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Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday #100


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish in June 2010. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists at The Broke and the Bookish. 
Top Ten Dead Authors I'd Love To Meet:

I know it sounds a little morbid, but the authors of yesteryear were just so damned interesting. 

1.
 Image result
Jules Verne (February 8th 1828 - March 4th 1909) 
Considered by many (myself included) to be the 'Father of Science Fiction'. He was so ahead of his time you only have to look at his novels Journey to the Center of the Earth, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea or From the Earth to The Moon to see how advanced and ahead of his time he truly was.

2.
 L.M. Montgomery
Lucy Maud Montgomery (November 30th 1874 - April 24th 1942)
Where would my youth have been if I didn't have Anne of Green Gables or Emily of New Moon to have kept me company in some of the darkest of times? I can imagine sitting on a porch swing in Green Gables hearing about her life.
3.
A a milne.jpg
A.A. Milne (January 18th 1882 - January 31st 1956)
He created Winnie the Pooh. That alone makes me want to share a cup of coffee with him.

4.
.Edgar Rice Burroughs
Edgar Rice Burroughs (September 1st 1875 - March 19th 1950)
As a life long fan of Tarzan (was raised on the films) I'd love to sit down and share a drink with him. Talk about where he got his inspiration. Why did he chose to write about John Carter of Mars. Space travel? Time travel. These were big ideas for his time.

5.
 Arthur Conany Doyle by Walter Benington, 1914.png
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (May 22nd 1859 - July 7th 1932) 
He's given us one of the most brilliant detectives in history. How he created Holmes and how he had him solving crimes was very advanced for his time. He was a brilliant man, and I'd love to pick his brain about his writing.

6.
 Beatrix Potter by King cropped.jpg
Beatrix Potter (28 July 1866 – 22 December 1943) 
Author and illustrator of The Peter Rabbit series, known for her rich water colour paintings, and preserving lands that now make up most of Lake District National Park in the United Kingdom. I'd love to hear about her life in her words. What was it like as a woman in her time? I'd love to pick her brain over tea.

7.
 Agatha Christie.png
Agatha Christie (15 September 1890 – 12 January 1976)
She's still the top selling novelist of all time and she's been dead 41 years. I would love to learn about her writing process. What was it like to be a female mystery writer in a genre so male dominated?

8.
 Image result for anya seton
Anya Seton (January 23, 1904 – November 8, 1990)
Author of novels such as Katherine, Green Darkness, My Theodosia and Dragonwyck among many others. I first came across her writing back in 2010 when I read Green Darkness. Told in two time lines and very sensual and dark I would love to know more about her as not very much has been written about her. 

9.
 Edgar Allan Poe daguerreotype crop.png
Edgar Allan Poe (January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849)
His writings have always moved me and for some reason he's always seemed so sad to me. I know it might not matter to him but I'd love to tell him how his poetry always brought me out of the darkness he seemed to dwell in.

10.
 Roald Dahl.jpg
Roald Dahl (13 September 1916 – 23 November 1990)
The man gave us The BFG, Matilda, The Witches and many other tales of wonder with eccentric main characters. He wrote books that I have some of the fondest memories of reading and having had his books read to me. I'd like to thank him for those stories.

if-youre-here-blinkie

Monday, March 27, 2017

[Review] Fatal Option by Chris Beakey


Fatal OptionOn the coldest night of the year, Stephen Porter is pulled from a restless sleep by a midnight phone call. His 17-year-old daughter Sara is stranded in a blizzard near the top of a mountain beyond their suburban home. She's terrified and unable to stop crying as she begs him to come to her rescue.
Unfortunately Stephen went to bed just an hour before after a night of binge drinking. With his blurred vision and unsteady balance he knows it’s dangerously irresponsible to get behind the wheel. But he heads out into the snowstorm to bring Sara home.
High school teacher Kieran O’Shea is also behind the wheel, searching for his autistic younger brother Aidan, who is wandering aimlessly through the storm on that same mountain. Kieran is also terrified—of the voices in his mind, of the possibility that Aidan will be taken from him, and of the certainty that he will soon be arrested for murdering three women.
In a matter of minutes Stephen will encounter Kieran and drive headlong into a collision that will force him to unlock the secret of his wife’s death, avoid prosecution, and protect his children from violence that hits all too close to home.

