Books That Caught Our Eye

1 Comment

dragonlegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

Shadow Child by Rahna Reiko Rizzuto at BermudaOnion.

Twin sisters Hana and Kei grew up in a tiny Hawaiian town in the 1950s and 1960s, so close they shared the same nickname. Raised in dreamlike isolation by their loving but unstable mother, they were fatherless, mixed-race, and utterly inseparable, devoted to one another. But when their cherished threesome with Mama is broken, and then further shattered by a violent, nearly fatal betrayal that neither young woman can forgive, it seems their bond may be severed forever–until, six years later, Kei arrives on Hana’s lonely Manhattan doorstep with a secret that will change everything.

Told in interwoven narratives that glide seamlessly between the gritty streets of New York, the lush and dangerous landscape of Hawaii, and the horrors of the Japanese internment camps and the bombing of Hiroshima, SHADOW CHILD is set against an epic sweep of history. Volcanos, tsunamis, abandonment, racism, and war form the urgent, unforgettable backdrop of this intimate, evocative, and deeply moving story of motherhood, sisterhood, and second chances.

MARTHA:

Who the Bishop Knows (The Amish Bishop Mysteries Book 3) by Vannetta Chapman found at An Imperfect Christian Mom.

What You Don’t See Might Hurt You

Every year, residents of the small Amish community in Monte Vista, Colorado, look forward to the Ski Hi Stampede, the state’s oldest professional rodeo. The rodeo is always good, clean entertainment for the hardworking farmers of the San Luis Valley. But this year, the Stampede turns deadly for one Amish man. Did rodeo fans see an unfortunate accident? Or something more sinister?

Amish bishop Henry Lapp is known far and wide for his uncanny ability to draw and remember the smallest details of anything he’s seen, skills that have served him well in past investigations. He was at the rodeo that day. The problem? He didn’t see Jeremiah Schwartz’s death.

With a murderer on the loose and members of his community being threatened, Henry must act fast. But can he solve a crime he didn’t see? This time around, Henry will have to rely on his keen sense of human character and observation, skills he’s honed in his role as bishop, if he hopes to crack the case.

Who the Bishop Knows is a story of accepting our talents, putting one another first, and trusting that God will care for His children.

I like the look and sound of this mystery.

——–

Side Life by Steve Toutonghi found Under My Apple Tree.

Dazzling, paranoid literary sci-fi for fans of Blake Crouch and Philip K. Dick

Vin, a down-on-his-luck young tech entrepreneur forced out of the software company he started, takes a job house-sitting an ultra-modern Seattle mansion whose owner has gone missing. There he discovers a secret basement lab with an array of computers and three large, smooth caskets. Inside one he finds a woman in a state of suspended animation. There is also a dog-eared notebook filled with circuit diagrams, beautiful and intricate drawings of body parts, and pages of code.

When Vin decides to climb into one of the caskets to see what happens, his reality begins to unravel, and he finds himself on a terrifying journey that asks fundamental questions about reality, free will, and the meaning of a human life.

Sci fi, software and caskets? Creepily interesting to me.

SERENA:

Best Beach Ever by Wendy Wax at Bookfan.

Forced to rent out or lose their beloved Bella Flora after the loss of their renovation-turned-reality-TV show Do Over, Maddie, Nikki, Avery, Kyra, and Bitsy move into cottages at the Sunshine Hotel and Beach Club believing the worst is over. Only to discover just how uncertain their futures really are.

Maddie struggles with the challenges of dating a rock star whose career has come roaring back to life while Nikki faces the daunting realities of mothering twins at forty-seven. Avery buries herself in a tiny home build in an attempt to dodge commitment issues, and Kyra battles to protect her son from the Hollywood world she once dreamed of joining. And Bitsy is about to find out whether the rewards of seeking revenge will outweigh the risks.

I just love Wendy Wax.

The Good Byline by Jill Orr at The Fiction Enthusiast.

Meet Riley Ellison, a quirky young library assistant who has become known in her hometown of Tuttle Corner, Virginia, as Riley Bless-Her-Heart. Riley’s odd habit of living vicariously through people she reads about in the obituary pages hits a little too close to home when she is asked to write one for her childhood best friend, Jordan James. Jordan’s unexpected suicide has left Riley desperate to understand why a young woman with so much to live for would suddenly opt out, so she steps out of her comfort zone and into the role of obituary writer.

