Best New Books: Week of 11/21/17



FICTION



The Story of Arthur Truluv by  Elizabeth Berg

story of arthur truluvA beautiful, life-affirming novel about a remarkably loving man who creates for himself and others second chances at happiness.

A moving novel about three people who find their way back from loss and loneliness to a different kind of happiness. Arthur, a widow, meets Maddy, a troubled teenage girl who is avoiding school by hiding out at the cemetery, where Arthur goes every day for lunch to have imaginary conversations with his late wife, and think about the lives of others. The two strike up a friendship that draws them out of isolation. Maddy gives Arthur the name Truluv, for his loving and positive responses to every outrageous thing she says or does. With Arthur’s nosy neighbor Lucille, they create a loving and unconventional family, proving that life’s most precious moments are sweeter when shared.

Description from Goodreads.

“I don’t know if I’ve ever read a more affecting book about the natural affinity between the young and the elderly than Elizabeth Berg’s The Story of Arthur Truluv. It makes the rest of us—strivers and preeners and malcontents—seem almost irrelevant.” – Richard Russo, author of Everybody’s Fool

“Elizabeth Berg’s characters jump right off the page and into your heart. I dare you to read this novel and not fall in love with Arthur Truluv. His story will make you laugh and cry, and will show you a love that never ends, and what it means to be truly human.” – Fannie Flagg, author of The Whole Town’s Talking

Available Formats:

Print Book

Ebook


Little Broken Things by  Nicole Baart

little broken thingsI have something for you. When Quinn Cruz receives that cryptic text message from her older sister Nora, she doesn’t think much of it. They haven’t seen each other in nearly a year and thanks to Nora’s fierce aloofness, their relationship consists mostly of infrequent phone calls and an occasional email or text. But when a haunted Nora shows up at the lake near Quinn’s house just hours later, a chain reaction is set into motion that will change both of their lives forever.

Nora’s “something” is more shocking than Quinn could have ever imagined: a little girl, cowering, wide-eyed, and tight-lipped. Nora hands her over to Quinn with instructions to keep her safe, and not to utter a word about the child to anyone, especially not their buttoned-up mother who seems determined to pretend everything is perfect. But before Quinn can ask even one of the million questions swirling around her head, Nora disappears, and Quinn finds herself the unlikely caretaker of a girl introduced simply as Lucy.

While Quinn struggles to honor her sister’s desperate request and care for the lost, scared Lucy, she fears that Nora may have gotten involved in something way over her head—something that will threaten them all. But Quinn’s worries are nothing compared to the firestorm that Nora is facing. It’s a matter of life and death, of family and freedom, and ultimately, about the lengths a woman will go to protect the ones she loves.

Description from Goodreads.

“If you liked Big Little Lies, you’ll want to crack open this new novel by Nicole Baart.”  – Southern Living

“Mesmerizing…an accomplished exploration of the fragile bonds of a family as they attempt to overcome obstacles they never saw coming.” – Publishers Weekly

Available Formats:

Print Book

Ebook



ROMANCE



Sweet Tea and Sympathy by  Molly Harper

sweet tea and sympathyNestled on the shore of Lake Sackett, Georgia is the McCready Family Funeral Home and Bait Shop. (What, you have a problem with one-stop shopping?) Two McCready brothers started two separate businesses in the same building back in 1928, and now it’s become one big family affair. And true to form in small Southern towns, family business becomes everybody’s business.

Margot Cary has spent her life immersed in everything Lake Sackett is not. As an elite event planner, Margot’s rubbed elbows with the cream of Chicago society, and made elegance and glamour her business. She’s riding high until one event goes tragically, spectacularly wrong. Now she’s blackballed by the gala set and in dire need of a fresh start—and apparently the McCreadys are in need of an event planner with a tarnished reputation.

As Margot finds her footing in a town where everybody knows not only your name, but what you had for dinner last Saturday night and what you’ll wear to church on Sunday morning, she grudgingly has to admit that there are some things Lake Sackett does better than Chicago—including the dating prospects. Elementary school principal Kyle Archer is a fellow fish-out-of-water who volunteers to show Margot the picture-postcard side of Southern living. The two of them hit it off, but not everybody is happy to see an outsider snapping up one of the town’s most eligible gentleman. Will Margot reel in her handsome fish, or will she have to release her latest catch?

Description from Goodreads.

“…[kicks] off Molly Harper’s newest series in the best of ways. Some cute & comical moments, some steamy attraction, and lots of down home charm had me smiling the whole way through this entertaining book.” – Harlequin Junkie

“…a completely entertaining and heartfelt read from beginning to end.” – RT Book Reviews

Available Formats:

Print Book


Secrets of Cavendon by  Barbara Taylor Bradford

secrets of cavendonFrom the #1 New York Times bestselling author, a stunning, epic novel featuring the characters of the beloved Cavendon series

For years things have run smoothly at Cavendon Hall, with very few quarrels, dramas, or upsets among the Inghams and the Swanns. But since the end of World War II, things have changed. The Secrets of Cavendon picks up in the summer of 1949, with the new generation of the estate at the forefront of the scandal and intrigue. With romance, betrayal, heartbreak, and possible murder threatening to tear them apart, the Inghams and Swanns will have to find a way to come together and protect each other in the face of threats they never could have predicted.

Description from Goodreads.

