All posts by Jessica FitzHanso

Get your summer books here!

OK, you’re looking at some time off, maybe even a whole week, at a lake or the beach or your own back deck. This is the perfect opportunity to attack that growing TBR pile. But wait, recent bestsellers, the latest by your favorite author, and the three recommended by your sister-in-law are checked out – what to do?? Never fear, we have some guaranteed great books for every taste, and the best part is, they are checked in! That is, until you get here…

Read below for some info on each, and then run in and pick them up from our display!


Adult Summer Reading is Back for 2019

Now Adults can join in the summer reading fun too!

Adult summer challenge Bingo cards can be downloaded and printed, or you can pick one up at the Circulation Desk on the main floor starting June 1st.

Cross off spaces for reading different genres, but also for attending summer programs, downloading music and movies, connecting with us on social media and much more! Turn in your completed card to the Main desk and be entered into a raffle for prizes by August 31

Also check out our displays in the library and our monthly Friday Fiction lists for suggestions on what to read this summer. If nothing there looks good, we’re here to help!


Start summer with the right book!

This month’s list is packed with highly anticipated reads from all genres.  Miracle Creek, by Angie Kim, is a compelling court room drama that tackles some pretty heavy issues. I couldn’t put it down. Also, Sarah Blake’s latest, The Guest Book, a lush family saga that already has over 50 holds. For those interested in wading into speculative fiction, there’s the thoroughly original and engaging Light From Other Stars by Erika Swyler.

Read through the whole list to find many many more, (we’ve included some RA hints as additional guides) and don’t forget to join us in July for our next live event! In the meantime, we’ll have another list in June (Yay summer!), and if you need even more ideas contact us anytime!

Join us for Book Tastings!

Have recent recommendations left a bad taste in your mouth? Looking for a new book to devour? Join us for a book tasting! We’re curating a delectable selection of new fiction to pique your appetite, from all genres so we’re certain you won’t leave hungry for new book to read. Sample each title, chat with your fellow diners, and enjoy some sweet treats. Next Wednesday evening at 7PM we’ll have the tables set so come and take you seat – your reservation awaits! Click here for our calendar entry.

Friday Fiction: Read around the world!

At this point in Winter, we all need a break. If you’re like most people, it’s not feasible to hop on a plane. Instead, try immersing yourself in a new book from a far off place, and travel without leaving your favorite reading nook! Our January Friday Fiction presentation took us around the world with titles that are sure to provide you with plenty of new “destinations” and thought-provoking experiences to carry through until Spring.

We started in the US with Asymmetry,a debut by Lisa Halliday, which examined New York and America through the eyes of two very different and seemingly unconnected individuals. The connection is there, and finding it is the true reward of this novel. Then, Essayist Pam Houston took us to the great American Rockies of Colorado for an exploration of humanity’s relationship to the earth in Deep Creek. David Kipen paints a vivid picture of three centuries in Los Angeles through the writings of its famous denizens and visitors, and The Paragon Hotel fictionalizes the often overlooked history of Portland, Oregon.

From there we moved abroad to the mountain villages of China for a horrific satire in famed Chinese writer Yan Liang’s latest The Day the Sun Died, and then to the brutal realities of the Philipine-American War through the lens of a filmmaker in the experimental and ambitious Insurrecto. Then west to Madhuri Vijay’s tale of family secrets, political turmoil, and difficult choices in the Kashmiri region of India in her moving, atmospheric novel, The Far Field.

Next we visited West Africa and two very different novels from Nigeria: In the first, prize winning author Chigozie Obioma weaves Nigerian folklore and Greek legend into an intricate, heart wrenching tale of modern Nigeria.  In the second, first time novelist Oyinkan Braithwaite treats us to a darkly humorous story about a young woman that has a bad habit of killing her boyfriends and the sister who has a bad habit of covering for her – that is until the latter’s new crush becomes the former’s new target.

Up on the European continent, we made many stops: First in Israel, for Amanda Sthers’ Holy Lands which contemplates modern technologies through the struggles of an estranged family. Then to Greece for a contemplative conversational novel that seeks the ultimate answers to difficult questions about acclaim, identity and sacrifice with Rachel Cusk’s Kudos. In Norway, North of Dawn describes the struggles of assimilation for a Somali family, and The Red Address Book describes the long, eventful and heartwarming life of a 96-six year old woman as she pages through her address book.