Things get messy, however, when Jordan’s co-worker, a paranoid reporter with a penchant for conspiracy theories, convinces Riley that Jordan’s death was no suicide. He leads her down a dangerous path toward organized crime, secret lovers, and suspicious taco trucks. Eventually, Riley’s serpentine hunt for the truth leads to a discovery that puts everything she holds dear—her job, the people she loves, and even her life—in danger. Will writing this obituary be the death of her?

This sounds good.

What books caught your eye this week?

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Books That Caught Our Eye

1 Comment

dragonlegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

LESLIE:

Amusing science cartoons about the natural world including animal dating profiles, wildlife wine pairings, threat displays of completely non-threatening animals, why hammerhead sharks have hammer heads, and much more.
Birding is My Favorite Video Game is a collection of fun, quasi-educational comics combining weird science, cute visuals, sweet wit, and a strong environmental message. Based on the popular webcomic Bird and Moon, this collection brings facts about birds, bees, and insects to life in the quirkiest, most wonderful way.
A bird book! What more is there to say? 🙂

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle at Carol’s Notebook.

It was a dark and stormy night; Meg Murry, her small brother Charles Wallace, and her mother had come down to the kitchen for a midnight snack when they were upset by the arrival of a most disturbing stranger.

“Wild nights are my glory,” the unearthly stranger told them. “I just got caught in a downdraft and blown off course. Let me sit down for a moment, and then I’ll be on my way. Speaking of ways, by the way, there is such a thing as a tesseract.”

A tesseract (in case the reader doesn’t know) is a wrinkle in time. To tell more would rob the reader of the enjoyment of Miss L’Engle’s unusual book. A Wrinkle in Time, winner of the Newbery Medal in 1963, is the story of the adventures in space and time of Meg, Charles Wallace, and Calvin O’Keefe (athlete, student, and one of the most popular boys in high school). They are in search of Meg’s father, a scientist who disappeared while engaged in secret work for the government on the tesseract problem.

A childhood favorite — and I just realized that I don’t own a copy of it!

MARTHA:

Orphan Monster Spy by Matt Killeen found at BermudaOnion’s Weblog.

Her name is Sarah. She’s blonde, blue-eyed, and Jewish in 1939 Germany. And her act of resistance is about to change the world.

After her mother is shot at a checkpoint, fifteen-year-old Sarah meets a mysterious man with an ambiguous accent, a suspiciously bare apartment, and a lockbox full of weapons. He’s part of the secret resistance against the Third Reich, and he needs Sarah to hide in plain sight at a school for the daughters of top Nazi brass, posing as one of them. If she can befriend the daughter of a key scientist and get invited to her house, she might be able to steal the blueprints to a bomb that could destroy the cities of Western Europe. Nothing could prepare Sarah for her cutthroat schoolmates, and soon she finds herself in a battle for survival unlike any she’d ever imagined. But anyone who underestimates this innocent-seeming girl does so at their peril. She may look sweet, but she’s the Nazis’ worst nightmare.

This title caught my eye and the blurb caught my attention.

Stardust by Neil Gaiman found at The Fiction Enthusiast.

In the tranquil fields and meadows of long-ago England, there is a small hamlet that has stood on a jut of granite for 600 years. Just to the east stands a high stone wall, for which the village is named. Here, in the hamlet of Wall, young Tristran Thorn has lost his heart to the hauntingly beautiful Victoria Forester. And here, one crisp October eve, Tristran makes his love a promise — an impetuous vow that will send him through the only breach in the wall, across the pasture… and into the most exhilarating adventure of his life.

I like Gaiman and this sounds good. Wasn’t this made into a movie?

SERENA:

Orphan Monster Spy by Matt Killeen found at BermudaOnion’s Weblog.

This was also on my list this week!

Just Add Sauce: A Revolutionary Guide to Boosting the Flavor of Everything You Cook at Under My Apple Tree.

