Mailbox Monday

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Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

It’s getting cold out there, time to pile more books and get under your covers. What good books did you get in your mailbox?

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

2 Comments

At Mailbox Monday, we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but also to check out the books received by others. Each week, our team is sharing with you a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

We are already in December, so this is my first time to post here. I’m thrilled to share with you what caught our eye this week.
A great way to fine tune your book list for Santa!

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

EMMA:

 

Homecoming, by Kate Morton,
found at Book’d Out

 

Adelaide Hills, Christmas Eve, 1959: At the end of a scorching hot day, beside a creek on the grounds of the grand and mysterious mansion, a local delivery man makes a terrible discovery. A police investigation is called and the small town of Tambilla becomes embroiled in one of the most shocking and perplexing murder cases in the history of South Australia.Sixty years later, Jess is a journalist in search of a story. Having lived and worked in London for almost twenty years, she now finds herself laid off from her full-time job and struggling to make ends meet. A phone call out of nowhere summons her back to Sydney, where her beloved grandmother, Nora, who raised Jess when her mother could not, has suffered a fall and been raced to the hospital.Nora has always been a vibrant and strong presence: decisive, encouraging, young despite her years. When Jess visits her in the hospital, she is alarmed to find her grandmother frail and confused. It’s even more alarming to hear from Nora’s housekeeper that Nora had been distracted in the weeks before her accident and had fallen on the steps to the attic—the one place Jess was forbidden from playing in when she was small.

At loose ends in Nora’s house, Jess does some digging of her own. In Nora’s bedroom, she discovers a true crime book, chronicling the police investigation into a long-buried tragedy: the Turner Family Tragedy of Christmas Eve, 1959. It is only when Jess skims through the book that she finds a shocking connection between her own family and this once-infamous crime—a crime that has never been resolved satisfactorily. And for a journalist without a story, a cold case might be the best distraction she can find…

An epic novel that spans generations, Homecoming asks what we would do for those we love, and how we protect the lies we tell. It explores the power of motherhood, the corrosive effects of tightly held secrets, and the healing nature of truth. Above all, it is a beguiling and immensely satisfying novel from one of the finest writers working today.

 
“I have devoured all of Morton’s books. So cool to see a new one to come out next April.
And… it’s available on Netgalley!!”

 


 

It is once again up to American markswoman Kate Rees to take the shot that just might win—or lose—World War II, in the followup to national bestseller Three Hours in Paris.

Three missions. Two cities. One shot to win the war.

October 1942: it’s been two years since American markswoman Kate Rees was sent to Paris on a British Secret Service mission to assassinate Hitler. Since then, she has left spycraft behind to take a training job as a sharpshooting instructor in the Scottish Highlands. But her quiet life is violently disrupted when Colonel Stepney, her former handler, drags her back into the fray for a dangerous three-pronged mission in Paris.

Each task is more dangerous than the next: Deliver a package of penicillin to sick children. Assassinate a high-ranking German operative whose knowledge of secret invasion plans could turn the tide of the war against the Allies. Rescue a British agent who once saved Kate’s life, and get out.

Kate will encounter sheiks and spies, poets and partisans, as she races to keep up with the constantly-shifting nature of her assignment, showing every ounce of her Oregonian grit in the process.

New York Times bestselling author Cara Black has crafted another heart-stopping thrill-ride that reveals a portrait of Paris at the height of the Nazi Occupation.–

Three Hours in Paris was Cara Black’s foray into historical mystery,
and it was fabulous. So cool to see a sequel!”

 


MARTHA:

 

The Stationmaster’s Cottage by Phillipa Nefri Clark
found at The Book Connection.

Christie is happy in her life… or so she tells herself. Despite a tragic childhood, she has built a satisfying career and loves her city apartment. But deep down she yearns for a simpler life. Family. A garden. And a place to heal her heart.

The decision to attend a funeral in a town she’s never heard of throws her safe world into disarray, exposing the cracks in her life. As she deals with the fallout, Christie moves into a rundown cottage she’s inherited and there, makes a discovery.

Fifty years ago, a heartbroken young artist waited each dawn on a jetty for his true love to return. And each night, he wrote her a love letter.

