Saturday, November 4, 2017

*Mail Call* September 2017

So I'm a little bit late getting this post put together and shared with y'all. I've got a super good excuse though. I spent all of October working my butt off proofreading (which takes a bit longer than normal reading), and had some eye issues as well which made looking at a computer screen painful (made looking at my Kindle Fire screen painful as well, honestly). So I just didn't have the time or energy/motivation to get this put together last month. But without further ado, here are all the books I got in the mail in September. 


Secret Words: Arcana Verb by Craig Wickersham

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

In the beginning, God said let there be light, and one angel -Saiel, cherished the word of creation above all things. He cherished the words so much, in time, he used their power for himself, creating huge empires on earth, subjugating millions, ravaging the planet, and even destroying human souls. But this violation brought divine wrath upon him and Karliel, a powerful twin-angel of fire, was sent to strip away Saiel's memory of the words -but not before Saiel had hidden them in a book. New York City, 2015. Arilyn, a misfit and awkward teen, finds an ancient, leather-bound manuscript in her late grandfather's study. Without knowing it, she has a picked up a book that hasn't been opened in over a thousand years. And when she does, her curiosity sets off a chain of events that not only put her and her family in mortal danger, but threaten the lives of every living soul.







The War Awakens: Bloody Alliance by Jason Soffe

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

Clor is a successful assassin, not just because he fulfils his assignments, but because he is still alive. His fighting skills, sense for danger, strength of mind and body combine to help him remain successful.

However, when called upon by King Jelin to protect his daughter, Princess Eilina, from kidnapping or assassination, Clor's survival skills are severely tested. Clor and his Dragora Assassins' Guild find they are not just taking on ambitious neighbouring rulers. They are also up against a hitherto unknown race of fighters, the Ulchan, who are huge beings, ruthless creatures in battle, with ambitions beyond their so called alliance to assist the Orelon, Lord Drel.

But even the Ulchan pale before a dark, mysterious, magic force which threatens all races and the Empire of Weydawn. It is now not only the safety of Princess Eilina which is at stake but the future of all the lands and Clor's skills are pivotal in the battles that ensue.




The Chin Kiss King by Ana Veciana-Suarez

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

In this lyrical novel set in a Cuban-American neighborhood in Miami, three generations of women face an unexpected--and ultimately life-changing--trial. When Maribel, an overly cautious and orderly market analyst, gives birth to a severely handicapped baby, her mother, Adela, and her grandmother Cuca must put aside their differences to fill his short life with love. This means more than just a shift in attitude for Cuca, who speaks regularly to her deceased husband, and for Adela, a middle-aged beautician with a penchant for the lottery and her friend's husband.

Poetic and poignant, spiritual and deeply human, The Chin Kiss King explores the resiliency of mothers, the power of love, the hopefulness of redemption, and the meaning of faith in an unforgettable story of family and the ties that bind.






The Heavy Bear by Tim Bowling

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

What happens when a respectable middle-aged father, teacher and writer decides one day to abandon his ordinary routine and embark on an unexpected journey toward an unknowable fate, following the ghost of Buster Keaton and a vision of a bear? In Tim Bowling’s fifth novel, The Heavy Bear, the main character – a sort of contemporary version of Joyce’s Leopold Bloom who just happens to be named Tim Bowling – spends an intense late-summer day in downtown Edmonton. Haunted by “the slender sadness” of the world, and unable to face his afternoon class, Tim Bowling finds himself pulled into an escapade revolving around an antique toy, a capuchin monkey and a young student our narrator likens to Pippi Longstocking. Accompanied by the shade of the silent-film star Buster Keaton, and the bear-shaped spirit of the American poet Delmore Schwartz, Bowling’s Tim Bowling must confront, with equal parts humour and sincerity, a fundamental problem of our age: how to make and maintain human connections in a world that seems intent on destroying them?