Many home cooks find sauces to be intimidating, equating them with rarified French restaurant techniques. America’s Test Kitchen is knocking down that preconception with this ground-breaking cookbook that brings the flavorful world of sauces to life through the lens of home cooking. Sauce becomes the home cook’s secret weapon with more than 175 simple sauces accompanied by over 100 fresh and fun recipes that use them. You’ll be amazed at the versatility of the recipes in this uniquely organized and beautifully illustrated cookbook. In addition to the must-have classics that will boost your cooking arsenal (think: Warm Brown Butter-Hazelnut Vinaigrette with a Frisée Salad, a bright and bold Thyme-Sherry Vinegar Pan Sauce to dress up a Weeknight Roast Chicken, and a Teriyaki Stir-Fry Sauce for an at-home version of Chinese takeout), we also dive into the wide world of simmering sauces (from piquant Thai curries to complex Mexican moles), yogurt sauces (we take this familiar dairy product and give it new life), relishes (from classic Italian caponata to restaurant-inspired Grapefruit-Basil), herb sauces (Moroccan Chermoula to Argentinian Chimichurri to French Persillade), and more to open up new realms of flavor in your kitchen. You’ll find plenty of unexpected pairings that showcase the ways that sauces can improve your everyday cooking.

I’ve been doing some cooking so this fits in with my new recipes.

What books caught your eyes this week? Please share them in the comments.

Books That Caught Our Eye

3 Comments

dragonlegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

LESLIE:

Celtic Tales by Kate Forrester @The Fiction Enthusiast

The traditional stories of Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, and Wales transport us to the fantastical world of Celtic folklore. These timeless tales brim with wit and magic, and each on is brought to life with elegant silhouette art in this special illustrated edition.

I find folklore fascinating. This sounds delightful.

After the Fire by Henning Mankell at Book Dilettante.

Fredrik Welin is a seventy-year-old retired doctor. Years ago he retreated to the Swedish archipelago, where he lives alone on an island. He swims in the sea every day, cutting a hole in the ice if necessary. He lives a quiet life. Until he wakes up one night to find his house on fire.

Fredrik escapes just in time, wearing two left-footed wellies, as neighbouring islanders arrive to help douse the flames. All that remains in the morning is a stinking ruin and evidence of arson. The house that has been in his family for generations and all his worldly belongings are gone. He cannot think who would do such a thing, or why. Without a suspect, the police begin to think he started the fire himself.

Tackling love, loss and loneliness, After the Fire is Henning Mankell’s compelling last novel.

I always enjoy a good mystery.

MARTHA:

Island Games: Mystery of the Four Quadrants by Caleb J. Boyer found at Library of Clean Reads.

When two boys wake up on a mysterious island, survival becomes more than a game…

Matthew and Ryan have no idea where they are. After waking up on a sandy beach with no clue how they got there, they realize they have no supplies, no shelter, and no way of escaping the creepy island. Their only chance of surviving the terrors of the night requires counting on each other…

As Matthew and Ryan explore their new surroundings, they discover there’s more to the island than meets the eye. The boys must face off against a series of challenges that test their strength, their smarts, and their friendship…

When the pressure to make it through each obstacle threatens to tear them apart, Matthew and Ryan must fight to keep their friendship and their lives…

Island Games is the first book in a series of fast-pced Young Adult adventures. If you like shocking twists, edge-of-your-seat action, and stories of true friendship, then you’ll love Caleb J. Boyer’s tropical tale.

Seeing a book written by a 12 year old sure caught my eye. I like the book premise.

The Girl Who Smiled Beads: A Story of War and What Comes After by Clemantine Wamariya and Elizabeth Weil found at BermudaOnion’s Weblog.

“The plot provided by the universe was filled with starvation, war and rape. I would not–could not–live in that tale.”

Clemantine Wamariya was six years old when her mother and father began to speak in whispers, when neighbors began to disappear, and when she heard the loud, ugly sounds her brother said were thunder. In 1994, she and her fifteen-year-old sister, Claire, fled the Rwandan massacre and spent the next six years migrating through seven African countries, searching for safety–perpetually hungry, imprisoned and abused, enduring and escaping refugee camps, finding unexpected kindness, witnessing inhuman cruelty. They did not know whether their parents were dead or alive.

