It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon


The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading
meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

——————————————

Life…

It’s been raining here for the last 24 hours on and off, enough in my area that the fires that have been burning since November are finally considered to be extinguished, though along the east coast of the country, 69 fires continue to burn, 20 of which are uncontrolled. And of course because Australia is a land of extremes, in the North there are floods, and inland several towns have been impacted by a massive dust storm. Meanwhile Puerto Rico has been hit by earthquakes, and a swathe of the US mainland is experiencing a series of severe storms, Indonesia has experienced catastrophic flooding, there was a deadly avalanche in Pakistan, and a volcano is threatening to erupt in the Phillipines. It’s insane, all of it!

On a slightly lighter note, hubby is back at work, and we are still watching Monk in the evenings. The younger kids have only about 10 days til the start of the new school year so this week we need to get organised, they will be entering Year 12, Year 10, and Year 9. Meanwhile my oldest daughter is planning a trip to Greece with a friend later this year. My plans this week involve the aforementioned organising, reading, blogging, and counting down the days til Picard premieres on January 24th (on Amazon Prime here in Australia), are you looking forward to it?

 

 

If you are in the US, click here for the trailer (stupid georestrctions)

——————————————-

 

What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

Long Bright River by Liz Moore

Mix Tape by Jane Sanderson

The Daughter of Victory Lights by Kerri Turner

Dear Life by Rachel Clarke

———————————————

 

New Posts…

Review: A Murder at Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey ★★★★

Review: Chosen by Kiersten White ★★1/2

Review: Long Bright River by Liz Moore ★★★★1/2

Review: Mix Tape by Jane Sanderson ★★★

2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge Recommendations Part 2

Bookshop Bounty

———————————————

 

What I’m Reading This Week…

 

 

Infinity Son by Adam Silvera

Balancing epic and intensely personal stakes, bestselling author Adam Silvera’s Infinity Son is a gritty, fast-paced adventure about two brothers caught up in a magical war generations in the making.

Growing up in New York, brothers Emil and Brighton always idolized the Spell Walkers—a vigilante group sworn to rid the world of specters. While the Spell Walkers and other celestials are born with powers, specters take them, violently stealing the essence of endangered magical creatures.

Brighton wishes he had a power so he could join the fray. Emil just wants the fighting to stop. The cycle of violence has taken a toll, making it harder for anyone with a power to live peacefully and openly. In this climate of fear, a gang of specters has been growing bolder by the day.

Then, in a brawl after a protest, Emil manifests a power of his own—one that puts him right at the heart of the conflict and sets him up to be the heroic Spell Walker Brighton always wanted to be.

Brotherhood, love, and loyalty will be put to the test, and no one will escape the fight unscathed.

xxxxxx

 

Saving Missy by Beth Morrey

Boy meets girl. Girl meets boy. Woman meets dog…

The world has changed around Missy Carmichael. At seventy-nine, she’s estranged from her daughter, her son and only grandson live across the world in Australia, and her great love is gone. Missy spends her days with a sip of sherry, scrubbing the kitchen in her big empty house and reliving her past–though it’s her mistakes, and secrets, that she allows to shine brightest. The last thing Missy expects is for two perfect strangers and one spirited dog to break through her prickly exterior and show Missy just how much love she still has to give. Filled with wry laughter and deep insights into the stories we tell ourselves, The Love Story of Missy Carmichael shows us it’s never too late to teach an old dog new tricks. It’s never too late to love.

xxxxxxx

 

The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave

After a storm has killed off all the island’s men, two women in a 1600s Norwegian coastal village struggle to survive against both natural forces and the men who have been sent to rid the community of alleged witchcraft.

Finnmark, Norway, 1617. Twenty-year-old Maren Bergensdatter stands on the craggy coast, watching the sea break into a sudden and reckless storm. Forty fishermen, including her brother and father, are drowned and left broken on the rocks below. With the menfolk wiped out, the women of the tiny Northern town of Vardø must fend for themselves.

Three years later, a sinister figure arrives. Absalom Cornet comes from Scotland, where he burned witches in the northern isles. He brings with him his young Norwegian wife, Ursa, who is both heady with her husband’s authority and terrified by it. In Vardø, and in Maren, Ursa sees something she has never seen before: independent women. But Absalom sees only a place untouched by God and flooded with a mighty evil.

