More books I got when I was at school!!!
From 21-Jump Street writer and series creator Patrick Hasburgh, a part thriller, part family novel about an ex-pat American living and surfing in Mexico, the family he loves, and the murder he witnesses, in the vein of Don Winslow’s The Dawn Patrol
“Going straight at the stuff that scares you is good advice. I just didn’t have the courage to do it…”—Nick Lutz
In a former life, Nick Lutz, sold cars in the Golden State. He had a wife and a young son, Marshall, and they struggled along until Nick was shot in the head when a potential customer hijacked the car he was demonstrating. The incident sets off a bad-luck domino fall, and he loses an eye, his job, his family, and, eventually, his self-respect.
With nothing left, he heads for Mexico, where he sheds his former self among an eclectic group of expats and locals, who fondly name him “Pirata” on account of his eye patch. There on the beaches of Sabinita, Nick and his new buddy Winsor drink, surf, and—most of all—they escape, buoyed away from their pasts on a life of south swells and Tecate. Nothing epic. That is until Winsor’s girlfriend, Meagan, puts the claws of a hammer into her lover’s skull.
The thing is, Winsor had it coming. And thanks to Nick’s soft spot for Meagan and her two sons, he agrees to help her out—after all, ninety percent of Mexican crimes go unsolved. They dump the body, Meagan and the boys move in with Nick, and a monsoon season fling turns into a torrid love affair as they weave their secrets and loyalties into something like a family. But when an FBI agent turns up looking for Nick and the local policía find a body washed up in the surf, he realizes his past—and his sins—have caught up to him. And there are dangerous new surprises that have yet to roll in with the tide….
A gifted storyteller, Hasburgh drops readers into the middle of a gripping, heartwarming, viscerally compelling page-turner. At once tender and deadly hysterical, Pirata is a novel readers won’t soon forget.
Been in the mood for thrillers lately, and apparently there is alo pretty funny too
Thanks, Harper Perinneal, for the review copy 🙂
The Flicker of Old DrEams by Susan Henderson
With the quiet precision of Jane Smiley’s A Thousand Acres and the technical clarity of Mary Roach’s Stiff, this is a novel about a young woman who comes most alive while working in her father’s mortuary in a small, forgotten Western town.
“The dead come to me vulnerable, sharing their stories and secrets…”
Mary Crampton has spent all of her thirty years in Petroleum, a small Western town once supported by a powerful grain company. Living at home, she works as the embalmer in her father’s mortuary: an unlikely job that has long marked her as an outsider. Yet, to Mary there is a satisfying art to positioning and styling each body to capture the essence of a subject’s life.
Though some townsfolk pretend that the community is thriving, the truth is that Petroleum is crumbling away—a process that began twenty years ago when an accident in the grain elevator killed a beloved high school athlete. The mill closed for good, the train no longer stopped in town, and Robert Golden, the victim’s younger brother, was widely blamed for the tragedy and shipped off to live elsewhere. Now, out of the blue, Robert has returned to care for his terminally ill mother. After Mary—reserved, introspective, and deeply lonely—strikes up an unlikely friendship with him, shocking the locals, she finally begins to consider what might happen if she dared to leave Petroleum.
Set in America’s heartland, The Flicker of Old Dreams explores themes of resilience, redemption, and loyalty in prose as lyrical as it is powerful.
Obviously not a book that I’m necessarily into, but, I should mention that I do have a plan for these novels in the near futures 😉
Thanks, Harper Perinneal, for the review copy 🙂
The Home for Unwanted Girls by Joanna Goodman
Philomena meets Orphan Train in this suspenseful, provocative novel filled with love, secrets, and deceit—the story of a young unwed mother who is forcibly separated from her daughter at birth and the lengths to which they go to find each other.
In 1950s Quebec, French and English tolerate each other with precarious civility—much like Maggie Hughes’ parents. Maggie’s English-speaking father has ambitions for his daughter that don’t include marriage to the poor French boy on the next farm over. But Maggie’s heart is captured by Gabriel Phénix. When she becomes pregnant at fifteen, her parents force her to give baby Elodie up for adoption and get her life ‘back on track’.
Elodie is raised in Quebec’s impoverished orphanage system. It’s a precarious enough existence that takes a tragic turn when Elodie, along with thousands of other orphans in Quebec, is declared mentally ill as the result of a new law that provides more funding to psychiatric hospitals than to orphanages. Bright and determined, Elodie withstands abysmal treatment at the nuns’ hands, finally earning her freedom at seventeen, when she is thrust into an alien, often unnerving world.
Maggie, married to a businessman eager to start a family, cannot forget the daughter she was forced to abandon, and a chance reconnection with Gabriel spurs a wrenching choice. As time passes, the stories of Maggie and Elodie intertwine but never touch, until Maggie realizes she must take what she wants from life and go in search of her long-lost daughter, finally reclaiming the truth that has been denied them both.
Historical Fiction doesn’t pop out to me a genre I need to read, but I’d be lying if didn’t say this one sounds like it’ll be really good!
