Thursday, July 31, 2014

"Invisible Streets"

New from Overlook: Invisible Streets by Toby Ball.

About the book, from the publisher:

A brilliantly imagined thriller, Invisible Streets is a sprawling, noirish epic of crime and corruption from an author who has been compared to Caleb Carr, James Ellroy, and Jonathan Lethem.

The year is 1965, and the City is a hulking shell of itself. Bohemians, crooks, and snarling anti-Communists have their run of the place, but if Mr. Canada has his way, all this decline and decadence will soon be nothing but a distant memory. His New City Project will paper over the grit and the grime, making the City safe for the rich. According to him, the project the City’s last hope—but according to everyone else in town, it’s a death knell.

So when the Project’s cache of explosives goes missing, everyone is a suspect, and a police detective named Torsten Grip finds himself up against a ticking clock and a wall of silence. Meanwhile a journalist named Frank Frings—the last honest man in the City—sets out to find his friend’s grandson, who has gotten himself involved with a radical group called Kollectiv 61, which—Grip believes—holds the key to the investigation.

At once a cinematic journey through a city down on its luck and a gripping story all the way up to its shocking conclusion, Invisible Streets will leave you awed and breathless.
Visit Toby Ball's website.

Writers Read: Toby Ball (September 2010).

My Book, The Movie: The Vaults.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Of Sea and Cloud"

New from Tyrus Books: Of Sea and Cloud by Jon Keller.

About the book, from the publisher:

Nicolas Graves raised his sons to be lobstermen. Bill and Joshua (known as Jonah) Graves grew up aboard their father’s boat—the Cinderella—learning the rules and rites of the antiquated business they love. But when their father is lost at sea and the price of lobster crashes worldwide, Bill and Jonah must decide how much they are willing to risk for their family legacy.

Standing against them is Osmond Raymond— former Calvinist minister, mystic, captain of the Sanctity, and their father’s business partner for more than twenty years. Together with his grandson and heir, Julius, Osmond is determined to push the Graves family out of their lobster pound, regardless of the cost or the consequences.

In the tradition of Russell Banks’ Affliction, Annie Proulx’s The Shipping News or Philipp Meyer’s The Son, Of Sea and Cloud is a powerful, haunting novel that, with extraordinary depth and compassion, explores the relationships between fathers and sons, tradition and change, and the surprising ways in which globalization is affecting some of the most isolated harbors on this planet.
Visit Jon Keller's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

"City of Ghosts"

New from Minotaur Books: City of Ghosts (A Miranda Corbie Mystery) by Kelli Stanley.

About the book, from the publisher:

June, 1940.

For the United States, war is on the horizon.

For Miranda Corbie, private investigator and erstwhile escort, there are debts to be paid and memories—long-suppressed and willfully forgotten—to be resurrected. Enter the U.S. State Department and the man who helped Miranda get her PI license. A man she owes. A man who asks her to track a chemistry professor here in San Francisco whom he suspects is a spy for the Nazis. Playing along may get Miranda a ticket to Blitz-bombed England and answers about her past…if she survives.

Through sordid back alleys and art gallery halls, from drag dress nightclubs to a Nazi costume ball, Miranda's journey into fear takes her on the famed City of San Francisco streamliner and to Reno, Nevada, the Biggest Little City in the World…where she finds herself framed for a murder she never anticipated. Forced to go underground, Miranda soldiers on alone, determined to find the truth about a murder, a Nazi spy, and her own troubling past.

But Miranda will have to learn the difference between reality and illusion, from despair to deceit and factual to fake, as she tries to get her life back…and navigates a City of Ghosts.

Miranda Corbie's back. Noir will never be the same.

And Kelli Stanley will once again mesmerize readers with the most thrilling novel yet in her award-winning series.
The Page 69 Test: City of Dragons.

My Book, The Movie: City of Dragons.

Coffee with a Canine: Kelli Stanley & Bertie.

My Book, the Movie: City of Secrets.

The Page 69 Test: City of Secrets.

Writers Read: Kelli Stanley (September 2011).

Learn more about the novel and author at Kelli Stanley's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"A History of the Future"

New from Atlantic Monthly Press: A History of the Future: A World Made By Hand Novel by James Howard Kunstler.

About the book, from the publisher:

A History of the Future is the third thrilling novel in Kunstler’s World Made By Hand series, set in a dystopian future version of upstate New York after the energy crisis has plunged the world into chaos.

Following the catastrophes of the twenty-first century—the pandemics, the environmental disaster, the end of oil, the ensuing chaos—people are doing whatever they can to get by and pursuing a simpler and sometimes happier existence. In little Union Grove, the townspeople are preparing for Christmas. Without the consumerist shopping frenzy that dogged the holidays of the previous age, the season has become a time to focus on family and loved ones. It is a stormy Christmas Eve when Robert Earle’s son Daniel arrives back from his two years of sojourning throughout what is left of the United States. He collapses from exhaustion and illness, but as he recovers tells the story of the break-up of the nation into three uneasy independent regions and his journey into the dark heart of the New Foxfire Republic centered in Tennessee and led by the female evangelical despot, Loving Morrow. In the background, Union Grove has been shocked by the Christmas Eve double murder by a young mother, in the throes of illness, of her husband and infant son. Town magistrate Stephen Bullock is in a hanging mood.

A History of the Future is attention-grabbing and provocative, but also lyrical, tender, and comic—a vision of a future of America that is becoming more and more convincing and perhaps even desirable with each passing day.
Visit James Howard Kunstler's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

"The Good Know Nothing"

New from Poisoned Pen Press: The Good Know Nothing: A California Century Mystery by Ken Kuhlken.

About the book, from the publisher:

During the summer of 1936, destitute farmers from the Dust Bowl swarm into California, and an old friend brings police detective Tom Hickey a manuscript, a clue to the mystery of his father Charlie’s long-ago disappearance. Tom chooses to risk losing his job and family to follow this lead. Even his oldest friend and mentor, retired cop Leo Weiss, opposes Tom’s decision. Why so passionately?

Tom lures the novelist B. Traven to a meeting on Catalina and accuses him of manuscript-theft and homicide. Traven replies that the Sundance Kid, having escaped from his reputed death in Bolivia, killed Charlie. Tom crosses the desert to Tucson, tracking the person or ghost of the legendary outlaw, and meets a young Dust Bowl refugee intent on avenging the enslavement of his sister by an L.A. cop on temporary border duty in Yuma. Tom frees the sister, delivers the boy’s revenge, and becomes a fugitive, wanted for felony assault by the L.A.P.D., his now former employer.

What he learns in Tucson sends Tom up against powerful newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst. He hopes to enlist Leo, but instead Leo offers evidence that Tom’s father was a criminal. For Tom and his sister, both victims of Charlie’s wife, their crazy mother, what now?

This is the final chapter in the Hickey saga that ranges across the 1900s, the California Century.
Visit Ken Kuhlken's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Lazarus Curse"

New from Kensington: The Lazarus Curse by Tessa Harris.

About the book, from the publisher:

In 1780s London, American anatomist Dr. Thomas Silkstone is plunged into a swirling cauldron of sorcery, slavery, and cold-blooded murder...

When the sole survivor of an ill-fated scientific expedition to Jamaica goes missing upon his return to London, Dr. Thomas Silkstone--entrusted with cataloging the expedition's New World specimens--feels compelled to investigate. There are rumors of a potion that has the power to raise the dead--and the formula is suspected to be in the private journal that has disappeared along with the young botanist.

