Breq, the only survivor of the destroyed starship Justice of Toren, is on a quest for answers and revenge. Heartbreaking and thought-provoking, this adventure and thriller mystery in a space opera setting kicks off one of my favorite science fiction trilogies.
Recommended by Jenny (2/20)
The perfect marriage? Or the perfect lie? Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do. You'd like to get to know Grace better. But it's difficult, because you realize Jack and Grace are never apart. Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn't work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows.
Recommended by Elaine (2/20)
The Book Woman of Troublesome Creek explores the story of the Fugates, a family from the Appalachia Mountains of Kentucky with pale blue skin due to a blood enzyme disorder which reduces their levels of oxygenation. Cussy Mary "Bluett"Fugate joins the pack horse librarian project launched by the WPA in the 1930s and goes on to challenge notions of racism and classism through her ceaseless empathy and charity. Woven throughout this story there is also a heartwarming tale of how love can transcend these boundaries.
Recommended by Krysti (12/19)
In 1821, several villagers of Ivy Hill have found new love and purpose, while questions and dreams remain. When a secretive new dressmaker arrives, the ladies suspect she isn't who she claims to be. While residents of Ivy Hill anticipate one wedding, an unexpected bride may surprise them all.
Recommended by Linda (2/20)
On the first Tuesday in October, Rosa Hartung is returning to her job as minister for social affairs following a year's leave of absence--granted after the dramatic disappearance of her twelve-year-old daughter. Linus Bekker, a mentally ill young man, confessed to her killing, but is unable to remember where he buried the various parts of her dismembered corpse, leaving Rosa with no choice but to try to move on without closure. The same day Rosa returns to parliament, a young single mother is found brutally murdered at her home in the suburbs of Copenhagen--she's been tortured, and one hand has been cut off. Thulin and Hess, the detectives sent to investigate the crime, arrive at the address to find a figure made of chestnuts hanging from a playhouse nearby. When yet another woman is murdered--this time with both hands cut off--and another chestnut figure is found, Thulin and Hess begin to suspect a connection to the Hartung case. To put an end to the killing spree, the pair, with nothing in common aside from equally troubled personal lives, realize they will need to put aside their differences in a race against time--and a brutal psychopath.
Recommended by Sara (2/20)
Cleverly written tale of a brother and sister "pushed" out of their home by a scheming stepmother, after their birth mother abandons them and their father remarries. Ironically the house, a mansion really and another "character" in the novel, is the cause for all of the conflict in the family. The mother left because the house was too ostentatious for her humble disposition, while the stepmother coveted the house for all its extravagance. However, the brother and sister, Danny and Maeve, become a closer family unit sans the parents and the step-siblings because of all the consternation the house has caused.
Recommended by Karen (12/19)
Harry recounts her path from glorious commercial success to heroin addiction, the near-death of partner Chris Stein, a heart-wrenching bankruptcy, and Blondie's breakup as a band to her multifaceted acting career in more than thirty films, a stunning solo career and the triumphant return of her band, and her tireless advocacy for the environment and LGBTQ rights.
Recommended by Amy (2/20)
Fegan has been a "hard man," an IRA killer in northern Ireland. Now that peace has come, he is being haunted day and night by twelve ghosts: a mother and infant, a schoolboy, a butcher, an RUC constable, and seven other of his innocent victims. In order to appease them, he's going to have to kill the men who gave him orders.
Recommended by Becky
In the middle of the night, in a house on a quiet street in suburban Minneapolis, intruders silently murder Luke Ellis' parents and load him into a black SUV. The operation takes less than two minutes. Luke will wake up at the Institute, in a room which looks just like his own, except there's no window. And outside his door are other doors, behind which are other kids with special talents—telekinesis and telepathy—who got to this place the same way Luke did. Kalisha, Nick, George, Iris, and the youngest of them, ten-year-old Avery Dixon. In this most sinister of institutions, the director, Mrs. Sigsby, and her staff are ruthlessly dedicated to extracting from these children the force of their extranormal gifts. There are no scruples here. If you go along, you get tokens for the vending machines. If you don't, punishment is brutal. Luke becomes more and more desperate to get out and get help. But no one has ever escaped from the Institute.
Recommended by: Louise (11/19)
It's 1992 in Bleak Creek, North Carolina, a sleepy little place with all the trappings of an ordinary Southern town: two Baptist churches, friendly smiles coupled with silent judgments, and an unquenchable appetite for pork products. Beneath the town's cheerful facade, however, Bleak Creek teens live in constant fear of being sent to The Whitewood School, a local reformatory with a record of putting unruly teens back on the straight and narrow--a record so impeccable that almost everyone is willing to ignore the mysterious deaths that have occurred there over the past decade. At first, high school freshmen Rex McClendon and Leif Nelson believe what they've been told: that the students' strange demises were all just tragic accidents, the unfortunate consequence of succumbing to vices like Dungeons & Dragons and Nirvana. But when the shoot for their low-budget horror masterpiece, PolterDog, goes horribly awry--and their best friend, Alicia Boykins, is sent to Whitewood as punishment--Rex and Leif are forced to piece together the unsettling truth of the school and its mysterious founder, Wayne Whitewood. What the boys find--with recent NYU film school student Janine Blitstein and her cousin Donna (a former Whitewood student with secrets of her own) at their side--will leave them battling an evil beyond their wildest teenage imaginations, one that will shake Bleak Creek to its core.