The Blind by A.F. Brady

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

Sam James has spent years carefully crafting her reputation as the best psychologist at Typhlos, Manhattan's most challenging psychiatric institution. She boasts the highest success rates with the most disturbed patients, believing if she can't save herself, she'll save someone else. It's this savior complex that serves her well in helping patients battle their inner demons, though it leads Sam down some dark paths and opens her eyes to her own mental turmoil.

When Richard, a mysterious patient no other therapist wants to treat, is admitted to Typhlos, Sam is determined to unlock his secrets and his psyche. What she can't figure out is why does Richard appear to be so completely normal in a hospital filled with madness? And what, really, is he doing at the institution? As Sam gets pulled into Richard's twisted past, she can't help but analyze her own life, and what she discovers terrifies her. And so the mind games begin. But who is the savior and who is the saved?





Permission to Speak Freely by Doug Crandall and Matt Kincaid, Ph.D. 

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

Lead So Your People Speak Freely 

Candid communication enhances innovation, ownership, engagement, and performance. The benefits of hearing questions and uncertainties, good and bad ideas, and honest feedback are game-changing. Yet research shows that most of the time, people never share their true thoughts with each other--and especially not with their leaders. 

But what if they did? What if everyone could confidently communicate without fearing a negative response? In Permission to Speak Freely, highly acclaimed leader developers Doug Crandall and Matt Kincaid illustrate the benefits of candor, explain the inhibitors that cause it to feel unsafe, and provide tools for leaders to encourage their people and embed trust and openness into the foundation of their organizational culture. 





Simplify the Season by Erin Olson

Photo Credit: Goodreads




Synopsis


Simplify the season this year by making time for your Savior. He is the reason for the season, and He is the One to be celebrated and worshiped. When we make a choice to simplify, we make room in our hearts and lives for His presence. Let's make a promise to focus on the One who is, was, and is to come. We do not have to exhaust and bankrupt ourselves both physically and financially. Let's not be so focused on Christmas that we miss Christ. May this simple Advent devotional help you as you pursue Him.






The Airborne in World War II by Michael E. Haskew

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

D-Day, Operation Market Garden, Battle of the Bulge--the US Airborne divisions were integral at all these major points in World War II. But they also played a significant role in North Africa, where they first saw action, and in Italy in 1943. Right on the tail of these planes, this expert history follows the airborne divisions from the redesignation and initial training of the 82nd in 1942 through to their final, momentous missions in the Pacific.

Featuring the equipment, division structure, and uniforms, as well as first-hand accounts, this book is the true history popularized by such titles as Band of BrothersA Bridge Too Far, and The Dirty Dozen.

With one hundred and sixty photographs, maps, and illustrations, The Airborne in World War II is an accessible account of remarkable men and the battles that they fought.



How to Get Your Dog to Eat by Mary DiTosto

Photo Credit: Goodreads



Synopsis

All dogs, large and small, need to eat proper, nutritious food. But what happens when your dog refuses to eat that food? It may happen once in a blue moon or once a day, but as a responsible dog owner you need to know what to do. This book provides all of the tools, tips and tricks you need to help man's best friend overcome any eating issues and become a happy, healthy dog.









Spot 12: The Story of a Birth by Jenny Jaeckel

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

Spot 12 delivers the gritty details of a mother, a newborn, and a five-month stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in a visually gripping graphic memoir by Jenny Jaeckel. A routine prenatal exam reveals a dangerous problem, and first-time parents find themselves thrust into a world of close calls, sleepless nights, and psychological crisis. Surrounded by disagreements, deaths, extended family tensions, and questions of faith, the mother struggles to maintain a positive frame of mind. 

Against the antiseptic, mechanical reality of the NICU, the dedicated health professionals are drawn as sympathetic and wry animal characters. Doctor Eyes and Nurse Gentlehands are two of the care providers that do all they can to take care of Baby Asa. But even the best hospital staff make mistakes, and Jaeckel and her husband’s vigilance must be acute. At times they battle feelings of helplessness, but their determination, insight, bravery, and connection ultimately helps keep their little one alive.