As Dr. Silkstone searches for clues to the man's whereabouts, he is drawn deeper into a dark and dangerous world of vengeance, infidelity, murder, and the trafficking of corpses for profit. Without the support of his beloved Lady Lydia Farrell--from whom he has been forcibly separated by law--he must confront the horrors of slavery, as well the very depths of human wickedness. And after a headless corpse is discovered, Dr. Silkstone begins to uncover the sinister motives of those in power who would stop at nothing to possess the Lazarus potion...
Visit Tessa Harris's website.

My Book, The Movie: The Devil's Breath.

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, July 28, 2014

"Dead Line"

New from Minotaur Books: Dead Line: A Thriller by Chris Ewan.

About the book, from the publisher:

If you're a security expert, what do you do if your fiancée suddenly goes missing, presumably kidnapped?

If you're Daniel Trent, a highly trained specialist in hostage negotiation, the answer is simple: You find out who took her and you make them talk. But what if your chief suspect is taken as well? How do you get him back quickly—and alive—so you can find out what really happened to your fiancée?

Set in Marseille, Chris Ewan's Dead Line is a fast-paced stand-alone thriller that pitches the reader into Daniel's world, as he tries desperately to secure the release of Jérôme Moreau from a ruthless gang in order to interrogate him on the whereabouts of his fiancée. When things don't go according to plan, Daniel must use all his skills and instincts to find the answers he's looking for, but will he be in time?
Learn more about the author and his work at Chris Ewan's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Good Thief's Guide to Paris.

Writers Read: Chris Ewan (December 2008).

The Page 69 Test: The Good Thief's Guide to Vegas.

The Page 69 Test: The Good Thief's Guide to Venice.

The Page 69 Test: Safe House.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Mountaintop School for Dogs and Other Second Chances"

New from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: The Mountaintop School for Dogs and Other Second Chances by Ellen Cooney.

About the book, from the publisher:

The Sanctuary. High up on the mountain, the Sanctuary is a place of refuge. It is a place where humans save dogs, who, in turn, save the humans. It is a place where the past does not exist, where hopelessness is chased away, where the future hasn’t been written, where orphans and strays can begin to imagine a new meaning for “family.”

Evie is making her way to the Sanctuary. She has lied to gain entry. She has pretended to know more than she does about dogs, but she is learning fast. Once the indomitable Mrs. Auberchon lets her pass, she will find her way. Like the racing greyhound who refuses to move, the golden retriever who returns to his job as the Sanctuary’s butler every time he’s adopted, and the Rottweiler who’s a hopeless candidate for search-and-rescue, Evie comes from a troubled past. But as they all learn, no one should stay prisoner to a life she didn’t choose.

This is the story of two women and a whole pack of dogs who, having lost their way in the world, find a place at a training school—and radical rescue center—called the Sanctuary. It is a story of strays and rescues, kidnappings and homecomings, moving on and holding on and letting go. And it is, ultimately, a moving and hilarious chronicle of the ways in which humans and canines help each other find new lives, new selves, and new hope.
Visit Ellen Cooney's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, July 27, 2014

"Secrets of the Lighthouse"

New from Simon & Schuster: Secrets of the Lighthouse by Santa Montefiore.

About the book, from the publisher:

Set in Ireland on the wild coast of Connemara, this hauntingly romantic novel tells the story of a young woman who goes in search of her family’s past and ends up discovering her future.

Ellen Trawton is running away from it all. She hates her job, she doesn’t love the aristocratic man to whom she is engaged, and her relationship with her controlling mother is becoming increasingly strained. So Ellen leaves London, fleeing to the one place she knows her mother won’t find her, her aunt’s cottage in Connemara. Cutting all her ties with chic London society, Ellen gives in to Ireland’s charm and warmth, thinking her future may lie where so much of her past has been hidden. Her imagination is soon captured by the compelling ruins of a lighthouse where, five years earlier, a young mother died in a fire.

The ghost of the young wife, Caitlin, haunts the nearby castle, mourning the future she can never have there. Unable to move on, she watches her husband and children, hoping they might see her and feel her love once more. But she doesn’t anticipate her husband falling in love again. Can she prevent it? Or can she let go and find a way to freedom and happiness?

The ruggedly beautiful Connemara coastline with its tightknit community of unforgettable characters provides the backdrop for this poignant story of two women seeking the peace and love they desperately need. For each, the key will be found in the secrets of the past, illuminated by the lighthouse.
Learn more about the book and author at Santa Montefiore's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Perfect Happiness.

The Page 69 Test: The Mermaid Garden.

My Book, The Movie: The Mermaid Garden.

Writers Read: Santa Montefiore (May 2011).

--Marshal Zeringue

"Paw and Order"

New from Atria Books: Paw and Order: A Chet and Bernie Mystery by Spencer Quinn.

About the book, from the publisher:

In the seventh book in the brilliant New York Times bestselling mystery series, canine narrator Chet and P.I. Bernie journey to Washington, DC, and the dog-eat-dog world of our nation’s capital.

Stephen King has called Chet “a canine Sam Spade full of joie de vivre.” Robert B. Parker dubbed Spencer Quinn’s writing “major league prose.” Now the beloved team returns in another suspenseful novel that finds Chet sniffing around the capital city and using his street smarts to uncover a devilish plot.

Chet and Bernie pay a visit to Bernie’s girlfriend, Suzie Sanchez, a crack reporter living in far-off Washington, DC. She’s working on a big story she can’t talk about, but when her source, a mysterious Brit with possible intelligence connections, runs into trouble of the worst kind, Bernie suddenly finds himself under arrest.

Meanwhile Chet gets to know a powerful DC operative who may or may not have the goods on an ambitious politician. Soon Chet and Bernie are sucked into an international conspiracy, battling unfamiliar forces under the blinking red eyes of a strange bird that Chet notices from the get-go but seems to have slipped by everybody else. Most menacing of all is Barnum, a guinea pig with the fate of the nation in his tiny paws.

As Harry Truman famously quipped, “If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog.” Too bad he didn’t get to meet Chet!
Visit Chet the Dog's blog and Facebook page, and Peter Abrahams's website.

The Page 69 Test: Spencer Quinn's The Dog Who Knew Too Much.

See--Coffee with a Canine: Peter Abrahams and Audrey (September 2011).

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Peter Abrahams and Pearl.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, July 26, 2014

"Avoidable Contact"

New from Poisoned Pen Press: Braking Points by Tammy Kaehler.

About the book, from the publisher:

Racecar driver Kate Reilly is suited up and ready for the start of the legendary 24 Hours of Daytona. But what’s ahead will test her will and nerve more than any other endurance race….

Even before the green flag waves over Daytona International Speedway comes word that Kate’s boyfriend Stuart is fighting for his life after a hit-and-run earlier in the day. Still reeling from that news, Kate must absorb other shocks in the race’s opening hours, including an on-track accident with tragic consequences and an eyewitness who claims Stuart was run down deliberately.

Convinced the reason for Stuart’s attack can be found in the race paddock, Kate and her best friend Holly join forces with an investigative reporter to find out who’s after Stuart and why. Alternating stints behind the wheel of her Corvette racecar with stretches of quizzing colleagues and searching for clues, Kate taps every possible source—friend, foe, and family—to help her unmask Stuart’s attacker.

As the race clock counts down to zero hour, Kate must confront her own deeply held fears about life, death, love, and trust before she can sort the truth from the lies around her. Only then can she identify who’s willing to kill to keep a secret buried—and stop them before they lash out again.
Learn more about the book and author at Tammy Kaehler's website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: Dead Man’s Switch.

My Book, The Movie: Dead Man's Switch.

Writers Read: Tammy Kaehler (August 2011).