What Christie uncovers will change her life forever.

“I was drawn by the lovely cover and I like historical romance.”


A Death in Tokyo by Keigo Higashino,
Giles Murray (Translator)
found at Book Dilettante.

In the latest from international bestselling author Keigo Higashino, Tokyo Police Detective Kaga is faced with a very public murder that doesn’t quite add up, a prime suspect unable to defend himself, and pressure from the highest levels for a quick solution.

In the Nihonbashi district of Tokyo an unusual statue of a Japanese mythic beast – a kirin – stands guard over the district from the classic Nihonbashi bridge. In the evening, a man who appears to be very drunk staggers onto the bridge and collapses right under the statue of the winged beast. The patrolman who sees this scene unfold, goes to rouse the man, only to discover that the man was not passed out, he was dead; that he was not drunk, he was stabbed in the chest. However, where he died was not where the crime was committed – the key to solving the crime is to find out where he was attacked and why he made such a super human effort to carry himself to the Nihonbashi Bridge. That same night, a young man named Yashima is injured in a car accident while attempting to flee from the police. Found on him is the wallet of the murdered man.

Tokyo Police Detective Kyoichiro Kaga is assigned to the team investigating the murder – and must bring his skills to bear to uncover what actually happened that night on the Nihonbashi bridge. What, if any, connection is there between the murdered man and Yashima, the young man caught with his wallet? Kaga’s investigation takes him down dark roads and into the unknown past to uncover what really happened and why.

A Death in Tokyo is another mind-bending mystery from the modern master of classic crime, finalist for both an Edgar Award and a CWA Dagger, the internationally bestselling Keigo Higashino.

“I like police procedurals and this got my interest in the series.”

 


 

SERENA:

 

Happy Place by Emily Henry
foud at Book’d Out

 

Harriet and Wyn have been the perfect couple since they met in college—they go together like salt and pepper, honey and tea, lobster and rolls. Except, now—for reasons they’re still not discussing—they don’t.

They broke up five months ago. And still haven’t told their best friends.

Which is how they find themselves sharing a bedroom at the Maine cottage that has been their friend group’s yearly getaway for the last decade. Their annual respite from the world, where for one vibrant, blissful week they leave behind their daily lives; have copious amounts of cheese, wine, and seafood; and soak up the salty coastal air with the people who understand them most.

Only this year, Harriet and Wyn are lying through their teeth while trying not to notice how desperately they still want each other. Because the cottage is for sale and this is the last week they’ll all have together in this place. They can’t stand to break their friends’ hearts, and so they’ll play their parts. Harriet will be the driven surgical resident who never starts a fight, and Wyn will be the laid-back charmer who never lets the cracks show. It’s a flawless plan (if you look at it from a great distance and through a pair of sunscreen-smeared sunglasses). After years of being in love, how hard can it be to fake it for one week…in front of those who know you best?

“These Emily Henry books are always funny and entertaining.
They seem to make me happier when I read them, so I’d like to get this one on audio.”

 


 

 Yeva Skalietska, a girl living in the city of Kharkiv, turned 12 on February 14, 2022—a happy day. Ten days later, the only life she’d ever known was irrevocably shattered. On February 24, her city was suddenly under attack as Russia launched its horrifying invasion of Ukraine. Yeva and her family ran to a basement bunker, where she began writing a diary. She describes the bombings they endured while sheltering underground, and their desperate journey west to escape the conflict raging around them. After many endless train rides and a prolonged stay in an overcrowded refugee center in Western Ukraine, Yeva and her beloved grandmother eventually find refuge in Dublin. There, she bravely begins to forge a new life, hoping she’ll be able to return home one day.

 

“This crisis in Ukraine has me very concerned,
especially when daughters similar in age to my own
are fleeing their home countries in order to be safe from harm and war.”

 

📚📚📚

 

What books caught your eye this week?

Mailbox Monday

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Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

I hope everyone who celebrates had a lovely Thanksgiving. I was out of town, so I want to thank Emma for posting the Books That Caught Our Eye post last week. She’s getting her feet wet. 🙂 Have a great week, everyone.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

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At Mailbox Monday, we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but also to check out the books received by others. Each week, our team is sharing with you a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

I hope you have all found some new books in this week’s posts to add to your end of year wish lists!