Summary & Cover taken from GoodReads.com
Length: 304 pages (Hardcover)
Source: Review Copy from Publisher
Series: N/A
Genre: Thriller
Publication Date: February 21st 2017 by Post Hill Press

I've been having some personal issues here so I've had to step back from the blog for a couple weeks until things were sorted out, as a result I'm a bit behind in a few reviews so now I'm playing catch up and Fatal Option was the first one on deck.
Chris Beakey had me from page one. I am not kidding. I thought that it might take me a bit of time to get back into the rhythm of reading again but as it turns out all I needed was the right book. Add in the cold rainy day that I spent reading it, it was just what the doctor ordered. What a thing to say about a thriller right?
This was very much a cat and mouse type thriller. We have our protagonist, Stephen. Widower. Drunk. Father. Fool. He's all of these things and more...but there was a grace about him. I found him flawed but a great character and he sure knew how to play the cat and mouse game the "bad guy" tangled him up in and he did it very well. His daughter is the one who sets him on the course of the events in the book on the worst blizzard of the year but I learned very quickly that with this thriller that all is not how it seems.
In Fatal Options, the characters, the events the motivations of each person appeared to be very clear but, I learned as I read on that not all was as it appeared. It reminded me of a tangle of knots. Just as I thought I was finally beginning to understand where the story was going I was flipped, spun around. It was like playing pin the tale on the donkey and I loved it. It was such a surprise to be surprised and a relief. Where I thought the story was going never ended up being what I thought it would.
This was an emotional rollercoaster of a read. I went into this book with my mind made up about certain characters but found by the end of it that I had been led astray by my presumptions. There's a lot of death in this book, sadness, grief and guilt were all such strong feelings I felt on behalf of the characters made me feel as if the emotions themselves were characters in the story made flesh.
This was haunting and heart pounding. Exciting and gut clenching and an all around dark yet fun read for me as a thriller lover. I thought that it was refreshingly well written told with a unique voice and one that I can't wait to hear more from. Chris Beakey left me wanting more and I can't wait to see what this exciting author has next.
I highly recommend thriller fans and fans of heart pounding plot twists to give this book a read as soon as possible. It's not one to be missed.

if-youre-here-blinkie

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? #138




READ LAST WEEK:


Letter 44, Volume 3: Dark MatterWORLD WAR THREE. The presence of alien life has been revealed to the people of Earth, and all hell has broken loose. A battle rages for control of the planet, between a US-led coalition of nations and a second group secretly controlled by ex-President Francis Carroll. Meanwhile, Earth's only contact with the aliens the brave crew of the Clarke has been kept in the dark about the E.T's intentions and prevented from contacting home. When they discover a massive threat headed straight for earth, all their efforts must turn to convincing the aliens to use their advanced technology to save us."

Velvet, Vol. 2: The Secret Lives of Dead Men




The white-hot spy series from the creators of Captain America: The Winter Soldier is back!
Everything Velvet Templeton ever believed about the worst night of her life has turned out to be a lie, and now she's coming back to London, taking the hunt back to the hunters, to find the truth or die trying.
Don't miss the second volume in the adventures of comics' favorite new super-spy!
CollectingVelvet 6-10


Fatal OptionOn the coldest night of the year, Stephen Porter is pulled from a restless sleep by a midnight phone call. His 17-year-old daughter Sara is stranded in a blizzard near the top of a mountain beyond their suburban home. She's terrified and unable to stop crying as she begs him to come to her rescue.
Unfortunately Stephen went to bed just an hour before after a night of binge drinking. With his blurred vision and unsteady balance he knows it’s dangerously irresponsible to get behind the wheel. But he heads out into the snowstorm to bring Sara home.
High school teacher Kieran O’Shea is also behind the wheel, searching for his autistic younger brother Aidan, who is wandering aimlessly through the storm on that same mountain. Kieran is also terrified—of the voices in his mind, of the possibility that Aidan will be taken from him, and of the certainty that he will soon be arrested for murdering three women.
In a matter of minutes Stephen will encounter Kieran and drive headlong into a collision that will force him to unlock the secret of his wife’s death, avoid prosecution, and protect his children from violence that hits all too close to home.