The Page 69 Test: Braking Points.

Writers Read: Tammy Kaehler.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Body in the Woods"

New from Henry Holt / Christy Ottaviano Books: The Body in the Woods by April Henry.

About the book, from the publisher:

Alexis, Nick, and Ruby have very different backgrounds: Alexis has spent her life covering for her mom’s mental illness, Nick’s bravado hides his fear of not being good enough, and Ruby just wants to pursue her eccentric interests in a world that doesn’t understand her. When the three teens join Portland County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue, they are teamed up to search for a autistic man lost in the woods. What they find instead is a dead body. In a friendship that will be forged in danger, fear and courage, the three team up to find the girl’s killer—before he can strike one of their own.

This first book in April Henry’s Point Last Seen YA mystery series, The Body in the Woods is full of riveting suspense, putting readers right in the middle of harrowing rescues and crime scene investigations.
Learn more about the book and author at April Henry's website and blog.

My Book, The Movie: Girl, Stolen.

--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, July 25, 2014

"Skin of the Wolf"

New from Blue Rider Press: Skin of the Wolf by Sam Cabot.

About the book, from the publisher:

Sam Cabot is the pseudonym of Carlos Dews and S.J. Rozan. In Sam Cabot’s exhilarating new novel, a vicious murder in Sotheby’s begins a series of inexplicable events surrounding an Iroquois ritual mask—and a secret that could unleash the most terrifying chaos and destruction the world has ever seen.

Months after Father Thomas Kelly, art historian Livia Pietro, and scholar Spencer George found themselves racing through Rome in a desperate effort to locate and preserve an incalculably valuable document, the three are about to be reunited in New York City. Thomas, still trying to assimilate what he learned—that vampires exist, and that Livia and Spencer are among them—is looking forward to seeing Livia again. Livia is excited to be allowed into the back room of Sotheby’s for an exclusive viewing of an ancient Iroquois mask. And Spencer’s in love. But before the three can meet, Spencer is badly injured when he’s inexplicably attacked in Central Park—by a wolf.

That same night, a Sotheby’s employee is found brutally murdered. Steps from her body is the mysterious native mask, undamaged amid the wreckage of a struggle. As rumors begin to swirl around the sacred object, Thomas, Livia, and Spencer are plunged deep into a world where money, Native American lore, and the history of the Catholic Church collide. They uncover an alarming secret: The wolf is a shapeshifter, and the mask contains a power that, if misused, could destroy millions of lives with the next full moon.

In Skin of the Wolf, Sam Cabot masterfully blends historical fact, backroom conspiracy, and all-encompassing alternate reality as the Noantri discover they aren’t the only humans set apart by their natures—there are Others.
Follow Sam Cabot on Facebook.

The Page 69 Test: Blood of the Lamb.

My Book, The Movie: Blood of the Lamb.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Ghost Month"

New from Soho Crime: Ghost Month by Ed Lin.

About the book, from the publisher:

August is Ghost Month in Taiwan—a time to commemorate the dead: burn incense, visit shrines, commemorate ancestors, and avoid unlucky situations, large purchases, and bodies of water. Jing-nan, a young man who runs a food stand in a bustling Taipei night market, doesn’t consider himself superstitious, but this August is going to haunt him no matter what he does. He is shocked to the core when he learns his ex-girlfriend from high school has been murdered. She was found scantily clad and shot in the chest on the side of a highway where she was selling betel nuts to passing truck drivers. Beyond his harrowing grief for this lost love of his life, Jing-nan is also confused by the news: “betel nut beauties” are usually women in the most desperate of circumstances; the job is almost as taboo as prostitution. But Julia Huang had been the valedictorian of their high school, and the last time Jing-nan spoke to her she was enrolled in NYU’s honor program, far away in New York. The facts don’t add up. Julia’s parents don’t think so, either, and the police seem to have closed the case without asking any questions. The Huangs beg Jing-nan if he can do some investigating on his own—reconnect with old classmates, see if he can learn anything about Julia’s life that she might have kept from them. Reluctantly, he agrees, for Julia’s sake; but nothing can prepare him for what he learns, or how it will change his life.
Learn more about the book and author at Ed Lin's website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: Snakes Can't Run.

The Page 69 Test: One Red Bastard.

Writers Read: Ed Lin (May 2012).

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, July 24, 2014

"Cataract City"

New from Graywolf Press: Cataract City by Craig Davidson.

About the book, from the publisher:

On the Canadian side of Niagara Falls, life beyond the tourist trade isn’t easy. Locals like Duncan Diggs and Owen Stuckey have few chances to leave. For Duncan, that means shift work on a production line. For Owen, it means pinning it all on a shot at college basketball. But they should know better; they’ve been unlucky before. As boys, they were abducted and abandoned in the woods. Though they made it out alive, the memory of that time won’t fade. Over the years they drift apart, but when Duncan is drawn into a chaotic world of bare-knuckle fighting and other shady dealings, Owen, now a cop, can’t look the other way any longer. Together, they’ll be forced to survive the wilderness once more as their friendship is pushed to the limit in this white-hot novel by a rising star.
Visit Craig Davidson's website.

The Page 99 Test: The Fighter.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone"

New from Soho Teen: The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone by Adele Griffin.

About the book, from the publisher:

“From the moment she burst into the downtown art scene, seventeen-year-old Addison Stone was someone to watch. Her trademark subversive street art and her violent drowning left her fans and critics craving to know more about this brilliant wild-child who shone so bright and was gone too soon.”
—Adele Griffin

Two-time National Book Award finalist Adele Griffin offers an ingenious fictional take on celebrity biography, as told in first person interviews through the eyes of Addison Stone’s parents, friends, boyfriends, mentors, critics, and more-punctuated in full color with Addison’s artwork, photographs, and emails. When it comes to Addison’s untimely and mysterious death, nobody escapes unscathed.
Learn more about the book and author at Adele Griffin’s website and Facebook page.

Read--Coffee with a Canine: Adele Griffin and Edith.

Writers Read: Adele Griffin (June 2011).

Writers Read: Adele Griffin.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

"Beneath the Neon Egg"

New from Bloomsbury USA: Beneath the Neon Egg: A Novel by Thomas E. Kennedy.

About the book, from the publisher:

Beneath the Neon Egg is a novel of jazz, violence, sex, death, love, and the underbelly of life, set in the low light of a Copenhagen winter. It is the story of Patrick Bluett, a forty-three-year-old Irish-American in Denmark, divorced and navigating his relationship with his college-age children, searching for life in a new country. It is also the story of his neighbor, a man in a similar circumstance who becomes his friend—and becomes entangled with a Russian prostitute.

The novel borrows its four-part structure from John Coltrane’s majestic jazz symphony A Love Supreme, which Patrick Bluett listens to as he gazes out the window at the frozen streets of his adopted city, unaware of events in the apartment across the hall, and unaware of the consequences his friend will meet—or will, perhaps, escape.

The final novel of Thomas E. Kennedy’s acclaimed Copenhagen Quartet—four independent novels about the seasons and souls of Copenhagen—Beneath the Neon Egg cements Kennedy’s reputation as a literary revelation.
Learn more about the book and author at Thomas E. Kennedy's website.

The Page 69 Test: In the Company of Angels.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Life on Mars"

New from Bloomsbury USA Childrens: Life on Mars by Jennifer Brown.

About the book, from the publisher:

Twelve-year-old Arcturus Betelgeuse Chambers comes from a family of stargazers and his quest to find life on other planets is unstoppable.