Mis(h)adra by Iasmin Omar Ata

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

An Arab-American college student struggles to live with epilepsy in this starkly colored and deeply-cutting graphic novel.

Isaac wants nothing more than to be a functional college student—but managing his epilepsy is an exhausting battle to survive. He attempts to maintain a balancing act between his seizure triggers and his day-to-day schedule, but he finds that nothing—not even his medication—seems to work. The doctors won’t listen, the schoolwork keeps piling up, his family is in denial about his condition, and his social life falls apart as he feels more and more isolated by his illness. Even with an unexpected new friend by his side, so much is up against him that Isaac is starting to think his epilepsy might be unbeatable.

Based on the author’s own experiences as an epileptic, Mis(h)adra is a boldly visual depiction of the daily struggles of living with a misunderstood condition in today’s hectic and uninformed world.



Me, Me, Me by Annika Dunklee and Lori Joy Smith

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

When best friends Annie, Lillemor and Lilianne learn their school will be having a talent show, Annie says they should enter as an all-girl singing group. Her friends are all in --- until Annie tries to force everyone to go along with her choice of song, costumes, band name and lead singer. When Lillemor and Liliane tell Annie they've had enough of her ?me, me, me? attitude, the band splits up, with Annie intent on performing solo. But it doesn't take long for her to realize it's just not the same without her friends. Can Annie find a way to make things right before it's too late? 

Annika Dunklee's trio of multicultural friends will charm and delight young children with their true-to-life relationships and spot-on dialogue, while Lori Joy Smith's irresistible art brings a playful humor to the girls and their enthusiasm. Annie, the lovable, perfectly imperfect girl, will have readers rooting for her as she struggles to find her way to doing the right thing. With its positive, non-preachy approach, this book could easily spark conversations about friendships and dealing with hurt feelings. With select words in French and Swedish included in the story (with translations) as well as other details sprinkled throughout that illustrate the girls' different backgrounds, this makes a terrific title for exploring other cultures in social studies classes. And the intriguing idea of a talent show shines a light on the performing arts and creativity within a school setting.


Ghosts in the Wind by Darlene Foster

Photo Credit: Goodreads

Synopsis

Amanda Ross is on a school trip to Taos, New Mexico to collect material for writing projects. She is travelling with Cleo, a classmate who believes in ghosts and insists she keeps seeing them. Amanda doesn't believe in ghosts and is determined to prove there is no such thing. When weird, unexplainable things start to happen to Amanda, she questions her denial of the supernatural.

Join Amanda as she visits a typical hacienda, an ancient pueblo, a painting that changes dramatically and a spooky hotel with the ghost of a murdered cowboy haunting the rooms. Can Amanda escape from the eerie wind that follows her everywhere she goes?
 






100 Reasons to Panic About Doing Yoga by Knock Knock

Photo Credit: Goodreads

Synopsis

Like a paper version of your funniest friend, this pocket-sized volume provides an honest look at the benefits of yoga, while also offering commonsense reassurance that everything’s going to work out fine. Probably. Maybe. Definitely.

-The search for quirky gifts (or stocking stuffer ideas) for your favorite yoga-pant wearers is over!
-Hardcover; 3.75 x 5 inches; 112 pages, 29+ illustrations
-Written by Knock Knock and illustrated by Gemma Correll






Elements Fire edited by Taneka Stotts

Photo Credit: Goodreads


Synopsis

ELEMENTS: Fire is a comics anthology of 23 stories by creators of color from around the globe. With stories featuring peaceful warriors, blossoming brujas, godly hackers, and a fire-breathing dragon boy, we are the main characters of our own stories, not the sidekicks or token characters. This is an anthology that is full of our passions, magic, and inner fire because our diversity is not just a buzzword: it's our reality!










