Take a look at some of the latest additions to our New and Featured Fiction collections! We check in new books nearly every day—check out the First Floor's LibraryThing account where we log all of our newest arrivals!
New Fiction - March 2014
Prayers for the Stolen
Ladydi Garcia Martinez is fierce, funny and smart. She was born into a world where being a girl is a dangerous thing. In the mountains of Guerrero, Mexico, women must fend for themselves, as their men have left to seek opportunities elsewhere. Here in the shadow of the drug war, bodies turn up on the outskirts of the village to be taken back to the earth by scorpions and snakes. School is held sporadically, when a volunteer can be coerced away from the big city for a semester. In Guerrero the drug lords are kings, and mothers disguise their daughters as sons, or when that fails they "make them ugly" - cropping their hair, blackening their teeth- anything to protect them from the rapacious grasp of the cartels. And when the black SUVs roll through town, Ladydi and her friends burrow into holes in their backyards like animals, tucked safely out of sight. While her mother waits in vain for her husband's return, Ladydi and her friends dream of a future that holds more promise than mere survival, finding humor, solidarity and fun in the face of so much tragedy. When Ladydi is offered work as a nanny for a wealthy family in Acapulco, she seizes the chance, and finds her first taste of love with a young caretaker there. But when a local murder tied to the cartel implicates a friend, Ladydi's future takes a dark turn. Despite the odds against her, this spirited heroine's resilience and resolve bring hope to otherwise heartbreaking conditions. An illuminating and affecting portrait of women in rural Mexico, and a stunning exploration of the hidden consequences of an unjust war.
Not Without You
Sophie Leigh's real name is Sophie Sykes. But she hasn't been called that for years, not since she became an A-list movie star. Living in Los Angeles, she can forget all about the life she left behind in England. But she's lost something of herself in the process, too. Glamorous 1950s starlet Eve Noel had none of Sophie's modern self-confidence. She didn't choose her name. A Hollywood producer did. In fact, he made all her decisions—what to wear, when to smile, who to love. Right up until the day she simply vanished from the spotlight. No one knows where she went, or why. As Sophie's perfect-on-the-outside world begins to crumble, her present collides with Eve's past. She must unravel the mystery around her idol's disappearance before it's too late for them both.
The Last Gift
One day, long before the troubles, he slipped away without saying a word to anyone and never went back. And then another day, forty-three years later, he collapsed just inside the front door of his house in a small English town. It was late in the day when it happened, on his way home after work, but it was also late in the day altogether. He had left things for too long and there was no one to blame for it but himself. Abbas has never told anyone about his past—before he was a sailor on the high seas, before he met his wife Maryam outside a drugstore in Exeter, before they settled into a quiet life with their children, Jamal and Hanna. Now, at the age of sixty-three, he suffers a collapse that renders him unable to speak about things he thought he would one day have to. Jamal and Hanna have grown up and gone out into the world. They were both born in England but cannot shake a sense of apartness. Hanna calls herself Anna now, and has just moved to a new city to be near her boyfriend. She feels the relationship is headed somewhere serious, but the words have not yet been spoken out loud. Jamal, the listener of the family, moves into a student house and is captivated by a young woman with dark blue eyes and her own complex story to tell. Abbas's illness forces both children home, to the dark silences of their father and the fretful capability of their mother, Maryam, who has never thought to find herself—until now.
Esther is a Ugandan teenager abducted by the Lord's Resistance Army and forced to witness and commit unspeakable atrocities, who is struggling to survive, to escape, and to find a way to live with what she has seen and done. Jane is an American journalist who has traveled to Africa, hoping to give a voice to children like Esther and to find her center after a series of failed relationships. In unflinching prose, Minot interweaves their stories, giving us razor-sharp portraits of two extraordinary young women confronting displacement, heartbreak, and the struggle to wrest meaning from events that test them both in unimaginable ways.
The Widow's Guide to Sex and Dating
The Widow's Guide to Sex and Dating is Carole Radziwill's deliciously smart comedy about a famously widowed young New Yorker hell-bent on recapturing a kind of passionate love she never really had.
