January's host was Rose City Reader! She did a fabulous job! February's host is be Library of Clean Reads!
The Story Siren
Every week we'll post about what books we have that week (via your mailbox/library/store bought)! Everyone that agrees to participate will try to visit each other's list and leave comments! Everyone is welcome to join! You can join at anytime and you DO NOT have to participate every week.
The entire Manufactured Identity series by Heath Sommer: I've had The Manufactured Identity on my wishlist for some time after reading reviews like this one at Tea Time With Marce, so I was thrilled when the author contacted me to review the series!
Months after his mysterious disappearance from a routine fishing trip, no one really expects over-the-hill Texas housewife Lory Latchley to find her missing husband—especially her husband. The Manufactured Identity is clinical psychologist Heath Sommer's ever-escalating immersion into the world of unlikely friends who each awaken to find their faithful companions missing without warning or reason. Desperate to find meaning in their pain, they are thrust by the auspices of fate into a common thread of mystery and human frailty. In the end, the fate of all may reside in the unstable hands of rookie pastor John Joe, but ultimately Lory and her newfound partners will uncover a truth so unnerving it makes even infidelity look palatable.
The Grand Delusion: Book Depository/Amazon
Loner Addy Siwel only wanted answers when she signed up for a freshman course in theology—what she got was the attention of a murderer. In The Grand Delusion, Dr. Heath Sommer brings to life the precursor stories of characters John Joe, Addy Siwel, and Merci Bowku, who were introduced to the world in the 2009 contemporary mystery The Manufactured Identity. Terror-struck, the three protagonists vie against a backdrop of ironic evil as they are stalked by an unidentified villain who breaks all the rules and sends Chief of police and reluctant clairvoyant Frank Murphy scrambling against the clock in a murder mystery showdown that leaves all questioning what is real and what is beyond this world.
The Human Obsession: Book Depository/Amazon
A year before retirement, Chief of Police Frank Murphy wants nothing more than to spend his golden years on HGTV marathons and endless tee-off times. What he gets is a string of abductions that makes Ted Bundy look like an amateur. The Human Obsession is the sequel to Heath Sommer's 2009 breakout psychological thriller The Manufactured Identity, where Murphy and hapless lovers Addy and John Joe scramble against inhuman odds and unpredictable twists to solve the riddles of murder, obsession, and human weakness. Focusing on the trial of Cameron Bo, alleged murderer and loony from Sommer's The Grand Delusion, The Human Obsession takes readers even deeper into the minds of Sommers' belovedand twistedcharacters. In the end, no one could have seen why those meant to protect and serve may be in the greatest danger of all.
Through Goodreads bookswap:
The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot: Book Depository/Amazon
Rebellious and affectionate, Maggie Tulliover is always in trouble.Recalling her own experiences as a girl, George Eliot describes Maggie's turbulent childhood with a sympathetic engagement that makes the early chapters of The Mill on the Floss among the most immediately attractive she ever wrote.
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass (omnibus) by Lewis Carroll: Book Depository/Amazon
Conceived by a shy British don on a golden afternoon to entertain ten-year-old Alice Liddell and her sisters, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass have delighted generations of readers in more than eighty languages. “The clue to the enduring fascination and greatness of the Alice books,” writes A. S. Byatt in her Introduction, “lies in language. . . . It is play, and word-play, and its endless intriguing puzzles continue to reveal themselves long after we have ceased to be children.”
And Only to Deceive by Tasha Alexander: Book Depository/Amazon
From gifted new writer Tasha Alexander comes a stunning novel of historical suspense set in Victorian England, meticulously researched and with a twisty plot that involves stolen antiquities, betrayal, and murder. For Emily, accepting the proposal of Philip, the Viscount Ashton, was an easy way to escape her overbearing mother, who was set on a grand society match. So when Emily's dashing husband died on safari soon after their wedding, she felt little grief. After all, she barely knew him. Now, nearly two years later, she discovers that Philip was a far different man from the one she had married so cavalierly. His journals reveal him to have been a gentleman scholar and antiquities collector who, to her surprise, was deeply in love with his wife. Emily becomes fascinated with this new image of her dead husband and she immerses herself in all things ancient and begins to study Greek. Emily's intellectual pursuits and her desire to learn more about Philip take her to the quiet corridors of the British Museum, one of her husband's favorite places. There, amid priceless ancient statues, she uncovers a dark, dangerous secret involving stolen artifacts from the Greco-Roman galleries. And to complicate matters, she's juggling two very prominent and wealthy suitors, one of whose intentions may go beyond the marrying kind. As she sets out to solve the crime, her search leads to more surprises about Philip and causes her to question the role in Victorian society to which she, as a woman, is relegated.