But when Arty’s family announces they’re moving to Las Vegas, the City of Lights threatens to put an end to his stargazing dreams forever—especially when he has to stay with his scary next door neighbor while his parents look for a house. As it turns out, “Mr. Death” isn’t terrifying at all—he’s actually Cash Maddox, a bonafide astronaut! But when Cash falls ill, will Arty find the courage to complete his mission by himself? And might he actually prove, once and for all, that there is life on Mars?

For fans of Frank Cottrell Boyce’s Cosmic and Jack Gantos’s Dead End in Norvelt comes a heartwarming story of true friendship—earthly or otherwise,
Learn more about the book and author at Jennifer Brown's website.

Writers Read: Jennifer Brown (October 2009).

Read: Coffee with a Canine: Jennifer Brown & Ursula and Aragorn.

Writers Read: Jennifer Brown (June 2013).

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

"Death by Toilet Paper"

New from Delacorte Books for Young Readers: Death by Toilet Paper by Donna Gephart.

About the book, from the publisher:

Fans of How to Survive Middle School will welcome the adventures of a contest-crazed seventh grader who uses his wits and way with words in hopes of winning a big cash prize to help his family avoid eviction.

Dear Royal-T Toilet Paper Company,

You guys make the best toilet paper. I realize that’s a weird thing for a seventh grader to say, but it’s true. I didn’t know how good I had it until the day it was replaced by scratchy (sand)paper.

Good toilet paper was the first thing to go....

Your friend,

Benjamin Epstein


Benjamin is about to lose a whole lot more than good toilet paper. But even with his flair for clever slogans, will he be able to win a cash prize large enough to keep a promise he made to his dad before he died?
Learn more about the book and author at Donna Gephart's website and blog.

Writers Read: Donna Gephart (December 2011).

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit"

New from Doubleday: The Ghost in the Electric Blue Suit by Graham Joyce.

About the book, from the publisher:

Critically acclaimed author Graham Joyce returns with a sexy, suspenseful,and slightly supernatural novel set 1976 England during the hottest summer in living memory, in a seaside resort where the past still haunts the present.

David, a college student, takes a summer job at a run-down family resort in a dying English resort town. This is against the wishes of his family . . . because it was at this resort where David's biological father disappeared fifteen years earlier. But something undeniable has called David there.

A deeper otherworldliness lies beneath the surface of what we see. The characters have a suspicious edge to them . . . David is haunted by eerie visions of a mysterious man carrying a rope, walking hand-in-hand with a small child . . . and the resort is under siege by a plague of ladybugs. Something different is happening in this town.

When David gets embroiled in a fiercely torrid love triangle, the stakes turn more and more menacing. And through it all, David feels as though he is getting closer to the secrets of his own past.

This is a darkly magic and sexy book that has a strong suspense line running through it. It's destined to continue to pull in a wider circle of readers for the exceptionally talented Graham Joyce.
Learn more about the book and author at Graham Joyce's website.

See Graham Joyce's top ten fairy fictions.

The Page 69 Test: Some Kind of Fairy Tale.

Writers Read: Graham Joyce (August 2012).

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, July 21, 2014

"Tabula Rasa"

New from Bloomsbury USA: Tabula Rasa (Gaius Petreius Ruso Series #6) by Ruth Downie.

About the book, from the publisher:

The medicus Ruso and his wife Tilla are back in the borderlands of Britannia, this time helping to tend the builders of Hadrian’s Great Wall. Having been forced to move off their land, the Britons are distinctly on edge and are still smarting from the failure of a recent rebellion that claimed many lives.

Then Ruso’s recently arrived clerk, Candidus, goes missing. A native boy thinks he sees a body being hidden inside the wall’s half-finished stonework, and a worrying rumor begins to spread. When the soldiers ransack the nearby farms looking for Candidus, Tilla’s tentative friendship with a local family turns to anger and disappointment. It’s clear that the sacred rites to bless her marriage to Ruso will have to wait. Tensions only increase when Branan, the family’s youngest son, also vanishes. He was last seen in the company of a lone and unidentified soldier who claimed he was taking the boy to see Tilla.

As Ruso and Tilla try to solve the mystery of the two disappearances—while at the same time struggling to keep the peace between the Britons and the Romans—an intricate scheme involving slavery, changed identities, and fur trappers emerges, and it becomes imperative that Ruso find Branan before it’s too late.
Learn more about the book and author at Ruth Downie's website.

The Page 69 Test: Caveat Emptor.

--Marshal Zeringue

"A Little Night Murder"

New from NAL: A Little Night Murder (A Blackbird Sisters Mystery) by Nancy Martin.

About the book, from the publisher:

Murder under the stars

Nora Blackbird—pregnant at last!—is spending summer afternoons wallowing in the Bucks County pool of her best friend, Lexie Paine, who has just been released from prison. At night, Nora is covering Philadelphia’s high-society events for the local newspaper. And this time she doesn’t have to look far for a good story.

Next door, a Broadway show is in rehearsal at the estate of Toodles Tuttle, the long-deceased but ever-legendary composer. Reigning over the estate is Toodles’s diva widow, Boom Boom. The demanding old broad still rules with an iron fist, and considering the chorus line of enemies she’s racked up over the years, her death has been a hotly anticipated event. So imagine everyone’s dismay when it’s her beloved daughter, Jenny, who drops dead—from a cause that is anything but natural—just as the lights are set to go on for the lucrative new Toodles musical.

Yet murder is only an overture to the drama to come….

Nora’s sister Libby, a soon-to-be-grandmother, has gotten herself into a sticky situation, wooed by both a lowly bug exterminator and a cheesecake-loving Broadway impresario. Edgy sister Emma has a dangerous new boyfriend who may jeopardize her show-jumping exploits. And the love of Nora’s life, Mick Abruzzo, has been desperate to prevent Nora from meeting the most notorious member of his mobbed-up family—his mother.

Now Nora has to deal with the bump-and-grind of her personal life, and also bring the curtain down on a daring killer—before he forces her to exit stage left, permanently.
Learn more about the book and author at Nancy Martin's website.

The Page 69 Test: Our Lady of Immaculate Deception.

The Page 69 Test: Sticky Fingers.

Writers Read: Nancy Martin (March 2011).

Writers Read: Nancy Martin (August 2012).

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, July 20, 2014

"Painted Horses"

New from Grove/Atlantic: Painted Horses by Malcolm Brooks.

About the book, from the publisher:

In the mid-1950s, America was flush with prosperity and saw an unbroken line of progress clear to the horizon, while the West was still very much wild. In this ambitious, incandescent debut, Malcolm Brooks animates that time and rugged landscape in a richly textured, sweeping tale of the modern and the ancient, of love and fate, and of heritage threatened by progress.

Catherine Lemay is a young archaeologist on her way to Montana, with a huge task before her—a canyon “as deep as the devil’s own appetites.” Working ahead of a major dam project, she has one summer to prove nothing of historical value will be lost in the flood. From the moment she arrives, nothing is familiar—the vastness of the canyon itself mocks the contained, artifact-rich digs in post-Blitz London where she cut her teeth. And then there’s John H, a former mustanger and veteran of the U.S. Army’s last mounted cavalry campaign, living a fugitive life in the canyon. John H inspires Catherine to see beauty in the stark landscape, and her heart opens to more than the vanished past.

Reminiscent of the work of Wallace Stegner, Thomas McGuane, and Annie Proulx, Painted Horses sends a dauntless young woman on a heroic quest, sings a love song to the horseman’s vanishing way of life, and reminds us that love and ambition, tradition and the future often make strange bedfellows. It establishes Malcolm Brooks as an extraordinary new talent.
Visit Malcolm Brooks's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"This Is the Water"

New from Harper Perennial: This Is the Water: A Novel by Yannick Murphy.