As Maren and Ursa are pushed together and are drawn to one another in ways that surprise them both, the island begins to close in on them with Absalom’s iron rule threatening Vardø’s very existence.

Inspired by the real events of the Vardø storm and the 1620 witch trials, THE MERCIES is a feminist story of love, evil, and obsession, set at the edge of civilization.

xxxxxx

 

The Lawson Sisters by Janet Gover

A heartfelt and compelling story of family, secrets and second chances, set in the heart of the beautiful Hunter Valley of NSW, from an award-winning new voice in Australian fiction.

A fractured family. Guilty secrets. Can the Lawson legacy be saved?

For many years Elizabeth Lawson has battled single-handedly to run the family’s historic horse stud in memory of her beloved father. But a devastating loss puts her dreams at risk. With no options left, Liz is forced to turn to her estranged sister Kayla for help.

Kayla has built a new life in the city as a wedding planner, far removed from the stableyard sweat and dust of her rural upbringing. She never thought she’d go back. But when Liz calls out of the blue, Kayla forms a plan that could save their childhood home.

Kayla’s return forces Liz to confront her past … and her future, in the shape of Mitch, her first and only love, who still watches over her from the other side of the creek.

But Liz still hides a terrible secret. When Kayla learns the truth, will the Lawson sisters find common ground or will their conflict splinter the family once again?

———————————————

Thanks for stopping by!

Bookshelf Bounty

 

Every third Sunday of the month I share my Bookshelf Bounty – what’s been added to my TBR tile recently for review from publishers, purchases or gifts.

This month I’m linking up with Mailbox Monday

Click on the cover images to view at Goodreads

For Review (print)
(My thanks to the respective publishers)

 


For Review (ebook)


2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge Recommendations Part 2

 

I’m happy to welcome those that have signed up for the Nonfiction Reader Challenge so far this year. The challenge asks participants to read up to 12 books over the year, each from a different categories.

Categories

1. Memoir 2. Disaster Event 3. Social Science 4. Related to an Occupation 5. History 6. Feminism     7. Psychology 8. Medical Issue 9. Nature 10. True Crime 11. Science 12. Published in 2020

Click here to learn more about the 2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge

I encourage participants who aren’t sure what to select for each category to look for recommendations from other book bloggers who they read and follow, or browse lists such as Goodreads Listopia, Library Booklists, or whatever source is favoured, however I thought I might offer a few gleaned from my own browsing.

For the next three weeks I will post some examples that might inspire your own selections

2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge Part 1

Click the cover for more information about each title at Goodreads

 

History

 

Feminism

 

Psychology

Medical Issues

CLICK HERE to enter your review links

 

Review: Mix Tape by Jane Sanderson

 


Title: Mix Tape

Author: Jane Sanderson

Published: January 23rd 2020, Bantam Press UK

Status: Read January 2020, courtesy Bantam Press/Netgalley

+++++++

My Thoughts:

I had been looking forward to reading Mix Tape by Jane Sanderson for a while before it finally came up in my schedule. I am of an age when mix tapes were common. I’d be listening to the radio on my boom box on a Sunday evening, a blank tape in the cassette deck, waiting for the Top 40 to start, with my fingers on the ‘play’ and ‘record’ buttons, poised to catch the opening bars of the whatever song I was hoping to record. We played mix tapes at parties, traded them among friends, and shyly gifted them to our boyfriend/girlfriend. I still have two or three of those tapes, though I no longer have anything to play them on.

Moving between the past and the present, this is the story of Daniel and Alison, who meet as teens in Sheffield, England in 1978. Their romantic relationship is brief, but intense, ending abruptly when Alison is compelled to flee her harrowing home life. Alison’s journey eventually leads her to Australia, and in 2012 she is a bestselling novelist, married with two near-adult daughters, when Dan, a music journalist whose home base is in Scotland with his wife and college bound son, receives a tweet from an old friend directing him to the profile of @AliConnorWriter. When Dan finally reaches out to the woman who has haunted his dreams for decades, he does so with a music video that speaks to a seminal moment in their relationship, ‘Pump It Up’ – Elvis Costello and the Attractions, 1978.

