Mailbox Monday #263

Mailbox Monday, created by Marcia at To Be Continued, formerly The Printed Page, has gone through a few incarnations from a permanent home with Marcia to a tour of other blogs.

Now, it has its own permanent home at its own blog.

To check out what everyone has received over the last week, visit the blog and check out the links.  Leave yours too.

Also, each week, Leslie, Vicki, and I will share the Books that Caught Our Eye from everyone’s weekly links.

Here’s what I received:

1.  The Late Parade by Adam Fitzgerald for review W.W. Norton’s Liveright Publishing.

Adam Fitzgerald “is a born poet whose extraordinary gift for phrasing, music, and verbal invention distinguish him from any young poet I know writing today,” writes Mark Strand about the twenty-nine-year-old American newcomer who follows “in the line of Arthur Rimbaud, Wallace Stevens, and John Ashbery” (Maureen McLane). Fitzgerald, whose title poem “carries the primal vision of Hart Crane into a future that does not surrender the young poet’s love of the real” (Harold Bloom), has already published in the Boston Review, A Public Space, Conjunctions, and the Brooklyn Rail and has become a poetic lightning rod in the East Village and other avant-garde settings. Here, in The Late Parade, he presents 48 poems that “fire dance around meaning itself” (Boston Review) yet help to redefine the modernist vision for the twenty-first-century with near-demonic displays of sonorous density and manic verbal fertility. This dazzling debut collection will be sure to “cause a commotion.”

2.  Nefertiti in the Flak Tower by Clive James for review from W.W. Norton’s Liveright Publishing.

Clive James’ power as a poet has increased year by year, and there has been no stronger evidence for this than Nefertiti in the Flak Tower. Here, his polymathic learning and technical virtuosity are worn more lightly than ever; the effect is merely to produce a deep sense of trust into which the reader gratefully sinks, knowing they are in the presence of a master. The most obvious token of that mastery is the book’s breathtaking range of theme: there are moving elegies, a meditation on the later Yeats, a Hollywood Iliad, odes to rare orchids, wartime typewriters and sharks – as well as a poem on the fate of Queen Nefertiti in Nazi Germany. But despite the dizzying variety, James’ poetic intention becomes increasingly clear: what marks this new collection out is his intensified concentration on the individual poem as self-contained universe. Poetry is a practice he compares (in ‘Numismatics’) to striking new coin; and Nefertiti in the Flak Tower is a treasure-chest of one-off marvels, with each poem a twin-sided, perfect human balance of the unashamedly joyous and the deadly serious, ‘whose play of light pays tribute to the dark’.

3.  Walking Home: A Poet’s Journey by Simon Armitage from W.W. Norton’s Liveright Publishing.

The wandering poet has always been a feature of our cultural imagination. Odysseus journeys home, his famous flair for storytelling seducing friend and foe. The Romantic poets tramped all over the Lake District searching for inspiration. Now Simon Armitage, with equal parts enthusiasm and trepidation, as well as a wry humor all his own, has taken on Britain’s version of our Appalachian Trail: the Pennine Way. Walking “the backbone of England” by day (accompanied by friends, family, strangers, dogs, the unpredictable English weather, and a backpack full of Mars Bars), each evening he gives a poetry reading in a different village in exchange for a bed. Armitage reflects on the inextricable link between freedom and fear as well as the poet’s place in our bustling world. In Armitage’s own words, “to embark on the walk is to surrender to its lore and submit to its logic, and to take up a challenge against the self.”

4.  Pansy in Paris: A Mystery at the Museum by Cynthia Bardes, illustrated by Virginia Best for review and Wiggles.

Pansy, the poodle who lives at the Palace Hotel in Beverly Hills and Avery, the little girl who adopted her, are off on a new adventure in Pansy in Paris. The two travel to the City of Lights to solve a new mystery: who is stealing paintings from the museum? With only one clue and their boundless curiosity, the two follow the trail, foil the thieves, and recover the missing artwork having great fun as they explore a beautiful new city and enjoy its treasures. Pansy and Avery learn about the joy of travel, the satisfaction of a job well done, and the special pleasure of teamwork.”