When Clemantine was twelve, she and her sister were granted refugee status in the United States; there, in Chicago, their lives diverged. Though their bond remained unbreakable, Claire, who had for so long protected and provided for Clemantine, was a single mother struggling to make ends meet, while Clemantine was taken in by a family who raised her as their own. She seemed to live the American dream: attending private school, taking up cheerleading, and, ultimately, graduating from Yale. Yet the years of being treated as less than human, of going hungry and seeing death, could not be erased. She felt at the same time six years old and one hundred years old.

In The Girl Who Smiled Beads, Clemantine provokes us to look beyond the label of “victim” and recognize the power of the imagination to transcend even the most profound injuries and aftershocks. Devastating yet beautiful, and bracingly original, it is a powerful testament to her commitment to constructing a life on her own terms.

This just grabbed my heartstrings

SERENA:

Celtic Tales by Kate Forrester @The Fiction Enthusiast

The traditional stories of Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, and Wales transport us to the fantastical world of Celtic folklore. These timeless tales brim with wit and magic, and each on is brought to life with elegant silhouette art in this special illustrated edition.

I am fascinated by Irish stories and myths, so this sounds delightful, especially since it’s illustrated.

Book Towns by Alex Johnson @Library of Clean Reads

Around 40 semi-official Book Towns now exist around the world, with most concentrated in Europe, South-East Asia, North America and Australia, but until now, there has been no directory of their location, history and charm. Book Towns takes readers on a richly illustrated tour of these captivating literary towns, outlining the history and development of each community, as well as offering practical travel advice.

Many Book Towns have emerged in areas of marked attraction, such as Ureña in Spain or Fjaerland in Norway, where bookshops have been set up in buildings including former ferry waiting rooms and banks. The views of the nearby glacier and dramatic mountains are superb. Although the UK has the best known examples at Hay, Wigtown and Sedbergh, the book has a broad international appeal, featuring locations such as Jimbochu in Japan, College Street in Calcutta, and major unofficial ‘book cities’ such as Buenos Aires.

I love traveling and bookstores, I would love to see these book towns, even if it is just in a book.

What books caught your eye this week?

Books That Caught Our Eye

2 Comments

DragonLegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

Martha is enjoying her cruise, so it will just be Leslie and I sharing our picks this week:

LESLIE:

Digging In by Loretta Nyhan at The Fiction Enthusiast.

Paige Moresco found her true love in eighth grade—and lost him two years ago. Since his death, she’s been sleepwalking through life, barely holding on for the sake of her teenage son. Her house is a wreck, the grass is overrun with weeds, and she’s at risk of losing her job. As Paige stares at her neglected lawn, she knows she’s hit rock bottom. So she does something entirely unexpected: she begins to dig.

As the hole gets bigger, Paige decides to turn her entire yard into a vegetable garden. The neighbors in her tidy gated community are more than a little alarmed. Paige knows nothing about gardening, and she’s boldly flouting neighborhood-association bylaws. But with the help of new friends, a charming local cop, and the transformative power of the soil, Paige starts to see potential in the chaos of her life. Something big is beginning to take root—both in her garden and in herself.

“Gardening is my therapy; this sounds good!”

I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark by Debbie Levy at Savvy Verse and Wit.

Get to know celebrated Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg—in the first picture book about her life—as she proves that disagreeing does not make you disagreeable!

Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has spent a lifetime disagreeing: disagreeing with inequality, arguing against unfair treatment, and standing up for what’s right for people everywhere. This biographical picture book about the Notorious RBG, tells the justice’s story through the lens of her many famous dissents, or disagreements.

“A good choice for young readers — and I’d like to read it too!”

SERENA:

Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris @Book Dillettante

2 CHILDREN FOR SALE

The scrawled sign, peddling young siblings on a farmhouse porch, captures the desperation sweeping the country in 1931. It’s an era of breadlines, bank runs, and impossible choices.

Two people who discover this story today set out to right a wrongdoing and mend a fractured family, at the risk of everything they value.

I’ve read McMorris’ work before and enjoyed it. This sounds like another winner.