The Dream Life of Astronauts by Patrick Ryan

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

For readers of Tom Perrotta and Lorrie Moore, this sharp and affecting short story collection takes place in and around Cape Canaveral, from the 1960s to the present day, showcasing Patrick Ryan s masterly understanding of regret and hope, marriage and family, and the universal longing for love.

The Dream Life of Astronauts balances heartbreak with wry humor as its characters try to make sense of the paths they find themselves on. A would-be Miss America auditions for a shady local talent scout over vodka and Sunny D; a NASA engineer begins to wonder if the woman he’s having an affair with is slowly poisoning her husband; a Boy Scout troop leader, recovering from a stroke, tries to protect one of his scouts from being bullied by his own sons; an ex-mobster living in witness protection feuds with the busybody head of his condo board; a grandmother, sentenced to driver’s ed after a traffic accident, surprises herself by falling for her instructor.

Set against landmark moments—the first moon launch, Watergate, the Challenger explosion—these private dramas unfurl in startling ways. The Dream Life of Astronauts ratifies the emergence of an indelible new talent in fiction.


Girls Made of Snow and Glass by Melissa Bashardoust

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

Frozen meets The Bloody Chamber in this feminist fantasy reimagining of the Snow White fairytale

At sixteen, Mina's mother is dead, her magician father is vicious, and her silent heart has never beat with love for anyone—has never beat at all, in fact, but she’d always thought that fact normal. She never guessed that her father cut out her heart and replaced it with one of glass. When she moves to Whitespring Castle and sees its king for the first time, Mina forms a plan: win the king’s heart with her beauty, become queen, and finally know love. The only catch is that she’ll have to become a stepmother.

Fifteen-year-old Lynet looks just like her late mother, and one day she discovers why: a magician created her out of snow in the dead queen’s image, at her father’s order. But despite being the dead queen made flesh, Lynet would rather be like her fierce and regal stepmother, Mina. She gets her wish when her father makes Lynet queen of the southern territories, displacing Mina. Now Mina is starting to look at Lynet with something like hatred, and Lynet must decide what to do—and who to be—to win back the only mother she’s ever known…or else defeat her once and for all.

Entwining the stories of both Lynet and Mina in the past and present, Girls Made of Snow and Glass traces the relationship of two young women doomed to be rivals from the start. Only one can win all, while the other must lose everything—unless both can find a way to reshape themselves and their story.


Shelby & Shauna Kitt and the Dimensional Holes by P.H.C. Marchesi

Photo Credit: Goodreads


Synopsis

Shelby Kitt never gets lost. Shauna, his sister, never gets sick. As far as most people are concerned, the inseparable Kitt twins are odd 13-year-olds. No one, however - not even Shelby and Shauna - can guess how extraordinary they are until the vice consul of Miriax, a planet from another dimension, asks them to take part in a dangerous mission. From that moment on, Shelby and Shauna Kitt discover that the universe is full of klodians, cities in jungles, giant bats, and tea with mushrooms. Most of all, they discover that it will take more than special powers for them to face - and survive - the evil that threatens the galaxy.








Wild Boys by David Sharp

Photo Credit: Goodreads

Synopsis

The Old West, a time of high adventure, outlaws, and the way of the gun, is traveled by alternative anti-heroes in this peculiar western. Dusty Calhoun is out for revenge after losing all to violence and fire. He lives for vengeance until he rescues Jake Willowford, a cowboy with a familiar face, and plans to use him to infiltrate the Blakely Gang, or die trying. Jake is separated from Dusty and must find his way back with the help of an outlaw, Frank Ward. On the run from One-Eyed Walker and his posse, they endure the dangers and desires of the wild west. The ride will lead them back or to the end of a rope. Consequences are dealt in a spirit quest in the Badlands. A wayward prostitute, Misty Waters, a randy cowboy, Troy Carter, and a message from a traitor set into motion the final ride of the Wild Boys, leading to a climactic shootout where the trail ends.






