Browsing Archives for Book Giveaways

Rebecca… A Giveaway

September 9th, 2008

I first heard about the book Rebecca, written by Daphne Du Maurier in the comments on this blog. Rebecca came up several times when I asked my readers to name their favorite book. She came up again when I asked readers to tell me their favorite mystery. She came up again when I talked about books in which a house is a main character.

It was almost like…

Rebecca was haunting me…

She began to turn up in conversations at work… and while chatting with friends. The man in the toll booth on the highway mentioned her as he gave me my change. The goatherd on the cliffside talked of little else. The mannequin in the dress shop went on and on… The tattooed lady at the circus… the elven critter on a Harley… and the unicorn! 

I began to wear long black dresses with starched white collars and to carry a candle everywhere I went.

I started to pin my hair back in a severe bun.

At other times I would look out the window and the waves seemed to be taunting me… calling me… they held out their icy cold arms begging me to join their embrace.

Until one day…

While stumbling down a rocky beach in a frumpy dress and strangely sensible shoes for the wife of a millionaire…

Looking for my little dog Jasper..

I found her.

In my cubby at work.

And I brought her home to me.

And I spent nineteen hours trying to remember how to hook up a VCR.

So that the immortal opening lines could be stated in the wistful young voice of Joan Fontaine…

“Last night I dreamt I went to Manderly….”

And as I watched the Alfred Hitchcock version of Rebecca… I went to Manderly too… and it is a journey from which I have still not returned.

Because I still have not finished the book.

But I have watched both film versions… the Masterpiece Theater rendition and the classic Alfred Hitchcock version. Both films are extremely faithful to the book – at least what I have read so far, but Mr. Hitchcock’s version is unforgettable… a trifle melodramatic… okay maybe seriously over the top… and I have to admit I had a fleeting impulse to sit right down and hammer out a parody of Rebecca in true Cold Comfort Farm style, but I suppressed the urge because almost immediately after I finished Alfred’s version, I wanted to watch it again.

And again…

And again…

It is an extremely glamorous and romantic film.

Along with Rebecca, I am also being haunted by My Cousin Rachel, so I am throwing in a copy of that book too… even though I have not gotten a chance to read it myself yet… I hope to read it soon.

Today’s giveaway includes one copy of the book Rebecca, one copy of the book My Cousin Rachel, one DVD of Masterpiece Theater’s Rebecca and one copy of Alfred’s Rebecca.

This giveaway has come to an end.

Stunning really.

When you think about it.

That the best selling novelist of all time.


Would be a woman…

A woman named Agatha

And having been given the singular and most hearty name of Agatha, she would continually come up with names of books that make you want to say them over and over again.

The MURDER at the vicarage.


>The Murder at the VICARAGE!

The Murder at the Vicarage…


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Agatha Christie is one of my go to girls.

She never fails to entertain me.

Her glittering settings in old hotels, on the Nile, along the Riviera, in the green and golden English countryside, amidst a quiet village,

A body…

Is discovered…

In the library…
little gray cells…

She wrote more books with Poirot, though according to my research, she grew to despise him long before she stopped using him as a main character. Perhaps it was then she began to plot his destruction. She plotted it carefully. Fully exploiting his usefulness like a mafia boss, because aside from being a prodigious writer, she also deeply believed she was an entertainer and did not want to disappoint her audience. And Poirot entertained people with his peculiar habits and massive ego like no other detective ever has.

You see, deep down… Agatha was really a blogger.

So even though Miss Marple was her favorite crime solver, she kept writing with Mr Poirot because her readers loved him so. (They told her this in the comments of course.)

Miss Marple is my favorite too – because you know me and Agatha – we understand one another. But I love Poirot too. My boys say POY-ROT and they ridicule me for renting all the Poyrots from NetFlicks one after another after another after another.

“Oh look” they say, “Mom rented another POYROT – what a surprise!”

My poor, pathetic, sad, little orphaned children.

So today for the giveaway I have got three great Agatha Christie books (all used – all from Alibris) one Poirot DVD and a set of THREE Miss Marple DVD’s.

To win one of these literary classics tell me… WhoDunnit? Do you have a favorite mystery? It can be a movie or a book or just one of those troublesome, nagging mysteries of the universe. Winners will be chosen randomly at or around 8 PM CST Tuesday Night.

This giveaway has been murdered.

We arrived home very late last night to a sparkling clean house.

I don’t think my house has ever been this clean.



My mom owns a small business and she temporarily set up shop in my study and also cared for our cats and our plants and made a few side trips to visit April’s Pig Farm, all while trying to get her new catalog put together. Strangely enough, on her infrequent breaks she felt compelled to mop my floors, organize my closets, and fold my laundry.

There is nothing better than a good mom.




Clearly our cats love my mom too, as they were lolling all over the furniture when we arrived home and when I shooed them off, they all sadly limped over to my mom and cried softly and seemed like they were about to tip over from fatigue and exhaustion from crossing the living room under their own power and she scooped them up and stroked their backs while softly singing them back to sleep.