“No words, no message. Only the song, speaking for itself.”

Mix Tape is unapologetically a love story, a tale of soulmates forcibly parted, and then reunited after a separation of thirty years.

Sanderson wonderfully captures the intensity of Daniel and Alison’s connection as teenagers. Dan, sweet and steady, is infatuated with the beautiful and enigmatic Alison. Alison, whose home life is chaotic and neglectful, basks in Dan’s admiration and returns his desire. When she leaves they are both devastated, aware they have lost something special.

When Dan and Ali reconnect decades later, they initially communicate only by trading songs via Twitter that remind them of their relationship, and then songs whose lyrics speak to their growing desires. I’m in my mid forties so I wasn’t particularly familiar with a fair amount of the music referenced in Mix Tape, and I found myself having to stop and search through YouTube on occasion to listen to the song to understand its significance. It’s a delightful idea though, a modern take on those not so subtle cassette mix tapes declaring love

Without sharing a word, despite all the time that has passed, the physical distance between them, and being married to other people, Dan and Alison rekindle the flame. Here is where Sanderson lost me a little, because while the idea of a love that cannot be denied is romantic, that it comes at the expense of others, even if neither of their spouses are particularly likeable, is uncomfortable for me. Still the inevitable reunion is epic, and to the author’s credit I wanted it to happen.

Mix Tape is unapologetically a love story, but it’s also about heartache, nostalgia, loss, forgiveness, and the music. While my feelings about it remain a little mixed, it has its charms.

++++++

Available from Bantam Press UK

Or from your preferred retailer via Booko I Book Depository

Review: Long Bright River by Liz Moore

Title: Long Bright River

Author: Liz Moore

Published: January 9th 2020, Hutchinson

Read an Extract

Status: Read January 2020 courtesy Penguin Books Australia

++++++

My Thoughts:

Long Bright River is a compelling literary novel of family drama and suspense from Liz Moore.

“There’s a body on the Gurney Street tracks. Female, age unclear, probable overdose, says the dispatcher. Kacey, I think. This is a twitch, a reflex, something sharp and subconscious that lives inside me and sends the same message racing to the same base part of my brain every time a female is reported.”

Set in a depressed neighbourhood of Philadelphia where the opioid crisis is taking an increasing toll on its residents, police officer Mickey (Michaela) Fitzgerald patrols the decaying streets of Kensington, always keeping a look out, among the prostitutes on the sidewalks and the drug addicts slumped in doorways, for her younger sister, Kacey. When it becomes clear that a serial killer targeting sex workers is stalking the ‘Ave’, Mickey begins a frantic search for both her missing sister, and the perpetrator, risking the job she loves, and even her own life.

I’m not always keen on a first person narrative but I found Mickey’s voice to be compelling as the novel moves between the story of the sisters’ difficult childhood (Then), and their present circumstances (Now). Moore’s characterisation of the sisters, and their complex dynamic, is nuanced and gripping. Raised by their resentful grandmother after the overdose death of their mother, the sisters were once close, but no longer speak. Nevertheless, Mickey tries to keep tabs on Kasey, who is lost in her addiction, driven by a potent mix of guilt, regret, and love, while barely holding together her own life.

Though the plot with regards to the serial murders is a little vague at times, it serves more as a backdrop to the multi-layered narrative that explores the devastating impact of opioid addiction on individuals, families, and communities, the dehumanisation of vulnerable persons, childhood neglect, sexual abuse, police corruption, and a myriad of other issues that define life’s struggles.

A thought-provoking, poignant story of loss, addiction, forgiveness, and healing, told with compassion and authenticity, Long Bright River is a powerful and absorbing novel.

“All of them children, all of them gone. People with promise, people dependent and depended upon, people loving and beloved, one after another, in a line, in a river, no fount and no outlet, a long bright river of departed souls.”

++++++

Available from Penguin Australia

Or from your preferred retailer via Booko I Book Depository I Indiebound

 

Review: Chosen {Slayer #2} by Kiersten White

 


Title: Chosen {Slayer #2}

Author: Kiersten White

Published: January 7th 2020, Simon & Schuster Australia

Status: Read January 2020, courtesy Simon & Schuster/Netgalley

++++++

My Thoughts:

The Chosen begins a few weeks after the finale of Slayer, in which Nina successfully averted an apocalypse, but accidentally killed her (sort of) boyfriend/watcher, Leo, and was deserted by her twin sister, Artemis.