On Fire edited by Rachel Kramer Bussel

Photo Credit: Goodreads



Synopsis

In On Fire, today’s top erotic authors take us inside the passions of couples who go above and beyond in pursuit of sexual and romantic satisfaction, from kink to fantasies to outrageous, stimulating adventures. You’ll treasure the stocking fetish in “Sensitive to the Touch” and travel to “A Place as Beautiful as This.” You’ll go “Beyond the Blindfold,” find out what lurks in the “Art of Darkness,” delight in discovering “The Sweetest Thing,” and observe a feisty femdom couple in “Dreams Made Flesh.” These steamy stories by Kristina Wright, Delilah Devlin, Giselle Renarde, Kay Jaybee, Veronica Blisse, Jade A. Waters and others are perfect bedtime reads for your lover or for your own pleasure. 




Alexander Hamilton, Revolutionary by Martha Brockenbrough

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

"Complex, passionate, brilliant, flawed? Alexander Hamilton comes alive in Martha Brockenbrough's exciting biography Alexander Hamilton: Revolutionary, which is an essential read for teen fans of Hamilton the musical.

Discover the incredible true story behind the Tony Award-winning musical – Hamilton’s early years in the Caribbean; his involvement in the Revolutionary War; and his groundbreaking role in government, which still shapes American government today. Easy to follow, this gripping account of a founding father and American icon features illustrations, maps, timelines, infographics, and additional information ranging from Hamilton's own writings to facts about fashion, music, etiquette and custom of the times, including best historical insults and the etiquette of duels."






A Robin's Snow by Barbara Briggs Ward

Photo Credit: Goodreads

Synopsis

Although curious of the world outside her Amish community, Annie Finley's love for her husband Daniel and their son, Jacob is why she's content to stay. A devastating accident one stormy night changes that, propelling Annie beyond those boundaries. With the help of two women who sell Annie's quilts, they learn those responsible for the accident are ruthless owners of a newspaper dynasty who will do anything to keep the presses running. A plan is devised enabling Annie to shed her simplicity and travel to Philadelphia where she infiltrates that dynasty, moving amongst them as one of them until the moment when she must make her move-a move with grave consequences reaching all the way to the White House.








The Hours Between Us by Carol Graf

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

Kai Ingersohn was motivated to become a psychiatrist after a childhood of dysfunction with her tempestuous and manic-depressive grandmother, Dumpling. Now divorced, in private practice, and raising two teenagers, she starts work with Stephanie, a young grad student with acute leukemia, who has returned to Charleston and its mystic healing waters and marsh to fight for her life. Stephanie braves the revelations of shocking family secrets, while Kai seeks peace with her own past as the therapy unfolds. Both women emerge with new capacities for love, life, and spiritual truths. This is a powerful work from a novelist whose story reflects her real-life experiences as a psychiatrist in Charleston. Set against a lush Lowcountry backdrop of Spanish moss, salt marshes, silent oaks, and the pounding sea, The Hours Between Us is an artful exploration of the heartbreaking struggles and unbreakable spirits of two extraordinary women.






The Amputee's Guide to Sex by Jillian Weise

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis


When Jillian Weise wrote The Amputee’s Guide to Sex, it was with the intention of changing the conversation around disability; essentially, she was tired of seeing “cripples” portrayed as asexual characters. The collection that resulted is a powerful lesson in desire, the body, pain, and possession. These poems interrogate medical language and history, imagine Mona Lisa in a wheelchair, rewrite Elizabeth Bishop’s poem “In the Waiting Room,” address a lover’s arsonist ex-girlfriend, and show the prosthesis as the object of male curiosity and lust. Publishers Weekly, in a starred review, called the book a “charged and daring debut” and described Jillian Weise as an “agile and powerful poet . . . speaking boldly and compassionately about a little-discussed subject that becomes universal in her careful hands.”

Ten years since its first publication, our culture continues to grapple with questions limned in this collection. In a new introduction, Weise revisits and recontextualizes her work, revealing its urgency to our present moment. What are the challenges of speaking “for” a community? How to resist the institutionalization of ableist paradigms? How are atypical bodies silenced? Where do our corporeal selves intersect with our technologies?


