Sunday, March 22, 2015

Readers' Choice Spotlight - Contemporary/Literary/General

Remember to vote for your pick in each category and to enter the giveaway on this page.

Keeping Private Idaho
Rick Just

Coyote never seems to learn. Yet, he never fails to teach, mostly through the error of his ways. He taught the Nez Perce that they came from the Heart of the Monster. Now, he is teaching modern day Idahoans, they have a monster in their heart. This is Private Idaho, a place that exists in the minds of accidental natives and territorial pranksters who take out their resentments on tourists and real estate speculators. They are anonymous and deadly. In this tale of the New West, where the cowboys are women and the Indians wear Rollerblades, be alert for exploding potatoes, the allure of mineshafts and the terrible finesse of chainsaws.

Playing Charlie Cool
Laurie Boris

Television producer Charlie Trager knows he’s lucky to have a successful career and good friends and family who support him. The man he loves, however, is not so lucky. Joshua Goldberg suffers the spite of an ex-wife gunning to keep him from their two children…and maybe Charlie. Determined not to let Joshua go, Charlie crafts a scheme that could remove the obstacles to their relationship…or destroy their love forever.

The Earthquake Doll
Candace Williams

Miyoko Takahashi struggles between the dictates of an ancient family covenant and the desire of her secret heart during Japan's greatest cultural upheaval. Imperial Japan is gone and the new democracy threatens to overturn the age-old belief that duty to family is more important than personal emotion.

When tragedy strikes, Miyoko is ordered to fulfill her family's duty under the covenant. If she disobeys, she will dishonor the memory of her father, bring hardship upon the family, and deny her secret heart's desire for happiness.

As the sun rises over the new Japan, Miyoko searches for an honorable

way to balance tradition and freedom. 

The Ribs and Thigh Bones of Desire
Sandra Hutchison

Will they or won't they? Should they or shouldn't they? It’s the summer of 1977 in a small college town, and physics professor David Asken has just lost his young family in a plane crash he somehow survived. Sixteen-year-old neighbor Molly Carmichael used to be the babysitter, but now will be keeping house for him while he recuperates. David's quietly planning to end his life just as soon as he can drive again. Molly's trying to cope with being known as Tampon Girl, thanks to a sculpture by her notorious artist mother, but she will have to deal with much worse after a drunken teenage party. 

In this provocative coming-of-age novel by the author of The Awful Mess, both man and girl must grow up the hard way, and it’s their unexpectedly tender connection, fraught with potential scandal, that may just help them do it. This engrossing novel asks: Is there ever a time when doing the wrong thing might be exactly right?

Warning: Offers adult themes, bad language, violence, and a blistering feminist critique of how men always leave that crap in the bottom of the sink. Has also been reported to keep people reading way too late into the night.

They Call Me Crazy
Kelly Stone Gamble

Cass Adams is crazy, and everyone in Deacon, Kansas, knows it. But when her good-for-nothing husband, Roland, goes missing, no one suspects that Cass buried him in their unfinished koi pond. Too bad he doesn’t stay there for long. Cass gets arrested on the banks of the Spring River for dumping his corpse after heavy rain partially unearths it.

The police chief wants a quick verdict—he’s running for sheriff and has no time for crazy talk. But like Roland’s corpse, secrets start to surface, and they bring more to light than anybody expected. Everyone in Cass’s life thinks they know her—her psychic grandmother, her promiscuous ex-best friend, her worm-farming brother-in-law, and maybe even her local ghost. But after years of separate silences, no one knows the whole truth. Except Roland. And he’s not talking.

Dan Cardinal

When a freak accident claims the lives of his wife and young daughter, Will Brown slips away to a remote cabin in Michigan's Upper Peninsula. After a near-death (but enlightening) experience involving depression and black bears, he decides to stay a bit longer—first just a month, and then an entire bitter-cold winter. After a number of escapades in the woods, including befriending a stray dog and stumbling upon a mortally injured hermit, his recreating expands to include more traditional pastimes like drinking, getting into bar fights, and hooking up. It’s unorthodox, and maybe not the best way to cope, but it makes him feel better.

Then a young divorcée named Lucy shows up, and she’s wonderful, and she’s got this great family, and Will realizes that if there’s anyone with whom he could start again, it’s her. But what he doesn’t seem to get is that it won’t work if he stays up there—she’ll leave or, worse, she’ll stay and end up like him. And the question becomes whether or not he’ll figure this out in time.


Sandra Hutchison said...

Looks like lots of good reading to check out. (Any chance you can fix the link to the review on mine? It's not live.)

BooksAndPals said...

Sorry about that, Sandra, and thanks for pointing it out. It's now fixed.

Sandra Hutchison said...

Thank you!