With the castle they call home being repurposed as a Sanctuary for Slayers and demons in need, Nina should be focused on their new mission, instead she’s distracted by grief, and the dark edge she feels to her newly restored powers. But with a new ‘big bad’ rising, Nina hasn’t got time to wallow if she’s going to save the world – again.

The storyline feels as if it would fit well within the Buffyverse. It’s nicely paced with a good dose of action and humour. I was delighted by the cameo’s from Clem and Oz, Buffy and Faith make an appearance in Nina’s dreams, and there are references to other characters such as Harmony, Angel and Spike, as well as events from Buffy the Vampire Slayer episodes. As a fan, I love these canonical moments.

Unfortunately Nina is no less whiny in Chosen than she was in Slayer, and while she has good reason to be upset, I found the angst a touch too repetitive. Meanwhile Artemis has completely lost the plot as she schemes with Honora, and Nina is about to be blindsided by another betrayal. Cillian, Rhys’s boyfriend, has a larger role in Chosen, as does Coldplay fan demon Doug. There are a handful of new characters introduced too, including a teleporting demon child named Tsip, and refugee Slayer, Maricruz.

I’m a little thrown by the Epilogue which could indicate White has decided not to continue the series, I hope that’s not the case though as I’m enjoying it. Chosen is a quick and an entertaining read.

++++++

Available from Simon & Schuster

Or from your preferred retailer via Booko I Book Depository I Indiebound

 

Also by Kiersten White reviewed at Book’d Out

 

Review: A Murder at Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey

 

Title: A Murder on Malabar Hill {Perveen Mistry #1}

Author: Sujata Massey

Published: January 7th 2020, Allen & Unwin

Status: Read January 2020 courtesy Allen & Unwin

++++++

My Thoughts:

A Murder on Malabar Hill is an engaging historical mystery novel, the first in a new series from Sujata Massey, which has won several awards, most notably the Mary Higgins Clarke Award (2019), and the Agatha Award for the Best Historical Novel (2018) (under the title of The Widows of Malabar Hill).

The series features Perveen Massey, a young woman in her mid twenties who is India’s first female solicitor, working alongside her father, a respected lawyer. Massey draws inspiration for her lead character from two ‘real life’ women, Cornelia Sorabji of Poona who was the first woman to read law at Oxford and sit the British law exam in 1892, and Mithan Tata Lam of Bombay, who was the first woman admitted to the Bombay Bar in 1923.

The story shifts between two timelines, one of which fleshes out Perveen’s personal history, from her family background, to her experiences at Oxford University, to her short-lived marriage.

The second timeline focuses on the murder at Malabar Hill, an upscale neighbourhood in Bombay, in the household of three Purdahnashin widows. When their wealthy husband, Omar Farid, dies, his wives, Razia, Sakina, and Mumtaz, and their children who choose to live a secluded life (known as Purdah), are at the mercy of their household agent, Mr. Mukri. While finalising Farid’s estate Perveen notices some discrepancies and as a female solicitor she is uniquely placed to speak to the widows directly to discover what they understand of their rights. Immediately following her first visit, which infuriates Mukri, the agent is murdered, and Perveen fears the women could be next. I enjoyed the mystery, which has a cozy feel and a ‘locked room’ aspect, though it wasn’t terribly difficult to solve.

The physical setting of A Murder in Malabar Hill – primarily the wealthy neighbourhoods of Bombay in the 1920’s – is interesting, but it was what I learned about the city’s social, political and cultural milieu I found fascinating. Massey touches on a number of issues such as the varied religious beliefs within Indian society, including Parsi (Zoroastrianism), Muslim, and Hindi; the rights, or lack thereof, of women; and the conflict surrounding English rule, as well as specific cultural practices such as arranged marriages, dowry contracts, and Purdah. The details seem authentic and are woven neatly into the plot.

Well crafted and appealing, highlighting an interesting historical period and an exotic (to me) culture, A Murder at Malabar Hill is an enjoyable mystery novel, and I look forward to reading the next.