About the book, from the publisher:

From Yannick Murphy, award-winning author of The Call, comes a fast-paced story of murder, adultery, parenthood, and romance, involving a girls’ swim team, their morally flawed parents, and a killer who swims in their midst.

In a quiet New England community members of swim team and their dedicated parents are preparing for a home meet. The most that Annie, a swim-mom of two girls, has to worry about is whether or not she fed her daughters enough carbs the night before; why her husband, Thomas, hasn’t kissed her in ages; and why she can’t get over the loss of her brother who shot himself a few years ago.

But Annie’s world is about to change. From the bleachers, looking down at the swimmers, a dark haired man watches a girl. No one notices him. Annie is busy getting to know Paul, who flirts with Annie despite the fact that he’s married to her friend Chris, and despite Annie’s greying hair and crow’s feet. Chris is busy trying to discover whether or not Paul is really having an affair, and the swimmers are trying to shave milliseconds off their race times by squeezing themselves into skin-tight bathing suits and visualizing themselves winning their races.

When a girl on the team is murdered at a nearby highway rest stop—the same rest stop where Paul made a gruesome discovery years ago—the parents suddenly find themselves adrift. Paul turns to Annie for comfort. Annie finds herself falling in love. Chris becomes obsessed with unmasking the killer.

With a serial killer now too close for comfort, Annie and her fellow swim-parents must make choices about where their loyalties lie. As a series of startling events unfold, Annie discovers what it means to follow your intuition, even if love, as well as lives, could be lost.
Visit Yannick Murphy's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, July 19, 2014

"Prototype"

New from Dutton: Prototype by M. D. Waters.

About the book, from the publisher:

The stunning debut that began with Archetype— and has readers buzzing—concludes in Prototype, when a woman’s dual pasts lock onto a collision course, threatening her present and future.

Emma looks forward to the day when she can let go of her past—both of them. After more than a year on the run, with clues to her parents’ whereabouts within her grasp, she may finally find a place to settle down. Start a new life. Maybe even create new memories with a new family.

But the past rises to haunt her and to make sure there’s nowhere on the planet she can hide. Declan Burke wants his wife back, and with a little manipulation and a lot of reward money, he’s got the entire world on his side. Except for the one man she dreads confronting the most: Noah Tucker.

Emma returns to face what she’s done but finds that the past isn’t the problem. It’s the present—and the future it represents. Noah has moved on and another woman is raising their daughter.

In the shocking conclusion to M.D. Waters’s spectacular debut, Emma battles for her life and her freedom, tearing down walls and ripping off masks to reveal the truth. She’s decided to play their game and prove she isn’t the woman they thought she was. Even if it means she winds up dead. Or worse, reborn.
Visit M. D. Waters's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, July 18, 2014

"Just Like the Movies"

New from Bloomsbury USA: Just Like the Movies by Kelly Fiore.

About the book, from the publisher:

Pretty, popular Marijke Monti and over-achieving nerd-girl Lily Spencer have little in common—except that neither feels successful when it comes to love. Marijke can’t get her boyfriend to say “I love you” and Lily can’t get a boyfriend at all. When the girls end up at a late night showing of Titanic, sniffling along with the sinking ship, they realize that their love lives could—and should—be better. Which sparks an idea: Why can’t life be like a movie? Why can’t they create perfect romantic situations? Now they have a budding friendship and a plan—to act out grand gestures and get the guys of their dreams. It seems like fun at first, but reality turns out to be much more complicated, and they didn’t take into account that finding true love usually requires finding yourself first.
Visit Kelly Fiore's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"What Strange Creatures"

New from William Morrow Paperbacks: What Strange Creatures: A Novel by Emily Arsenault.

About the book, from the publisher:

Scandal, love, family, and murder combine in this gripping literary mystery by critically acclaimed author Emily Arsenault, in which a young academic’s life is turned upside down when her brother is arrested for murder and she must prove his innocence.

The Battle siblings are used to disappointment. Seven years, one marriage and divorce, three cats, and a dog later, Theresa still hasn’t finished her dissertation. Instead of a degree, she’s got a houseful of adoring pets and a dead-end copywriting job for a local candle company.

Jeff, her so-called genius older brother, doesn’t have it together, either. Creative, and loyal, he’s also aimless in work and love. But his new girlfriend, Kim, a pretty waitress in her twenties, appears smitten.

When Theresa agrees to dog-sit Kim’s puggle for a weekend, she has no idea that it is the beginning of a terrifying nightmare that will shatter her quiet world. Soon, Kim’s body will be found in the woods, and Jeff will become the prime suspect.

Though the evidence is overwhelming, Theresa knows that her brother is not a cold-blooded murderer. But to clear him she must find out more about Kim. Investigating the dead woman’s past, Theresa uncovers a treacherous secret involving politics, murder, and scandal—and becomes entangled in a potentially dangerous romance. But the deeper she falls into this troubling case, the more it becomes clear that, in trying to save her brother’s life, she may be sacrificing her own.
Learn more about the book and author at Emily Arsenault's website.

The Page 69 Test: The Broken Teaglass.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, July 17, 2014

"Welcome to the Dark House"

New from Disney-Hyperion: Welcome to the Dark House by Laurie Faria Stolarz.

About the book, from the publisher:

What's your worst nightmare?

For Ivy Jensen, it's the eyes of a killer that haunt her nights. For Parker Bradley, it's bloodthirsty sea serpents that slither in his dreams.

And for seven essay contestants, it's their worst nightmares that win them an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at director Justin Blake's latest, confidential project. Ivy doesn't even like scary movies, but she's ready to face her real-world fears. Parker's sympathetic words and perfect smile help keep her spirits up. . . at least for now.

Not everyone is so charming, though. Horror-film fanatic Garth Vader wants to stir up trouble. It's bad enough he has to stay in the middle of nowhere with this group-the girl who locks herself in her room; the know-it-all roommate; "Mister Sensitive"; and the one who's too cheery for her own good. Someone has to make things interesting.

Except, things are already a little weird. The hostess is a serial-killer look-alike, the dream-stealing Nightmare Elf is lurking about, and the seventh member of the group is missing.
Visit Laurie Stolarz's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Dear Daughter"

New from Viking: Dear Daughter: A Novel by Elizabeth Little.

About the book, from the publisher:

A sensational debut thriller featuring an unforgettable heroine who just might have murdered her mother

Former “It Girl” Janie Jenkins is sly, stunning, and fresh out of prison. Ten years ago, at the height of her fame, she was incarcerated for the murder of her mother, a high-society beauty known for her good works and rich husbands. Now, released on a technicality, Janie makes herself over and goes undercover, determined to chase down the one lead she has on her mother’s killer. The only problem? Janie doesn’t know if she’s the killer she’s looking for.

Janie makes her way to an isolated South Dakota town whose mysteries rival her own. Enlisting the help of some new friends (and the town’s wary police chief), Janie follows a series of clues—an old photograph, an abandoned house, a forgotten diary—and begins to piece together her mother’s seemingly improbable connection to the town. When new evidence from Janie’s own past surfaces, she’s forced to consider the possibility that she and her mother were more alike than either of them would ever have imagined.

As she digs tantalizingly deeper, and as suspicious locals begin to see through her increasingly fragile facade, Janie discovers that even the sleepiest towns hide sinister secrets—and will stop at nothing to guard them. On the run from the press, the police, and maybe even a murderer, Janie must choose between the anonymity she craves and the truth she so desperately needs.