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

EMMA:

Lonely Castle in the Mirror, by Mizuki Tsujimura
found at vvb32reads

Seven students are avoiding going to school, hiding in their darkened bedrooms, unable to face their family and friends, until the moment they discover a portal into another world that offers temporary escape from their stressful lives. Passing through a glowing mirror, they gather in a magnificent castle which becomes their playground and refuge during school hours. The students are tasked with locating a key, hidden somewhere in the castle, that will allow whoever finds it to be granted one wish.

At this moment, the castle will vanish, along with all memories they may have of their adventure. If they fail to leave the castle by 5 pm every afternoon, they will be eaten by the keeper of the castle, an easily provoked and shrill creature named the Wolf Queen.

Delving into their emotional lives with sympathy and a generous warmth, Lonely Castle in the Mirror shows the unexpected rewards of reaching out to others. Exploring vivid human stories with a twisty and puzzle-like plot, this heart-warming novel is full of joy and hope for anyone touched by sadness and vulnerability.

“I love Japanese literature, so this one is definitely on my TBR!
It will be perfect for next Japanese Literature Challenge (January-March 2023)”

 


The Couple at the Table, by Sophie Hannah
found at An Interior Journey

Honeymooners at a posh resort receive an ominous warning with deadly consequences in the latest gripping, twisty psychological thriller from New York Times bestselling author Sophie Hannah.
Jane and William are enjoying their honeymoon at an exclusive couples-only resort…

…until Jane receives a chilling note warning her to “Beware of the couple at the table nearest to yours.” At dinner that night, five other couples are present, and none of their tables is any nearer or farther away than any of the others. It’s almost as if someone has set the scene in order to make the warning note meaningless–but why would anyone do that?
Jane has no idea.
But someone in this dining room will be dead before breakfast, and all the evidence will suggest that no one there that night could have possibly committed the crime.

“I have always been impressed by Sophie Hannah‘s writing.
But I haven’t read any of this series, and this is already #11! It’s high time to catch up!”

MARTHA:

Christmas Past by Brian Earl
found at Carstairs Considers.

Behind every Christmas tradition is a story — usually, a forgotten one. Each year, as we decorate a tree, build a gingerbread house, and get ready for a visit from St. Nicholas, we’re continuing generations-old narratives, while being largely unaware of their starting chapters. But knowing how these traditions began adds a new level of depth to our Christmas spirit, as well as an arsenal of anecdotes to share at Christmas parties.

Christmas Past: The Fascinating Stories Behind Our Favorite Holiday’s Traditions reveals the surprising, quirky, mysterious, and sometimes horrifying stories behind the most wonderful time of the year. With 26 short chapters, it’s a festive, digestible Advent calendar of a book.

Covering traditions ancient and modern, Christmas Past is filled with stories of happy accidents, cultural histories, criminal capers (including tomb raiders and con artists), and hidden connections between Christmas and broader social, economic, and technological influences. How did the invention of plate glass forever change the Christmas season? What common Christmas item helped introduce fine art to the masses? Why do Americans typically spike their eggnog with rum, rather than the traditional brandy? And speaking of booze, does using the phrase “Merry Christmas” mark you as a drunken reveler?

Christmas Past answers all of those questions, and many more.

“I celebrate the original ‘reason for the season’,
but I’d like to know the history of the many Christmas traditions.”

 


 

Shadows We Remain by Mose J. Gingerich,
found at Bookshelf Journeys.

Private investigator Bruce Ellsworth is familiar with the Amish.
In his previous job as Sheriff in Castleton, Illinois, he was occasionally summoned to the nearby Amish community of Caroline Creek to solve a minor disagreement.

But when an Amish family arrives at his office seeking help in finding their missing son, Bruce quickly finds himself caught up in a tangled web of FBI informants, Mafiosos, and secret societies that threaten to upend his whole world – and possibly get him killed.

 

“I like stories about the Amish and this Christian thriller sounds like a good story.”

 

What books caught your eye this week?