Finally, in England, we get two thrilling tales from very different corners. The first is a small but powerful novelization of a real and terrifying event that took place in the council estates in London, told through the eyes of several witnesses called In Our Mad and Furious City. The second is a true to form thriller-mystery set on the summer coast in Norfolk, England, where a long lost Au Pair must be tracked down years later to uncover long kept family secrets, a novel appropriately titled The Au Pair.

And finally, we are back in New York, with a gem of a novel called the Museum of Modern Love. This inspired story is framed by the moving performance art of the real Marina Abramovic, specifically an exhibition from 2010 called The Artist is Present, around which the heart broken fictional characters revolve. It’s a lovely book.

Our next live Friday Fiction presentation at the library is April 19, at 10:30AM. We will also be adding a second, evening event for readers, called Book Tastings, on April 24 at 7PM, which will feature many of the books from the April Friday Fiction. More details on that soon. Need more recommendations now? Contact Us!

Chelmsford Library’s Best Reads of 2018!

If you’re still thinking about what to give the book-lover in your life, or if you just need something new to read, our expert librarians have put together a great list of their favorite reads of 2018. So, whether you’re a fantasy fan, a kitchen savant, a graphic guru, or a master/ mistress of suspense, this list has something for you. And better still – many on this list are from previous years, so they’re a great option for people waiting in long hold queues for the latest bestsellers.

Need more ideas for what to read? Contact our Bookwise team!

Fiction | Nonfiction | Picture Books | Middle Grade | Teen and Young Adult | Graphic Novels and Manga | Scifi and Fantasy | Mystery and Suspense | Historical Fiction | Book club picks Cookbooks | Memoir and Biography | History


Lindsay Trupti Eileen
Jessica Sara

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R.E.A.C.T.: Read Engage And Come Together with the Chelmsford Library

Thanks to a $7,500 federal IMLS grant awarded by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners to the Chelmsford Library, we are  embarking on a year-long project to promote civic participation and education called REACT Grant: Read, Engage, And Come Together.

Join us as we explore six key issues that impact our community, through engaging programming, in depth, moderated discussions, films, readings, and quality resources. The schedule of these six areas are:

  • October 2018: Promote the project and Voter Engagement
  • November/December 2018: Poverty and Food Insecurity
  • January/February 2019: Racial Justice and One Book
  • March/April 2019: Environment and Climate Change
  • May/June 2019: LGBTQ Equality
  • July/August 2019: Immigration and Refugees
  • September/October 2019: Public Education

You won’t want to miss what we have in store. Find out about upcoming events in the series and links to resources here.


BINGO Summer Reading Challenge results

Thanks to everyone who participated in the Summer Reading Bingo challenge this year! If you are looking for something new to try this Fall, check out what your neighbors suggest:

How the Irish Saved Civilization, by Thomas Cahill: “This book is an excellent scholarly history book that is told in a clear fun style. Great Irish biographies and stories form the background of Ireland’s role in saving the literary legacy of the classical world.”
Let Me Call You Sweetheart, by Mary Higgins Clark: “A young woman who is a prosecuting attorney and who has a young daughter finds information that a man convicted for murder  may be innocent. As she pursues different avenues her daughter is threatened with possible harm. Many twists and turns to the plot. Not til about 10-12 pages to the end of the book do you finally figure out what’s going on.”
Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics, by Dan Harris: “This book is a follow-up to his book 10% Happier. It’s a humorous but practical guide to meditation for those of us who want to meditate but just haven’t made the commitment for some reason. It offers common-sense guidance which inspired me to try again.”
A Psalm for Lost Girls, by K. Bayerd: “So good – I couldn’t put it down! Well-drawn characters and teenagers that act like teenagers not like adults in teen clothing. Heavy subjects – grief, death, religion, identity – are handled both realistically and with sensitivity. I will miss the universe of this book.”
The House on Mango Street, by Sandra Cisneros: “This book has become one of my all-time favorites. Cisneros used short literary vignettes, or snapshots, of Esperanza’s inner thoughts to build her coming of age story following a young Latina growing up in Chicago. Published in 1984, this book is still a must-read. With fluid and poetic writing, this is a quick read with a lot of depth.”
Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache mysteries: “I love all Louise Penny books – they are all good, Glass Houses was a particular favorite however I would recommend reading them in order. It isn’t absolutely necessary but helps in understanding the development of the characters. Her detective Armand Gamache has become a favorite along with the other recurring (and somewhat eccentric) characters of Three Pines. L. P. is a remarkable writer – hard to put her books down prior to finish.”
The Bridge, by Peter Tomasi: Very interesting. “I had no idea how hard it was to build the Brooklyn Bridge in NYC. The trials and all the engineering. But the politics were another dimension. Recommended to my son to read.”
The Speed of Dark, by Elizabeth Moon: “A well-respected sci-fi writer who initially entered the field by co-writing two books with Anne McCaffrey. Though this book takes place sometime (not specified) in the future, it’s about an autistic male who works for a large company that employs a group of people with autism that can make incredibly fast calculations. Should our hero have an operation that will correct his autism or will the operation essentially impair his brilliance? Moon has an autistic son herself so she knows what she is talking about though the book is fiction.”
A Column of Fire, by Ken Follett: “This book is historical fiction starting in England in the 16th century and branching out to other locations in the world. The world is torn by religious conflict. Exploring the conflicts and historical characters of the time through the fictional characters in the story helps to provide better understanding of the period.”
The Great Alone, by Kristin Hannah: “This is a great story of courage and resilience set in the Alaskan wilderness. All of the characters face hardships that can only be overcome by working together.”
The Outsider by Stephen King: “What starts out as a murder to be solved turns into a book about people in two places at once. Actually the murderer is a shape-shifter – includes Holly from Mr. Mercedes.”