CURRENTLY READING:


The Burning Land (The Saxon Stories, #5)The enemy is massing on the borders, a united force for once.
The king, a man of many victories, is in failing health, and his heir is an untested youth.
Uthred, the king's champion, leads his country's forces to war, but his victory is soured by personal tragedy and by the envy of the king's court. So he breaks with the king and takes off for the land of his birth, determined to resist all calls for his return. That is, until one unexpected request...
This is the making of England brought magnificently to life by the master of historical fiction.
ADD TO GOODREADS

Archangel's Heart (Guild Hunter, #9)New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh takes us into a dangerous and exhilarating world where a deadly, beautiful archangel and his once-mortal consort are caught in a fury of twisted darkness…
One of the most vicious archangels in the world has disappeared. No one knows if Lijuan is dead or has chosen to Sleep the long sleep of an immortal. But with her lands falling into chaos under a rising tide of vampiric bloodlust, a mysterious and ancient order of angels known as the Luminata calls the entire Cadre together to discuss the fate of her territory.
Accompanying her archangelic lover Raphael to the Luminata compound, guild hunter-turned-angel Elena senses that all is not as it seems. Secrets echo from within the stone walls of the compound, and the deeper Elena goes, the uglier the darkness. But neither Raphael nor Elena is ready for the brutal truths hidden within—truths that will change everything Elena thinks she knows about who she is…
Nothing will ever be the same again.
 

UP NEXT:

Rumi's Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love
The acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of Smash Cut, Flannery, and City Poet delivers the first popular biography of Rumi, the thirteenth-century Persian poet revered by contemporary Western readers.
Ecstatic love poems of Rumi, a Persian poet and Sufi mystic born over eight centuries ago, are beloved by millions of readers in America as well as around the world. He has been compared to Shakespeare for his outpouring of creativity and to Saint Francis of Assisi for his spiritual wisdom. Yet his life has long remained the stuff of legend rather than intimate knowledge.
In this breakthrough biography, Brad Gooch brilliantly brings to life the man and puts a face to the name Rumi, vividly coloring in his time and place—a world as rife with conflict as our own. The map of Rumi’s life stretched over 2,500 miles. Gooch traces this epic journey from Central Asia, where Rumi was born in 1207, traveling with his family, displaced by Mongol terror, to settle in Konya, Turkey. Pivotal was the disruptive appearance of Shams of Tabriz, who taught him to whirl and transformed him from a respectable Muslim preacher into a poet and mystic. Their vital connection as teacher and pupil, friend and beloved, is one of the world’s greatest spiritual love stories. When Shams disappeared, Rumi coped with the pain of separation by composing joyous poems of reunion, both human and divine.
Ambitious, bold, and beautifully written, Rumi’s Secret reveals the unfolding of Rumi’s devotion to a "religion of love," remarkable in his own time and made even more relevant for the twenty-first century by this compelling account.
 

GeekerellaGeek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball, and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck (and her dad’s old costume), Elle’s determined to win…unless her stepsisters get there first.
Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons—before he was famous. Now they’re nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise. But when she disappears at midnight, will he ever be able to find her again?
Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, and all totally adorbs, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom.
 

The Weight of HimIn The Weight of Him Billy Brennan undergoes an unforgettable journey in a startling attempt to resurrect his family and reignite hearts, his own most of all.
At four hundred pounds, Billy can always count on food. From his earliest memories, he has loved food's colors, textures and tastes. The way flavors go off in his mouth. How food keeps his mind still and his bad feelings quiet. Food has always made everything better, until the day Billy's beloved son Michael takes his own life.
Billy determines to make a difference in Michael's memory and undertakes a public weight-loss campaign, to raise money for suicide prevention--his first step in an ambitious plan to save himself, and to save others. However, Billy's dramatic crusade appalls his family, who want to simply try to go on, quietly, privately.
Despite his crushing detractors, Billy gains welcome allies: his community-at-large; a co-worker who lost his father to suicide; a filmmaker with his own dubious agenda; and a secret, miniature kingdom that Billy populates with the sub-quality dolls and soldiers he saves from disposal at the toy factory where he works. But it is only if Billy can confront the truth of the suffering and brokenness within and around him that he and others will be able to realize the recovery they need.
Told against the picturesque yet haunting backdrop of rural, contemporary Ireland, The Weight of Him is a big-hearted novel about loss and reliance that moves from tragedy to recrimination to what can be achieved when we take the stand of our lives.

WHAT ARE YOU READING?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #156


The Drowning King (Fall of Egypt #2)Ancient Egypt, 51 B.C. Sisters Arsinoe and Cleopatra face a devastating choice: to allow Rome's army to siphon power from their ailing father, or to take matters--and the dynasty--into their own hands.