Soon to be a major motion picture directed by Tommy Lee Jones, The Homesman is a devastating story of early pioneers in 1850s American West. It celebrates the ones we hear nothing of: the brave women whose hearts and minds were broken by a life of bitter hardship. A “homesman” must be found to escort a handful of them back East to a sanitarium. When none of the county’s men steps up, the job falls to Mary Bee Cuddy—ex-teacher, spinster, indomitable and resourceful. Brave as she is, Mary Bee knows she cannot succeed alone. The only companion she can find is the low-life claim jumper George Briggs. Thus begins a trek east, against the tide of colonization, against hardship, Indian attacks, ice storms, and loneliness—a timeless classic told in a series of tough, fast-paced adventures.
In his heartbreaking yet hopeful fourth novel, award-winning author Willy Vlautin demonstrates his extraordinary talent for illuminating the disquiet of modern American life, captured in the experiences of three memorable characters looking for meaning in distressing times. Severely wounded in the Iraq war, Leroy Kervin has lived in a group home for eight years. Frustrated by the simplest daily routines, he finds his existence has become unbearable. An act of desperation helps him disappear deep into his mind, into a world of romance and science fiction, danger and adventure where he is whole once again. Freddie McCall, the night man at Leroy's group home, works two jobs yet still can't make ends meet. He's lost his wife and kids, and the house is next. Medical bills have buried him in debt, a situation that propels him to consider a lucrative—and dangerous—proposition. Pauline Hawkins, a nurse, cares for the sick and wounded, including Leroy. She also looks after her mentally ill elderly father. Yet she remains emotionally removed, until she meets a young runaway who touches something deep and unexpected inside her. In crystalline prose, both beautiful and devastating, this "major realist talent" (Seattle Post-Intelligencer) considers the issues transforming ordinary people's lives—the cost of health care, the lack of economic opportunity, the devastating scars of war—creating an extraordinary contemporary portrait that is also a testament to the resiliency of the human heart.
Bread and Butter
Kitchen Confidential meets Three Junes in this mouthwatering novel about three brothers who run competing restaurants, and the culinary snobbery, staff stealing, and secret affairs that unfold in the back of the house. Britt and Leo have spent ten years running Winesap, the best restaurant in their small Pennsylvania town. They cater to their loyal customers; they don't sleep with the staff; and business is good, even if their temperamental pastry chef is bored with making the same chocolate cake night after night. But when their younger brother, Harry, opens his own restaurant—a hip little joint serving an aggressive lamb neck dish—Britt and Leo find their own restaurant thrown off-kilter. Britt becomes fascinated by a customer who arrives night after night, each time with a different dinner companion. Their pastry chef, Hector, quits, only to reappear at Harry's restaurant. And Leo finds himself falling for his executive chef-tempted to break the cardinal rule of restaurant ownership. Filled with hilarious insider detail—the one-upmanship of staff meals before the shift begins, the rivalry between bartender and hostess, the seedy bar where waitstaff and chefs go to drink off their workday—Bread and Butter is both an incisive novel of family and a gleeful romp through the inner workings of restaurant kitchens.
The Wood of Suicides
Woollett's narrator, Laurel Marks is a stunning, repressed seventeen-year-old schoolgirl. She also has a weakness for older men most of all her father, whom she'll do anything to impress. After his sudden death, Laurel is sent off to a boarding school where she shortly latches onto a new love-object: her English teacher, Mr. Hugh Steadman. Following an encounter in the woods, a flirtation develops between the two, marked by hopeful highs and suicidal lows, on Laurel's part. Their romance is eventually consummated one November afternoon, in the arbor where they first met. But Laurel's middle-aged teacher proves to be a more violent lover than she ever anticipated. Like the doomed chase between Daphne and Apollo, Steadman pursues and Laurel recedes. Woollett charts the course of their obsession with an unswerving eye, describing their unbridled desire for one another and the reckless and tortured course on which they have embarked and of Laurel's unshed grief for her father, whose absence will be either her salvation or her undoing.
New Science Fiction and Fantasy - March 2014
A Darkling Sea
On the planet Ilmatar, under a roof of ice a kilometer thick, a team of deep-sea diving scientists investigates the blind alien race that lives below. The Terran explorers have made an uneasy truce with the Sholen, their first extraterrestrial contact: so long as they don’t disturb the Ilmataran habitat, they’re free to conduct their missions in peace. But when Henri Kerlerec, media personality and reckless adventurer, ends up sliced open by curious Ilmatarans, tensions between Terran and Sholen erupt, leading to a diplomatic disaster that threatens to escalate to war. Against the backdrop of deep-sea guerrilla conflict, a new age of human exploration begins as alien cultures collide. Both sides seek the aid of the newly enlightened Ilmatarans. But what this struggle means for the natives—and the future of human exploration—is anything but certain.