Nothing by Linda Naseem

Photo Credit: Goodreads

Synopsis

I lived in a cozy pink house in San Francisco and didn't realize that my husband was using meth until my life started disappearing, one piece at a time. I thought I could help him, but his violence reduced me to a cowering shadow and that shadow disintegrated the day I came home from work early and found him with his pregnant girlfriend.

I didn't have a clue how to put my pieces back together.

One day I looked up from my desk and there he was. The person who could help me. I didn't know it at the time.

My first instinct was to run.




Listening to Women on the Right by Rachel Friedman, Nichelle D. McNabb and Kristen L. McCauliff

Photo Credit: Goodreads

Synopsis


 For much of the past century, public discourse about gender and politics has been driven largely by progressive women--those voices on the left that support policies widely considered to be pro-women. Little scholarly attention has been paid to the dialogue of conservative women, and what literature there is tends to focus on specific issues rather than fundamentals like social and political identity. The authors focus on this under-studied yet rhetorically interesting group and their approach to political speech. The narratives and policy positions of Condoleezza Rice, Nikki Haley, Teri Lynn Land, Susana Martinez, Joni Ernst and others are examined for the ways in which they frame their political images as women in the GOP.






Chasing the Monkey King by D.C. Alexander

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

"Entertainment so involving you won't realize you're being educated too." —Coast Weekend 

A U.S. government investigator vanishes while on assignment in China. Former detective Lars Severin is hired by the investigator's family—mysterious scions of an international trade dynasty—to find out what happened to her. Was her disappearance the result of a random act of violence or something more sinister? Did she uncover something that drove a hidden enemy to make her disappear? Could she still be alive? Severin's quest casts him into a labyrinth of double-dealing and conspiracy, taking him from the misty streets and alleys of Seattle's old Chinatown neighborhood, to the corridors of power in Washington, D.C., to the dazzling city of Shanghai, to the ancient heart of rural China. The case grows more complicated with each step Severin takes, until all at once he realizes that his own life is in great danger. 





The Far Away Brothers by Lauren Markham

Photo Credit: Goodreads
Synopsis

The deeply reported story of identical twin brothers who escape El Salvador's violence to build new lives in California--fighting to survive, to stay, and to belong.

Growing up in rural El Salvador in the wake of the civil war, Ernesto Flores had always had a fascination with the United States, the faraway land of skyscrapers and Nikes, while his identical twin, Raul, never felt that northbound tug. But when Ernesto ends up on the wrong side of the region's brutal gangs he is forced to flee the country, and Raul, because he looks just like his brother, follows close behind--away from one danger and toward the great American unknown.

In this urgent chronicle of contemporary immigration, journalist Lauren Markham follows the seventeen-year-old Flores twins as they make their harrowing journey across the Rio Grande and the Texas desert, into the hands of immigration authorities, and from there to their estranged older brother's custody in Oakland, CA. Soon these unaccompanied minors are navigating a new school in a new language, working to pay down their mounting coyote debt, and facing their day in immigration court, while also encountering the triumphs and pitfalls of life as American teenagers-girls, grades, Facebook-with only each other for support. With intimate access and breathtaking range, Markham offers a coming of age tale that is also a nuanced portrait of Central America's child exodus, an investigation of U.S. immigration policy, and an unforgettable testament to the migrant experience.


So that is all the books that I got in the mail in September. This months theme seems to be graphic novels, because there are three of them listed here. Of these books, I think I'm most interested in reading Girls Made of Snow and Glass. Which of these books are you most interested in reading my review on? - Katie 

2 comments:

  1. Invest in Ripple on eToro the World’s Leading Social Trading Network.

    Join millions who have already discovered easier strategies for investing in Ripple.

    Learn from profitable eToro traders or copy their positions automatically.

    ReplyDelete