If You Come Softly by Jacqueline Woodson @BermudaOnion’s Blog

Jeremiah feels good inside his own skin. That is, when he’s in his own Brooklyn neighborhood. But now he’s going to be attending a fancy prep school in Manhattan, and black teenage boys don’t exactly fit in there. So it’s a surprise when he meets Ellie the first week of school. In one frozen moment their eyes lock, and after that they know they fit together–even though she’s Jewish and he’s black. Their worlds are so different, but to them that’s not what matters. Too bad the rest of the world has to get in their way.

I’ve enjoyed other books by Woodson.

Let us know what books caught your eyes this week.

Books That Caught Our Eye

3 Comments
DragonLegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

Serena

The Arts: A Visual Encyclopedia by DK Publishing @ BermudaOnion

The most visual and comprehensive encyclopedia for children that charts the evolution of the world’s greatest cultural achievements in painting, sculpture, photography, music, and dance, supporting the arts in STEAM education.

Kids can trace the development of painting, from prehistoric cave drawings to the Mona Lisa to contemporary art; discover the evolution of sculpture, from the Great Sphinx at Giza to modern day abstract forms; find out about photography, from the early “camera obscura” to digital imagery; read the story of music, from classical and jazz to rock and roll; and put on their dancing shoes for some ballroom, ballet, modern dance, and more. Stunning images bring each subject to life, and clear text and annotations provide comprehensive, age-appropriate coverage.

Full of amazing facts, clear explanations, and awe-inspiring photography, The Arts: A Visual Encyclopedia is the essential introduction to the cultural world for children.

“I’ve always loved art and encyclopedias. They may be out of fashion in today’s digital world, but I want this on my shelf.”

Martha

From the Future, With Love by Alison McKenzie found at Library of Clean Reads.

An invite from her best friend to spend the summer in Scotland, and celebrate her twentieth birthday, is just the thing Robyn needs to put some positivity back in her life.

On the long drive from Devon, she is strangely drawn to a man she finds collapsed and bleeding in the middle of a wheat field. There is something about this dark-haired, dark-eyed stranger that’s more than mysterious.

The last thing Robyn expects is to become entangled in a romance before even crossing the border, but she feels an inexplicable connection, and perhaps Shay, feeling it too, or due to his bang on the head, starts dropping hints about life in another time.

From the Future, With Love is a love story with a time-travelling twist, and a reminder that today’s actions have future consequences.

“Like Laura, I have a thing for time travel. And a setting in Scotland adds to the draw.”

——–

The Girl in The Tower (Winternight Trilogy #2) by Katherine Arden found at The InfiniteCurio.

For a young woman in medieval Russia, the choices are stark: marriage or a life in a convent. Vasya will choose a third way: magic…

The court of the Grand Prince of Moscow is plagued by power struggles and rumours of unrest. Meanwhile bandits roam the countryside, burning the villages and kidnapping its daughters. Setting out to defeat the raiders, the Prince and his trusted companion come across a young man riding a magnificent horse.

Only Sasha, a priest with a warrior’s training, recognises this ‘boy’ as his younger sister, thought to be dead or a witch by her village. But when Vasya proves herself in battle, riding with remarkable skill and inexplicable power, Sasha realises he must keep her secret as she may be the only way to save the city from threats both human and fantastical..

“This is the sequel to The Bear and the Nightingale which also looks good. ”

Leslie

The Third Victim by Phillip Margolin at Lori’s Reading Corner.

A woman stumbles onto a dark road in rural Oregon―tortured, battered, and bound. She tells a horrific story about being kidnapped, then tortured, until she finally managed to escape. She was the lucky one―two other women, with similar burns and bruises, were found dead.

The surviving victim identifies the house where she was held captive and the owner, Alex Mason―a prominent local attorney―is arrested. Although he loudly insists upon his innocence, his wife’s statements about his sexual sadism and the physical evidence found at the scene, his summer home, is damning.

Regina Barrister is a legendary criminal defense attorney, known as “The Sorceress” for her courtroom victories. But she’s got a secret, one that threatens her skill, her reputation, and, most of all, her clients. And she’s agreed to take on the seemingly impossible task of defending Alex Mason.