Work Done for Hire
Wounded in combat and honorably discharged nine years ago, Jack Daley still suffers nightmares from when he served his country as a sniper, racking up sixteen confirmed kills. Now a struggling author, Jack accepts an offer to write a near-future novel about a serial killer, based on a Hollywood script outline. It’s an opportunity to build his writing career, and a future with his girlfriend, Kit Majors. But Jack’s other talent is also in demand. A package arrives on his doorstep containing a sniper rifle, complete with silencer and ammunition—and the first installment of a $100,000 payment to kill a “bad man.” The twisted offer is genuine. The people behind it are dangerous. They prove that they have Jack under surveillance. He can’t run. He can’t hide. And if he doesn’t take the job, Kit will be in the crosshairs instead.
The Folded Man
In Hill's frightening dystopian vision of Britain's near future, the state has collapsed, leaving marauding vigilante nationalist gangs to ravish the northern post-industrial wasteland. Some combination of Raymond Chandler, Trainspotting, and Philip K. Dick, Hill's unsettling novel is not an escapist fantasy, but rather a call to arms, a plea to change the future.
Area X has been cut off from the rest of the continent for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilization. The first expedition returned with reports of a pristine, Edenic landscape; all the members of the second expedition committed suicide; the third expedition died in a hail of gunfire as its members turned on one another; the members of the eleventh expedition returned as shadows of their former selves, and within months of their return, all had died of aggressive cancer. This is the twelfth expedition. Their group is made up of four women: an anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain and collect specimens; to record all their observations, scientific and otherwise, of their surroundings and of one another; and, above all, to avoid being contaminated by Area X itself. They arrive expecting the unexpected, and Area X delivers—they discover a massive topographic anomaly and life forms that surpass understanding—but it’s the surprises that came across the border with them, and the secrets the expedition members are keeping from one another, that change everything. Annihilation is the first volume in Jeff VanderMeer’s Southern Reach trilogy, which will be published throughout 2014: volume two (Authority) in June, and volume three (Acceptance) in September.
New Mysteries - March 2014
Tiger Shrimp Tango
Thanks to the growth of the Internet, America finds itself plagued by a noxious epidemic of ruthless scam artists. Where do they all come from? If you guessed 110 percent of them are spawned in Florida, you win the cigar. . . When a new digital scheme goes horribly awry—causing innocents to die and a young woman to go missing—only one person can set things right: obsessive Florida trivia buff and reluctant serial killer Serge Storms. Aided by his perpetually addled sidekick, Coleman, and latter-day noir private eye Mahoney, Serge launches a crusade to rid his beloved state of predators and save the girl. But Serge's mission is hampered by one pesky little detail: he's being tracked by a hit man dis-patched from his murky past. And all bets are off when Serge learns the same assassin is responsible for killing the love of his life years ago. It's not long before the two begin tracking each other around Florida in a frenzied Mobius loop. It's a dance only one can survive—it's the Tiger Shrimp Tango.
Who Thinks Evil
In London, 1892, a well-guarded young nobleman goes missing under distressing circumstances. The nobleman, one Baron Renfrew, is actually Prince Albert Victor, eldest grandson of Queen Victoria. He disappeared while he was visiting a house of ill repute, with bodyguards both inside and outside the building—with his inside bodyguard rendered unconscious and the trussed-up corpse of a brutally murdered young woman left behind. Hoping to find the missing Prince and to clear him of the murder, the royal family is looking for a brilliant—and, more importantly, discreet—investigator. Sherlock Holmes, alas, is out of the country so, at the suggestion of his brother Mycroft, they turn to the only man who just might be more brilliant—Dr. James Moriarty.
Love is in the air as freelance writer Jaine Austen begins a new job at the Dates of Joy matchmaking service—but between juggling her boss's demands, deflecting the advances of an eccentric suitor, and tracking down a calculating killer, she hardly has time to think about romance. . .
Lion Plays Rough
Leo Maxwell always lived in the shadow of his older brother Teddy, one of San Francisco's most ruthless and effective criminal defense lawyers. Then a gunman shot Teddy in the head. Although Teddy survived the shooting, he has been left disabled and dependent on Leo, now a criminal defense attorney practicing in Oakland. The Maxwell brothers are living together in Oakland while Leo, chafing in his role as junior attorney in his former sister-in-law's small criminal defense firm, is on the lookout for the big case that will make his reputation. He thinks he's found that when a mysterious woman nearly runs him down, then appears at his office to hire him to defend her brother on a murder charge. Bodies pile up as Leo closes in on his pursuers while at the same time, his pursuers close on him. Yet the truth is far more sinister, as Leo must confront the one person he never would have suspected...