Yeah – sorry cats, tomorrow it is back outside for you.

This morning when I stumbled down to the kitchen, there were sweet rolls and coffee and a kitchen that was gleaming. I was almost blinded when I walked into it.




I have a few more posts left to do on San Francisco. (I am so tempted to say San Fran, but I am using every fiber in my being to stop myself.) but I am out of photo storage and waiting for the upgrade to kick in, so until then I am going to do a quick book giveaway…

But first a quick word from our sponsor…

Which is just me by the way…

Lately there has been a sort of strange and exotic influx of new readers to this blog. A massive migration from Pie Near Woman to this humble grammatically challenged site, has been studied and observed by the geek in the observation tower and though the geek has enjoyed it immensely, it has also completely freaked me ( I mean her… I mean me) out. A few weeks ago when I gave away the wonderful book Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons, something strange happened to me.
Typically I give away used books. I buy them from Alibris which is a fabulous online book store that serves as a store front for thousands of small book shops all over the world to post their inventory and sell their wares to people like me who are always seeking out books from their sordid past. I much prefer to occasionally buy books instead of checking them out because it prolongs the dreaded trip to the local library where I am forced to face my appalling mountain of overdue fines.

So I am a frequent shopper at Alibris, and when I realized that I could offer used books as giveaways and that my readers were actually interested in these used books, and that they didn’t seem to mind at all, I just kept right on purchasing used books for the giveaways.


When it came time to send out the latest book to the latest winner I looked over the yellowing dog-eared copy of the used version of Cold Comfort Farm and I suddenly felt panicky and and nervous and sort of shaky and weak and sort of limp and exhausted and kind of scared and lonely and kind of like a gigantic weirdo (which in not necessarily unusual, but still…) and so I rushed out and bought a brand new copy of Cold Comfort Farm and hastily stuck that in the mailing package instead and I am sorry to say that I was so trembly and panicked about the whole fiasco that I did not even rip off the price tag… and I remembered as I was driving off, and it was too late!

Also to everyone who has ever won a giveaway on this blog you probably realize that my packaging skills are HORRIBLE that I can barely write and that I am in desperate need of someone to come up with some cute clever packaging in which to send stuff out, but instead it comes in a generic mailer and I can’t even bother to send a card with it. Sorry. I am so so so sorry!

I am so so so so so so SORRY!need my mom to come and live with me everyday for the rest of my life. Because she would insist on cute clever packaging and she would make me do it… and then when I was too pathetic to do it, she would do it for me. Which is why I love my mom so much. In the meantime… until my mom moves in with me and takes over my entire life… I am sorry to say that the giveaways on this blog will continue to be poorly packaged and primarily contain crumbling used books.

I just wanted you to know.

This time I am giving away my own copy. It has only been used once… but still used… and unless some miracle occurs between now and whenever I get around to sending it out, it will arrive in a plain mailer probably with some coffee stains on it, without a card, addressed in horribly smudged handwriting and you will probably wonder if it is from the uni-bomber, but then you will remember you recently won something and then you will realize that it is just from the crazy lady with the used book giveaways.

I happen to love books so much I don’t even care if they are used. In fact I love used books more, because sometimes they have an old inscription or a pressed flower or fervent yellow highlights and notes in the margins, but other people might not agree, so I wanted to tell you.

Now onto the giveaway.

Which is…

The Wild Trees
By Richard Preston

This highly engrossing true story of the absolutely insane people who climb the majestic, coastal redwood forests and do research on the tippy top of the canopy was so intense and well written that I hardly looked up from it at all during the long flight home . The trees they climb are usually around 370 feet tall which is kind of like climbing a thirty story building, except there are no elevators and no plumbing and no fire escapes and no electricity and you have to wear a harness and a helmet and one slight miscalculation means a 370 foot fall to a “dirt nap” from which you will never awake. This is a book about climbing trees and the history of trees and the survival of trees and mostly about the marvellous characters who passionately pursue these trees in an attempt to discover just how these ancient coastal giants have managed to keep right on growing through more than 2000 years of drought, flood, famine, and every possible attempt by humans to destroy them once and for all. It is a story about a deep love of nature and how it can drive you to discovery, to design and occasionally to delirium.

I was completely unable to put the book down, pausing only to order a full can of tomato juice on the flight and to make sure the stewardess understood that I wanted the whole can – yes please the WHOLE CAN and not just a miserly half can in a cup full of ice.

To win this ever so slightly used version of The Wild Trees by Richard Preston tell me your favorite tree in the comments. OR IF YOU ARE APRIL YOU CAN TELL MY YOUR FAVORITE PIG PART!!! Or if the favorite tree thing is really bothering you… like it seems to be bothering my sister the PIG FARMER… you can just say whatever. You can also say that I am prettier than my sister… and nicer… and that my kids are better behaved! Whatever you like.

This book giveaway is taking a dirt nap.