++++++

Available from Allen & Unwin RRP AUD $29.99

Or from your preferred retailer via Booko I Book Depository I Indiebound

 

US Cover

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #SundayPost #SundaySalon

The It’s Monday! What Are You Reading meme is hosted at BookDate

I’m also linking to The Sunday Post @ Caffeinated Reviewer

And the Sunday Salon @ ReaderBuzz

 

 

Life…

Thank you to those who have supported Australia during the past week, either with funds or good wishes, the fires are still burning but this week favourable weather conditions are expected to provide firefighters with a chance to get some control over the worst of the blazes. This image was displayed on the Sydney Opera House this weekend.

 

My week was a mix of good and not so good. The good – my youngest daughter turned 17 on Wednesday. The bad – our car required more expensive repairs after the shock absorbers gave out, and the air conditioner stopped working.

With my husband still on holidays from work, we signed up for a free month of Amazon Prime, and we are now binging Monk which my husband finds endlessly amusing.

 

——————————————-

What I’ve Read Since I last Posted…

Maggie’s Going Nowhere by Rose Hartley

Chosen (Slayer #2) by Kiersten White

A Murder at Malabar Hill by Sujata Massey

 

———————————————

 

New Posts…

#AuthorsForFireys Twitter Auction

Review: The Mothers by Genevieve Gannon

Review: Cedar Valley by Holly Throsby

Review: Maggie’s Going Nowhere by Rose Hartley

2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge Recommendations Part 1

Reading: Recommended

 

———————————————

 

What I’m Reading This Week…


Long Bright River by Liz Moore

KENSINGTON AVE, PHILADELPHIA:

THE FIRST PLACE YOU GO FOR DRUGS OR SEX.

THE LAST PLACE YOU WANT TO LOOK FOR YOUR SISTER.

Mickey Fitzpatrick has been patrolling the 24th District for years. She knows most of the working women by name. She knows what desperation looks like and what people will do when they need a fix. She’s become used to finding overdose victims: their numbers are growing every year. But every time she sees someone sprawled out, slumped over, cold to the touch, she has to pray it’s not her sister, Kacey.

When the bodies of murdered sex workers start turning up on the Ave, the Chief of Police is keen to bury the news. They’re not the kind of victims that generate a whole lot of press anyway. But Mickey is obsessed, dangerously so, with finding the perpetrator – before Kacey becomes the next victim.

xxxxxx

 

Mix Tape by Jane Sanderson

You never forget the one that got away. But what if ‘what could have been’ is still to come?

Daniel was the first boy to make Alison a mix tape. But that was years ago and Ali hasn’t thought about him in a very long time. Even if she had, she might not have called him ‘the one that got away’; she’d been the one to run away, after all.

Then Dan’s name pops up on her phone, with a link to a song from their shared past.

For two blissful minutes, Alison is no longer an adult in Adelaide with temperamental daughters; she is sixteen in Sheffield, dancing in her too-tight jeans. She cannot help but respond in kind. And so begins a new mix tape.

Ali and Dan exchange songs – some new, some old – across oceans and time zones, across a lifetime of different experiences, until one of them breaks the rules and sends a message that will change everything…

Because what if ‘what could have been’ is still to come?

xxxxxx

 

The Daughter of Victory Lights by Kerri Turner

PART CABARET, PART BURLESQUE, AND LIKE NOTHING YOU’VE EVER SEEN BEFORE! GENTLEMEN, AND LADIES IF YOU’VE DARED TO COME, WELCOME TO …’

There was a pause, and Evelyn sensed those around her leaning forward in anticipation.

‘THE VICTORY!’

1945: After the thrill and danger of volunteering in an all-female searchlight regiment protecting Londoners from German bombers overhead, Evelyn Bell is secretly dismayed to be sent back her rigid domestic life when the war is over. But then she comes across a secret night-time show, hidden from the law on a boat in the middle of the Thames. Entranced by the risque and lively performance, she grabs the opportunity to join the misfit crew and escape her dreary future.