New Horror - March 2014
With richly textured characters, scarred and haunted by the ghosts of those they loved most, Snowblind is spellbinding in scope and rooted deeply in classic storytelling. Christopher Golden has written a chilling masterpiece that is the best work of his career and a standout supernatural thriller.
Scott Sigler’s Infected shocked readers with a visceral, up-close account of physical metamorphosis and one man’s desperate fight for sanity and survival, as “Scary” Perry Dawsey suffered the impact of an alien pathogen’s early attempts at mass extinction. In the sequel Contagious, Sigler pulled back the camera and let the reader experience the frantic national response to this growing cataclysm. And now in Pandemic, the entire human race balances on the razor’s edge of annihilation, beset by an enemy that turns our own bodies against us, that changes normal people into psychopaths or transforms them into nightmares.
New World Fiction - March 2014
The Panda Theory
Gabriel is a stranger in a small Breton town. Nobody knows where he came from or why he's here. Yet his small acts of kindness, and exceptional cooking, quickly earn him acceptance from the locals. His new friends grow fond of Gabriel, who seems as reserved and benign as the toy panda he wins at the funfair. But unlike Gabriel, the fluffy toy is not haunted by his past . . . Pascal Garnier is a leading figure in contemporary French literature, in the tradition of Georges Simenon. He lived in the Ardeche. Pascal Garnier died in March 2010.
Karate Chop, Dorthe Nors’s acclaimed story collection, is the debut book in the collaboration between Graywolf Press and A Public Space. These fifteen compact stories are meticulously observed glimpses of everyday life that expose the ominous lurking under the ordinary. While his wife sleeps, a husband prowls the Internet, obsessed with female serial killers; a bureaucrat tries to reinvent himself, exposing goodness as artifice when he converts to Buddhism in search of power; a woman sits on the edge of the bed where her lover lies, attempting to locate a motive for his violence within her own self-doubt. Shifting between moments of violence (real and imagined) and mundane contemporary life, these stories encompass the complexity of human emotions, our capacity for cruelty as well as compassion. Not so much minimalist as stealthy, Karate Chop delivers its blows with an understatement that shows a master at work.
Time on My Hands
When does a game stop being a game? And what would cause a young boy to commit an act of savage violence? In Time on My Hands by Giorgio Vasta, the year is 1978, and a chilling drama is unfolding in Rome. Members of a leftist terrorist group known as the Red Brigades have kidnapped the former Italian prime minister, Aldo Moro, and are holding him in a secret prison, while broadcasting their demands to the public. Far from Rome, in Palermo, Sicily, a trio of eleven-year-old schoolboys are following Moro’s abduction with intense interest. To their minds, the terrorists are warriors, striking a blow at the stifling conformity and propriety of everyday Italian life. Just like the Red Brigades, the boys give themselves code names: Nimbus, Radius, and Flight. They shave their heads, develop a secret language, and begin a life of escalating crime in worshipful imitation of their heroes. But when Moro’s body is discovered in the trunk of a car, riddled with bullets, and as the stakes of the friends’ games grow higher, Nimbus, the most innocent of the three, must decide just how far he is willing to go.
New GLBT Fiction - March 2014
The Days of Anna Madrigal
Suspenseful, comic, and profoundly moving, the latest novel in Armistead Maupin's Tales of the City series follows one of modern literature's most beloved and indelible characters—Anna Madrigal, the transgender landlady of 28 Barbary Lane—as she embarks on a road trip that will take her deep into her complicated past.
Love Burns Bright: A Lifetime of Lesbian Romance
These stories of lesbian couples celebrating their lives and desire from some of the best romance and erotica writers today are heartfelt and best of all, hot! Some things really do get better with time...come discover the never-ending passion of lesbian love and desire in these tales of Love So Bright!