5.  The Nose Book by Al Perkins, illustrated by Joe Mathieu for Wiggles from her auntie Kelly for her birthday.

In this Bright and Early Book, Perkins offers a super-simple look at noses of all kinds, colors, and shapes, including their multiple uses and maddening maladies!

6.  Images of War: War in the Balkans: The Battle for Greece and Crete 1940-1941 by Jeffrey Plowman for review from the publisher.

Jeffrey Plowman s photographic history traces the course of the entire Balkan campaign from the first moves of the Italians through Albania and the invasion of Jugoslavia and Bulgaria by German forces through to the battle for Greece and the final airborne assault on Crete. He gives equal weight to every stage of the campaign he doesn t just combine the first stages and treat them as an introduction to the battle for Crete and he covers all the forces involved the Germans, the Greeks, and the Commonwealth troops. By shifting the focus to the mainland, he views the campaign as a whole, and he offers a balanced portrayal of a conflict that is often overlooked in histories of this phase of the Second World War. Most of the graphic photographs he has selected have never been published before, and many come from private sources.

What did you receive?


  1. I received another Pansy book that I reaviewed last year. It was fun.
    stacybuckeye´s last blog post ..Blogging from A to Z and a WINNER!

  2. Looking forward to your thoughts on the WWII photography book! I may have to borrow it at some point. Happy reading!
    Anna (Diary of an Eccentric)´s last blog post ..Review: Citadel by Kate Mosse

  3. You have a good variety. I love the look of Pansy in Paris. I have listened to several stories set in WWII and the history is very interesting.
    Hope you enjoy your week and reading.
    MarthaE´s last blog post ..Print Launch Blitz for Hard to Handle by Jessica Lemmon

  4. Getting ready for April Poetry Month are you? Me too! I got the books I plan on reviewing from my library this week.

    Enjoy all your books!
    Vicki´s last blog post ..Review: Across Great Divides by Monique Roy

  5. Walking Home looks like it will be good.

    ENJOY your reading week.

    Silver’s Reviews
    My Mailbox Monday
    Elizabeth´s last blog post ..Mailbox Monday – 3/24/14

  6. What a great mix of books! Loving the cover of Pansy in Paris 🙂
    Mary´s last blog post ..Four Friends by Robyn Carr

  7. What a great mix of books! Pansy in Paris looks so cute 🙂 Happy reading!
    Lucy @ The Reading Date´s last blog post ..Mailbox Monday (89)

  8. Hi Serena,

    A fantastic focus on the poetry books this week. Whilst I couldn’t sit and read poetry ‘on demand’, I do like to have a selection of poetry books on my shelves, so that I can dip in and out of them, as I feel like it! I am not so sure that the Clive James would make my shelves, but the other two sound like great additions.

    Thanks for sharing and hosting MM. Enjoy your week,

    [email protected]´s last blog post ..New On The Shelf At Fiction Books This Week

  9. All new titles for me. The Nose Book looks adorable!
    Leslie´s last blog post ..Mailbox Monday ~ March 24th

  10. Looks like you’re gearing up for National Poetry Month. Hope you enjoy all your new books.
    Cheryl Malandrinos´s last blog post ..Mailbox Monday – March 24

  11. The Late Parade looks tempting. I love the idea of a collection that will “cause a commotion.”

    Enjoy your week, and thanks for visiting my blog.
    Laurel-Rain Snow´s last blog post ..AUTHOR’S HOME PAGE

  12. Beth Hoffman says

    I’m curious about Walking Home, the cover drew me in, too!

  13. It looks like you’re ready for poetry month!
    bermudaonion (Kathy)´s last blog post ..Mailbox Monday

  14. The Late Parade sounds good Serena and the kids books adorable. enjoy

  15. Enjoy them all and have a good week.
    Mystica´s last blog post ..MAILBOX MONDAY/IT’S MONDAY! WHAT ARE YOU READING?