Thanks, Harper Perinneal, for the review copy 🙂
The Clingerman Files by Mildred Clingerman
Widely acclaimed as one of the first successful female science fiction authors, Mildred Clingerman returns with the exciting follow up to her 1961 science fiction collection, A Cupful of Space.
Her stories tend to wed a literate tone to subject matters whose ominousness is perhaps more submerged than the horrors under the skin made explicit in the work of Shirley Jackson, but equally as deadly.
Clingerman’s new anthology, The Clingerman Files, includes all of her originally published stories; The Day of the Green Velvet Cloak, Mr. Sakrison’s Halt, Wild Wood, The Little Witch of Elm Street and many other favorites. Also included are previously unpublished works; Top Hand, Tribal Customs, The Birthday Party, Fathers of Daughters and many more soon to be favorites.
The key to her stories is that they appear simple and straightforward, but each takes a twist or turn that, even when you’re tempted to guess where they’re heading, they take you there in a way you would never have bargained on.
Other writers of the period tried to make big splashes. Clingerman, it seems, prided herself in concealing her effects within her masterfully constructed sentences. They barely make a ripple on the surface; all their power and drive lurk deep down below.
So many of her stories are alive with the underpinning notion that the cosmological vistas we spy at the end ends of telescopes and various other means of measurement belong to the very same universe under our feet. We’re not apart from the universe, we’re a part of it.
Nearly every story here is alive with that sensibility, in the truest sense of that word. In every sentence there is a note (a gentle one, but insistent) of silent rebellion, a surreptitious snarl, entreating you to see that not the everyday, but an undiscovered marvel.
May these eloquent rebellions be undiscovered no longer.
Welcome to the world of Mildred Clingerman!”
This one actually has a very inserting and heartfelt story behind its publication, and I was going to link to the interivew here, but I am just realizing now that never actually sent that interivew… 😀 Hopefully it will still be a go and you will all see it soon!
Thanks, Mark, for the review copy 🙂
For the Love of the South by Amber Wilson
Named by Garden & Gun as one of the best books of 2018, For the Love of the South captures the essence of Southern culture—a deep devotion to family, friends, and food—in a charming cookbook featuring delicious, comforting recipes, her recollections of growing up on the bayous of Louisiana, and more than 100 full-color and black-and-white photographs.
Amber Wilson’s popular blog, For the Love of the South, reflects the generosity, cordiality, and sense of tradition that are the heart of Southern culture. In her engaging posts, she shares personal, entertaining stories about her childhood in the deep South, pays tribute to her heritage, and presents mouthwatering recipes that showcase the best of the region’s cooking, accompanied by gorgeous photos.
In this first book, drawn from her popular website, she brings together 100 delectable, accessible, and easy-to-make recipes for Southern classics, and mixes them with delightful family anecdotes, which convey her love and respect for her roots. A terrific cook and captivating writer, Amber is also an accomplished photographer. For the Love of the South showcases 100 of her pictures—both black-and-white and color images of ingredient prep and finished dishes, as well as photos that evoke quintessential Southern life.
No matter where in the country you live, no matter if you’ve barely used a stove or are an old hand around the kitchen, Amber teaches you how to master a host of Southern dishes, from starters to desserts. The recipes use inexpensive, readily available ingredients and come with instructive, encouraging directions. Learn to make a roux, perfect the popover, fry okra, lattice a piecrust, and create irresistible gumbos and jambalayas like a true Southerner. From Pain Perdu, Pimento Hushpuppies, Corn Bisque, and Spicy Oven-Roasted Okra to Tomato and Bacon Sandwich with Chipotle Mayonnaise, Nashville Hot Chicken, Cajun Jambalaya, and Bacon-Latticed Apple Pie, there’s something tasty for everyone.
Amber offers a pantry-full of time- and money-saving kitchen tips—from storing and freezing bacon to prolonging fresh berries in the fridge, seasoning cast-iron skillets, and making vanilla extract—and provides helpful do-ahead and leftover-saving tips for many recipes as well.
Grab a chair, sit down for a spell, and enjoy a taste of Southern life and food with For the Love of the South.
I honestly have no idea how to really rate/review a cookbook – not do I even have a reference to point to what makes one good… but all the photos in it looked deliscous!
Thanks, Harper Design, for the review copy 🙂
Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz
When editor Susan Ryeland is given the manuscript of Alan Conway’s latest novel, she has no reason to think it will be much different from any of his others. After working with the bestselling crime writer for years, she’s intimately familiar with his detective, Atticus Pünd, who solves mysteries disturbing sleepy English villages. An homage to queens of classic British crime such as Agatha Christie and Dorothy Sayers, Alan’s traditional formula has proved hugely successful. So successful that Susan must continue to put up with his troubling behavior if she wants to keep her job.
Conway’s latest tale has Atticus Pünd investigating a murder at Pye Hall, a local manor house. Yes, there are dead bodies and a host of intriguing suspects, but the more Susan reads, the more she’s convinced that there is another story hidden in the pages of the manuscript: one of real-life jealousy, greed, ruthless ambition, and murder.
Oh! Here’s another mystery/thriller!!! 😀
Thanks, HarperCollins, for the review copy 🙂
Read any of these books yet? Which would you read first? What new have you picked up recently?
Let me know what’s good!