Literary

//Literary

The Alienation of Courtney Hoffman

Fifteen-year-old Courtney wants to be normal like her friends. But there’s something frighteningly different about her―and it’s not just the mysterious tattoo her conspiracy-obsessed grandfather marked her with when she was a child. The last thing Courtney wants to do is end up crazy and dead like her grandfather―but what about the tattoo? And the alien scouts who visit Courtney in her bedroom at night, claiming to have shared an alliance with her grandfather?

With her new friend Agatha’s apocalyptic visions, Courtney begins connecting the dots between the past, present, and future―of her bloodline, and the ancient history that surrounds it. So is she going mentally insane, like her family claimed her grandfather did, or is she actually a “chosen one” with ancestral connections to another world? Either way, Courtney has a mission: untangle her past, discover the truth, and stop the apocalypse before anyone from school finds out she’s missing.

Pretend I’m Your Friend: Stories

“There are, I suppose, stories full of brilliance, hilarity, and longing—the stories in MB Caschetta’s terrific Pretend I’m Your Friend are full of all these things—but I can’t remember when I’ve read a collection so full of life. Actual life: the bad jokes, the astounding velocity, the sweetness and darkness. You will love the characters here the way you love your own family: complicatedly, with tenderness, understanding, and consternation. The only difference may be how willing—and eager—you are to introduce them to friends. Good heavens, this book is good.”
—Elizabeth McCracken, author of Thunderstruck

Humor, LGBT, Literary|0 Comments

Geeks & Greeks

== STORY ==
Geeks & Greeks is Good Will Hunting meets Animal House in graphic novel format. In this high-tech battle royale two of MIT’s smartest students square off in an escalating war of pranks and egos. Jim Walden is an underachieving freshman with a knack for mischief and a secret that could end his career before it begins. Luke Bardolf is a gruff alpha-nerd senior on a mission to pull the ultimate prank and maintain dominance over his fraternity. When their rivalry comes to a head, it will take all of Jim’s creativity and resourcefulness to save his scholarship, his friendships, his girlfriend, and his dream of becoming an astronaut.

== INSPIRED BY ACTUAL EVENTS ==

Geeks & Greeks was written by humorist Steve Altes and is based on MIT’s world-famous hacking culture and real-life hazing incidents Altes witnessed as an MIT student. At MIT a hack is a clever, humorous, technically sophisticated prank, such as building a life-size campus police car replica atop the Institute’s 150-foot-high “Great Dome” under the cover of night.

This extensively researched 184-page coming-of-age story includes over 100 endnotes providing colorful background details on true aspects of the story as well as revealing numerous Easter eggs which will delight readers of all stripes. These endnotes divulge the many scientific, literary, and pop cultural allusions the creators have embedded in the graphic novel.

Operation Cosmic Teapot

“A virgin birth? A virgin? Her?” God shouted at Freud while recalling his one night stand with Mary. Freud snorted another line of cocaine in celebration, believing that this story would help Nietzsche in his quest to fire God from Heaven Inc. Nietzsche, however, had other problems: the Norse gods were running amok on Earth, his board of directors were in a constant state of chaos, and syphilis pushed him into a past life that he would rather forget.

Literary|0 Comments

Follow the Dotted Line

A funny new Mystery about Epic Family Dysfunction
Andrea Bravos is dazed and amazed when a Styrofoam burger box with her ex’s ashes arrives in the mail. Her adventure to find out what happened will upset officials of several small countries, insult the founders of three major religions, give her four adult children acid reflux, and lead her to assault with a deadly golf club.

In the process, she will joyfully drag along her soft-spoken but fearsome accountant, while trying to fend off her mooch of a nephew. It’s a convoluted and quixotic caper, but it all comes together in the end—even the avocados, World War II spy, IRS agent, palm reader, and deadly spider.

Move over Marple and Plum, here comes Andy!

Introducing the Andrea Bravos Mystery Series.

Strange as it Seems

As author Chip Jacobs vividly portrays in his new biography, the life of Gordon Zahler was simply so miraculous it might as well have been science fiction. Strange As It Seems (Rare Bird Books) is more than an underdog Hollywood story born from tragedy. It’s about wringing every drop of adventure you can against a ticking clock.

