Thursday, April 14, 2011

So Much Pretty - giveaway

“I feel that we are inundated with violence and it becomes something that drives our aesthetics. There is a banality and a predictability to it all: the disappearance, the search, and the inevitable discovery of a dead woman or girl, who has nearly without exception been sexually assaulted. When I was a young reporter I was shocked by this, and as a novelist I wanted to explore it.” ~ Cara Hoffman
I recently read Cara Hoffman's first novel, So Much Pretty. I really, really liked it. Due to fortuitous timing, while I had just started reading it, I happened upon a live chat with the author on Twitter. I learned two exciting things that day: 1. this book is being made into a film and 2. Hoffman is working on another book that sounds like it will be just as good as her first.

So Much Pretty is compared a lot with the Stieg Larsson trilogy and The Lovely Bones, probably because these books are so popular and more people will be able to relate. I think So Much Pretty is actually more comparable to Winter's Bone, American Rust and Songs for the Missing. To say Hoffman's writing reminds me of Stuart O'Nan is high praise from me.

I enjoyed this book because of its many themes (rural culture, violence against women, leftist idealism, ecological issues, adolescence, poverty, healthcare). Interesting issues aren't enough though -- there are plenty of writers who utilize news headlines and topical controversial issues for their stories. Hoffman's book is so enjoyable because she writes with intense authenticity and a journalist's ability to keep the story moving along at an engaging pace. I didn't detect a single false note.

Giveaway Details:

•A hardcover copy of So Much Pretty has been kindly provided by Simon & Schuster.

•To enter to win, leave a comment on this post that includes your email address.

•For another entry follow this blog via Google Friend Connect in the side bar or subscribe via email -- current followers/subscribers are eligible too. Leave a separate comment for this.

•And, for yet another entry, Blog/Tweet/Post on Facebook about this giveaway. Leave a separate comment with your twitter user name and/or link to blog post (side bar is cool).

NOTE: Giveaway reserved for residents within the U.S. and Canada.

The winners will be selected from the comments using
Deadline: midnight, April 28. Winner announced April 29.

Good luck!


Lee said...

"So Much Pretty is harder to pin down, trickier in its aims and delivers a skillful, psychologically acute tale of how violence affects a small town, its tentacles enmeshed so deeply into the collective fabric that it takes the thoughts and actions of one intelligent adolescent to shake things up and force everyone to examine their duplicitous complacency. To say more about Hoffman's constantly surprising story is to reveal too much, but the payoff is more than worth the slow-building suspense."
—The Los Angeles Times

Pam said...

This is perfect timing - I was trying to decide between this and The Weird Sisters yesterday on my Kindle, and went with the Sisters and put this next on my list, so winning this would be lovely!

Pam said...

Tweeted! ID is Sidewalkshoes!

Pam said...

I follow you!

Margie said...

This sounds like an intriguing book. Thanks for the giveaway.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Margie said...

new follower via GFC
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Jessica said...

Cara is a new author for me but that's cool as I'm always looking for new authors to try.


Jessica said...



westwood said...

Looks interesting! Although I really am a bit mind-boggled by any attempt to compare Winter's Bone and Steig Larsson's books.


JHS. said...

GFC follower!


jhsmail at comcast dot net

Tena said...

I already follow you. would love to win this book.

Tena said...

Forgot my email address...

wtenaw at yahoo dot com

Melynda said...

I follow you, on GFC. What a nice giveaway, thanks.

Melynda said...

The book sounds like a great read. And as a side note, I just got a glimpse of Riley. He would look great in a red bandanna!

Robyn said...

Sounds like a great book. I've recently become a huge Stewart O'Nan fan and I really liked Winter's Bone (the book). Please sign me up for the giveaway and I'm a new follower!

a real librarian said...

This sounds like a great book!! Thanks for the chance to win!


Carol M said...

This sounds like a book I would really enjoy! Thank you for the giveaway!
mittens0831 at aol dot com

Carol M said...

I follow on GFC
mittens0831 at aol dot com

Carol M said...

mittens0831 at aol dot com

karen-holmes said...

i'm a happy follower, lee! thank you. -k.