At first the Victory travels from port to port to raucous applause, but as the shows get bigger and bigger, so too does the risks the performers are driven to take, as well as the growing emotional complications among the crew. Until one desperate night …

1963: Lucy, an unloved and unwanted little girl, is rescued by a mysterious stranger who says he knows her mother. On the Isle of Wight, Lucy is welcomed into an eclectic family of ex-performers. She is showered with kindness and love, but gradually it becomes clear that there are secrets they refuse to share. Who is Evelyn Bell?

xxxxxx

 

Dear Life by Rachel Clarke

A brilliant combination of lyrical memoir and guide to living and dying, comparable to Kathryn Mannix’s WITH THE END IN MIND and Julia Samuel’s GRIEF WORKS, from the author of YOUR LIFE IN MY HANDS.

It takes courage to love the things of this world when all of them, without fail, are fleeting, fading, no more than a spark against the darkness of deep time. Yet when everything you have been and done and meant to the world is being prised from your grasp, human connections are the vital medicine. It is other people who make the difference.

Rachel Clarke grew up spellbound by her father’s stories of practising medicine. Then, as a doctor herself, one who specialised in palliative medicine, she found herself contemplating all her training had taught her in the face of her own beloved father’s mortality.

DEAR LIFE is the inspiring, sometimes heartbreaking and yet deeply uplifting story of the doctor we would all want to have by our side in a crisis. The hospice where Rachel works is, of course, a world haunted by loss and grief, but it is also teeming with life.

If there is a difference between people who know they are dying and the rest of us, it is simply this: that the terminally ill know their time is running out, while we live as though we have all the time in the world. In a hospice, therefore, there is more of what matters in life – more love, more strength, more kindness, more smiles, more dignity, more joy, more tenderness, more grace, more compassion – than you could ever imagine.

DEAR LIFE is a love letter – to a father, a profession, to life itself

———————————————

Thanks for stopping by!

Reading: Recommended

Like most of us, I add more books to my wishlist than I can ever hope to read, a mix of backlist, recently published and soon-to-be released titles gleaned from a variety of sources. I’m planning to highlight a handful of these books in this new monthly feature.

{Click on the cover to view at Goodreads}

 

Death In the Air: The True Story of a Serial Killer, the Great London Smog, and the Strangling of a City by Kate Winkler Dawson

A real-life thriller in the vein of The Devil in the White City, Kate Winkler Dawson’s debut Death in the Air is a gripping, historical narrative of a serial killer, an environmental disaster, and an iconic city struggling to regain its footing.

London was still recovering from the devastation of World War II when another disaster hit: for five long days in December 1952, a killer smog held the city firmly in its grip and refused to let go. Day became night, mass transit ground to a halt, criminals roamed the streets, and some 12,000 people died from the poisonous air. But in the chaotic aftermath, another killer was stalking the streets, using the fog as a cloak for his crimes.

All across London, women were going missing-poor women, forgotten women. Their disappearances caused little alarm, but each of them had one thing in common: they had the misfortune of meeting a quiet, unassuming man, John Reginald Christie, who invited them back to his decrepit Notting Hill flat during that dark winter. They never left.

The eventual arrest of the “Beast of Rillington Place” caused a media frenzy: were there more bodies buried in the walls, under the floorboards, in the back garden of this house of horrors? Was it the fog that had caused Christie to suddenly snap? And what role had he played in the notorious double murder that had happened in that same apartment building not three years before-a murder for which another, possibly innocent, man was sent to the gallows?

The Great Smog of 1952 remains the deadliest air pollution disaster in world history, and John Reginald Christie is still one of the most unfathomable serial killers of modern times. Journalist Kate Winkler Dawson braids these strands together into a taut, compulsively readable truecrime thriller about a man who changed the fate of the death penalty in the UK, and an environmental catastrophe with implications that still echo today.

Recommended by Kittling:Books

————————

Inland by Tea Obreht

In the lawless, drought-ridden lands of the Arizona Territory in 1893, two extraordinary lives unfold. Nora is an unflinching frontierswoman awaiting the return of the men in her life–her husband, who has gone in search of water for the parched household, and her elder sons, who have vanished after an explosive argument. Nora is biding her time with her youngest son, who is convinced that a mysterious beast is stalking the land around their home.