Other books read during the challenge:

Read a Book from a genre you don’t like:

Read a short story collection:

Read a book published the year you were born:

Read a Staff Pick:

Read a Graphic Novel:

Read a book that’s also a movie:

Other answers from readers:

Tell us about an item the library should lend:

Science equipment for kids

Nintendo Switch

Novelty cake pans

GPS preloaded with local hiking trails

Halloween costumes


Art work

Graphic novel binge box


Summer lawn games

Basic home repair toolbox

Crafting materials

Self paced programming courses (some are available here)

Suggest a program the library should offer:

More reading challenges

Escape room for kids

Photography Class

Better learning garden at MacKay

Trips for seniors

Bilingual storytime

Gaming club

Magic 101

Adulting classes

How to Sew

Quilting group (Crafty people should also check out our newest book group, Knit-Lit!)

Walking tour of Chelmsford History (check out the walking tour created by the Chelmsford Historical Society and Girl Scout Troop 63112 here!)

Cooking classes



Variety is the spice of summer!

Thanks to all who joined us last Friday morning for our quarterly live book-share. I hope you found something to read or look forward to! For those that were unable to attend, the list is below. This round, we brought a variety of genres, to help you complete those Summer Reading BINGO boards, and because summer is a great time to experiment with new stories. We have also included some that we know will be favorites soon, and some favorites that our audience suggested. There are a few set during WWII, (The Lost Vintage, Dear Mrs. Bird, Eagle and Crane) but each tells such an intriguing new story from that era. There are some uplifting stories for warm summer days (The Lido, The Late Bloomers Club), and there are thrillers for stormy afternoons (Rough Animals, Providence, Still Lives, The Darkest Time of Night). There are serious novels to spark interesting conversation at your next cookout (Bad Stories, The Poisoned City). There are novels of speculative fiction (The Suicide Club, Tell the Machine Goodnight) and magic (Spinning Silver, Witchmark), great character-driven fiction (The Ensemble, Unsheltered, What We Were Promised), a novel by an author that seems determined to write a great story based on each famous building in Manhattan (The Masterpiece), and many more. Read through the list – which one will make it into your suitcase or beach bag?

Join us for our next meeting on October 19th!

Happy Reading!