As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner: Book Depository/Amazon
As I Lay Dying is Faulkner's harrowing account of the Bundren family's odyssey across the Mississippi countryside to bury Addie, their wife and mother. Told in turns by each of the family members—including Addie herself—the novel ranges in mood from dark comedy to the deepest pathos.
This edition follows the text of As I Lay Dying as corrected in 1985. It includes an editor's note by Noel Polk on the corrections as well as line and page notes prepared by Joseph Blotner.
Death in Holy Orders by P. D. James: Book Depository/Amazon
Baroness James may have turned 80, but neither she nor her dogged Scotland Yard detective Commander Adam Dalgliesh (last seen in 1997's A Certain Justice) shows any sign of flagging in this superb whodunit, with its extraordinarily complex and nuanced plot and large cast of credible characters. When the body of a young ordinand, Ronald Treeves, turns up buried in a sandy bank on the Suffolk coast near isolated St. Anselm's, a High Anglican theological college, it's unclear whether his death was an accident, suicide or murder. The mystery deepens a few days later when someone suffocates Margaret Munroe, a retired nurse with a bad heart, because she remembers an event 12 years earlier that could have some bearing on whatever's amiss at St. Anselm's. Enter Dalgliesh at the behest of Ronald's father, Sir Alred, who's received an anonymous note suggesting foul play in his son's death. It isn't long before another death occurs, and this time it's clearly murder: late one night in the chapel, somebody bashes in the head of Archdeacon Crampton, a hard-nosed outsider who wanted to close St. Anselm's. Dalgliesh and his investigative team examine the complicated motives of a host of suspects resident at the college, mostly ordinands and priests, slowly unveiling the connections among the various deaths. Illegitimacy, incest, a secret marriage, a missing cloak and a valuable altar triptych are just some of the ingredients in a case as contrived as any Golden Age classic but presented with such masterful ease and conviction that even the most skeptical readers will suspend disbelief. This is a natural for PBS Mystery adaptation. (Apr. 19) Forecast: With a 300,000-copy first printing, this BOMC main selection is sure to race up the bestseller lists. - Publishers Weekly
Silent on the Moor by Deanna Raybourn: Book Depository/Amazon
(This one is really for Not-So-Bebe-Girl Autumn - she likes historical romance)
Despite his admonitions to stay away, Lady Julia arrives in Yorkshire to find Brisbane as remote and maddeningly attractive as ever. Cloistered together, they share the moldering house with the proud but impoverished remnants of an ancient family—the sort that keeps their bloodline pure and their secrets close. Lady Allenby and her daughters, dependent upon Brisbane and devastated by their fall in society, seem adrift on the moor winds, powerless to change their fortunes. But poison does not discriminate between classes….
A mystery unfolds from the rotten heart of Grimsgrave, one Lady Julia may have to solve alone, as Brisbane appears inextricably tangled in its heinous twists and turns. But blood will out, and before spring touches the craggy northern landscape, Lady Julia will have uncovered a Gypsy witch, a dark rider and a long-buried legacy of malevolence and evil.
On December 9, 1979, smallpox, the most deadly human virus, ceased to exist in nature. After eradication, it was confined to freezers located in just two places on earth: the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta and the Maximum Containment Laboratory in Siberia. But these final samples were not destroyed at that time, and now secret stockpiles of smallpox surely exist. For example, since the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, and the subsequent end of its biological weapons program, a sizeable amount of the former Soviet Union's smallpox stockpile remains unaccounted for, leading to fears that the virus has fallen into the hands of nations or terrorist groups willing to use it as a weapon. Scarier yet, some may even be trying to develop a strain that is resistant to vaccines. This disturbing reality is the focus of this fascinating, terrifying, and important book.
A longtime contributor to The New Yorker and author of the bestseller The Hot Zone, Preston is a skillful journalist whose work flows like a science fiction thriller. Based on extensive interviews with smallpox experts, health workers, and members of the U.S. intelligence community, The Demon in the Freezer details the history and behavior of the virus and how it was eventually isolated and eradicated by the heroic individuals of the World Health Organization. Preston also explains why a battle still rages between those who want to destroy all known stocks of the virus and those who want to keep some samples alive until a cure is found. This is a bitterly contentious point between scientists. Some worry that further testing will trigger a biological arms race, while others argue that more research is necessary since there are currently too few available doses of the vaccine to deal with a major outbreak. The anthrax scare of October, 2001, which Preston also writes about in this book, has served to reinforce the present dangers of biological warfare.
As Preston eloquently states in this powerful book, this scourge, once contained, was let loose again due to human weakness: "The virus's last strategy for survival was to bewitch its host and become a source of power. We could eradicate smallpox from nature, but we could not uproot the virus from the human heart."
OK .. lots of classics that I didn't have on my shelf, and a few that I just thought looked good. What did YOUR mailbox bring? Please feel free to leave a link to YOUR mailbox in the comments; I'd love to come visit!