New African-American Fiction - March 2014
Why exactly Charley Bordelon’s late father left her eight hundred sprawling acres of sugarcane land in rural Louisiana is as mysterious as it was generous. Recognizing this as a chance to start over, Charley and her eleven-year-old daughter, Micah, say good-bye to Los Angeles. They arrive just in time for growing season but no amount of planning can prepare Charley for a Louisiana that’s mired in the past: as her judgmental but big-hearted grandmother tells her, cane farming is always going to be a white man’s business. As the sweltering summer unfolds, Charley must balance the overwhelming challenges of her farm with the demands of a homesick daughter, a bitter and troubled brother, and the startling desires of her own heart. Penguin has a rich tradition of publishing strong Southern debut fiction—from Sue Monk Kidd to Kathryn Stockett to Beth Hoffman. In Queen Sugar, we now have a debut from the African American point of view. Stirring in its storytelling of one woman against the odds and initimate in its exploration of the complexities of contemporary southern life, Queen Sugar is an unforgettable tale of endurance and hope.
Dare to Be Tempted
Aleesa Davis is happily married and deeply in love with her husband, a Special Forces officer serving in Afghanistan. But when Wade returns home from the war, he is psychologically injured, impotent, and struggling with the idea that he can't satisfy the woman he loves. Aleesa still loves her husband, but she's struggling with the loss of their once-great sex life. While Wade was at war, Aleesa kept a journal of her secret fantasies, all featuring her husband, that she planned to give him as a gift when he returned. But since his return, their sex life has been nonexistent and Aleesa puts the journal away, hoping their marriage will go back to normal at some point. When Aleesa heads off on a spa weekend, Wade finds the hidden diary and spends two days reading it, lost in his wife's fantasies. His emotions run the gamut from hurt and anger to gratitude and love. To show her his love, Wade decides to give Aleesa the ultimate gift: a weekend pass for her forty-fifth birthday. She has forty-eight hours to fulfill any sexual fantasy of her choosing, outside of their marriage, no questions asked. Will Aleesa accept the gift? What would a weekend pass do to their troubled marriage? Featuring stories for the grown and sexy, the Eden Davis series novels feature dynamic women in their forties and fifties, each dealing with life, love, and sex, working to become the confident, empowered women they were born to be.
Bad Girl Blvd
Luca Linn keeps a low-profile but her presence is felt throughout her old stomping grounds of New York. Nestled deep in the heart of Canarsie, Brooklyn is a five-block radius that the police have coined Bad Girl Blvd. BGB is the name of the heroin that has infiltrated the streets and has turned a once up and coming middle class neighborhood into a drug den. The mastermind, Luca, has seen success by allowing underage girls to carry out the most harsh elements of organized crime. But as her empire grows, she realizes the heat is just around the corner and one fateful decision could place her in a fight or flight situation.
After a lifetime spent scrubbing and mending for others, Ana Mae Futrell has passed away. Her siblings have reluctantly returned to their North Carolina hometown to bury the older sister they never really bothered to know. For instance, they didn't know Ana Mae had gathered a hefty savings account. They didn't know she'd won big on a lottery ticket. And they definitely didn't know she'd leave anything to any of them. There's just one catch: Ana Mae's millions will go only to the person who can interpret the clues she's left behind.
New Historical Fiction - March 2014
I Am Abraham: a Novel of Lincoln and the Civil War
Since publishing his first novel in 1964, Jerome Charyn has established himself as one of the most inventive and prolific literary chroniclers of the American landscape. Here in I Am Abraham, Charyn returns with an unforgettable portrait of Lincoln and the Civil War. Narrated boldly in the first person, I Am Abraham effortlessly mixes humor with Shakespearean-like tragedy, in the process creating an achingly human portrait of our sixteenth President.
Clement and Angel are fraternal twins separated at birth; they grow up in the same small, frontier logging town of Stillwater, Minnesota. Clement was left at the orphanage. Angel was adopted by the town’s richest couple, but is marked and threatened by her mother’s mental illness. They rarely meet, but Clement knows if he is truly in need, Angel will come to save him.Stillwater, near the Mississippi River and Canada, becomes an important stop on the Underground Railroad. As Clement and Angel grow up and the country marches to war, their lives are changed by many battles for freedom and by losses in the struggle for independence, large and small. Stillwater reveals the hardscrabble lives of pioneers, nuns, squaws, fur trappers, loggers, runaway slaves and freedmen, outlaws and people of conscience, all seeking a better, freer, more prosperous future. It is a novel about mothers, about siblings, about the ways in which we must take care of one another and let go of one another. And it’s brought to us in Nicole Helget’s winning, gorgeous prose.