 Bad Stories is an effort to make sense of our historical moment. The book argues that bad outcomes arise directly from the bad stories we tell ourselves. Using literature as a lens, Bad Stories explores entertainment, sports, and political parody, the degeneration of our free press into a for-profit industry, and our enduring pathologies of race, class, immigration, and tribalism. Critics are calling it “the feel bad read of the season!”
 The Darkest Time of Night: Investigative journalist for WSMV-TV in Nashville, Jeremy Finley’s debut thriller explores what happens to people’s lives when our world intersects with the unexplainable.
Dear Mrs. Bird: London, 1940. Emmeline Lake is Doing Her Bit for the war effort as a volunteer telephone operator with the Auxiliary Fire Services. When a job is advertised at the London Evening Chronicle, Emmy’s sees her dream of being a Lady War Correspondent coming true. But she winds up as typist for the fierce and renowned advice columnist, Henrietta Bird. Disappointed, she gamely bucks up and buckles down. Prepare to fall head over heels for Emmy and her best friend Bunty in Pearce’s irresistible debut.
Eagle and Crane: Louis Thorn and Haruto “Harry” Yamada the Eagle and the Crane, are the star attractions of a daredevil aerial stunt team that traverses Depression-era California. The young men have a complicated relationship, thanks to the Thorn family’s belief that the Yamadas, Japanese immigrants, stole land from the Thorn family. This tension is inflamed when Louis and Harry are both drawn to the same woman, Ava. After the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor there are changes and harsh realities to face. And when one of the stunt planes crashes with two charred bodies inside, the ensuing investigation struggles when the details don’t add up and no one seems willing to tell the truth.
The Ensemble: I really got into this one. It’s my favorite kind of character driven, coming of age story, about a group of friends, a family really, that go from their graduation through their early adult lives, changing in multitudes along the way. A Cellist herself, her narrative follows four bright young musicians: Jana, Brit, Daniel, and Henry. Each has their own stories but all come together over the projects of the Van Ness String Quartet.. My heart broke over the individual trials of each player, but rejoiced over the companionship they forged through their musicianship. It’s a wonderful coming of age story, like Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings. – Jessica
French Exit: The characters are not necessarily relatable at first, but they grow on you. Suddenly you find yourself looking through their eye, a sort of distorted and disoriented viewpoint.  Forced to give up luxury on the upper east side in NYC for a borrowed apartment in Paris because of overspending in the wake of the patriarch’s death and financial scandal Frances and her son Malcolm must begin a new life. Neither Mother nor son is able to sustain normal society, so their disorientation and required humility provides great comedy to the narrative, and DeWitt is a master at this. Will they come to terms with their new situation  in life, or will they continue on their slow but definite road to ruin? You may be reminded of the shenanigans that populate Wodehouse’s Jeeves series.
From the Corner of the Oval: Against the backdrop of glamour, drama, and intrigue, this is the story of a young woman making unlikely friendships, getting her heart broken, learning what truly matters, and, in the process, discovering her voice
The Last Cruise: Christine, a former journalist turned farmer, Mick, a Hungarian cruise ship chef, and Miriam, an Israeli quartet violinist find themselves thrown together in turmoil as what was supposed to be pleasant retro-cruise turns into a nightmare at sea.
The Late Bloomers Club: A delightful novel about two headstrong sisters, a small town’s efforts to do right by the community, and the power of a lost dog to summon true love.
The Lido: Another one related to civic engagement, but much more tame, The Lido is the story of two women coming together over an unexpected cause. Kate is a young, anxiety ridden reporter in Brixton, outside London, charged with covering the closing of a local community pool, which will be torn down to accommodate more housing development. This is just the latest in a pattern of gentrification for the community. In investigating the history of the pool for the local newspaper she meets the community that greatly values the pool, most especially an 86 year old woman named Rosemary whose relationship with the pool goes back decades. Her life forms the second track of the novel as we learn about how the pool served as a respite for her at different points in her life. Under Rosemary’s influence, Kate changes from a depressed and friendless woman to a person with purpose (to save the pool) and relationships. Similar in storyline to A Man Called Ove, this is a sweet story for an afternoon by the pool.
The Lost Vintage: Sweetbitter meets The Nightingale in this page-turner about a woman who returns to her family’s ancestral vineyard in Burgundy to study for her Master of Wine test, and uncovers a lost diary, a forgotten relative, and a secret her family has been keeping since WWII.
The Masterpiece: Fiona Davis returns with her third historical in 3 years, after 2016’s The Dollhouse and last year’s The Address. In The Masterpiece, Davis once again pairs women across generations in New York City to present the story of famous landmarks and historical periods. The Masterpiece‘s focus is Grand Central Terminal. In 1928, we meet Clara Darden, illustrator and teacher at the art school once housed in the terminal building. In 1974, we meet Virginia Clay, a divorced mother whose lack of skills but ample resourcefulness bring her to an unusual position in the now crumbling train station. Both women exude great strength as their respective cultures aim to push them aside for being women. Davis does a good job with the characters, but an even better job of highlighting some of NYC’s most intriguing stories.
