August 17, 2021 | kimba
In the ballrooms and drawing rooms of Regency London, rules abound. From their earliest days, children of aristocrats learn how to address an earl and curtsey before a prince--while other dictates of the ton are unspoken yet universally understood. A proper duke should be imperious and aloof. A young, marriageable lady should be amiable...but not too amiable. Daphne Bridgerton has always failed at the latter. The fourth of eight siblings in her close-knit family, she has formed friendships with the most eligible young men in London. Everyone likes Daphne for her kindness and wit. But no one truly desires her. She is simply too deuced honest for that, too unwilling to play the romantic games that captivate gentlemen. Amiability is not a characteristic shared by Simon Basset, Duke of Hastings. Recently returned to England from abroad, he intends to shun both marriage and society--just as his callous father shunned Simon throughout his painful childhood. Yet an encounter with his best friend's sister offers another option. If Daphne agrees to a fake courtship, Simon can deter the mamas who parade their daughters before him. Daphne, meanwhile, will see her prospects and her reputation soar. The plan works like a charm--at first. But amid the glittering, gossipy, cut-throat world of London's elite, there is only one certainty: love ignores every rule...
Afi Tekple has her focus on mastering her skills as a seamstress in a small town in Ghana, where she is happy with a simple life. She lives with her widowed mother who one day proposes an arranged marriage to a wealthy man named Elikem Ganyo, who is too busy to attend their eventual wedding and sends his brother in as a stand-in. The Ganyo family convinces Afi that the woman Elikem is currently dating has a wicked hold on him, and marriage to Afi will help bring him back around. After she moves to Accra to live in the flat provided by Elikem, Afi learns that the situation is more complicated than the family initially led on. In her debut novel, Medie writes with a precise rhythm that builds the reader's anticipation. Themes like deception, ambition, love, and values drench the pages with conflict that evolves into an emotional rollercoaster. Essentially, Afi's fight for love leads her down the path of boundary-setting and living life on her own terms.
A sweeping, masterful debut about a daughter's fateful choice, a mother motivated by her own past, and a family legacy that begins in Cuba before either of them were born. In present-day Miami, Jeanette is battling addiction. Daughter of Carmen, a Cuban immigrant, she is determined to learn more about her family history from her reticent mother and makes the snap decision to take in the daughter of a neighbor detained by ICE. Carmen, still wrestling with the trauma of displacement, must process her difficult relationship with her own mother while trying to raise a wayward Jeanette. Steadfast in her quest for understanding, Jeanette travels to Cuba to see her grandmother and reckon with secrets from the past destined to erupt. From 19th-century cigar factories to present-day detention centers, from Cuba to Mexico, Of Women and Salt is a kaleidoscopic portrait of betrayals-personal and political, self-inflicted and those done by others-that have shaped the lives of these extraordinary women. A haunting meditation on the choices of mothers, the legacy of the memories they carry, and the tenacity of women who choose to tell their stories despite those who wish to silence them, this is more than a diaspora story; it is a story of America's most tangled, honest, human roots.
A young chaplain at a large medical center fears her "soul is broken," though she hasn't subscribed to any formal religion in years-she's far too busy tending to the souls of her patients to do anything about her own. But strange things happen over the course of a single night shift, and interactions with patients in various states of consciousness and with various relationships to spirituality give her insight into her own life as they pinpoint our most human vulnerabilities and impulses. There's the former airport employee who never flew and, in his last moments of life, wants her to speak to him as if he's in a plane that's about to take off. The fifteen-year-old surfer who is the sole survivor of a rock-climbing accident and must now learn how to surf in his head. A frail elderly woman who has had a stroke and is unable to speak but does not want to be admitted. And the chaplain's companions: a student researching out-of-body experiences, and a dog that may or may not be a ghost. Though the novel unfolds over the course of a single night, Cooney renders the interior lives of the chaplain and her patients with great depth, evoking the challenges and rewards of solidarity in moments of fear and pain. A tender, intelligent novel that exudes wisdom and warmth and grants the most challenging moments of our human lives-those in which our bodies begin to fail us-a shimmer of magical possibility.