Mailbox Monday

2 Comments

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

November seems to be cruising along, doesn’t it? It is hard to believe that it is Thanksgiving week! I have nothing to prepare for once, as we traveling to my husband’s family. We’re hoping our daughter can spend some time with her cousins and other side of the family and her grandmother. I hope you have some good plans for the holiday. I find it is more about family and gratitude than the history we were always told.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

2 Comments

At Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

I hope everyone found some new books in this week’s post to add to those ever-growing TBR piles and wish lists.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

EMMA:

Some Days the Bird by Heather Bourbeau and Anne Casey at Savvy Verse and Wit.

Throughout 2021, as COVID and climate change battled for supremacy in the hearts and minds of the world, American poet Heather Bourbeau and Irish-Australian poet Anne Casey engaged in a poetry conversation back and forth across the globe, alternating each week, to create 52 poems over 52 weeks.

With poems anchored in their gardens, they buoyed each other through lockdowns and exile from family, through devastating floods, fires, wild winds and superstorms.  Some Days The Bird, a collection of internationally recognized and award-winning poems, is the result of their weekly communiqués from different hemispheres (and opposing seasons) in verse.

“Poetry, nature, environment, international input: all great ingredients for poetry that I love.”


The Forty Elephants by Erin Bledsoe at Bookshelf Journeys.

Inspired by the true story of Alice Diamond and the Forty Elephants, the first all-female gang of London.
London in the 1920s is no place for a woman with a mind of her own. Gang wars, violence, and an unforgiving world have left pickpocket Alice Diamond scrambling to survive in the Mint, the gritty neighborhood her family has run for generations. When her father goes to jail yet again and her scam artist brother finds himself in debt to the dangerous McDonald crime syndicate, Alice takes over. Fighting for power at every turn, she struggles to protect her father’s territory and keep the people she loves safe from some of London’s most dangerous criminals.
Recruited by the enigmatic Mary Carr, Alice boldly chooses to break her father’s edict against gangs and become part of a group of notorious lady shoplifters, the Forty Elephants. Leaving the Mint behind, she and the other girls steal from the area’s poshest department stores, and for the first time in her life, Alice Diamond tastes success. But it’s not long before she wants more–no matter the cost. And when her past and present collide, there’s no escaping the girl from the Mint.
“I had never heard of the true story. But ‘the first all-female gang of London’ in the 1920s? Send me the book now!”

The Ballad of Clay Moore by Eric S. Hoffman also  at Bookshelf Journeys.

When a mysterious plane lands in his backyard, retired rancher Clay Moore stumbles upon a secret that could change the world…

It started like any other night: walking his dog along the creek, having a smoke beneath the stars. Things were peaceful and Clay Moore was happy. Then this plane came down and ruined everything.

Now Clay’s on the run from a madman that wants him dead. He’s got a secret in his pocket and an army on his tail. What’s a good-ol’-boy to do?

With his wife and bloodhound by his side, Clay must navigate a dangerous gauntlet from the wilds of Wyoming to the peak of human power. The Ballad of Clay Moore is an action-packed page-turner about a cowboy caught up in a dangerous game.

“This is very intriguing. I want to know more about this world changing secret!”


MARTHA:

Side Launch by Brock Martin found at The Book Connection.

1939, Canada unprepared but defiant, declares war on Germany and mass produces a mid-size warship, the Corvette. Thus starts the creation and journey of Canada’s first Corvette, the HMCS Collingwood. Neither designed nor equipped for the North Atlantic, Collingwood is tasked to protect convoys and take on the predatory Sea Wolves lurking below the waves.
 
Heart breaking wartime romance as Ian and Kate struggle with love in difficult times. Our hero Ian, takes command of the Collingwood. He is ready to fight with any weapon he is given having witnessed Nazi atrocities and now driven by hatred. Kate is the daughter of the Collingwood shipyards owner, a brilliant woman with a strong desire to make something of herself. She is ready to fight for her country, but first she must fight for success in a male dominated world.
 
Action packed historical fiction based on true events of WWII and the Battle of the Atlantic. Murderous Wolf Packs, German Commandos, a nail-biting secret mission, spies and saboteurs. Side Launch takes the reader through a roller coaster of emotion.
 
