Sponsored by Candlewick Press
Welcome to ancient Greece as only Newbery Medal-winning storyteller Laura Amy Schlitz can conjure it. Bound by destiny, Thracian slave Melisto and spoiled aristocrat Rhaskos—Amber and Clay—never meet in the flesh. By the time they do, one of them is a ghost. But the thin line between life and death is just one boundary their unlikely friendship crosses. Blending verse, prose, and illustrated archaeological “artifacts,” Amber and Clay is a tale that vividly transcends time, an indelible reminder of the power of language to illuminate the over- and underworlds of human history.
It’s Tuesday! (Tues-yay?) How was your weekend? Did you read anything good? Is anyone out there watching the Olympics? I dragged my old bones out of bed at the very early hour of 8am (lol) on Sunday to watch the USA play France in basketball. I honestly think it was the first time I’ve watched a summer Olympic event since Flo-Jo was competing. (She was so awesome.💔)
Moving on to books: I am excited to get my hands on a lot of today’s releases. At the top of my to-buy list are How to Find Your Way in the Dark by Derek B. Miller, The Minister Primarily by John Oliver Killens, and Summer Fun by Jeanne Thornton. And speaking of today’s great books, for this week’s episode of All the Books! Patricia and I discussed some of the wonderful books that we’ve read, such as Not a Happy Family, I Am Not Starfire, A Song Everlasting, and more.
And now, it’s time for everyone’s favorite gameshow: AHHHHHH MY TBR! Here are today’s contestants:
Godspeed by Nickolas Butler
I’m a big fan of Butler’s work, and this one continued to hold my admiration. I love his gritty midwest storylines. This one is about three down-on-their-luck carpenters who are offered a ridiculous amount of money to finish building a house in the mountains outside of Jackson, Wyoming. The catch? The project must be finished in an almost impossible amount of time. Despite their reservations—Why wasn’t the house completed by the original builders? Who is the mysterious owner?—the men decide to take on the project, but bad luck and tragic consequences follow. It’s a frantic, dark tale of friendship and greed. It’s perfect for fans of Daniel Woodrell, Michael Farris Smith, and David Joy.
Backlist bump: The Hearts of Men by Nickolas Butler
Breathing Fire: Female Inmate Firefighters on the Front Line of California’s Wildfires by Jaime Lowe
And for you fans of nonfiction that cover an aspect of the world you’ve never considered before, this is a fascinating, devastating book. The size of California’s wildfires and the number of days they burn grows each year. Roughly 30 percent of the on-the-ground crews fighting the fires in the state now are inmates. Lowe spent years interviewing dozens of women who risked their lives for the state, as well as captains, family and friends, correctional officers, and camp commanders. She discusses the dangers of the work, for which the inmates earn a dollar a day, and the politics involved in such a program.
Backlist bump: Fire Season: Field Notes from a Wilderness Lookout by Philip Connors
The Man Ban by Nicola Marsh
And here is an easy, breezy romance novel for those of you looking for a lighter pick today. After a terrible breakup, Harper Ryland decides to swear off dating and focus on her career. So of course, that’s when a handsome doctor appears in her life. At first, everything about Manny Gomes rubs her the wrong way, but when he appears while she’s working out of the country and she gets to know him better, Harper decides her ban doesn’t apply to international travel. But can they make things work when she returns home? (Admittedly, Harper’s ‘man ban’ doesn’t last very long, so the title is kinda silly, but the book will take your mind off the outside world for a while.)
Backlist bump: The Friend Zone by Abby Jimenez
Say it with me now: YAY BOOKS. Thank you, as always, for joining me each week as I rave about books! I am wishing the best for all of you in whatever situation you find yourself in now. – XO, Liberty