Not Our Kind (Coming in September):  It’s post war Manhattan, and Eleanor Moskowitz is late for a prestigious teaching interview, so she decides to take a cab. When her cab is rear ended and she finds herself simultaneously bloody, desperate for a phone, and ashamed of her appearance, when the perfectly tailored and coiffed Patrica Bellamy, comes to her aid, though second guessing her decision upon learning her passenger’s last name. At Patricia’s Park Avenue Apartment, Eleanor surprisingly befriends Patricia’s  polio-stricken and surly daughter Margeaux. As a result, Eleanor is hired as Margeaux’s tutor, allowing Eleanor access to the world of New York’s 1%. They will simultaneously accept and reject her as a result of the prejudices brewing while America was at war. On the surface, it’s a simple romance, but the defeat of prejudice and the developing relationship between ethnic groups and classes is the real focus of this novel. It’s an important and often overlooked story. – Jessica
The Poisoned City: Through a series of disastrous decisions, the state government had switched the city’s water supply to a source that corroded Flint’s aging lead pipes. Complaints about the foul-smelling water were dismissed: the residents of Flint, mostly poor and African American, were not seen as credible, even in matters of their own lives.
It took eighteen months of activism by city residents and a band of dogged outsiders to force the state to admit that the water was poisonous. By that time, twelve people had died and Flint’s children had suffered irreparable harm. The long battle for accountability and a humane response to this man-made disaster has only just begun.
In the first full account of this American tragedy, The Poisoned City recounts the gripping story of Flint’s poisoned water through the people who caused it, suffered from it, and exposed it. It is a chronicle of one town, but could also be about any American city, all made precarious by the neglect of infrastructure and the erosion of democratic decision making. Places like Flint are set up to fail-and for the people who live and work in them, the consequences can be fatal.
Providence: Providence is known for a few things, but perhaps most notable of all is that it was the final home of the writer H. P. Lovecraft. In her third novel, Caroline Kepnes inserts Lovecraft into a modern day teenage love story to present a captivating and genre-bending page turner. Jon is a quirky kid, loved by no one except Chloe. Their relationship is close, they understand each other in ways others can’t comprehend, and just as Jon is about to suggest a new intensity to their relationship he is kidnapped. Chloe is devastated about his disappearance, but equally about the lack of interest others have for his disappearance. She unravels, but then, as time goes by, picks herself up and assumes the role of a normal teenage girl. Then, 4 years later, Jon reappears, taller, stronger and with a strange intense new power that inadvertently harms and sometimes kills those around him, mysteriously imparted to him by his kidnapper. He must learn to simultaneously keep his physical distance from Chloe and find a way to keep her close. He travels from New Hampshire to Providence, where perfectly healthy people suddenly begin to drop dead and a quirky detective is trying to figure out the pattern. It’s fast-paced, fiercely original and great for adults and young adults, fans of Stranger Things or anyone that loves a good suspenseful mystery. – Jessica
Rough Animals: Breaking Bad meets No Country for Old Men… Ever since their father’s untimely death five years before, Wyatt Smith and his inseparably close twin sister, Lucy, have scraped by alone on their family’s isolated ranch in Box Elder County, Utah. That is until one morning when, just after spotting one of their steers lying dead in the field, Wyatt is hit in the arm by a hail of gunfire that takes four more cattle with it. The shooter: a fever-eyed, fearsome girl-child with a TEC-9 in her left hand and a worn shotgun in her right. They hold the girl captive, but she breaks loose overnight and heads south into the desert. With the dawning realization that the loss of cattle will mean the certain loss of the ranch, Wyatt feels he has no choice but to go after her and somehow find restitution for what’s been lost. Wyatt’s decision sets him on an epic twelve-day odyssey through a nightmarish underworld he only half understands; a world that pitches him not only against the primordial ways of men and the beautiful yet brutally unforgiving landscape, but also against himself. As he winds his way down from the mountains of Box Elder to the mesas of Monument Valley and back, Wyatt is forced to look for the first time at who he is and what he’s capable of, and how those hard truths set him irrevocably apart from the one person he’s ever really known and loved. Steeped in a mythic, wildly alive language of its own, and gripping from the first gunshot to the last, Rough Animals is a tour de force from a powerful new voice.