If you are a fan of history and love to learn, this Canadian historical fiction is for you.
“I do like historical and this is different being (for me) set in Canada.”

The Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee found at Sam Still Reading.

Spanning the globe and several centuries, The Gene is the story of the quest to decipher the master-code that makes and defines humans, that governs our form and function.

The story of the gene begins in an obscure Augustinian abbey in Moravia in 1856 where a monk stumbles on the idea of a ‘unit of heredity’. It intersects with Darwin’s theory of evolution, and collides with the horrors of Nazi eugenics in the 1940s. The gene transforms post-war biology. It reorganizes our understanding of sexuality, temperament, choice and free will. This is a story driven by human ingenuity and obsessive minds – from Charles Darwin and Gregor Mendel to Francis Crick, James Watson and Rosalind Franklin, and the thousands of scientists still working to understand the code of codes.

This is an epic, moving history of a scientific idea coming to life, by the author of The Emperor of All Maladies. But woven through The Gene, like a red line, is also an intimate history – the story of Mukherjee’s own family and its recurring pattern of mental illness, reminding us that genetics is vitally relevant to everyday lives. These concerns reverberate even more urgently today as we learn to “read” and “write” the human genome – unleashing the potential to change the fates and identities of our children.

Majestic in its ambition, and unflinching in its honesty, The Gene gives us a definitive account of the fundamental unit of heredity – and a vision of both humanity’s past and future.

“This is a different pick for me but I find the topic interesting.”


SERENA:

noquietwaterNo Quiet Water by Shirley Miller Kamasa at Bookshelf Journeys.

After the U.S. declares war on Japan in 1941, all persons of Japanese descent in the Western U.S. come under suspicion. Curfews are imposed, bank accounts frozen, and FBI agents search homes randomly.

Despite the fact that two generations of the Miyota family are American citizens, Fumio and his parents and sister Kimiko must pack meager belongings and are transported under military escort to the California desert to be held at Camp Manzanar, leaving their good friends and neighbors the Whitlocks to care for their farm and their dog, Flyer.

The family suffer unimaginable insults, witness prejudice and violent protests, are forced to live in squalor, and are provided only poor-quality, unfamiliar food which makes them ill. Later, they are transferred to Idaho’s Camp Minidoka, where Fumio learns what it means to endure and where he discovers a strange new world of possibility and belonging.

“I’ve read another book about Camp Minidoka — fictionalized — and this one sounds like a good read about the same time period.”


Terry’s Crew by Terry Crews at the bookworm.

Young Terry Crews has a Big Dream Plan: He wants to become a MULTIHYPHENATE. That means he wants to be an artist. And a football player. And a musician. And maybe a NASA scientist, too! OK, maybe it’s ambitious, but his parents worked hard so he could go to a new school—Rock City Academy, a prestigious institution (read: rich kids go there) where he’s sure he can make his mark at the talent show. He plans an elaborate performance with his new friends, Rani, a passionate engineer, and Xander, a shy kid with a head like an encyclopedia.

Along the way, Terry’s plan is threatened by his grades, which slip below Mom-and-Dad-approved levels, as well as the schemes of the school’s football star, Rick, who won’t stop until Terry quits the talent show altogether. No matter what challenges he faces, though, Terry knows that he always has his crew to back him up.

“This looks like an inspiring story for kids. My daughter loves these kinds of stories about people who have multiple interests like she does.”

What books caught your eye this week?

Mailbox Monday

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Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

November has calmed down now that the elections and COVID are gone. My daughter volunteered for the first time, and she can’t wait to do it again in 2024. But since I was busy being nurse to my husband and chauffeur to my daughter, I haven’t read much these past weeks. I hope to change that soon.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

3 Comments

At Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

I hope everyone found some new books in this week’s post to add to those ever-growing TBR piles and wish lists.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

EMMA:

Call Me Spes by Sara Cahill Marron at Savvy Verse Wit.

An operating system falls for its user. It waits, a journey not unlike Dante’s Inferno, from factory to glass face. Strangers, friends, lovers, predators, kin, all translated through the operating system’s code. Each voice, a whole character the system struggles to make sense of, held by a human hand. This device logs your locations even when you don’t ask. Undeniably, these actions lack all conditions, a form of loving.