A gripping, electrifying debut novel with an ingenious and like-it-or-not sexy protagonist, Dear Daughter follows every twist and turn as Janie unravels the mystery of what happened the night her mother died—whatever the cost.
Visit Elizabeth Little's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

"Big Little Lies"

New from Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty.

About the book, from the publisher:

Sometimes it’s the little lies that turn out to be the most lethal....

A murder… . . . a tragic accident… . . . or just parents behaving badly?
What’s indisputable is that someone is dead.
But who did what?

Big Little Lies follows three women, each at a crossroads:

Madeline is a force to be reckoned with. She’s funny and biting, passionate, she remembers everything and forgives no one. Her ex-husband and his yogi new wife have moved into her beloved beachside community, and their daughter is in the same kindergarten class as Madeline’s youngest (how is this possible?). And to top it all off, Madeline’s teenage daughter seems to be choosing Madeline’s ex-husband over her. (How. Is. This. Possible?).

Celeste is the kind of beautiful woman who makes the world stop and stare. While she may seem a bit flustered at times, who wouldn’t be, with those rambunctious twin boys? Now that the boys are starting school, Celeste and her husband look set to become the king and queen of the school parent body. But royalty often comes at a price, and Celeste is grappling with how much more she is willing to pay.

New to town, single mom Jane is so young that another mother mistakes her for the nanny. Jane is sad beyond her years and harbors secret doubts about her son. But why? While Madeline and Celeste soon take Jane under their wing, none of them realizes how the arrival of Jane and her inscrutable little boy will affect them all.

Big Little Lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the dangerous little lies we tell ourselves just to survive.
Learn more about the book and author at Liane Moriarty's website.

The Page 69 Test: What Alice Forgot.

Writers Read: Liane Moriarty.

My Book, The Movie: What Alice Forgot.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Bone Orchard"

New from Minotaur: The Bone Orchard by Paul Doiron.

About the book, from the publisher:

In the aftermath of a family tragedy, Mike Bowditch has left the Maine Warden Service and is working as a fishing guide in the North Woods. But when his mentor Sgt. Kathy Frost is forced to kill a troubled war veteran in an apparent case of "suicide by cop," he begins having second thoughts about his decision.

Now Kathy finds herself the target of a government inquiry and outrage from the dead soldier's platoon mates. Soon she finds herself in the sights of a sniper, as well. When the sergeant is shot outside her farmhouse, Mike joins the hunt to find the mysterious man responsible. To do so, the ex-warden must plunge into his friend's secret past—even as a beautiful woman from Mike's own past returns, throwing into jeopardy his tentative romance with wildlife biologist Stacey Stevens.

As Kathy Frost lies on the brink of death and a dangerous shooter stalks the blueberry barrens of central Maine, Bowditch is forced to confront the choices he has made and determine, once and for all, the kind of man he truly is, in The Bone Orchard by Paul Doiron.
Learn more about Paul Doiron at his website and blog.

The Page 69 Test: The Poacher's Son.

My Book, The Movie: Trespasser.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

"Don't Talk to Strangers"

New from Bantam: Don't Talk to Strangers by Amanda Kyle Williams.

About the book, from the publisher:

Hailed by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution as “one of the most addictive new series heroines,” Keye Street is the brilliant, brash heart of a sizzling thriller full of fear and temptation, judgments and secrets, infidelity and murder.

He likes them smart.

In the woods of Whisper, Georgia, two bodies are found: one recently dead, the other decayed from a decade of exposure to the elements. The sheriff is going to need help to track down an experienced predator—one who abducts girls and holds them for months before ending their lives. Enter ex–FBI profiler and private investigator Keye Street.

He lives for the struggle.

After a few weeks, Keye is finally used to sharing her downtown Atlanta loft with her boyfriend, A.P.D. Lieutenant Aaron Rauser. Along with their pets (his dog, her cat) they seem almost like a family. But when Rauser plunks a few ice cubes in a tumbler and pours a whiskey, Keye tenses. Her addiction recovery is tenuous at best.

And loves the fear.

Though reluctant to head out into the country, Keye agrees to assist Sheriff Ken Meltzer. Once in Whisper, where the locals have no love for outsiders, Keye starts to piece together a psychological profile: The killer is someone who stalks and plans and waits. But why does the sociopath hold the victims for so long, and what horrible things must they endure? When a third girl goes missing, Keye races against time to connect the scant bits of evidence. All the while, she cannot shake the chilling feeling: Something dark and disturbing lives in these woods—and it is watching her every move.
Visit Amanda Kyle Williams's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Half Life of Molly Pierce"

New from HarperTeen: The Half Life of Molly Pierce by Katrina Leno.

About the book, from the publisher:

A gorgeous and visceral page-turner reminiscent of the film Memento, The Half Life of Molly Pierce is perfect for fans of Gabrielle Zevin's Elsewhere and Lauren Oliver's Before I Fall.

For all of her seventeen years, Molly feels like she's missed bits and pieces of her life. Now she's figuring out why. Now she's remembering her own secrets. And in doing so, Molly uncovers the separate life she seems to have led . . . and the love that she can't let go.
Visit Katrina Leno's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Monday, July 14, 2014

"The Secret of the Key"

New from Random House Books for Young Readers: The Secret of the Key: A Sixty-Eight Rooms Adventure by Marianne Malone.

About the book, from the publisher:

Chicago sixth graders Ruthie and Jack think they’ve learned everything about the magic of the Art Institute’s Thorne Rooms. But the magic starts to act strangely when Ruthie and Jack discover two rings that are out of place—and out of time—and a portal that shouldn’t be open but somehow is. Ruthie and Jack follow the clues to seventeenth-century England and the Brownlow house, where they meet the Brownlow’s governess, Rebecca. But Rebecca has a few secrets of her own—and she might even be in the wrong century! Can Ruthie and Jack discover the truth about Rebecca’s mysterious past, or will they end up stuck in the wrong century themselves? Their quest for answers takes them from 1930s New York City and San Francisco to turn-of-the-century China. The only one who can truly answer their questions may be the woman who started it all: the room’s creator, Narcissa Thorne. But to talk to Mrs. Thorne, they’ll have to go back in time and find her!

Unlock the magic . . . in the exciting conclusion to the Sixty-Eight Rooms Adventures!
Visit Marianne Malone's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Fantastic Laboratory of Dr. Weigl"

New from W.W. Norton: The Fantastic Laboratory of Dr. Weigl: How Two Brave Scientists Battled Typhus and Sabotaged the Nazis by Arthur Allen.

About the book, from the publisher:

From a laboratory in wartime Poland comes a fascinating story of anti-Nazi resistance and scientific ingenuity.

Few diseases are more gruesome than typhus. Transmitted by body lice, it afflicts the dispossessed—refugees, soldiers, and ghettoized peoples—causing hallucinations, terrible headaches, boiling fever, and often death. The disease plagued the German army on the Eastern Front and left the Reich desperate for a vaccine. For this they turned to the brilliant and eccentric Polish zoologist Rudolf Weigl.

In the 1920s, Weigl had created the first typhus vaccine using a method as bold as it was dangerous for its use of living human subjects. The astonishing success of Weigl’s techniques attracted the attention and admiration of the world—giving him cover during the Nazi’s violent occupation of Lviv. His lab soon flourished as a hotbed of resistance. Weigl hired otherwise doomed mathematicians, writers, doctors, and other thinkers, protecting them from atrocity. The team engaged in a sabotage campaign by sending illegal doses of the vaccine into the Polish ghettos while shipping gallons of the weakened serum to the Wehrmacht.