Transformed: San Francisco

Charley McElroy is a handsome, well-heeled travel writer and CIA informant who also happens to be an F-to-M transman. And he’s been recently benched by the Agency for not paying his taxes. On the other side of San Francisco, Electra, a Manhattan socialite-turned-dominatrix has just arrived to rebuild her life. After they meet at yet another boring society benefit, the two manage to uncover a Christian fundamentalist’s plot to destroy the ‘hedonists’ of San Francisco. Soon after they meet Frankie, a lesbian police sergeant on the outs with the SFPD. Together, the three set out to foil this terror plot – but can they get anyone to listen to them? Or are they on their own? Find out in this funny thriller filled with San Francisco’s spectacular scenery and inimitable, quirky characters.

Adventure, Crime, Cultural, Fiction, Humor, LGBT, Literary, Mystery/Thriller, Popular, Romance, Suspense, Thriller|Comments Off on Transformed: San Francisco

Where’s Sailor Jack?

Bob and Richard were part of the one generation of lower class provincials in England ever to get a real shout. Grammar school boys from Lancashire, they’d shared in the great flowering of working class culture from the late fifties to the mid sixties, before rising with the meritocracy in business and industry. By their own admission, they’d taken far more out than they would ever put in. Now in their sixties, they still occupy their hinterland of church youth club innocence. Richard looks for meaning and Bob purpose. Richard sees events as fickle fate, presently working in his favour, Bob as a catalogue of decisions he’d enjoyed making, with some bad ones currently coming home to roost. As they look for someone or something to believe in before the last trumpet sounds, both men are to be tested over the next year in life, love and death. Only one thing is certain: they will be changed.

Literary|0 Comments

The Edge of Nowhere

The year is 1992 and Victoria Hastings Harrison Greene—reviled matriarch of a sprawling family—is dying.

After surviving the Oklahoma Dust Bowl and the Great Depression, Victoria refuses to leave this earth before revealing the secrets she’s carried for decades.
Once the child of a loving family during peaceful times, a shocking death shattered her life. Victoria came face to face with the harshness of the world. As the warm days of childhood receded to distant memory, Victoria learns to survive.

No matter what it takes.

To keep her family alive in an Oklahoma blighted by dust storms and poverty, Victoria makes choices—harsh ones, desperate ones. Ones that eventually made her into the woman her grandchildren fear and whisper about. Ones that kept them all alive. Hers is a tale of tragedy, love, murder, and above all, the conviction to never stop fighting.

Generation Dementia

They line up in Frick Village to get on the garbage truck: the disoriented, the suicidal, the desperate, even the kid who won’t look up from her cell phone. They are Generation Dementia, high school seniors who have lost their bearings. When a video made about the troubled teens on the garbage truck goes viral, the reality TV crews come around to repackage Generation Dementia and the trash they haul. Narrator Hash O’Connell rebels against this makeover and soon finds he and his friends are confronted with a darker underside of both his community and the cameras now framing it. Hash unearths disturbing secrets about twenty years of lost trash and the lurid tales buried with that refuse. Ultimately, Hash encounters the corruptions off Frick’s past, revelations that will transform his understanding of his family’s legacy and allow him to emerge from the rubble he has inherited.

Literary|Comments Off on Generation Dementia

Painter’s Daughter

Sophie Dupont assists her father in his studio, keeping her own artwork out of sight. In private, she paints the picturesque north Devon coast, popular with artists–including handsome Wesley Overtree, who seems more interested in Sophie than the landscape.

Captain Stephen Overtree is accustomed to taking on his brother Wesley’s responsibilities. Near the end of his leave, he is sent to find his brother and bring him home. Upon reaching Devonshire, however, Stephen is stunned to learn Wesley has sailed for Italy and left his host’s daughter in serious trouble.

Stephen feels duty-bound to act, and strangely protective of the young lady, who somehow seems familiar. Wanting to make some recompense for his own past failings as well as his brother’s, Stephen proposes to Miss Dupont. He does not offer love, but marriage “in name only” to save her from scandal. If he dies in battle, as he fears, she will at least be a respectable widow.

Desperate for a way to escape her predicament, Sophie finds herself torn between her first love and this brooding man she barely knows. Dare she wait for Wesley to return? Or should she elope with the captain and pray she doesn’t come to regret it?

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS INCLUDED

Faith Based, Fiction, Historical Fiction, History, Literary|Comments Off on Painter’s Daughter

Dreams of an American Exile

On the brink of graduating college, undocumented 22-year-old Rose Quintero gets deported from Tucson, Az. to the volatile Mexican border town of Nogales. Dumped in a country she fled with her parents as a baby, she struggles to survive without a home and avoid the violence of the streets. As days turn to weeks, she searches for her deported parents and learns the only way back to the U.S. entails a deadly and illegal three-day hike through Arizona’s Sonoran Desert. With the threat of violence imminent and her situation hopeless, Rose must come to terms with the possibility that she may never see her home or family again.