Robin Lockwood, a young lawyer and former MMA fighter, has just left a clerkship at the Oregon Supreme Court to work for Regina Barrister. The Alex Mason trial is her first big one, a likely death penalty case, and she’s second chair to Regina. Increasingly, she’s worried her boss’s behavior and the details in the case against their client don’t quite add up.

“I enjoy a good mystery.”

——–

The Broken Girls by Simone St. James at Silver’s Reviews.

Vermont, 1950. There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants–the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming–until one of them mysteriously disappears. . . .

Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.

When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past–and a voice that won’t be silenced. . . .

Books That Caught Our Eye

2 Comments

DragonLegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

Martha

Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover found at Cori’s Mini Book Reviews.

Tara Westover was seventeen the first time she set foot in a classroom. Born to survivalists in the mountains of Idaho, she prepared for the end of the world by stockpiling home-canned peaches and sleeping with her “head-for-the-hills” bag. In the summer she stewed herbs for her mother, a midwife and healer, and in the winter she salvaged metal in her father’s junkyard.

Her father distrusted the medical establishment, so Tara never saw a doctor or nurse. Gashes and concussions, even burns from explosions, were all treated at home with herbalism. The family was so isolated from mainstream society that there was no one to ensure the children received an education, and no one to intervene when an older brother became violent.

When another brother got himself into college and came back with news of the world beyond the mountain, Tara decided to try a new kind of life. She taught herself enough mathematics, grammar, and science to take the ACT and was admitted to Brigham Young University. There, she studied psychology, politics, philosophy, and history, learning for the first time about pivotal world events like the Holocaust and the Civil Rights Movement. Her quest for knowledge transformed her, taking her over oceans and across continents, to Harvard and to Cambridge University. Only then would she wonder if she’d traveled too far, if there was still a way home.

Educated is an account of the struggle for self-invention. It is a tale of fierce family loyalty, and of the grief that comes from severing one’s closest ties. With the acute insight that distinguishes all great writers, Westover has crafted a universal coming-of-age story that gets to the heart of what an education is and what it offers: the perspective to see one’s life through new eyes, and the will to change it.

“This really sounds fascinating.”

——–

We Don’t Eat Our Classmates by Ryan T. Higgins found at Savvy Verse and Wit.

It’s the first day of school for Penelope Rex, and she can’t wait to meet her classmates. But it’s hard to make human friends when they’re so darn delicious! That is, until Penelope gets a taste of her own medicine and finds she may not be at the top of the food chain after all. . . .
Readers will gobble up this hilarious new story from award-winning author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins.

“I really liked Mother Bruce by this author and doesn’t this look/sound adorable?”

Serena

The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews @ Serendipity and Silver’s Reviews.

When ninety-nine-year-old heiress Josephine Bettendorf Warrick summons Brooke Trappnell to Talisa Island, her 20,000 acre remote barrier island home, Brooke is puzzled. Everybody in the South has heard about the eccentric millionaire mistress of Talisa, but Brooke has never met her. Josephine’s cryptic note says she wants to discuss an important legal matter with Brooke, who is an attorney, but Brooke knows that Mrs. Warrick has long been a client of a prestigious Atlanta law firm.

Over a few meetings, the ailing Josephine spins a tale of old friendships, secrets, betrayal and a long-unsolved murder. She tells Brooke she is hiring her for two reasons: to protect her island and legacy from those who would despoil her land, and secondly, to help her make amends with the heirs of the long dead women who were her closest friends, the girls of The High Tide Club—so named because of their youthful skinny dipping escapades—Millie, Ruth and Varina. When Josephine dies with her secrets intact, Brooke is charged with contacting Josephine’s friends’ descendants and bringing them together on Talisa for a reunion of women who’ve actually never met.

“I’ve loved reading other books by Mary Kay Andrews and this one sounds good too.”

Leslie

Number One Chinese Restaurant by Lillian Li at Book Dilettante.

The Beijing Duck House in Rockville, Maryland, is not only a beloved go-to setting for hunger pangs and celebrations; it is its own world, inhabited by waiters and kitchen staff who have been fighting, loving, and aging within its walls for decades. When disaster strikes, this working family’s controlled chaos is set loose, forcing each character to confront the conflicts that fast-paced restaurant life has kept at bay.