Among the scientists saved by Weigl, who was a Christian, was a gifted Jewish immunologist named Ludwik Fleck. Condemned to Buchenwald and pressured to re-create the typhus vaccine under the direction of a sadistic Nazi doctor, Erwin Ding-Schuler, Fleck had to make an awful choice between his scientific ideals or the truth of his conscience. In risking his life to carry out a dramatic subterfuge to vaccinate the camp’s most endangered prisoners, Fleck performed an act of great heroism.

Drawing on extensive research and interviews with survivors, Arthur Allen tells the harrowing story of two brave scientists—a Christian and a Jew— who put their expertise to the best possible use, at the highest personal danger.
The Page 69 Test: Vaccine.

Writers Read: Arthur Allen (July 2007).

--Marshal Zeringue

Sunday, July 13, 2014

"The Angel of Losses"

New from Ecco: The Angel of Losses: A Novel by Stephanie Feldman.

About the book, from the publisher:

The Tiger’s Wife meets A History of Love in this inventive, lushly imagined debut novel that explores the intersections of family secrets, Jewish myths, the legacy of war and history, and the bonds between sisters.

When Eli Burke dies, he leaves behind a mysterious notebook full of stories about a magical figure named The White Rebbe, a miracle worker in league with the enigmatic Angel of Losses, protector of things gone astray, and guardian of the lost letter of the alphabet, which completes the secret name of God.

When his granddaughter, Marjorie, discovers Eli’s notebook, everything she thought she knew about her grandfather—and her family—comes undone. To find the truth about Eli’s origins and unlock the secrets he kept, she embarks on an odyssey that takes her deep into the past, from 18th century Europe to Nazi-occupied Lithuania, and back to the present, to New York City and her estranged sister Holly, whom she must save from the consequences of Eli’s past.

Interweaving history, theology, and both real and imagined Jewish folktales, The Angel of Losses is a family story of what lasts, and of what we can—and cannot—escape.
Visit Stephanie Feldman's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"Mindful America"

New from Oxford University Press: Mindful America: The Mutual Transformation of Buddhist Meditation and American Culture by Jeff Wilson.

About the book, from the publisher:

Thirty years ago, "mindfulness" was a Buddhist principle mostly obscure to the west. Today, it is a popular cure-all for Americans' daily problems. A massive and lucrative industry promotes mindfulness in every aspect of life, however mundane or unlikely: Americans of various faiths (or none at all) practice mindful eating, mindful sex, mindful parenting, mindfulness in the office, mindful sports, mindfulness-based stress relief and addiction recovery, and hire mindful divorce lawyers. Mindfulness is touted by members of Congress, CEOs, and Silicon Valley tech gurus, and is even being taught in public schools, hospitals, and the military.

Focusing on such processes as the marketing, medicalization, and professionalization of meditation, Jeff Wilson reveals how Buddhism shed its countercultural image and was assimilated into mainstream American culture. The rise of mindfulness in America, Wilson argues, is a perfect example of how Buddhism enters new cultures and is domesticated: in each case, the new cultures take from Buddhism what they believe will relieve their specific distresses and concerns, and in the process create new forms of Buddhism adapted to their needs. Wilson also tackles the economics of the mindfulness movement, examining commercial programs, therapeutic services, and products such as books, films, CDs, and even smartphone applications.

Mindful America is the first in-depth study of this phenomenon--invaluable for understanding how mindfulness came to be applied to such a vast array of non-religious concerns and how it can be reconciled with traditional Buddhism in America.
The Page 99 Test: Jeff Wilson's Dixie Dharma.

--Marshal Zeringue

Saturday, July 12, 2014

"Last Chain On Billie"

New from St. Martin's Press: Last Chain On Billie: How One Extraordinary Elephant Escaped the Big Top by Carol Bradley.

About the book, from the publisher:

Against the backdrop of a glittering but brutal circus world, Carol Bradley's Last Chain on Billie charts the history of elephants in America, the inspiring story of the Elephant Sanctuary and the spellbinding tale of a resilient elephant who defied the system even as she struggled to conquer her past, who never lost sight of the life she was meant to have.

Left in the wild, Billie the elephant would have spent her days surrounded by family, free to wander the jungles of Asia. Instead, traders captured her as a baby and shipped her to America, where she learned to carry humans, stand on a tub and balance on one leg – the full repertoire of elephant tricks. For decades, Billie crisscrossed the country, dazzling audiences as she performed breathtaking stunts. But behind the scenes she lived a life of misery: traveling in trucks, chained for hours on end, barely able to move, giving eight-minute performances under harsh lights and to the sounds of blaring music. And worse.

Finally, she got a lucky break. As part of the largest elephant rescue in American history, Billie wound up at a sanctuary for performing elephants in Tennessee, able once more to roam through open meadows and share her days with a herd. She would never be beaten again. But, overcome with anxiety, she withdrew from the rest of the elephants and refused to let anyone remove a chain still clamped around her leg. Her caregivers began to wonder if Billie could ever escape her emotional wounds. The compelling story of Billie’s battle to reclaim her old self is a testament to the intelligence, emotional complexity and remarkable strength of all elephants, captive or free.
Visit Carol Bradley's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Race for Paradise"

New from Oxford University Press: The Race for Paradise: An Islamic History of the Crusades by Paul M. Cobb.

About the book, from the publisher:

In 1099, when the first Frankish invaders arrived before the walls of Jerusalem, they had carved out a Christian European presence in the Islamic world that endured for centuries, bolstered by subsequent waves of new crusaders and pilgrims. The story of how this group of warriors, driven by faith, greed, and wanderlust, created new Christian-ruled states in parts of the Middle East is one of the best-known in history. Yet it is offers not even half of the story, for it is based almost exclusively on Western sources and overlooks entirely the perspective of the crusaded. How did medieval Muslims perceive what happened?

In The Race for Paradise, Paul M. Cobb offers a new history of the confrontations between Muslims and Franks we now call the jihad.

An engrossing synthesis of history and scholarship, The Race for Paradise fills a significant historical gap, considering in a new light the events that distinctively shaped Muslim experiences of Europeans until the close of the Middle Ages.
--Marshal Zeringue

Friday, July 11, 2014

"House Reckoning"

New from Atlantic Monthly Press: House Reckoning (Joe DeMarco Series #9) by Mike Lawson.

About the book, from the publisher:

The ninth installment in Mike Lawson’s Washington, D.C., political thriller series launches readers back into Joe DeMarco’s past—to the murder of his father, which was never investigated, let alone solved.

DeMarco always knew that his father, Gino, worked for a violent Mafioso in New York, but he didn’t know that Gino had been a hit man until he was murdered. Now, nearly twenty years later, one of Gino’s former mob associates is dying and wants to get something off his chest before retiring to the grave: the truth about Gino DeMarco’s killer.

DeMarco learns that the killer was not just another hood, but a supposedly upstanding citizen whose career has flourished in the intervening years. Now he’s on the brink of taking a job in Washington, D.C., that will leave him virtually untouchable. DeMarco must act quickly to avenge his father’s death. But how far is he willing to go? Is revenge worth his job—or even his life?

House Reckoning tells in full for the first time the story of DeMarco’s family and his start working for Congressman John Mahoney. It is a gripping must-read for political thriller fans.
Learn more about the author and his work at Mike Lawson's website.

The Page 69 Test: House Rules.

--Marshal Zeringue

"The Spark and the Drive"

New from St. Martin's Press: The Spark and the Drive by Wayne Harrison.