It's the dawn of a new era for Egypt as Cleopatra and her brother, Ptolemy, are welcomed to the throne after their father's death. But joint rule breeds its own conflicts: can the Nile be shared? Long overlooked by his father in favor of the beguiling Cleopatra, Ptolemy is determined to prove his ability as both man and king-but, at eleven, he is no match for his elder sister, who's quick to assert her primacy throughout the land.

Their sister Arsinoe is torn between her siblings in one of history's greatest power struggles. As the palace echoes with rumors, scandals and betrayal, Arsinoe's love for her childhood friend Alexander deepens into a forbidden passion that could endanger both their lives. When Cleopatra is forced to flee a rebel uprising, Arsinoe decides she has no choice but to follow her sister into exile.

Yet while Cleopatra gathers an army to retake the crown, Arsinoe begins to doubt whether her sister is the champion Egypt needs. Faced with the choice of betraying her family or her country, Arsinoe will determine a kingdom's fate and the course of history.
Length: 432 pages (Hardcover)
Expected Publication Date: April 4th 2017 by Little, Brown and Company

Why I'm Waiting:
I haven't read the first book in this series yet, but it is coming up on my TBR pile and I have one of those feelings where I know I'm going to enjoy the book so I can't wait to read this one. Cleopatra, Ptolemy. You had me at hello.

A mysterious keepsake, a murdered bride, a legacy of secrets...
The Fourteenth LetterOne balmy June evening in 1881, Phoebe Stanbury stands before the guests at her engagement party: this is her moment, when she will join the renowned Raycraft family and ascend to polite society.
As she takes her fiancé's hand, a stranger holding a knife steps forward and ends the poor girl's life. Amid the chaos, he turns to her aristocratic groom and mouths: 'I promised I would save you.'
The following morning, just a few miles away, timid young legal clerk William Lamb meets a reclusive client. He finds the old man terrified and in desperate need of aid: William must keep safe a small casket of yellowing papers, and deliver an enigmatic message: The Finder knows.With its labyrinth of unfolding secrets, Claire Evans' riveting debut will be adored by fans of Kate Mosse, Carlos Ruiz Zafon and Jessie Burton.
Length: 448 pages (Hardcover)
Expected Publication Date: April 6th 2017 by Sphere
ADD TO GOODREADS

Why I'm Waiting:
This one just seems to have such a complex emotionally wrought story between it's cover that I can't help but be curious about it. It sounds like one that will have me put my thinking cap on as well.

What Are You Waiting On?
if-youre-here-blinkie

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday #99


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish in June 2010. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists at The Broke and the Bookish. 
The Top 10 Books I've Read In One Sitting:

Harry Potter Boxset (Harry Potter, #1-7)Lords of the North (The Saxon Stories, #3)Pushing the Limits (Pushing the Limits, #1)AmazoniaDaughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke & Bone, #1)Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter, #1)Seven Years to SinThe Secret History: A Novel of Empress TheodoraA Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire, #1)His Majesty's Dragon (Temeraire, #1)



 1
.The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling. I've read all of them in one sitting (many times over).

2. 
The Saxon Stories Book 5: Lords of the North by Bernard Cornwell. I read this one last week in a single sitting in preparation of the newest season of the Netflix adaptation of this series (The Last Kingdom) premiering. Excellent historical fiction!

3.
 Pushing The Limits by Katie McGarry. I loved the couple in this one and I am NOT one for YA romances but this one got me and I devoured it.

4. 
Amazonia by James Rollins. I love all of his books though this is my favourite by him. Rip roaring adventure in the amazon with fantastical creatures? Sign me up.

5. 
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. I remember starting this one around 10 P.M. and  was finished it in 4 hours. Absolutely loved this one. Unfortunately the rest of the series was a let down for me but this was amazing.

6. 
Angel's Blood (Guild Hunter #1) by Nalini Singh I remember reading this one for a read-a-thon like 5 years ago and I loved it. I've been reading the series ever since. Want a kick ass heroine? Check this series out.

7.
Seven Years to Sin by Sylvia Day I love Sylvia Day's romances in general but this one was special. Loved the characters and how unconventional their relationship was. If you like steamy reads check this one out.

8.
The Secret History A Novel of Empress Theodora by Stephanie Thornton she writes about strong women in history and I LOVE HER BOOKS. I read this one on a rainy day whilst on summer vacation and was done by supper. She truly brings history to life.

9.
A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin while I didn't read it in one sitting the first time I read it I have read it twice since then both on cold winter days starting in the early morning and finishing by bed time.

