It’s August already! Just a few more weeks until school starts and everyone gets busy, so get your reading in now with some of our new titles. Blake Crouch has a new sci-fi thriller, Recursion, about an alien force that attacks memory. Escape Room by Megan Goldin is a thriller centered around a team-building escape room exercise that turns deadly. Anthony Horowitz’s new mystery, The Sentence Is Death, has detective Daniel Hawthorne hunting the killer of a celebrity divorce lawyer. You have to love a mystery by the man who created Midsomer Murders and Foyle’s War.
Some other new titles that we have in are Never Have I Ever by Joshilyn Jackson, Lady in the Lake by Laura Lippman, Someone We Know by Shari Lapena, and The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary. Never Have I Ever is a departure for Jackson — It’s her first thriller, but it still has a touch of her humor throughout. The Flatshare is a quirky love story about how opposites truly attract.
If you like historical fiction (my very favorite thing to read), then check out Deep River by Karl Marlantes and The Vexations by Caitlin Horrocks. The story of three siblings who migrate to America from Finland, Deep River is several stories contained in one epic novel. Family dynamics, the immigrant experience, working in the harsh wilds along the Columbia River, and the early 20th century labor movement blend together into a wonderful story. The Vexations is Horrocks’ debut novel, and chronicles the life and genius of French composer Erik Satie. It is set during the Belle Epoque in France, and includes many of the artists who were writing, painting, or composing during this period. It is a story about the thin line between artistic genius and madness and how that thinness affects those who love the genius. It is an amazing read.
Dutch Girl: Audrey Hepburn and World War II by Robert Matzen tells the story of an unknown portion of Hepburn’s life: her life during five years of Nazi occupation in the Netherlands. This show a different facet of Hepburn’s life star — she worked with the Dutch Resistance and tended the wounded of the battle of Arnhem. Her son Luca Dotti wrote the foreward, and many of the photographs featured in the book are from Hepburn’s personal collection.
I’ve just finished Maid: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother’s Will to Survive by Stephanie Land, and it should be on everyone’s must-read list. Stephanie Land was a single mother living in the Pacific Northwest where there was very little economic opportunity. The term “working poor” comes to life with her story: she worked long hours cleaning houses, took online classes to work toward a writing degree, and relied on various government programs to supplement her income. Land exposes the apathy of the government workers she dealt with while getting assistance. She talks about the things she learned from cleaning people’s houses, such as money does not always bring happiness, and about being a “nameless ghost” to her clients. What I like best about this book is that Land is not complaining or making a political statement; she’s just exposing how a person can work hard and still live below the poverty line.
Special note to all the book clubs: We’ll be changing out the titles in our Book-Club-In-A-Bag sets, so let me know if you have any suggestions or want to be notified when we select the titles (firstname.lastname@example.org).