Book Scoop May 12- May 20, 2017

May 20, 2017
Book Scoop, InToriLex
Book Industry News, Links to Sift Through & Short Stories

HEADLINES


Lovecraft Country
The critically acclaimed cult novelist makes visceral the terrors of life in Jim Crow America and its lingering effects in this brilliant and wondrous work of the imagination that melds historical fiction, pulp noir, and Lovecraftian horror and fantasy

Chicago, 1954. When his father Montrose goes missing, twenty-two year old Army veteran Atticus Turner embarks on a road trip to New England to find him, accompanied by his Uncle George—publisher of The Safe Negro Travel Guide—and his childhood friend Letitia. On their journey to the manor of Mr. Braithwhite—heir to the estate that owned Atticus’s great grandmother—they encounter both mundane terrors of white America and malevolent spirits that seem straight out of the weird tales George devours.

At the manor, Atticus discovers his father in chains, held prisoner by a secret cabal named the Order of the Ancient Dawn—led by Samuel Braithwhite and his son Caleb—which has gathered to orchestrate a ritual that shockingly centers on Atticus. And his one hope of salvation may be the seed of his—and the whole Turner clan’s—destruction.

A chimerical blend of magic, power, hope, and freedom that stretches across time, touching diverse members of one black family, Lovecraft Country is a devastating kaleidoscopic portrait of racism—the terrifying specter that continues to haunt us today.


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Best Short Story Collections to Read Now 
The World to Come
~Amazon~ 
These ten stories ring with voices belonging to--among others--English Arctic explorers in one of history's most nightmarish expeditions, a young contemporary American negotiating the shockingly underreported hazards of our crude-oil trains, eighteenth-century French balloonists inventing manned flight, and two mid-nineteenth-century housewives trying to forge a connection despite their isolation on the frontier of settlement. In each case the personal is the political as these characters face everything from the emotional pitfalls of everyday life to historic catastrophes on a global scale. In his fifth collection, Shepard makes each of these wildly various worlds his own, and never before has he delineated anything like them so powerfully.


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Waiting on Wednesday Issue #13: Warcross (WarCross #1) by Marie Lu

May 17, 2017
InToriLex, Waiting on Wednesday, Weekly Feature
"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, Hosted at Breaking the SpineIt spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
Warcross, Marie Lu, Waiting on Wednesday, InToriLex
Warcross (Warcross, #1)
~Amazon~
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu—when a game called Warcross takes the world by storm, one girl hacks her way into its dangerous depths.

For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. Needing to make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.

Convinced she’s going to be arrested, Emika is shocked when instead she gets a call from the game’s creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year’s tournament in order to uncover a security problem . . . and he wants Emika for the job. With no time to lose, Emika’s whisked off to Tokyo and thrust into a world of fame and fortune that she’s only dreamed of. But soon her investigation uncovers a sinister plot, with major consequences for the entire Warcross empire.

In this sci-fi thriller, #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu conjures an immersive, exhilarating world where choosing who to trust may be the biggest gamble of all.
OUT SEPTEMBER 12, 2017
I have only read the Legend Series by Marie Lu, but I enjoyed all of the action and intrigue that made the series good. I'm excited to read about a young female spy hacker and waiting to see how technology will help the story along. Marie Lu has always to included  diverse characters in her books and I'm sure this new series will feature more. 
 
What are You Anxiously Waiting On?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

I write young adult novels, and have a special love for dystopian books. Ironically, I was born in 1984. Before becoming a full-time writer, I was an Art Director at a video game company. Now I shuffle around at home and talk to myself a lot. :)

I graduated from the University of Southern California in '06 and currently live in LA, where I spend my time stuck on the freeways.

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Monday Musings: Black Non-Compliance 5/15/17

May 15, 2017

LIFE UPDATE

Yesterday was Mother's day and I was happy to spend it with my Grandmother, Mom and many aunts that helped raise me. Seeing family always brings some perspective and humbles me to keep trying my best in everything that I do. While I was able to tackle a fair amount of reading this weekend, I'm still not back to the reading pace that I like. After spending months just grappling with a government that is actively trying to erode civil rights, I'm still trying to balance civic engagement with everything else.