10. 
His Majesty's Dragon (Temeraire #1) by Naomi Novik set in an alternate history of our world the victorians have access to dragons for full scale aerial assults and to wage war and THEY TALK to their crew. Love this book, and series in general. Highly recommended.

if-youre-here-blinkie

Monday, March 20, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? #137




READ LAST WEEK:



Lords of the North (The Saxon Stories, #3)The third instalment in Bernard Cornwell's King Alfred series, following on from the outstanding previous novels The Last Kingdom and The Pale Horseman, both of which were top ten bestsellers. The year is 878 and Wessex is free from the Vikings. Uhtred, the dispossessed son of a Northumbrian lord, helped Alfred win that victory, but now he is disgusted by Alfred's lack of generosity and repelled by the king's insistent piety. He flees Wessex, going back north to seek revenge for the killing of his foster father and to rescue his stepsister, captured in the same raid. He needs to find his old enemy, Kjartan, a renegade Danish lord who lurks in the formidable stronghold of Dunholm. Uhtred arrives in the north to discover rebellion, chaos and fear. His only ally is Hild, a West Saxon nun fleeing her calling, and his best hope is his sword, with which he has made a formidable reputation as a warrior. He will need the assistance of other warriors if he is to attack Dunholm and he finds Guthred, a slave who believes he is a king. He takes him across the Pennines to where a desperate alliance of fanatical Christians and beleaguered Danes form a new army to confront the terrible Viking lords who rule Northumbria. 'The Lords of the North' is a powerful story of betrayal, romance and struggle, set in an England of turmoil, upheaval and glory. Uhtred, a Northumbrian raised as a Viking, a man without lands, a warrior without a country, has become a splendid heroic figure.


Sword Song (The Saxon Stories, #4)The year is 885, and England is at peace, divided between the Danish Kingdom to the north and the Saxon kingdom of Wessex in the south. Warrior by instinct and Viking by nature, Uhtred, the dispossessed son of Northumbrian lord, has land, a wife and children-and a duty to King Alfred to hold the frontier on the Thames. But a dead man has risen, and new Vikings have invaded the decayed Roman city of London with dreams of conquering Wessex...with Uhtred's help. Suddenly forced to weigh his oath to the king against the dangerous turning side of shifting allegiances and deadly power struggles, Uhtred-Alfred's sharpest sword-must now make the choice that will determine England's future.

Letter 44, Volume 3: Dark MatterWORLD WAR THREE. The presence of alien life has been revealed to the people of Earth, and all hell has broken loose. A battle rages for control of the planet, between a US-led coalition of nations and a second group secretly controlled by ex-President Francis Carroll. Meanwhile, Earth's only contact with the aliens the brave crew of the Clarke has been kept in the dark about the E.T's intentions and prevented from contacting home. When they discover a massive threat headed straight for earth, all their efforts must turn to convincing the aliens to use their advanced technology to save us."

Velvet, Vol. 2: The Secret Lives of Dead Men
The white-hot spy series from the creators of Captain America: The Winter Soldier is back!
Everything Velvet Templeton ever believed about the worst night of her life has turned out to be a lie, and now she's coming back to London, taking the hunt back to the hunters, to find the truth or die trying.
Don't miss the second volume in the adventures of comics' favorite new super-spy!
CollectingVelvet 6-10


CURRENTLY READING:


The Burning Land (The Saxon Stories, #5)The enemy is massing on the borders, a united force for once.
The king, a man of many victories, is in failing health, and his heir is an untested youth.
Uthred, the king's champion, leads his country's forces to war, but his victory is soured by personal tragedy and by the envy of the king's court. So he breaks with the king and takes off for the land of his birth, determined to resist all calls for his return. That is, until one unexpected request...
This is the making of England brought magnificently to life by the master of historical fiction.
 

Archangel's Heart (Guild Hunter, #9)New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh takes us into a dangerous and exhilarating world where a deadly, beautiful archangel and his once-mortal consort are caught in a fury of twisted darkness…
One of the most vicious archangels in the world has disappeared. No one knows if Lijuan is dead or has chosen to Sleep the long sleep of an immortal. But with her lands falling into chaos under a rising tide of vampiric bloodlust, a mysterious and ancient order of angels known as the Luminata calls the entire Cadre together to discuss the fate of her territory.
Accompanying her archangelic lover Raphael to the Luminata compound, guild hunter-turned-angel Elena senses that all is not as it seems. Secrets echo from within the stone walls of the compound, and the deeper Elena goes, the uglier the darkness. But neither Raphael nor Elena is ready for the brutal truths hidden within—truths that will change everything Elena thinks she knows about who she is…
Nothing will ever be the same again.
 