Call Me Spes lays bare these overheard voices— tenderly, voyeuristically, a perpetual ride-along. The device deepens its relationship with its user, learning and updating with the solitary goal of closeness. Pressed against a page, these poems are siren songs marching through Inferno to the promised Heaven we scroll to attain, some kind of progress.

You, dear reader, are my Beatrice, my lover entwined from Hell to Paradise, holding these leaves, this paper in your palms, searching all the while for that lightweight machine, the one you text, call, Zoom, buy, call cars, date, trade, play, learn, and pour yourself into—who knows tender parts of you because you gave them to me.

“I am very picky at poetry, but this sounds exactly the type I like!”


Knot Bad Amigurumi: Learn Crochet Stitches and Techniques to Create Cute Creatures by Vincent Green-Hite at The Bookworm.

In Knot Bad Amigurumi, discover a world of 25 adorable and unique crochet creatures you’ll love to make, keep, and display.

Create the unexpected: a smiling rocket ship, a jubilant glass of boba tea, a joyful acorn, a breezy beach hat, and much more. These modern characters spring from the imagination of crochet artist Vincent Green-Hite (Instagram: @knot.bad; TikTok: @knotbad), who loves sharing his designs and techniques with the world.

In addition to beginner-friendly patterns, the book includes a rundown of basic materials such as yarns and hooks, step-by-step stitch tutorials, instructions for embroidering appealing faces, advice on working with color, and ideas for customizing patterns.

You’ll learn how to give your amigurumi a clean, professional look with easy methods for stuffing, attaching, and finishing pieces. Build your skills and become a more confident creative as you work your way through each charming pattern.

“This is so adorable, how could I resist?”

Icequake by Crawford Kilian at Martha’s Bookshelf.

A ground-breaking page turner in the realm of speculative science fiction by Crawford Kilian.

When the world climate changes overnight, when thirteen million cubic kilometers of icecap slide into the sea, when famine and flood break down civil order, the survivors at the remote New Shackleton Station on the Antarctic icecap know that rescue is impossible.

“This is not a recent book, but scifi to tackle environmental issues has been proving very enjoyable to me, so I’m very curious about this one.”


MARTHA:

The Institution by Helen Sarah Fields found at Book Reviews by Linda Moore.

They’re locked up for your safety.
Now, you’re locked in with them.

Dr Connie Woolwine has five days to catch a killer.

On a locked ward in the world’s highest-security prison hospital, a scream shatters the night. The next morning, a nurse’s body is found and her daughter has been taken. A ransom must be paid, and the clock is ticking.

Forensic profiler Dr Connie Woolwine is renowned for her ability to get inside the mind of a murderer. Now, she must go deep undercover among the most deranged and dangerous men on earth and use her unique skills to find the girl – before it’s too late.

But as the walls close in around her, can Connie get the killer before The Institution gets her?

“I like forensic profiler stories and this one sounds intense.”

Stone Cold Fox by Rachel Koller Croft found at Silver’s Reviews.

A compelling debut novel about an ambitious woman who, after a lifetime of conning alongside her mother, wants to leave her dark past behind and marry the heir to one of the country’s wealthiest families.

Like any enterprising woman, Bea knows what she’s worth and is determined to get all she deserves—it just so happens that what she deserves is to marry rich. After a lifetime of forced instruction in the art of swindling men by her mother, Bea wants nothing more than to escape her shadow, close the door on their sordid past, and disappear safely into old-money domesticity.

When Bea finds her final mark in the perfectly dull blue-blooded Collin, she’s ready to deploy all her tricks one last time. The challenge isn’t getting the ring, but rather the approval of Collin’s family and everyone else in their tax bracket, particularly his childhood best friend Gale. Going toe-to-toe with Gale isn’t a threat to an expert like Bea, but what begins as an amusing cat-and-mouse game quickly develops into a dangerous chase. As the truth of Bea’s past threatens to come roaring out, she finds herself racing against the clock to pass the finish line before everything is exposed.

“We seemed to have quite a few thrillers this week and this one looks interesting.”

SERENA:

Seven Letters from Paris by Samantha Verant at Bookfan.

