Mailbox Monday #315

Mailbox Monday, created by Marcia at To Be Continued, formerly The Printed Page, has a 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.  Rebel Queen by Michelle Moran from the author for review.

When the British Empire sets its sights on India in the 1850s, it expects a quick and easy conquest. After all, India is not even a country, but a collection of kingdoms on the subcontinent. But when the British arrive in the Kingdom of Jhansi, expecting its queen to forfeit her crown, they are met with a surprise. Instead of surrendering, Queen Lakshmi raises two armies—one male, one female—and rides into battle like Joan of Arc. Although her soldiers are little match against superior British weaponry and training, Lakshmi fights against an empire determined to take away the land she loves.

Told from the perspective of Sita, one of the guards in Lakshmi’s all-female army and the queen’s most trusted warrior, The Last Queen of India traces the astonishing tale of a fearless ruler making her way in a world dominated by men.

2.  Double Jinx by Nancy Reddy from Milkweed Editions for review.

Double Jinx follows the multiple transformations — both figurative and literal — that accompany adolescence and adulthood, particularly for young women. Drawing inspiration from sources as varied as Ovid’s Metamorphoses, the rewritten fairy tales in Anne Sexton’s Transformations, and the wild and shifting dreamscapes of Brigit Pegeen Kelly’s work, these poems track speakers attempting to construct identity.

A series of poems depict the character of Nancy Drew as she delves into an obsession with a doppelgänger. Cinderella wakes up to a pumpkin and a tattered dress after her prince grows tired of her. A young girl obsessed with fairy tales becomes fascinated with a copy of Grey’s Anatomy in which she finds a “pink girl pinned to the page as if in vivisection. Could she / be pink inside like that? No decent girl / would go around the world like that, uncooked.”

The collection culminates in an understanding of the ways we construct our selves, whether it be by way of imitation, performance, and/or transformation. And it looks forward as well, for in coming to understand our identities as essentially malleable, we are liberated. Or as the author writes, “we’ll be our own gods now.”

3. ABC Universe by American Museum of Natural History from Sterling Children’s Books for review.

From an astronaut in space to Voyager, yellow dwarf, and zenith, this ABC board book opens up the entire universe to children! Created in tandem with the American Museum of Natural History, it takes kids on a photographic journey through comets, flares, and planets like Jupiter, and introduces them to black holes, supernovas, telescopes, and more. Perfect for the youngest astronomers.

What did you receive?


  1. Cheryl Malandrinos says

    Rebel Queen looks popular. I’ve seen it at a few blogs lately.

    Thanks for visiting The Busy Mom’s Daily last week.

  2. Fiction-Books says

    Hi Serena,

    I’m not sure that I am on the same wavelength as any of your selection this week, they certainly are an eclectic mix.

    I do love it when parents and children are still inclined to sit down together and read a ‘proper’ book. So much of life and indeed schooling has been digitalised, but that invaluable bonding time can only truly be met when there aren’t the added distractions which come with electronic devices.

    Enjoy all your books, I shall be most interested to see what you make of ‘Double Jinx’, the author certainly has a very vivid imagination when it comes to my remembered and much loved childhood literary characters 🙂


  3. Anna (Diary of an Eccentric) says

    I can’t wait to read Rebel Queen! Enjoy!

  4. Double Jinx sounds… different!

  5. Laurel-Rain Snow says

    These are all new to me…thanks for sharing, and for visiting my blog.

  6. The cover of Double Jinx is interesting! Enjoy your new goodies, Serena.

  7. I also received Rebel Queen…I’ve loved Moran’s books so far!

  8. Rebel Queen is a popular one this week! It looks great to me. Have a good week!

  9. Beth Hoffman says

    The cover of Double Jinx is so creative. I’m curious to hear about the poetry. Have a great week!

  10. That is a strange cover on Double Jinx. I bet ABC Universe is fabulous. Have a great week.

  11. Rebel Queen was a nice surprise in my mailbox as well!

  12. Enjoy your reads – Rebel Queen looks good!

  13. Rebel Queen was a very good read.