Fatal OptionOn the coldest night of the year, Stephen Porter is pulled from a restless sleep by a midnight phone call. His 17-year-old daughter Sara is stranded in a blizzard near the top of a mountain beyond their suburban home. She's terrified and unable to stop crying as she begs him to come to her rescue.
Unfortunately Stephen went to bed just an hour before after a night of binge drinking. With his blurred vision and unsteady balance he knows it’s dangerously irresponsible to get behind the wheel. But he heads out into the snowstorm to bring Sara home.
High school teacher Kieran O’Shea is also behind the wheel, searching for his autistic younger brother Aidan, who is wandering aimlessly through the storm on that same mountain. Kieran is also terrified—of the voices in his mind, of the possibility that Aidan will be taken from him, and of the certainty that he will soon be arrested for murdering three women.
In a matter of minutes Stephen will encounter Kieran and drive headlong into a collision that will force him to unlock the secret of his wife’s death, avoid prosecution, and protect his children from violence that hits all too close to home.

UP NEXT:

Rumi's Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love
The acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of Smash Cut, Flannery, and City Poet delivers the first popular biography of Rumi, the thirteenth-century Persian poet revered by contemporary Western readers.
Ecstatic love poems of Rumi, a Persian poet and Sufi mystic born over eight centuries ago, are beloved by millions of readers in America as well as around the world. He has been compared to Shakespeare for his outpouring of creativity and to Saint Francis of Assisi for his spiritual wisdom. Yet his life has long remained the stuff of legend rather than intimate knowledge.
In this breakthrough biography, Brad Gooch brilliantly brings to life the man and puts a face to the name Rumi, vividly coloring in his time and place—a world as rife with conflict as our own. The map of Rumi’s life stretched over 2,500 miles. Gooch traces this epic journey from Central Asia, where Rumi was born in 1207, traveling with his family, displaced by Mongol terror, to settle in Konya, Turkey. Pivotal was the disruptive appearance of Shams of Tabriz, who taught him to whirl and transformed him from a respectable Muslim preacher into a poet and mystic. Their vital connection as teacher and pupil, friend and beloved, is one of the world’s greatest spiritual love stories. When Shams disappeared, Rumi coped with the pain of separation by composing joyous poems of reunion, both human and divine.
Ambitious, bold, and beautifully written, Rumi’s Secret reveals the unfolding of Rumi’s devotion to a "religion of love," remarkable in his own time and made even more relevant for the twenty-first century by this compelling account.
 

GeekerellaGeek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic sci-fi series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball, and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck (and her dad’s old costume), Elle’s determined to win…unless her stepsisters get there first.
Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons—before he was famous. Now they’re nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he’s ever wanted, but Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake—until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise. But when she disappears at midnight, will he ever be able to find her again?
Part romance, part love letter to nerd culture, and all totally adorbs, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom.
 

The Weight of HimIn The Weight of Him Billy Brennan undergoes an unforgettable journey in a startling attempt to resurrect his family and reignite hearts, his own most of all.
At four hundred pounds, Billy can always count on food. From his earliest memories, he has loved food's colors, textures and tastes. The way flavors go off in his mouth. How food keeps his mind still and his bad feelings quiet. Food has always made everything better, until the day Billy's beloved son Michael takes his own life.
Billy determines to make a difference in Michael's memory and undertakes a public weight-loss campaign, to raise money for suicide prevention--his first step in an ambitious plan to save himself, and to save others. However, Billy's dramatic crusade appalls his family, who want to simply try to go on, quietly, privately.
Despite his crushing detractors, Billy gains welcome allies: his community-at-large; a co-worker who lost his father to suicide; a filmmaker with his own dubious agenda; and a secret, miniature kingdom that Billy populates with the sub-quality dolls and soldiers he saves from disposal at the toy factory where he works. But it is only if Billy can confront the truth of the suffering and brokenness within and around him that he and others will be able to realize the recovery they need.
Told against the picturesque yet haunting backdrop of rural, contemporary Ireland, The Weight of Him is a big-hearted novel about loss and reliance that moves from tragedy to recrimination to what can be achieved when we take the stand of our lives.

WHAT ARE YOU READING?