Fiction, Literary|Comments Off on Dreams of an American Exile

A Distant Prospect

Set in Sydney, Australia between the two world wars, Lucy has fled tragedy in Galway for Australia, only to suffer polio and loneliness. A big, engaging, meticulous historical drama, character-driven and rich with music, friendship and hope.

The Mountain Story

Five days. Four hikers. Three survivors. From Lori Lansens, author of the national bestsellers Rush Home Road, The Girls and The Wife’s Tale comes a gripping tale of adventure, sacrifice and survival in the unforgiving wilderness of a legendary mountain.

On his 18th birthday, Wolf Truly takes the tramway to the top of the mountain that looms over Palm Springs, intending to jump to his death. Instead he encounters strangers wandering in the mountain wilderness, three women who will change the course of his life. Through a series of missteps he and the women wind up stranded, in view of the city below, but without a way down. They endure five days in freezing temperatures without food or water or shelter, and somehow find the courage to carry on.

Wolf, now a grown man, has never told his son, or anyone, what happened on the mountain during those five days, but he can’t put it off any longer. And in telling the story to his only child, Daniel, he at last explores the nature of the ties that bind and the sacrifices people will make for love. The mountain still has a hold on Wolf, composed of equal parts beauty and terror.

Adventure, Fiction, Literary, Suspense|0 Comments

The Small Backs of Children

An orphan girl survives violence in Eastern Europe and becomes a painter in America.

Literary|Comments Off on The Small Backs of Children

A Matter of Mercy

Caroline Marcum thought she’d escaped the great mistake of her life by leaving Wellfleet harbor, but is forced to face it when she returns to care for her dying mother. Ridley Neal put his past-and his prison term-behind him to return home to take over his father’s oyster and clam beds. Casual acquaintances long ago, their lives intersect once again and they must set aside their suspicions and learn to trust-and to love.

Literary|0 Comments

Message Stick: A Novel of Australia

“One of the best novels in ten years.”
-Hackney Literary Awards Committee
“From the beginning, it’s obvious we are in the hands of an exceptional writer and master storyteller. Cunningham has crafted a truly special book.”
-Edmund R. Schubert, award-winning author Dreaming Creek and Editor, Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show
“Characters so real and memorable you won’t put this book down.”
-Pamela King Cable, ALA’s 2012 Pick Televenge
In this literary thriller, Gabriel Branch leaves his home on the Queensland coast to search the rugged outback for his best friend. Although Gabe is a biracial Aborigine, he lost all ties to his culture when the government forcibly removed him from his family when he was a child. Everything about the red desert seems alien including the artifact, a message stick, that is his only clue.
While crisscrossing the unforgiving terrain he draws the attention of Dana Pukatja, a Pitjantjatjara shaman who runs the smuggling ring. Using his traditional knowledge and many tricks, he stalks Gabe to keep him from discovering the truth. As Gabe struggles with the loss of both his friend and his biological family, the shaman draws closer. The men clash on an arid plain of twisted mulga shrub far from any law except that of the outback itself.
Message Stick provides a panoramic look at Australia, its land, its peoples and the social issues that continue to this day. The novel won two national awards and was supported by The Jerome Foundation, the New York Mills Cultural Center and Cornucopia Arts Center.
Dreamtime tales, with their beautiful, spare styles and eternal lessons, are woven throughout Message Stick.
“Ms. Cunningham shows an Australia beautiful and brutal. You know it isn’t going to be a gentle ride but you’re still not expecting to be kicked out of your seat onto the desert floor, rolling to a stop in the sharp-as-glass spinifex. Don’t be surprised when you want to put it down but can’t.” – Garrison Somers, Editor-in-Chief, The Blotter literary magazine

Literary|0 Comments

That’s When the Knives Come Down

Dolan Morgan’s debut collection focuses on cities and relationships and lives gone awry. A man designs a city around absence to cope with his wife’s disappearance; an entire town exhibits symptoms of a monstrous disease; a sound overtakes New York, leaving its denizens lonely and shuddering and immensely aroused. A guy propositions his furniture, a volcano spews its ash, and a horde of enemies engage in a literally uplifting fight. Throughout, Morgan poses questions to the reader: if an endless hole exists in the earth, does it not also exist in ourselves? What happens if we dig a shallower hole? What happens when we fill it? At once absurd, harrowing, and inimitable, That’s When the Knives Come Down establishes Dolan Morgan as the writer whose voice will supersede your inner monologue and expose your roiling inner turmoil.

Literary|0 Comments