Twenty years, seven letters, and one long-lost love of a lifetime

At age 40, Samantha Verant’s life is falling apart-she’s jobless, in debt, and feeling stuck… until she stumbles upon seven old love letters from Jean-Luc, the sexy Frenchman she’d met in Paris when she was 19. With a quick Google search, she finds him, and both are quick to realize that the passion they felt 20 years prior hasn’t faded with time and distance.

Samantha knows that jetting off to France to reconnect with a man that she only knew for one sun-drenched, passion-filled day is crazy-but it’s the kind of crazy she’s been waiting for her whole life.

“I love books about letters and romance. There’s just something different about letter-based relationships.”


The Queen of Dirt Island by Donal Ryan at Book Reviews by Linda Moore.

The Aylward women of Nenagh, Tipperary, are mad about each other, but you wouldn’t always think it. You’d have to know them to know – in spite of what the neighbours might say about raised voices and dramatic scenes – that their house is a place of peace, filled with love, a refuge from the sadness and cruelty of the world.

Their story begins at an end and ends at a beginning. It involves wives and widows, gunrunners and gougers, sinners and saints. It’s a story of terrible betrayals and fierce loyalties, of isolation and togetherness, of transgression, forgiveness, desire, and love. About all the things family can be and all the things it sometimes isn’t. From the prize-winning author of Strange Flowers and The Spinning Heart, The Queen of Dirt Island is an uplifting celebration of fierce, loyal love and the powerful stories that bind generations together.

“I love books spanning generations, and this sounds like it has lots of drama.”

What books caught your eye this week?

Mailbox Monday

6 Comments

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles, and humongous wish lists.

November already has thrown us for a loop. Covid and RSV; I think I’m done with fall/winter. NO reading here. I hope you all have better news and books to share.

Tell us about your new books by adding your Mailbox Monday post to the linky below:

Be sure to stop back later this week for Books That Caught Our Eye.

Books That Caught Our Eye

1 Comment

At Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received but to check out the books others have received. Each week will share a few Books That Caught Our Eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

We are so happy to welcome EMMA on board this month as a new host. We’ll get to see what catches her eye.

We encourage you to share the books that caught your eye in the comments.

EMMA:

The Looking Glass: Essential Stories by Machado De Assis at A Universe in Words.

Machado de Assis is one of the most enigmatic and fascinating story writers who ever lived. What seem at first to be stately social satires reveal unanticipated depths through hints of darkness and winking surrealism. This new selection of his finest work, translated by the prize-winning Daniel Hahn, showcases the many facets of his mercurial genius.
A brilliant scientist opens the first asylum in his hometown, only to start finding signs of insanity all around him. A young lieutenant basks in praise of his new position, but in solitude feels his identity fray into nothing. The reading of a much-loved, respected elder statesman’s journals reveals hidden thoughts of merciless cruelty.

“I love literature in translation, and I have another book by this Brazilian author on my Classics TBR. It’s thrilling to see another translation in English.”

The Color Storm by Damian Dibben at Bookfan.

Enter the world of Renaissance Venice, where the competition for fame and fortune can mean life or death, in this immersive novel of art and the Inquisition.
Giorgio “Giorgione” Barbarelli’s career hangs in the balance. A student of Bellini and a mentor turned rival of Titian, he’s seen his reputation fall out of favor and his debts pile up. When he hears a rumor of a mysterious, otherworldly new pigment brought to Venice by the richest man in Europe, he sets out to acquire the rare color and secure his name in history.
Winning a commission to paint a portrait of the rich man’s wife, Giorgione thinks he has found a way into the merchant’s favor. Instead the woman draws him into her confidence, revealing the true reason her husband’s come to Venice. Giorgione finds himself caught up in a conspiracy that stretches across Europe and a marriage coming apart inside one of the floating city’s most illustrious palazzos.
Atmospheric and suspenseful, and filled with the famous artists of the era, The Color Storm captures the fascinating world of Venice at the height of its power and a moment of artistic invention that echoes through the centuries.

“This reminds me of another amazing historical novel involving art and color. So I am definitely considering reading this one.”