About the book, from the publisher:

By an award-winning writer of short fiction, a devastatingly powerful debut novel of hero-worship, first love, and betrayal

Justin Bailey is seventeen when he arrives at the shop of legendary muscle car mechanic Nick Campbell. Anguished and out of place among the students at his rural Connecticut high school, Justin finds in Nick, his captivating wife Mary Ann, and their world of miraculous machines the sense of family he has struggled to find at home.

But when Nick and Mary Ann’s lives are struck by tragedy, Justin’s own world is upended. Suddenly Nick, once celebrated for his mechanical genius, has lost his touch. Mary Ann, once tender and compassionate to her husband, has turned distant. As Justin tries to support his suffering mentor, he finds himself drawn toward the man’s grieving wife. Torn apart by feelings of betrayal, Justin must choose between the man he admires more than his own father and the woman he yearns for.

A poignant and fiercely original debut, with moments of fast-paced suspense, Wayne Harrison's The Spark and The Drive is the unforgettable story of a young man forced to make an impossible decision—no matter the consequences.
Visit Wayne Harrison's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Thursday, July 10, 2014

"The Hundred-Year House"

New from Viking: The Hundred-Year House by Rebecca Makkai.

About the book, from the publisher:

Meet the Devohrs: Zee, a Marxist literary scholar who detests her parents’ wealth but nevertheless finds herself living in their carriage house; Gracie, her mother, who claims she can tell your lot in life by looking at your teeth; and Bruce, her step-father, stockpiling supplies for the Y2K apocalypse and perpetually late for his tee time. Then there’s Violet Devohr, Zee’s great-grandmother, who they say took her own life somewhere in the vast house, and whose massive oil portrait still hangs in the dining room.

Violet’s portrait was known to terrify the artists who resided at the house from the 1920s to the 1950s, when it served as the Laurelfield Arts Colony—and this is exactly the period Zee’s husband, Doug, is interested in. An out-of-work academic whose only hope of a future position is securing a book deal, Doug is stalled on his biography of the poet Edwin Parfitt, once in residence at the colony. All he needs to get the book back on track—besides some motivation and self-esteem—is access to the colony records, rotting away in the attic for decades. But when Doug begins to poke around where he shouldn’t, he finds Gracie guards the files with a strange ferocity, raising questions about what she might be hiding. The secrets of the hundred-year house would turn everything Doug and Zee think they know about her family on its head—that is, if they were to ever uncover them.

In this brilliantly conceived, ambitious, and deeply rewarding novel, Rebecca Makkai unfolds a generational saga in reverse, leading the reader back in time on a literary scavenger hunt as we seek to uncover the truth about these strange people and this mysterious house. With intelligence and humor, a daring narrative approach, and a lovingly satirical voice, Rebecca Makkai has crafted an unforgettable novel about family, fate and the incredible surprises life can offer.
Learn more about the author and her work at Rebecca Makkai's website, Facebook page and Twitter perch.

Writers Read: Rebecca Makkai (August 2009).

My Book, The Movie: The Borrower.

--Marshal Zeringue

"All I Love and Know"

New from William Morrow: All I Love and Know: A Novel by Judith Frank.

About the book, from the publisher:

Told with the storytelling power and emotional fidelity of Wally Lamb, this is a searing drama of a modern American family on the brink of dissolution, one that explores adoption, gay marriage, and love lost and found.

For years, Matthew Greene and Daniel Rosen have enjoyed a quiet domestic life together in Northampton, Massachusetts. Opposites in many ways, they have grown together and made their relationship work. But when they learn that Daniel’s twin brother and sister-in-law have been killed in a bombing in Jerusalem, their lives are suddenly, utterly transformed.

In dealing with their families and the need to make a decision about who will raise the deceased couple’s two children, both Matthew and Daniel are confronted with challenges that strike at the very heart of their relationship. What is Matthew’s place in an extended family that does not completely accept him or the commitment he and Daniel have made? How do Daniel’s questions about his identity as a Jewish man affect his life as a gay American? Tensions only intensify when they learn that the deceased parents wanted Matthew and Daniel to adopt the children—six-year-old Gal, and baby Noam.

The impact this instant new family has on Matthew, Daniel, and their relationship is subtle and heartbreaking, yet not without glimmers of hope. They must learn to reinvent and redefine their bond in profound, sometimes painful ways. What kind of parents can these two men really be? How does a family become strong enough to stay together and endure? And are there limits to honesty or commitment—or love?
Visit Judith Frank's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

"Sand and Fire"

New from G.P. Putnam’s Sons: Sand and Fire by Tom Young.

About the book, from the publisher:

North Africa. A jihadist leader has seized a supply of sarin gas and is wreaking havoc: a nightclub in Sicily, a packed street in Gibraltar. Acting on information, Marine gunnery sergeant A. E. Blount, at six-foot-eight a formidable warrior, the grandson of one of the first black Marines, sets out with his strike force to kill or capture the terrorist.

But it is a trap. Several Marines are killed, some are captured, and the jihadist promises that unless forces withdraw, he will execute one prisoner a day. Immediately, Blount’s friends and colleagues Sophia Gold, now with the U.N., and Lieutenant Colonel Michael Parson, working for the United States Africa Command, rush to Libya to help coordinate rescue efforts. The ordeal, however, has only begun. Soon they will all be fighting for their lives in the sand and fire of the desert.
Learn more about the book and author at Thomas W. Young's website and blog.

My Book, The Movie: The Mullah's Storm.

Writers Read: Thomas W. Young (August 2011).

Writers Read: Tom Young (August 2012).

Writers Read: Tom Young (July 2013).

--Marshal Zeringue

"Skies Like These"

New from Margaret Ferguson Books: Skies Like These by Tess Hilmo.

About the book, from the publisher:

Twelve-year-old Jade’s perfect summers have always been spent reading and watching TV reruns, so she’s not happy when her parents send her off to Wyoming to her aunt’s house. She meets a boy who calls himself Roy Parker—just like the real name of the legendary rebel cowboy Butch Cassidy. Roy’s dad’s hardware store has closed because a chain store has opened up in town, and Roy thinks it is just like the big cattle barons in Butch’s day who put the local ranchers out of business. He wants Jade to be his Sundance Kid and help him pull some stunts worthy of Butch Cassidy. Sabotage the big store? Outsmart the store’s owner by doing reconnaissance on his ranch? Jade wants to be a good friend, but she’s not so sure about Roy’s schemes.
Visit Tess Hilmo's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

"In Deep"

New from Simon Pulse: In Deep by Terra Elan McVoy.

About the book, from the publisher:

Ultracompetitive Brynn from The Summer of Firsts and Lasts craves swimming victory—and gets in over her head—in this irresistible novel from Terra Elan McVoy.

Swim.
Push.
Breathe.
Swim.


Nothing else matters to Brynn as she trains her body and mind to win. Not her mediocre grades and lack of real friends at school. Not the gnawing grief over her fallen hero father. Not the strained relationship with her absent mother and clueless stepdad. In the turquoise water, swimming is an escape and her ticket to somewhere—anywhere—else. And nothing will get in her way of claiming victory.

But when the competitive streak follows Brynn out of the pool in a wickedly seductive cat-and-mouse game between herself, her wild best friend, and a hot new college swimmer, Brynn’s single-mindedness gets her in over her head, with much more than a trophy to lose.
Learn more about the book and author at Terra Elan McVoy's website, Facebook page, and Twitter perch.

My Book, The Movie: The Summer of Firsts and Lasts.

My Book, The Movie: Being Friends with Boys.

Writers Read: Terra Elan McVoy (May 2013).

The Page 69 Test: Criminal.

--Marshal Zeringue