I Always Loved You: a Story of Mary Cassatt and Edgar Degas
A novel of Mary Cassatt and Edgar Degas's great romance from the New York Times bestselling author of My Name Is Mary Sutter.The young Mary Cassatt never thought moving to Paris after the Civil War to be an artist was going to be easy, but when, after a decade of work, her submission to the Paris Salon is rejected, Mary's fierce determination wavers. Her father is begging her to return to Philadelphia to find a husband before it is too late, her sister Lydia is falling mysteriously ill, and worse, Mary is beginning to doubt herself. Then one evening a friend introduces her to Edgar Degas and her life changes forever. Years later she will learn that he had begged for the introduction, but in that moment their meeting seems a miracle. So begins the defining period of her life and the most tempestuous of relationships. In I Always Loved You, Robin Oliveira brilliantly re-creates the irresistible world of Belle Époque Paris, writing with grace and uncommon insight into the passion and foibles of the human heart.
The Swan Gondola
A lush and thrilling romantic fable about two lovers set against the scandalous burlesques, midnight séances, and aerial ballets of the 1898 Omaha World's Fair. On the eve of the 1898 Omaha World's Fair, Ferret Skerritt, ventriloquist by trade, con man by birth, isn't quite sure how it will change him or his city. Omaha still has the marks of a filthy Wild West town, even as it attempts to achieve the grandeur and respectability of nearby Chicago. But when he crosses paths with the beautiful and enigmatic Cecily, his whole purpose shifts and the fair becomes the backdrop to their love affair. One of a traveling troupe of actors that has descended on the city, Cecily works in the Midway's Chamber of Horrors, where she loses her head hourly on a guillotine playing Marie Antoinette. And after closing, she rushes off, clinging protectively to a mysterious carpetbag, never giving Ferret a second glance. But a moonlit ride on the swan gondola, a boat on the lagoon of the New White City, changes everything, and the fair's magic begins to take its effect. From the critically acclaimed author of The Coffins of Little Hope, The Swan Gondola is a transporting read, reminiscent of Water for Elephants or The Night Circus.
New Short Stories - March 2014
The seven short stories in David Brunicardi's debut collection transport readers to places both natural and supernatural. Set predominately in the San Francisco Bay Area, each resonant tale follows characters whose lives are dominated by events that are beyond their control. A young woman on a camping trip whose world is unraveling before her eyes, a man struggling to protect his wife from a rapidly deteriorating community, an outcast returning to the abandoned town that he wishes he could forget - these characters and more are brought to life in the Outside Lands.
How to Best Avoid Dying
In this devilishly clever collection of short fiction, renowned humorist Owen Egerton leads us on a wildly surprising, darkly comic, and often heart-wrenching ride into the terrible beauty of life's end. With razor wit and compassionate insight, Egerton has a crafted a work that brilliantly explores the pain and wonder of life, knowing that with the turn of any corner death could be panhandling for your soul.
Tales from the Eternal Cafe
Tales from the Eternal Café, author Janet Hamill's debut short story collection, offers a thrilling, unwinding trail of tales that excite and mystify; drift then deliver a powerful punch that readers will devour. Like Karen Russell, George Saunders, José Luis Borges and Isabel Allende, Janet Hamill's writing lures readers willingly into a labyrinth of surprise and suspense, with humor lurking just on the other side of pathos; a tear just moments away from bright, well-deserved laughter. The seventeen crisp stories included in Tales from the Eternal Café offer a plethora of fascinating characters and scenarios: a brief memoir from Baudelaire's publisher; a letter from a writer who knows he is going mad; an exasperated Italian film director unable to inspire Europe's most famous actor during the shooting of a brothel scene. The book includes an introduction by the author's lifelong friend, singer-songwriter-poet-author Patti Smith, whose book Just Kids, received the National Book Award for Nonfiction in 2010.
The Rise and Fall of the Scandamerican Domestic
Merkner's first short story collection provides a voyeuristic vantage point on fractured lives. He has the striking ability to turn the familiar into the uncanny and morph the comfortable into the weird, and, clearly, he's at home in that strange realm. In most of the stories, we witness lives at the moment an individual's identity begins to fray, sometimes slowly and sometimes swiftly. These changes are both painful and thought provoking to witness through the book's unrelenting first-person perspective. At times Merkner's prose evokes unease, but more often it encourages a chuckle, and his plot twists will leave even the most seasoned reader surprised.