Parade Malibu: August 1983. It's the day of Nina Riva's annual end-of-summer party, and anticipation is at a fever pitch. Everyone wants to be around the famous Rivas: Nina, the talented surfer and supermodel; brothers Jay and Hud, one a championship surfer, the other a renowned photographer; and their adored baby sister, Kit. Together the siblings are a source of fascination in Malibu and the world over--especially as the offspring of the legendary singer Mick Riva. The only person not looking forward to the party of the year is Nina herself, who never wanted to be the center of attention, and who has also just been very publicly abandoned by her pro tennis player husband. Oh, and maybe Hud--because it is long past time for him to confess something to the brother from whom he's been inseparable since birth. Jay, on the other hand, is counting the minutes until nightfall, when the girl he can't stop thinking about promised she'll be there. And Kit has a couple secrets of her own--including a guest she invited without consulting anyone. By midnight the party will be completely out of control. By morning, the Riva mansion will have gone up in flames. But before that first spark in the early hours before dawn, the alcohol will flow, the music will play, and the loves and secrets that shaped this family's generations will all come rising to the surface. Malibu Rising is a story about one unforgettable night in the life of a family: the night they each have to choose what they will keep from the people who made them . . . and what they will leave behind.
December 1926: England unleashes the largest manhunt in its history. The object of the search is not an escaped convict or a war criminal, but the missing wife of a WWI hero, up-and-coming mystery author Agatha Christie. When her car is found wrecked, empty, and abandoned near a natural spring, the country is in a frenzy. Eleven days later, Agatha reappears, claiming amnesia. She provides no answers for her disappearance. That is...until she writes a very strange book about a missing woman, a murderous husband, and a plan to expose the truth. What role did her unfaithful husband play? And what was he not telling investigators? The mystery of Mrs. Christie explores one strong woman's successful endeavor to take her history into her own hands.
The Vignes twin sisters will always be identical. But after growing up together in a small, southern black community and running away at age sixteen, it's not just the shape of their daily lives that is different as adults, it's everything: their families, their communities, their racial identities. Ten years later, one sister lives with her black daughter in the same southern town she once tried to escape. The other secretly passes for white, and her white husband knows nothing of her past. Still, even separated by so many miles and just as many lies, the fates of the twins remain intertwined. What will happen to the next generation, when their own daughters' storylines intersect? Weaving together multiple strands and generations of this family, from the Deep South to California, from the 1950s to the 1990s, Brit Bennett produces a story that is at once a riveting, emotional family story and a brilliant exploration of the American history of passing. Looking well beyond issues of race, The Vanishing Half considers the lasting influence of the past as it shapes a person's decisions, desires, and expectations, and explores some of the multiple reasons and realms in which people sometimes feel pulled to live as something other than their origins. As with her New York Times-bestselling debut The Mothers, Brit Bennett offers an engrossing page-turner about family and relationships that is immersive and provocative, compassionate and wise.
From beloved, award-winning poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil comes a debut work of nonfiction--a collection of essays about the natural world, and the way its inhabitants can teach, support, and inspire us. As a child, Nezhukumatathil called many places home: the grounds of a Kansas mental institution, where her Filipina mother was a doctor; the open skies and tall mountains of Arizona, where she hiked with her Indian father; and the chillier climes of western New York and Ohio. But no matter where she was transplanted--no matter how awkward the fit or forbidding the landscape--she was able to turn to our world's fierce and funny creatures for guidance. "What the peacock can do," she tells us, "is remind you of a home you will run away from and run back to all your life." The axolotl teaches us to smile, even in the face of unkindness; the touch-me-not plant shows us how to shake off unwanted advances; the narwhal demonstrates how to survive in hostile environments. Even in the strange and the unlovely, Nezhukumatathil finds beauty and kinship. For it is this way with wonder: it requires that we are curious enough to look past thedistractions in order to fully appreciate the world's gifts. Warm, lyrical, and gorgeously illustrated by Fumi Nakamura, World of Wonders is a book of sustenance and joy.