In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren where we highlight what books we bought, received, or picked up at the library in the last week.
Marcia of The Printed Page hosts Mailbox Monday, the gathering place for readers to share books that came into our homes last week (checked out library books don’t count, eBooks & audio books do). Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.
Here’s what I got this week!
Black Smoke by Robin Leigh Miller
Samantha Wells has lived through more hell in her short life than most. At the age of eight her serene life was turned upside down. Her parents were brutally murdered and Sam barely escaped with her life. But she didn’t do it alone – a soft calm voice led her to safety, the voice of her spirit guide. Disguised by a black mask and the handle Black Smoke, with the help of her spirit guide Sam rescues those unfortunate people who find themselves in the hands of humanity’s worst. Life is good until Sam is called on to assist a small covert military team in recovering a kidnapped scientist in Afghanistan. Lt. Mark Lowe (Kong) is less than thrilled to be placing his team’s lives in the hands of a woman, much less one as beautiful and sexy as Sam. He quickly learns there is more to this woman than meets the eye. She not only infiltrates enemy bases – she’s infiltrated his heart. Kong retreats to safer ground, leaving Sam heartbroken. Distant and unwilling to listen to anyone, Sam delves headfirst into a hell that only Kong can pull her from.
Glorious by Bernice L. McFadden
Glorious is set against the backdrops of the Jim Crow South, the Harlem Renaissance, and the civil rights era. Blending the truth of American history with the fruits of Bernice L. McFadden’s rich imagination, this is the story of Easter Venetta Bartlett, a fictional Harlem Renaissance writer whose tumultuous path to success, ruin, and revival offers a candid portrait of the American experience in all its beauty and cruelty.
Glorious is ultimately an audacious exploration into the nature of self-hatred, love, possession, ego, betrayal, and, finally, redemption.
The Language of Secrets by Dianne Dixon
From a fresh and exciting new voice in women’s fiction, The Language of Secrets unflinchingly examines the lifelong repercussions of a father’s betrayal.
Justin Fisher has a successful career as the manager of a luxury hotel, a lovely wife, and a charming young son. While all signs point to a bright future, Justin can no longer ignore the hole in his life left by his estranged family. When he finally gathers the courage to reconnect with his troubled past, Justin is devastated to learn that his parents have passed away. And a visit to the cemetery brings the greatest shock of all—next to the graves of his father and mother sits a smaller tombstone for a three-year-old boy: a boy named Thomas Justin Fisher.
What follows is an extraordinary journey as Justin struggles with issues of his own identity and pieces together the complex and heartbreaking truth about his family. With great skill and care, Dianne Dixon explores the toll that misunderstandings, blame, and resentment can take on a family. But it is the intimate details of family life—a mother’s lullaby for her son, a father’s tragic error in judgment—that make this novel so exceptional and an absolute must for reading groups everywhere.
The Language of Secrets is the story of an unspeakable loss born of human frailty and an ultimate redemption born of human courage.
ef="http://www.amazon.com/Map-True-Places-Brunonia-Barry/dp/0061624780?ie=UTF8&tag=craforboo-20&link_code=btl&camp=213689&creative=392969" target="_blank">The Map of True Places by Brunonia Barry
Zee Finch has come a long way from a motherless childhood spent stealing boats—a talent that earned her the nickname Trouble. She’s now a respected psychotherapist working with the world-famous Dr. Liz Mattei. She’s also about to marry one of Boston’s most eligible bachelors. But the suicide of Zee’s patient Lilly Braedon throws Zee into emotional chaos and takes her back to places she though she’d left behind.
What starts as a brief visit home to Salem after Lilly’s funeral becomes the beginning of a larger journey for Zee. Her father, Finch, long ago diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, has been hiding how sick he really is. His longtime companion, Melville, has moved out, and it now falls to Zee to help her father through this difficult time. Their relationship, marked by half-truths and the untimely death of her mother, is strained and awkward.
Overwhelmed by her new role, and uncertain about her future, Zee destroys the existing map of her life and begins a new journey, one that will take her not only into her future but into her past as well. Like the sailors of old Salem who navigated by looking at the stars, Zee has to learn to find her way through uncharted waters to the place she will ultimately call home.
The Year of Ice by Brian Malloy
It is 1978 in the Twin Cities, and Kevin Doyle, a high school senior, is a marginal student in love with keggers, rock and roll, and-unbeknownst to anyone else-a boy in his class with thick eyelashes and a bad attitude. His mother Eileen died two years earlier when her car plunged into the icy waters of the Mississippi River, and since then Kevin’s relationship with his father Patrick has become increasingly distant. As lonely women vie for his father’s attention, Kevin discovers Patrick’s own closely guarded secret: he had planned to abandon his family for another woman. More disturbingly, his mother’s death may well have been a suicide, not an accident.
Complicating the family dynamic is the constant meddling of Kevin’s outspoken Aunt Nora-who will never forgive Patrick for Eileen’s death-along with Patrick’s inability to stay single for very long. His loyalties divided between his father and his aunt, between his internal reality and his public persona, Kevin is forced to reevaluate his notions of family and love as painful truths emerge about both.
Crossing Washington Square by Joanne Rendell
A story of two strong-willed and passionate women who are compelled to unite their senses and sensibilities, from the author of The Professors’ Wives’ Club.
Professor Diana Monroe is a highly respected scholar of Sylvia Plath. Serious and aloof, she steadfastly keeps her mind on track. Professor Rachel Grey is young and impulsive, with a penchant for teaching relevant contemporary women’s stories like Bridget Jones’ Diary and The Devil Wears Prada, and for wearing her heart on her sleeve.
The two conflicting personalities meet head-to-heart when Carson McEvoy, a handsome and brilliant professor visiting from Harvard, sets his eyes on both women and creates even more tension between them. Now Diana and Rachel are slated to accompany an undergraduate trip to London, where an almost life-threatening experience with a student celebrity will force them to change their minds and heal their hearts…together.
Winter Garden by Kristin Hannah
Can a woman ever really know herself if she doesn’t know her mother? From the author of the smash-hit bestseller Firefly Lane and True Colors comes a powerful, heartbreaking novel that illuminates the intricate mother-daughter bond and explores the enduring links between the present and the past
Meredith and Nina Whitson are as different as sisters can be. One stayed at home to raise her children and manage the family apple orchard; the other followed a dream and traveled the world to become a famous photojournalist. But when their beloved father falls ill, Meredith and Nina find themselves together again, standing alongside their cold, disapproving mother, Anya, who even now, offers no comfort to her daugh
ters. As children, the only connection between them was the Russian fairy tale Anya sometimes told the girls at night. On his deathbed, their father extracts a promise from the women in his life: the fairy tale will be told one last time—and all the way to the end. Thus begins an unexpected journey into the truth of Anya’s life in war-torn Leningrad, more than five decades ago. Alternating between the past and present, Meredith and Nina will finally hear the singular, harrowing story of their mother’s life, and what they learn is a secret so terrible and terrifying that it will shake the very foundation of their family and change who they believe they are.