Meanwhile, Lurie is a former outlaw and a man haunted by ghosts. He sees lost souls who want something from him, and he finds reprieve from their longing in an unexpected relationship that inspires a momentous expedition across the West. The way in which Lurie’s death-defying trek at last intersects with Nora’s plight is the surprise and suspense of this brilliant novel.

Mythical, lyrical, and sweeping in scope, Inland is grounded in true but little-known history. It showcases all of Téa Obreht’s talents as a writer, as she subverts and reimagines the myths of the American West, making them entirely–and unforgettably–her own.

———————-

The Good Turn (Cormac Reilly #3) by Dervla McTiernan

Police corruption, an investigation that ends in tragedy and the mystery of a little girl’s silence – three unconnected things that will prove to be linked by one small town.

While Detective Cormac Reilly faces enemies at work and trouble in his personal life, Garda Peter Fisher is relocated out of Galway with the threat of prosecution hanging over his head. But even that is not as terrible as having to work for his overbearing father, the local copper for the pretty seaside town of Roundstone.

For some, like Anna and her young daughter Tilly, Roundstone is a refuge from trauma. But even this village on the edge of the sea isn’t far enough to escape from the shadows of evil men.

———————

Captured Lives: Australia’s Wartime Internment Camps by Peter Monteath

Captured Lives peers behind the barbed wire veil that was drawn around people – both civilian internees and prisoners of war-deemed threats to Australia’s security during the two world wars.

Civilians from enemy nations, even if born in Australia, were subjects of suspicion and locked away in internment camps. Many had been long-term residents of Australia, naturalised and married, and raising families. They had contributed economically and had often brought new skills and know-how to the nation. To hold fond memories and have cultural ties to their country of origin did not override their loyalty to their adopted country. For them, being interned was bewildering.

Captured Lives is richly illustrated and includes sketches and watercolours made by internees that serve as firsthand references of the conditions and life in the camps. There were photographers, too, who were allowed to keep their cameras and who documented various camps from an insider’s perspective.

Recommended by ANZLitLovers

——————-

The Last High by Daniel Kalla

Deliberately or not, they must’ve been poisoned…And if it happened to them…

There will be others.

Dr. Julie Rees, a toxicologist and ER doctor, is stunned when her emergency room is flooded with teenagers from the same party, all on the verge of death. Julie knows the world of opioids inside and out, and she recognizes that there’s nothing typical about these cases. She suspects the teens took—or were given—fentanyl. But why did they succumb so quickly?

Detective Anson Chen is determined to find out. He and Julie race to track down the supplier of the deadly drugs. But the trail of suspects leads everywhere, from unscrupulous street dealers to ruthless gang leaders who hide behind legitimate business fronts and the walls of their mansions.

As Anson and Julie follow clues through the drug underworld, Julie finds herself haunted by memories of her troubled past—and the lover she lost to addiction. When other overdoses fill the ER—and the morgue—Julie realizes that something even more sinister than the ongoing fentanyl crisis is devastating the streets. And the body count is rapidly rising.

A gripping thriller, The Last High explores the perfect storm of greed, addiction, and crime behind the malignant spread of fentanyl, a deadly drug that is killing people faster than any known epidemic.

Recommended by 49thShelf.com

——————————

Are you tempted to add any of these to your reading wishlist? 

2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge Recommendations Part 1

 

I’m happy to welcome those that have signed up for the Nonfiction Reader Challenge so far this year. The challenge asks participants to read up to 12 books over the year, each from a different categories.

Categories

1. Memoir 2. Disaster Event 3. Social Science 4. Related to an Occupation 5. History 6. Feminism     7. Psychology 8. Medical Issue 9. Nature 10. True Crime 11. Science 12. Published in 2020

Click here to learn more about the 2020 Nonfiction Reader Challenge

I encourage participants who aren’t sure what to select for each category to look for recommendations from other book bloggers who they read and follow, or browse lists such as Goodreads Listopia, Library Booklists, or whatever source is favoured, however I thought I might offer a few gleaned from my own browsing.

Make sure you click here and check out participants links too 

For the next three weeks I will post some examples that might inspire your own selections

 

Click the cover for more information about each title at Goodreads

Memoir

 

Disaster Event

Social Science

 

Related to an Occupation

 

 

 

Previous Older Entries