Owner Jimmy Han hopes to leave his late father’s homespun establishment for a fancier one. Jimmy’s older brother, Johnny, and Johnny’s daughter, Annie, ache to return to a time before a father’s absence and a teenager’s silence pushed them apart. Nan and Ah-Jack, longtime Duck House employees, are tempted to turn their thirty-year friendship into something else, even as Nan’s son, Pat, struggles to stay out of trouble. And when Pat and Annie, caught in a mix of youthful lust and boredom, find themselves in a dangerous game that implicates them in the Duck House tragedy, their families must decide how much they are willing to sacrifice to help their children.

Generous in spirit, unaffected in its intelligence, multi-voiced, poignant, and darkly funny, Number One Chinese Restaurant looks beyond red tablecloths and silkscreen murals to share an unforgettable story about youth and aging, parents and children, and all the ways that our families destroy us while also keeping us grounded and alive.

“Something a little different from my usual genres.”

——–

The Subway Girls by Susie Orman Schnal at Silver’s Reviews.

In 1949, dutiful and ambitious Charlotte’s dream of a career in advertising is shattered when her father demands she help out with the family business. Meanwhile, Charlotte is swept into the glamorous world of the Miss Subways beauty contest, which promises irresistible opportunities with its Park Avenue luster and local fame status. But when her new friend―the intriguing and gorgeous fellow-participant Rose―does something unforgivable, Charlotte must make a heart-wrenching decision that will change the lives of those around her forever.

Nearly 70 years later, outspoken advertising executive Olivia is pitching the NYC subways account in a last ditch effort to save her job at an advertising agency. When the charismatic boss she’s secretly in love with pits her against her misogynistic nemesis, Olivia’s urgent search for the winning strategy leads her to the historic Miss Subways campaign. As the pitch date closes in on her, Olivia finds herself dealing with a broken heart, an unlikely new love interest, and an unexpected personal connection to Miss Subways that could save her job―and her future.

The Subway Girls is the charming story of two strong women, a generation apart, who find themselves up against the same eternal struggle to find an impossible balance between love, happiness, and ambition.

Books That Caught Our Eye

Leave a comment
DragonLegendsAt Mailbox Monday we encourage participants to not only share the books they received, but to check out the books others have received.

Every Wednesday we will each share two books that caught our eye from that week’s Mailbox Monday.

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

Serena

Patrick Turns His Play Into Pay by Patrick Muhammad and Shani Muhammad at Imperfect Christian Mom.

“Patrick Turns His Play Into Pay” is a picture book, based on a true story. It details the journey of an entrepreneur, Patrick Muhammad through the eyes of a child. The book uses illustrations that are vivid and lively words, to explain the road little Patrick took to the world of entrepreneurship. This book shows the reader how Patrick turned his passion of baking into a full-fledged business for himself. This book plants an entrepreneurial seed in today’s youth and demonstrates how their passion can someday become their profession.

“This sounds like a good teaching moment for my daughter and it includes pictures, which she is still into even though she is learning to read on her own more and more.”

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Four Respectable Ladies Seek Part-time Husband by Barbara Toner at Sam Still Reading.

It’s September 1919. The war is over, and everyone who was going to die from the flu has done so. But there’s a shortage of husbands and women in strife will flounder without a male to act on their behalf.

And in the southern New South Wales town of Prospect, four ladies bereft of men have problems that threaten to overwhelm them.

Beautiful Louisa Worthington, whose dashing husband died for King and Country, is being ruined by the debts he left behind.

Young Maggie O’Connell, who lost her mother in childbirth and her father to a redhead, is raising her two wayward brothers and fighting for land she can’t prove is hers.

Adelaide Nightingale has a husband, but he’s returned from the war in a rage and is refusing to tackle the thieving manager of their famous family store.

Pearl McCleary, Adelaide’s new housekeeper, must find her missing fiancé before it’s too late and someone dies.

Thank God these desperate ladies have a solution: a part-time husband who will rescue them all. To find him, they’ll advertise. To afford him, they’ll share . . .