MARTHA:

The Cowboy’s Road Home (Cowboys of Whistle Rock Ranch #1) by Shirleen Davies found at The Book Connection.

Second chances aren’t a sure thing.
Not when sparks fly between the perfect woman
and a devoted cowboy whose father
is determined to keep them apart.

It’s been eight years since Wyatt Bonner left Whistle Rock Ranch.

After two college degrees and loads of experience helping to run his uncle’s dude ranch, he’s back and ready to take his place beside his father. Sunrise to sunset, he’s all business, hardworking, and dedicated to the family’s horse breeding operation—until Daisy Raines bursts back into his life.

A successful businesswoman, Daisy’s never forgotten her first love. Learning Wyatt has returned to Brilliance, Wyoming, and the family ranch, she faces a hard truth. She still loves the handsome, sometimes cocky cowboy.

After eight years, she expects little, and is surprised when Wyatt makes it clear he wants another chance. The independent Daisy is all in until a significant obstacle blocks their growing relationship.

There’s no sure path to a second chance. Not when Wyatt’s father is dead set against a union including Daisy.

“This beautiful cover caught my eye and it sounds like a nice HEA read.”

Code Name Sapphire by Pam Jenoff found at Silver’s Reviews.

A woman must rescue her cousin’s family from a train bound for Auschwitz in this riveting tale of bravery and resistance, from the bestselling author of The Lost Girls of Paris

1942Hannah Martel has narrowly escaped Nazi Germany after her fiancé was killed in a pogrom. When her ship bound for America is turned away at port, she has nowhere to go but to her cousin Lily, who lives with her family in Brussels. Fearful for her life, Hannah is desperate to get out of occupied Europe. But with no safe way to leave, she must return to the dangerous underground work she thought she had left behind.

Seeking help, Hannah joins the Sapphire Line, a secret resistance network led by a mysterious woman named Micheline and her enigmatic brother Mateo. But when a grave mistake causes Lily’s family to be arrested and slated for deportation to Auschwitz, Hannah finds herself torn between her loyalties. How much is Hannah willing to sacrifice to save the people she loves? Inspired by incredible true stories of courage and sacrifice, Code Name Sapphireis a powerful novel about love, family and the unshakable resilience of women in even the hardest of times.

“I get drawn in by spy stories and the secret resistance interests me.”

SERENA:

Ode to Nobody by Caroline Brooks DuBois at A Universe in Words.

A devastating tornado tears apart more than just houses in this striking novel in verse about a girl rebuilding herself.

Before the storm, thirteen-year-old Quinn was happy flying under the radar. She was average. Unremarkable. Always looking for an escape from her house, where her bickering parents fawned over her genius big brother.

     Inside our broken home / we didn’t know how broken / the world outside was.

But after the storm, Quinn can’t seem to go back to average. Her friends weren’t affected by the tornado in the same way. To them, the storm left behind a playground of abandoned houses and distracted adults. As Quinn struggles to find stability in the tornado’s aftermath, she must choose: between homes, friendships, and versions of herself.

Nothing that was mine / yesterday is mine today.

Told in rich, spectacular verse, Caroline Brooks DuBois crafts a powerful story of redemption as Quinn makes her way from Before to After. There’s nothing average about the world Quinn wakes up to after the storm; maybe there’s nothing average about her, either. This emotional coming-of-age journey for middle grade readers proves that it’s never too late to be the person you want to be.

“I love novels in verse, and this one sounds like one about a strong young lady.”

The Holiday Bookshop by Lucy Dickens at Sam Still Reading.

One woman. One island. A bookshop in need of revival…

Jenny has never been a risk taker. But when her best friend takes off on an American road trip, Jenny finds herself saying yes to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of her own and accepts the role of a bookseller in the Maldives.

The island of Bounty Cove Cay is everything she’d hoped for: white sandy beaches, glistening turquoise waters and palm trees bursting with coconuts. But it’s not all plain sailing…

The resort bookshop is far from thriving and, in an unexpected twist, management are threatening closure.

Can Jenny throw her rulebook to the wind and turn things around before it’s too late? And might she find her own happy ending along the way?

“I just love beach reads, and sometimes you need one.”

What books caught your eye this week?