Monday, July 01, 2013

August Treasures in My Closet

Any month of reading is good when it includes a new book by Louise Penny. However, there are a number of interesting books coming out in August. Which ones are you waiting to read?

Aimee Bender, author of the popular novel, The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake, turns to short stories with The Color Master. The stories are about people searching for connection through love, sex, and family, while navigating the painful realities of their lives.

After two acclaimed historical novels, one of Canada's most celebrated authors, Dennis Bock, goes contemporary with Going Home Again. Charlie Bellerose's semi-nomadic life, traveling widely to manage the language academies he established, leaves him wondering how he ended up separated, missing his daughter, lacking a meaningful relationship with his brother. Two tragic events force him to reevaluate his priorities and his relationships.

In Claire of the Sea Light, Edwidge Danticat takes readers deep into the intertwined lives of a small Haitian town. On the night of Claire's seventh birthday, she disappears. As her fisherman father, Nozias, and others look for her, painful secrets and startling truths are unearthed among the men and women whose stories connect to Claire, her parents, and the town itself.

A Place of Confinement is the fourth installment in Anna Dean's Regency mystery series. After refusing her sister-in-law's attempt to marry her off to a ghastly clergyman, Miss Dido Kent is sent on a journey as companion to her hypochondriac, wealthy Aunt Manners. However, they find a mystery when they arrive at Aunt Manners' childhood home. A rich heiress has disappeared while visiting the manor, and Dido believes the main suspect when he says he didn't abduct her. It's up to Miss Dido Kent to put the pieces together, save a family, and find the vanished heiress.

Vicki Delany is one of my favorite Canadian mystery writers, and her Constable Molly Smith series is one of my favorite traditional series. In A Cold White Sun, it's March in Trafalgar, British Columbia. March means the last influx of skiers. But, for one middle-aged high school English teacher, it means death when she's gunned down by a sniper on the hiking trail. Sergeant John Winters is frustrated by the case, and calls on Molly for help. Even as they investigate, Molly realizes she has serious decisions to make about her life, both personal and professional.

Breaking the Line by Samuel G. Freedman is about one season in Black college football. It's about the historic battle for the 1967 black college football championship. The game between Grambling College and Florida A&M brought about two historic firsts: the first game to be played in the South between a black and a white school, and the first starting black quarterback in the NFL. It was a game that forever changed football.

John Gaspard's The Ambitious Card is an Eli Marks mystery. When magician Eli Marks publicly debunks a famed psychic and the psychic ends up dead, the evidence directs the police right to Eli. As more psychics are slain, and more cards point to Eli, he can't escape suspicion. Then, Eli's romance with a beautiful psychic threatens to turn deadly, and he must use every trick he knows to reveal the true killer.

Carolyn Hart's Brave Hearts first came out in 1987. Now, it's re-released, a story of ordinary people caught in the Philippines when the Japanese attacked during World War II. Catharine Cavanaugh was trapped in a loveless marriage, married to a British diplomat in wartime London. When she met American war correspondent Jack Maguire, she discovered love again. Jack followed Catharine and her husband when they were transferred to the Philippines, only to be forced into a harrowing adventure as they tried to escape the Japanese army.

Melodie Johnson Howe brings readers a Hollywood-inspired thriller in City of Mirrors. Diana Poole is an actress desperate to rebuild her career. She jumps at the chance to play the role of starlet Jenny Parson's mother in a film. When the troubled young woman ends up dead, Diana goes in search of Jenny's killer. She's so good at her quest that she also uncovers scandalous secrets.

Thomas Keneally, author of Schindler's List, now takes readers to the First World War in The Daughters of Mars. It's the story of Naomi and Sally Durance, estranged sisters, charged with healing the wounded from Gallipoli to the Western Front as they bear witness to the cataclysm of the war.

How can you go wrong with an author who says, "If you take only one thing away from any of my books I'd like it to be this: Goodness exists."? In Louise Penny's How the Light Gets In, she takes readers back to Three Pines as Christmas approaches. Chief Inspector Armand Gamache welcomes the chance to escape the hostility of Quebec when Myrna Landers sends a message that a longtime friend has failed to arrive in the village. While Gamache investigates, he's drawn even deeper into Three Pines as he searches for peace. It's a novel that pushes the characters into desperate spots as they are each forced to make decisions.

At the center of Marisha Pessl's novel, Night Film, is a notorious film director. When the director's daughter is found dead, an investigative reporter is suspicious. Was it suicide, or was she pushed? Was the death a result of something strange in one of her father's films? Or, was it one more nightmare like so much in her father's world?

Argentine crime writer Claudia Pinero's latest novel is A Crack in the Wall. Set in contemporary Buenos Aires, it follows architect Pablo Borla as his marriage and career are in crisis. When a young woman walks into his office and brings to light a murder committed decades ago by people in is office, Borla's life is transformed.

For many of us, that common saying, "So many books, so little time" rings true. But, we'll want to make time for some of the August releases. Which books are you going to make time to read?


Janet C said...

Oh, so many books to anticipate. If I had to make a limited selection, I would pick the Vicky Delaney, the Melodie Johnson Howe, and the Louise Penny books. I'm especially looking forward to the Johnson Howe book - it's been way too long since the last one.

Joan in Warwick said...

Since Louise Penny announced that August 27 is the release date for "How the Light Gets In", I've had that day blocked off on my calendar. I can't wait to read it!

Beth Hoffman said...

Yes ... "So many books, so little time" seems to be my mantra of late, and yet I keep adding books to my list!

Karen C said...

Some great sounding books coming in August! My reading has slowed down - which is just wrong!

Joe Barone said...

You are right about Louise Penny. But the upcoming book scares me. The last one was so dark. The title gives me some hope. I have long ago pre-ordered this book.

Lesa said...


I don't think we need to worry. I think the title means there is hope. Great books coming, aren't they?