings counts.

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