“I love historical novels and the perseverance of characters during wartime. This sounds delightful.”

Martha

American War: A Novel by Omar El Akkad found at Mrs Q Book Addict.

An audacious and powerful debut novel: a second American Civil War, a devastating plague, and one family caught deep in the middle—a story that asks what might happen if America were to turn its most devastating policies and deadly weapons upon itself.

Sarat Chestnut, born in Louisiana, is only six when the Second American Civil War breaks out in 2074. But even she knows that oil is outlawed, that Louisiana is half underwater, and that unmanned drones fill the sky. When her father is killed and her family is forced into Camp Patience for displaced persons, she begins to grow up shaped by her particular time and place. But not everyone at Camp Patience is who they claim to be. Eventually Sarat is befriended by a mysterious functionary, under whose influence she is turned into a deadly instrument of war. The decisions that she makes will have tremendous consequences not just for Sarat but for her family and her country, rippling through generations of strangers and kin alike.

“This is another futuristic dystopia featuring a fractured America. I find these interesting in a chilling way.”

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Saving the Sheriff: A Three River Ranch Novella by Roxanne Snopek found at Herding Cats.

The power might be out…but the heat is on. Will this felon burn him?

Every Christmas, free-spirited Frankie Sylva banishes her holiday loneliness with good deeds. This time, she’s rescuing a truckload of neglected reindeer–until a blizzard sidetracks her scheme, and now she’s stuck…literally.

Local sheriff Red LeClair is shocked to find a very cute, half-frozen woman trespassing on Three River Ranch in a ditched rig, with a suspiciously empty trailer. Is she a horse thief? Is she on the run? Is she out of her mind? He has no choice but to take her back to the ranch and keep an eye on her.

But when the power goes out, Red and Frankie are forced to depend on each other in a way that both have avoided for years. The sheriff’s quiet holiday is suddenly festive: a crackling fire, candles, carols, and an irresistible stranger…who might be a felon.

“This looks and sounds like fun. Sometimes you just need something on the light side.”

Leslie

Red Clocks by Leni Zumas at Mrs Q | Book Addict.

Five women. One question. What is a woman for?

In this ferociously imaginative novel, abortion is once again illegal in America, in-vitro fertilization is banned, and the Personhood Amendment grants rights of life, liberty, and property to every embryo. In a small Oregon fishing town, five very different women navigate these new barriers alongside age-old questions surrounding motherhood, identity, and freedom.

Ro, a single high-school teacher, is trying to have a baby on her own, while also writing a biography of Eivør, a little-known 19th-century female polar explorer. Susan is a frustrated mother of two, trapped in a crumbling marriage. Mattie is the adopted daughter of doting parents and one of Ro’s best students, who finds herself pregnant with nowhere to turn. And Gin is the gifted, forest-dwelling homeopath, or “mender,” who brings all their fates together when she’s arrested and put on trial in a frenzied modern-day witch hunt.

“First I’ve heard of this book. Sounds timely and controversial.”

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The Lucky Galah by Tracy Sorensen at Sam Still Reading.

A magnificent novel about fate, Australia and what it means to be human… it just happens to be narrated by a galah called Lucky.

It’s 1969 and a remote coastal town in Western Australia is poised to play a pivotal part in the moon landing. Perched on the red dunes of its outskirts looms the great Dish: a relay for messages between Apollo 11 and Houston, Texas.

Radar technician Evan Johnson and his colleagues stare, transfixed, at the moving images on the console -although his glossy young wife, Linda, seems distracted. Meanwhile the people of Port Badminton have gathered to watch Armstrong’s small step on a single television sitting centre stage in the old theatre. The Kelly family, a crop of redheads, sit in rare silence. Roo shooters at the back of the hall squint through their rifles to see the tiny screen.

I’m in my cage on the Kelly’s back verandah. I sit here, unheard, underestimated, biscuit crumbs on my beak. But fate is a curious thing. For just as Evan Johnson’s story is about to end (and perhaps with a giant leap), my story prepares to take flight…

“I couldn’t help notice a book narrated by a cockatoo! It doesn’t look like it’s available in the states yet, but it’s going on my wishlist for the future.”