RESISTANCE BEGINS WITH YOU

I don't know when Congress, the Republican Leadership or Americans will reach their breaking point with this administration. But the firing of FBI Director James Comey followed by the President admitting that he fired him to stop the Russian Investigation aimed at his campaign should be the final straw. Country before party is how democracy works and I worry the more we allow Trump to go unchecked the further we get from deomocracy. Please continue to call your Senators and demand an independent special prosecutor to maintain the integrity of the Russian Investigation.

Black Non-Compliance Punishable by Death

Jordan Edwards is the latest victim of a scared white man with a gun reacting out of fear. The officer has been charged with murder but it is more surprising than assuring. Officer's who have killed in the past, have enjoyed administrative leave and the ability to return to work.

When the Supreme Court justified shooting someone running away, in Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1 (under the Fourth Amendment, when a law enforcement officer is pursuing a fleeing suspect, he or she may not use deadly force to prevent escape unless "the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others") this gave police officers the explanation they needed to justify shooting black men who don't comply. 

Unfortunately most of the United States see's a black male as a threat,  the Willie Horton effect continues to plague our society and overcrowd our prisons. The FBI reported this year that law enforcement has been infiltrated by white supremacists. Private prisons has made it profitable to criminalize and lock up brown and black bodies. Jordan Edwards was a fifteen year old victim of racism, and we shouldn't call it something more palatable. By continuing to rationalize the casualty's of racism, we ignore the human costs. There will be more victims and we must fight for racial equity, remembering that for most non-compliance to racism and authority will have far less grave consequences.

RACE IN THE BOOK WORLD



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Book Scoop May 5- May 12, 2017

May 12, 2017
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 In these dark times, remember to watch what our President does not what he says!

HEADLINES





~Amazon~
Smart, warm, uplifting, the story of an out-of-the-ordinary heroine whose deadpan weirdness and unconscious wit make for an irresistible journey as she realizes the only way to survive is to open her heart.

Meet Eleanor Oliphant: she struggles with appropriate social skills and tends to say exactly what she’s thinking. That, combined with her unusual appearance (scarred cheek, tendency to wear the same clothes year in, year out), means that Eleanor has become a creature of habit (to say the least) and a bit of a loner. Nothing is missing in her carefully timetabled life of avoiding social interactions, where weekends are punctuated by frozen pizza, vodka, and phone chats with Mummy. 

But everything changes when Eleanor meets Raymond, the bumbling and deeply unhygienic IT guy from her office. When she and Raymond together save Sammy, an elderly gentleman who has fallen on the sidewalk, the three become the kind of friends who rescue each other from the lives of isolation they have each been living. And it is Raymond’s big heart that will ultimately help Eleanor find the way to repair her own profoundly damaged one.

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine is the story of a quirky yet lonely woman whose social misunderstandings and deeply ingrained routines could be changed forever—if she can bear to confront the secrets she has avoided all her life. But if she does, she’ll learn that she, too, is capable of finding friendship—and even love—after all.

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We Love You, Charlie Freeman
~Amazon~ 
The Freeman family--Charles, Laurel, and their daughters, teenage Charlotte and nine-year-old Callie--have been invited to the Toneybee Institute to participate in a research experiment. They will live in an apartment on campus with Charlie, a young chimp abandoned by his mother. The Freemans were selected because they know sign language; they are supposed to teach it to Charlie and welcome him as a member of their family. But when Charlotte discovers the truth about the institute’s history of questionable studies, the secrets of the past invade the present in devious ways.

The power of this shattering novel resides in Greenidge’s undeniable storytelling talents. What appears to be a story of mothers and daughters, of sisterhood put to the test, of adolescent love and grown-up misconduct, and of history’s long reach, becomes a provocative and compelling exploration of America’s failure to find a language to talk about race.



