This intense 770-page tome is reminiscent of the best of horror/science fiction classics such as THE STAND, UNDER THE DOME and THE ROAD but delivered in a way that only Chuck Wendig can write. One day the world faces extinction from an unknown source and seemingly normal people from every part of the country walk away from their family as if sleepwalking to an unknown destination. You cannot stop them without hurting them and others so many join them on their walk acting as shepherds. As the epidemic grows and the CDC grows more puzzled, tensions rise and give way to a scary scenario - is it better to die from the disease or defending the walkers from alarmists? What would have been pure science fiction 20 or 30 years ago now seems horribly plausible- hidden deadly pathogens, mind controlling A.I. and militants on a killing spree. For the main characters in this book, most of whom are normal and likable despite their flaws, the hope is that they can solve it before the end of the world as they know it. I for one would love a sequel.
In April of 2014 a militant Islamic group called the Boko Haram abducted 276 young girls after setting fire to the school they attended in Chibok, Nigeria. A handful of the girls escaped during the early hours but the majority were taken far from their home, made to live under horrible conditions, verbally abused and repeatedly told they were going home only to find it a lie. Many of these young girls were not brought home until years later and the fate of quite a few of them is still unknown. Isha Sesay is the CNN reporter who heard about these girls early on and made a commitment to them and their families to never give up searching for them and working towards their release. In an amazing lack of coverage by other sources, red tape government policies and the uncertain dealings with Boko Haram leaders, these young women held together and remained strong. The anguish, fear, and mistreatment at the hands of their captors would have been enough to cripple most but these young women had a strong faith and each other. Some gave in, converted and married Boko Haram men but the majority refused to convert and held their ground. A secondary part of the book is devoted to the author's own upbringing, her African roots and her mother's health disaster that was the only thing to take her away from getting the girls back. It is a heroic story of faith, sisterhood and the tireless journey of both the girls, their families and the reporter who wouldn't give up on them.
A novice journalist comes to the Bahamas to cover the society pages and by that I mean the Duke and Duchess of Windsor who is acting as the Governor of the English colony. They are in the middle of a war but in the warm sea breezes and glittering parties that are held, you would never know it. Nassau is crawling with secrets and none more than the Windsors and their friends. One of those friends is Benedict Thorpe, a mysterious man full of secrets of his own and one that Lulu can't help but fall for.
The second story goes back to WWI in Europe and gives us insight into Thorpe's past and how the stories are entwined. Beatriz Williams is a master storyteller who combines fascinating storylines with unforgettable characters. A must for summer getaway reading.
Jake Buchannan finds himself seated next to Clara Stowe on a flight to Denver. Each swears they know each other yet other than a couple of similarities, they are unable to place how and where. They actually have much more in common than being orphans and having memory problems which they will discover after setting foot in Denver. Someone has brought them together to jog their memory about an event that happened years ago and that someone doesn't care what they have to do to get answers. It is a tightly twisted psychological thriller and one that you can't put down til the end. For fans of government conspiracies and the show "Homecoming", this will pull you in every direction possible.
A classic Americana tale of immigrant families who settled the lands of the Pacific Northwest. The Finns who ran from Russian oppression and the Swedes who came looking for an opportunity are featured as they work to create a logging empire in the early 1900's Washington. Old customs and racial divides were not forgotten in this new land of great natural beauty as well as the chance to conquer the impossible and make something of yourself. At the center of the tale is the radical and independent Aino Koski and her siblings along with the two men in her life that want to claim her as their own. The author does a remarkable job of syncing the lush and dangerous countryside to the tough dangerous but very emotional people who try to tame it. This book is an important addition to the immigrant experience and how it took independent thinkers who were willing to work hard at great risk to break the cycle of only the elite few reaching success.
A sweet apartment-sitting job turns into a remake of "Rosemary's Baby" in this frightening tale. Jules gets offered a too good apartment-sitting job in a posh old building that she has loved since childhood. Sure, there are a lot of rules to follow and her life will get a bit more complicated but she takes the job. As she begins to fall into a routine and gets to know the residents of the Bartholomew, things seem a bit off. As she does some research on the building and its famous inhabitants over the years, she starts to want out of the deal. The problem is that part of the deal is that you can't leave. She is afraid to stay and more afraid to leave. Creepy, scary and a one-sitting read, this book will have you checking lease agreements and your neighbors much more thoroughly.
Motherhood, men at the top and total corporate mayhem are at the forefront of this debut. A group of female executives struggle to manage their busy lives - they juggle friendships, mentoring other younger associates, exhaustion from motherhood, husbands and a whole lot of work-related shenanigans. Finally, it is all too much and when an event happens after some serious accusations come to light these women must deal with their "fight or flight" impulses. A must for the "Lean In" generation who will doubtless shake their heads in acknowledgment and their fists in rage. This is an edgy novel - a corporate "Big Little Lies" meets "9 to 5" where the meek do not inherit the corner office.
Meet the Sorenson Family. They are a handsome happy couple with four well-adjusted daughters, at least to the outside world. Each daughter has their own hangups but most center on their desire to replicate their parent's perfect marriage and that is the problem - no marriage is perfect. Claire Lombardo dissects the great American family in a very warm and human way so that we all see ourselves from the kid's point of view or that of the parents. This is such a satisfying read that after the last page and a contented sigh I didn't know who I wanted to call first, my daughters or my mom. There is much to discuss in these complex relationships making it a solid choice for book clubs. Most of all, there is such perfection in all their imperfections.
Coco Chanel and her rival Elsa Schiaparelli are at war as their beloved Paris steels itself for war and German occupation. They will do just about anything to capture the couture crown as well as survive in this deadly game. With the war on their doorstep, they, as well as their friends, clients, and employees, must choose sides and that choice may determine their survival. This is an intimate look at pre-war Paris and all the glitter and the reality for some. The clothes, the parties and of course in its center the glamorous Ritz. Jeanne Macklin expertly blends fact with the persona of the times - false gaiety and the tough bravado of these women who were seemingly in control of their lives yet in reality always one step away from disaster. This is the perfect companion to Melanie Benjamin's MISTRESS OF THE RITZ with the crossover characters. I guarantee that after reading this you will look up their designs - breathtaking.
This legal thriller from Sweden will take you from one end of the spectrum to the other and leave you twisting on the line like a newly caught salmon. You will form opinions about the participants in this murder investigation and then with whiplash speed, form new opinions. A teenage girl with anger issues and a habit of getting into trouble is hauled into police custody after a businessman is found stabbed to death in a park. Stella is 18 and has a solid alibi putting her at home thanks to her pastor father. Her mother, an attorney, finds her an old colleague to represent her. They are in shock, Stella's best friend since childhood is in shock but they all have nagging doubts. How far will you go to protect your child? How long can you last before the doubts begin? A first-rate pulse-pounding legal battle that asks questions we hope we never have to think about. It starts off with a bang, ends with a shocker, and keeps your heart rate up the whole time. Fans of DEFENDING JACOB will want to read this.
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