“…filled with the glitz and glamour of the aristocracy, fashion world, publishing and film realms. This is exactly what Bradford’s loyal fans expect.” – RT Book Reviews

“Told with Bradford’s inimitable deftness of prose and a beloved cast of characters, Secrets of Cavendon is a captivating novel that will draw readers in and grip them until the very last page.” – Book Reporter

Available Formats:

Print Book

Ebook



SCI-FI & FANTASY



Winter of Ice and Iron by  Rachel Neumeier

winter of ice and ironIn this gorgeous, dark fantasy in the spirit of Jacqueline Carey, a princess and a duke must protect the people of their nations when a terrible threat leaves everyone in danger.

With the Mad King of Emmer in the north and the vicious King of Pohorir in the east, Kehara Raehema knows her country is in a vulnerable position. She never expected to give up everything she loves to save her people, but when the Mad King’s fury leaves her land in danger, she has no choice but to try any stratagem that might buy time for her people to prepare for war—no matter the personal cost.

Hundreds of miles away, the pitiless Wolf Duke of Pohorir, Innisth Eanete, dreams of breaking his people and his province free of the king he despises. But he has no way to make that happen—until chance unexpectedly leaves Kehara on his doorstep and at his mercy.

Yet in a land where immanent spirits inhabit the earth, political disaster is not the greatest peril one can face. Now, as the year rushes toward the dangerous midwinter, Kehera and Innisth find themselves unwilling allies, and their joined strength is all that stands between the peoples of the Four Kingdoms and utter catastrophe.

Description from Goodreads.

“The story is tense throughout, with attention focused on its characters and the implications of its worldbuilding. Kehera’s resolute devotion to fighting against the odds even as the world shifts and realigns around her carries through to the cosmically satisfying ultimate battle.” – Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

“The plot is astounding because of its depth, details, and surprises. ” – Utopia State of Mind

Available Formats:

Print Book



NON-FICTION



Victoria & Albert: A Royal Love Affair by  Daisy Goodwin & Sara Sheridan

victoria and albertThe official companion to the second season of the PBS/Masterpiece drama Victoria by award-winning creator and screenwriter Daisy Goodwin.

Airing in the Downton Abbey slot on PBS/Masterpiece last January, Victoria captivated millions of viewers, eclipsing Downton‘s first-season viewership and leaving its audience eager for the series’s next season, which will focus on Victoria and Albert’s passionate and tempestuous marriage.

This official tie-in to the show, by creator and screenwriter Daisy Goodwin, gives a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the show, featuring never-before-seen interviews, photos, diary entries, profiles on all major characters, and sumptuous detail on the costumes and props that bring Victoria and Albert’s world to vivid life. Victoria and Albert follows this extraordinary relationship between two very different people—she impulsive, emotional, capricious; he cautious, self-controlled, and logical—whose devotion to each other was unparalleled in royal history.

Taking fans deeper into the world of Victoria than ever before, Victoria and Albert: A Royal Love Affair is the ultimate gift for devotees of the show.

Description from Overdrive.

Available Formats:

Print Book

Ebook


Dear Evan Hansen: Through the Window by  Steven Levenson

dear evan hansenWinner of 6 Tony Awards!
The official behind-the-scenes book of the new hit musical.
A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed he could have. Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted: a chance to finally fit in. Both deeply personal and profoundly contemporary, Dear Evan Hansen is a new American musical about life and the way we live it.

The book-produced by Melcher Media, the team behind HamiltonWickedRent, and many more-tells the story of the musical from its conception nearly a decade ago to the Broadway stage. From developing the idea to writing the show, composing, casting, and rehearsals, Dear Evan Hansen appeals to fans far and wide offering them the opportunity to continuously revisit the show, and for those who haven’t seen the musical, reading the book will make them feel like they have.

Filled with interviews with the cast and crew, original behind-the-scenes photography, a deeper look into Evan’s fictional world and the visual world of the show, unreleased lyrics, and of course the libretto, as well as reflections on the creators own formative memories from their adolescence as it relates to the show’s themes, and important examinations of how we present ourselves online and mental health, Dear Evan Hansen is a beautifully produced, thoughtful, and uplifting book.

Description from Goodreads.

Available Formats:

Print Book


Gold Dust Woman by  Stephen Davis

gold dust womanStevie Nicks is a legend of rock, but her energy and magnetism sparked new interest in this icon. At 68, she’s one of the most glamorous creatures rock has known, and the rare woman who’s a real rock ‘n’ roller.

Gold Dust Woman gives “the gold standard of rock biographers” (The Boston Globe) his ideal topic: Nicks’ work and life are equally sexy and interesting, and Davis delves deeply into each, unearthing fresh details from new, intimate interviews and interpreting them to present a rich new portrait of the star. Just as Nicks (and Lindsey Buckingham) gave Fleetwood Mac the “shot of adrenaline” they needed to become real rock stars–according to Christine McVie–Gold Dust Woman is vibrant with stories and with a life lived large and hard:
–How Nicks and Buckingham were asked to join Fleetwood Mac and how they turned the band into stars
–The affairs that informed Nicks’ greatest songs
–Her relationships with the Eagles’ Don Henley and Joe Walsh, and with Fleetwood himself
–Why Nicks married her best friend’s widower
–Her dependency on cocaine, drinking and pot, but how it was a decade-long addiction to Klonopin that almost killed her
— Nicks’ successful solo career that has her still performing in venues like Madison Square Garden
–The cult of Nicks and its extension to chart-toppers like Taylor Swift and the Dixie Chicks

Description from Goodreads.

“Davis’s candid, energetic book reveals the life of the woman who’s arguably one of rock’s greatest singer-songwriters.” – Publishers Weekly

“An entertaining rock biography, even if you’re a take-it-or-leave-it fan of the singer.” – Kirkus Reviews

Available Formats:

Print Book

Ebook

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