Best Books to Truly Understand Mexico
Among Strange Victims
~Amazon~
Rodrigo likes his vacant lot, its resident chicken, and being left alone. But when passivity finds him accidentally married to Cecilia, he trades Mexico City for the sun-bleached desolation of his hometown and domestic life with Cecilia for the debauched company of a poet, a philosopher, and Micaela, whose allure includes the promise of time travel. Earthy, playful, and sly, Among Strange Victims is a psychedelic ode to the pleasures of not measuring up.

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“Together” by Jess Arndt
  "Meanwhile" by Sasha Fletcher
“Miss Snowfall” by Sofia Samatar

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Waiting on Wednesday Issue #12: The Arsonist by Stephanie Oakes

May 10, 2017
"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, Hosted at Breaking the SpineIt spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

The Arsonist
Molly Mavity is not a normal teenage girl. For one thing, her father is a convicted murderer, and his execution date is fast approaching. For another, Molly refuses to believe that her mother is dead, and she waits for the day when they’ll be reunited . . . despite all evidence that this will never happen.

 Pepper Yusef is not your average teenage boy. A Kuwaiti immigrant with epilepsy, serious girl problems, and the most useless seizure dog in existence, he has to write a series of essays over the summer . . . or fail out of school. And Ava Dreyman—the brave and beautiful East German resistance fighter whose murder at seventeen led to the destruction of the Berlin Wall—is unlike anyone you’ve met before.

When Molly gets a package leading her to Pepper, they’re tasked with solving a decades-old mystery: find out who killed Ava, back in 1989. Using Ava’s diary for clues, Molly and Pepper realize there’s more to her life—and death—than meets the eye. Someone is lying to them. And someone out there is guiding them along, desperate for answers. 

OUT AUGUST 22, 2017
I am so excited for this new book by Stephanie Oakes. I absolutely loved the The Sacred Lives of Minnow Bly, so I have very high expectations. Usually I'm not interested in Young Adult Mysteries because I find them to be too predictable. But I trust this author's talent, and the reviews I've read all point to this being great.

What are You Anxiously Waiting On?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Stephanie Oakes is a teacher and YA author from Washington State. Her debut novel, THE SACRED LIES OF MINNOW BLY (Dial/Penguin, June 9, 2015), about a girl who escapes from a religious commune only to find herself at the center of a murder investigation, is based on the Grimm fairy tale, "The Handless Maiden."

THE ARSONIST, her second YA mystery through Dial/Penguin, is scheduled for publication in 2017. 

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Book Scoop April 28- May 5, 2017

May 5, 2017
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The Story of My Teeth
I was born in Pachuca, the Beautiful Windy City, with four premature teeth and my body completely covered in a very fine coat of fuzz. But I'm grateful for that inauspicious start because ugliness, as my other uncle, Eurípides López Sánchez, was given to saying, is character forming.

Highway is a late-in-life world traveler, yarn spinner, collector, and legendary auctioneer. His most precious possessions are the teeth of the "notorious infamous" like Plato, Petrarch, and Virginia Woolf. Written in collaboration with the workers at a Jumex juice factory, Teeth is an elegant, witty, exhilarating romp through the industrial suburbs of Mexico City and Luiselli's own literary influences.

HEADLINES




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Signature's Best Books of May 2017
Men Without Women: Stories
~Amazon~ 
 A dazzling new collection of short stories--the first major new work of fiction from the beloved, internationally acclaimed, Haruki Murakami since his #1 best-selling Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage.

Across seven tales, Haruki Murakami brings his powers of observation to bear on the lives of men who, in their own ways, find themselves alone. Here are vanishing cats and smoky bars, lonely hearts and mysterious women, baseball and the Beatles, woven together to tell stories that speak to us all.

Marked by the same wry humor that has defined his entire body of work, in this collection Murakami has crafted another contemporary classic.



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