Recommended by Ashley (2/20)
Wonderful coming-of-age story set in small town Minnesota during the summer of 1961. Told in first person by a thirteen-year-old boy, Frank Drum, the novel centers around several deaths that occur in the community where Frank lives with his minister father, somewhat distant mother, musically-talented older sister, and younger sidekick brother. The novel is true to the culture of the time period, including certain aspects of racism and sexism, as well as the elements of living in a small town environment and its inhabitants. It reminded me of "To Kill a Mockingbird" with a young protagonist telling the story, a father trying to do right by his family and community, and the truth and motivations behind criminal activities. The author has described the book as the “most nearly autobiographic work” he has done.
Recommended by Karen (12/19)
A sweeping panorama steeped in the tragedy and glory that is Ireland, epitomizes the power and richness of Rutherford's storytelling magic. The saga begins in tribal, pre-Christian Ireland during the reign of the fierce and mighty High kings at Tara, with the fate of two lovers, the princely Conall and the ravishing Deirdre, whose travails cleverly echo the ancient Celtic legend of Cuchulainn.
Recommended by: Becky (2/20)
When everyone's had their fill of intergalactic war, the beneficent victors invent a better system to decide who's allowed to live - namely, an interplanetary rock competition. It's American Idol for the survival of the species, and humans, as the newest discovered life form, must send a worthy contender to avoid annihilation. Decibel Jones one-hit glam-rock wonder, voyages toward the reckoning together with Oort St. Ultraviolet, the other half of Decibel Jones and the Absolute Zeros. Dogged by the past, an extraterrestrial red panda and a few alternate timelines, anything could happen.
Recommended by Erin W. (2/20)
Twelve-year-old Rain Winter narrowly escaped an abduction while walking to a friend's house. Her two best friends, Tess and Hank, were not as lucky. Tess never came home, and Hank was held in captivity before managing to escape. Their abductor was sent to prison but years later was released. Then someone delivered real justice and killed him in cold blood. Now Rain is living the perfect suburban life, her dark childhood buried deep ... But when another brutal murderer who escaped justice is found dead, Rain is unexpectedly drawn into the case.
Recommended by Christina (2/20)
A central figure in American popular culture, Tarzan first came swinging through the jungle in the pages of a pulp-fiction magazine in 1912, and subsequently appeared in the novel that went on to spawn numerous film, full-length cartoon, and theatrical adaptations. The infant Tarzan, lost on the coast of West Africa, is adopted by an ape-mother and grows up to become a model of physical strength and natural prowess, and eventually leader of his tribe. When he encounters a group of white Europeans, and rescues Jane Porter from a marauding ape, he finds love, and must choose between the values of civilization and the jungle. Jason Haslam's engaging introduction situates the novel not only in the pulp fiction industry, but also against the backdrop of adventure stories, European exploration in Africa, and the debates over nature versus civilization. This edition also features an up-to-date bibliography, chronology, and helpful notes as well as appendices that include selections of letters from readers to the editor of The All-Story magazine where the novel first appeared, histories of feral children, African explorers, and American advocates of self-reliance.
Recommended by Benjamin (2/20)
She calls herself Lady Justice. And once she has chosen a man as her target, she turns herself into a tall blonde or a curvaceous redhead, makes herself as alluring and seductive as possible to them. Once they are in her grasp, they are powerless. The first victim is wealthy businessman Nigel McEnroy. His company's human resources department has already paid out settlements to a couple of his young victims-but they don't know that his crimes go far beyond workplace harassment. Lady Justice knows. And in one shocking night of brutality, she makes him pay a much steeper price. Now Eve Dallas and her husband, Roarke, are combing through the evidence of McEnroy's secret life. His compulsive need to record his misdeeds provides them with a wide range of suspects, but the true identity of Lady Justice remains elusive. It's a challenging case, made even more difficult by McEnroy's widow, who reacts to the investigation with fury, denial, and threats. Meanwhile, Lady Justice's criminal crusade is escalating rapidly, and if Eve can't stop this vigilante, there's no telling how much blood may be spilled.
Recommended by: Louise (11/19)
Emmy-award winning gadfly Mike Rowe presents a ridiculously entertaining, seriously fascinating collection of his favorite episodes from his short-form podcast, The Way I Heard It, along with a host of memories, ruminations, illustrations, and insights. It's a delightful collection of mysteries. A mosaic. A memoir. A charming, surprising must-read. Delivered with Mike's signature blend of charm, wit, and ingenuity, their stories are part of a larger mosaic--a memoir full of surprising revelations, sharp observations, and intimate, behind-the-scenes moments drawn from Mike's own remarkable life and career.
Recommended by Amy (2/20)
How do you set about solving a murder no one can reveal has been committed?
That's the challenge confronting C.S. Harris's aristocratic soldier-turned-sleuth Sebastian St. Cyr when his friend, surgeon and anatomist Paul Gibson, illegally buys the cadaver of a young man from London’s infamous body snatchers. A rising star at the Foreign Office, Mr. Alexander Ross was reported to have died of a weak heart. But when Gibson discovers a stiletto wound at the base of Ross’ skull, he can turn only to Sebastian for help in catching the killer.
Described by all who knew him as an amiable young man, Ross at first seems an unlikely candidate for murder. But as Sebastian’s search takes him from the Queens drawing rooms in St. James’s Palace to the embassies of Russia, the United States, and the Turkish Empire, he plunges into a dangerous shadow land of diplomatic maneuvering and international intrigue, where truth is an elusive commodity and nothing is as it seems.
Meanwhile, Sebastian must confront the turmoil of his personal life. Hero Jarvis, daughter of his powerful nemesis Lord Jarvis, finally agrees to become his wife. But as their wedding approaches, Sebastian can’t escape the growing realization that not only Lord Jarvis but Hero herself knows far more about the events surrounding Ross’s death than they would have him believe.
Recommended by: Becky (1/20)