Spinning Silver: Miryem was brought up in a snowbound village, on the edge of a charmed forest. She comes from a family of moneylenders, but her kind father shirks his work. Free to lend and reluctant to collect, his family faces poverty – until Miryem intercedes. Hardening her heart, she sets out to retrieve what’s owed, and her neighbors soon whisper that she can turn silver into gold. Then an ill-advised boast attracts the cold creatures that haunt the wood. Nothing will be the same again, for words have power. And the challenge she’s issued will change the fate of a kingdom.
Channeling the spirit of the original Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale, Naomi Novik has written a rich, multi-layered fantasy about sacrifice, power and love that is a joy to read.
Still Lives: A riveting page-turner and feminist proclamation all in one. Maggie Richter is a copy-editor for the revered, but struggling, modern art museum Rocque in Los Angeles. In an effort to revitalize the museum’s coffers and place back in the center of the LA art scene, they commission the controversial Kim Lord to produce an exhibition of her latest work Still Lives. Lord’s paintings depict the bodies of famous female victims of violent crimes in LA, including The Black Dahlia, Kitty Genovese and Nicole Brown Simpson. Maggie can’t stand them for the way they seem to be exploiting the lives and deaths of these women for publicity. Then, the artist herself fails to appear for her own exhibit’s opening gala, and the artist’s boyfriend, also Maggie’s ex, is the prime suspect. Maggie, and the reader, are then drawn into an investigation that will take them through LA’s glamorous and not-so-glamorous sides. I loved the layers to this book. You have a well-written page turner, a socially conscious set of characters, and a great tour of LA’s history and seedy underworlds. – Jessica
The Suicide Club: A compelling look at a near future world obsessed with the possibility of immortality. Suicide Club specifically addresses our culture’s health obsession by drawing a world in which music and art are discouraged as cortisol inducing behaviors and trading in human organs is the best way to maintain wealth. Lea, at 100 years old, is such a prime product of this culture that she and her well-toned fiance are positioned to be included in the so called 3rd wave, which would extend Lea’s life-expectancy of 300 years to infinity. But someone from her past has resurfaced and is involved in a counter cultural movement. Lea’s connection to this figure and the cause of the underground movement place her under scrutiny from the Ministry and cause her to question her life’s direction. – Jessica
A Terrible Country: When Andrei Kaplan’s older brother Dima insists that Andrei return to Moscow to care for their ailing grandmother, Andrei must take stock of his life in New York. Perhaps a few months in Moscow are just what he needs. So Andrei sublets his room in Brooklyn, packs up his hockey stuff, and moves into the apartment that Stalin himself had given his grandmother, a woman who has outlived her husband and most of her friends. Andrei learns to navigate Putin’s Moscow, still the city of his birth, but with more expensive coffee.  A wise, sensitive novel about Russia, exile, family, love, history and fate, A Terrible County asks what you owe the place you were born, and what it owes you. Writing with grace and humor, Keith Gessen gives us a brilliant and mature novel that is sure to mark him as one of the most talented novelists of his generation.
Unsheltered: Barbara Kingsolver has been writing since her debut in 1988 with the Bean Trees. Since then she has had numerous best-sellers, including The Poisonwood bible, a perennial book club favorite about the travails of a baptist missionary and his family in an unstable African Congo in 1959. In her latest novel, she presents a story of a New Jersey neighborhood and the people residing there, joined over time. The first strain tells the story of Willa Knox, a middle aged freelance journalist living in the dawn of Trump, despairing over her crumbling New Jersey house and her growing caretaker responsibilities, which include her ailing and right-wing father in law, her two fledgling adult children and her son’s newborn baby.The second strain tells the story of a teacher in the 1880s, residing in the same but younger neighborhood of Willa. The teacher, Thatcher Greenwood, struggles to teach the new evolutionary theory of Charles Darwin to a local school body, but is met with great resistance from the community and within his own household. Through beautiful writing and expertly drawn characters, Kingsolver tells the story of two characters, joined in their relative struggles at the edge of cultural upheaval.
What We Were Promised: Set in modern Shanghai, a debut by a Chinese-American writer about a prodigal son whose unexpected return forces his newly wealthy family to confront painful secrets and unfulfilled promises.
Witchmark: In an original world reminiscent of Edwardian England in the shadow of a World War, cabals of noble families use their unique magical gifts to control the fates of nations, while one young man seeks only to live a life of his own.
Magic marked Miles Singer for suffering the day he was born, doomed either to be enslaved to his family’s interest or to be committed to a witches’ asylum. He went to war to escape his destiny and came home a different man, but he couldn’t leave his past behind. The war between Aeland and Laneer leaves men changed, strangers to their friends and family, but even after faking his own death and reinventing himself as a doctor at a cash-strapped veterans’ hospital, Miles can’t hide what he truly is.
When a fatally poisoned patient exposes Miles’ healing gift and his witchmark, he must put his anonymity and freedom at risk to investigate his patient’s murder. To find the truth he’ll need to rely on the family he despises, and on the kindness of the most gorgeous man he’s ever seen.