New Romance - March 2014
Do or Die: Reluctant Heroes
Navy SEAL Ian Dunn went rogue in a big way when he turned his talents to a lawless life of jewel heists and con jobs. Or so the world has been led to believe. In reality, the former Special Ops warrior is still fighting for good, leading a small band of freelance covert operatives who take care of high-stakes business in highly unofficial ways. That makes Ian the hands-down choice when the U.S. government must breach a heavily guarded embassy and rescue a pair of children kidnapped by their own father, a sinister foreign national willing to turn his kids into casualties.
A Girl Walks into a Bar: Your Fantasy, Your Rules
You make the rules. You're at one of the hottest bars in town, all dressed up for a fabulous girls' night out with your best friend, when she cancels. What do you do now? In this novel, YOU make the decisions. Will you do body shots with a rock star? Cozy up to the hot bartender? Follow a mysterious woman to a rather unusual exhibition? Investigate a suave millionaire's box of tricks? Take a joyride with a buff bodyguard? Or maybe what you want is closer to home than you realize. . . . So many options. . . . All you have to do is choose.
Searching for Someday
In charming Verily, New York, Kate Seymour has a smashing success with Kinnections, the matchmaking service she owns with her two best girlfriends. But Kate's more than a savvy businesswoman: She's gifted with a secret power, a jolting touch that signals when love's magic is at work. It rocked her when she picked up a strange volume of love spells in the town's used bookstore . . . and it zapped her again when she encountered Slade Montgomery, the hot-tempered—and hot-bodied—divorce lawyer who storms into Kinnections demanding proof that playing Cupid won't destroy his vulnerable sister, Kate's newest client. The only way to convince this cynic that she's no fraud, and that love is no mirage, is for Kate to meet his audacious challenge: find him his dream woman. Can Kate keep their relationship strictly business when her electrifying attraction nearly knocked her off her feet? Or has the matchmaker finally met her match?
New Inspirational Fiction - March 2014
Simon Orwell is a brilliant student whose life has taken a series of wrong turns. At the point of giving up on his dreams, he gets a call from an old professor who has discovered a breakthrough in a device that would create unlimited energy, and he needs Simon's help. But once he crosses the border, nothing goes as the young man planned. The professor has been killed and Simon is assaulted and nearly killed by members of a powerful drug cartel. Now he must take refuge in the only place that will help him, a local orphanage. There, Simon meets Harold Finch, the orphanage proprietor who walked away from a lucrative career with NASA and consulting Fortune 500 companies to serve a higher cause. With Harold's help, Simon sets out on a quest to uncover who killed the professor and why. In due time, he will discover secrets to both the world-changing device and his own unlimited potential.
I'm in Love with a Church Girl
Miles Montego is a guy who has it all—cars, boats, good looks, a mansion, money, women, and a past. Miles is a retired high-level drug trafficker who has gone legitimate. Even though he’s turned over a new leaf, the DEA can’t seem to let him out of their sights. Miles’ extreme loyalty to his circle of friends and former colleagues, lead him to try and sway them to legal forms of business. When Miles meets the girl of his dreams, Vanessa, she isn’t his usual type, as she is a “Church Girl.” Miles and Vanessa embark on a fairytale romance, while God uses Vanessa as way to help Miles choose to hold on to his past or let go and let God have his way with his life.
All for a Story
Monica Brisbaine loves being a modern girl in the Roaring Twenties. Her job writing a gossip column allows her access to all the local speakeasys in Washington, D.C., where she can dance the night away—and find fodder for her next article. But when the owner of the Capitol Chatter newspaper passes away, Monica wonders what will happen to her job, and the lifestyle she loves.
Beautiful Rachel wants nothing more than for her older half sister Leah to wed and move out of their household. Maybe then she would not feel so scrutinized, so managed, so judged. Plain Leah wishes her father Laban would find a good man for her, someone who would love her alone and make her his only bride. Unbeknownst to either of them, Jacob is making his way to their home, trying to escape a past laced with deceit and find the future God has promised him. But the past comes back to haunt Jacob when he finds himself on the receiving end of treachery and the victim of a cruel bait and switch. The man who wanted only one woman will end up with sisters who have never gotten along and now must spend the rest of their lives sharing a husband. In the power struggles that follow, only one woman will triumph . . . or will she? Combining meticulous research with her own imaginings, Jill Eileen Smith not only tells one of the most famous love stories of all time but will manage to surprise even those who think they know the story inside and out.