#5Books: Book recs and Easter goodness

#5Books for the week ending 28 April 2019

And now we return to our regularly scheduled book recs!

I hope everyone’s Easter weekend was fabulous, safe and chocolately! I mostly hung out with family, caught up with a few things that I had let slip and enjoyed lovely lovely warm weather for this time of year.

In other news, I need to find new ways of styling my long hair. Apparently, the old wife’s tale about wearing your hair one way all the time being bad… is actually true. And I’ve discovered I have a receding hairline (ponytails and buns) and a glaring spot that has less hair than it should. There’s a term for that: traction alopecia. It’s a thing. Why do we not get taught this in health in school, I ask you?

Though in the grand scheme of all the things that I ought to have been taught: core activation, protective your back — it’s small potatoes.

What do you wish you’d been taught in school instead of you know, isoceles triangles and physics (I hate physics) 

Anyway, how’s that for TMI hair issues for your afternoon/morning??

Mercifully, I am now going to introduce you to these babies:

My Detective 

Los Angeles is booming. Money is pouring in. Buildings are going up. But someone is killing architects.

Detective Sam Carver journeys through sins scattered across the City of Angels, where hipsters, homeless, immigrants, producers, politicians, movie stars, and cops collide in mysterious ways. Every move Carver makes is anticipated by the killer, Dylan Cross. She has hacked his computer and knows his diaries and secrets. She sees in him a kindred and damaged spirit, a man who can understand her crimes, heal her scars, and love her. Dylan is reclaiming herself from a past of brutal injustices inflicted by a world of misogyny and power. Detective Carver is dealing with his own troubled history-an elusive and violent father.

My Detective is a story of obsession set against vengeance and prayers of forgiveness in a city that is as cruel as it is fantastical. It captures modern Los Angeles in real time, an eerie glide through the imagination, where winds gust high above the San Gabriel Mountains and neighborhoods stretch toward the ocean like the flash and tremor of a dream. The novel speaks to our sense of beauty in a new century and the demons we rouse when we dare to create a new metropolis.

First, that cover — the neon lights, the darker cityscape? Totally does it for me and makes for a seriously atmospheric cover. But, more than that — a female killer obsessed with a cop? OH yes please, I want to see where this goes!

Fame Adjacent

The child star that was left behind is about to get her moment to shine in this swoony romantic comedy inspired by a unique, beloved facet of pop culture history: The Mickey Mouse Club.

Holly Danner has a complicated relationship with fame. It’s not easy being the only cast member of a 1990s song-and-dance show who didn’t become famous. When she was eleven, she used to do anything for a laugh (or at least a laugh-track) on “Diego and the Lion’s Den.” If she talked about it–which she almost never does–Holly might explain how her childhood best friends came to dominate the worlds of pop music, film, and TV while she was relegated to a few near-misses and a nanny gig for her niece. She’d even be telling the truth about making peace with the whole thing years ago.

But when she finds out there’s a 25th anniversary for the show planned–a televised reunion, clip show, and panel–and she wasn’t invited, it’s time for an impromptu road trip to crash the event and set the record straight. Three problems: she’s currently in Internet Rehab (perhaps she’s not quite as well-adjusted as she believes…), she has no cash, and the only person who can get her across the country in time is Thom Parker, a handsome, infuriatingly level-headed patient who doesn’t think she should confront her famous ex-friends.

FAME ADJACENT is a contemporary, realistic, and humorous look at love, friendship, and fame, as seen through the eyes of a girl who lived it–from the sidelines.

*waves hands at blurb* Look at all that — a washed out childhood star confronting her frenemies and it seems, everything else as well. Being on the sidelines hurts.

Searching for Sylvie Lee

It begins with a mystery. Sylvie, the beautiful, brilliant, successful older daughter of the Lee family, flies to the Netherlands for one final visit with her dying grandmother—and then vanishes.

Amy, the sheltered baby of the Lee family, is too young to remember a time when her parents were newly immigrated and too poor to keep Sylvie. Seven years older, Sylvie was raised by a distant relative in a faraway, foreign place, and didn’t rejoin her family in America until age nine. Timid and shy, Amy has always looked up to her sister, the fierce and fearless protector who showered her with unconditional love.

But what happened to Sylvie? Amy and her parents are distraught and desperate for answers. Sylvie has always looked out for them. Now, it’s Amy’s turn to help. Terrified yet determined, Amy retraces her sister’s movements, flying to the last place Sylvie was seen. But instead of simple answers, she discovers something much more valuable: the truth. Sylvie, the golden girl, kept painful secrets . . . secrets that will reveal more about Amy’s complicated family—and herself—than she ever could have imagined.

A deeply moving story of family, secrets, identity, and longing, Searching for Sylvie Lee is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive portrait of an immigrant family. It is a profound exploration of the many ways culture and language can divide us and the impossibility of ever truly knowing someone—especially those we love.

*waves hands at blurb again* (I’m doing that a lot today) There’s so much to get into here: the sisters’ relationship, their family’s relationship. And Sylvie’s secrets — that are more far-reaching than I expected when I first started reading this blurb.

Stone Mothers

Erin Kelly, the masterful author of He Said/She Said, delivers another irresistible, unputdownable novel of psychological suspense.

You can’t keep the secret.
You can’t tell the truth.
You can’t escape the past…

Marianne was seventeen when she fled her home in Nusstead – leaving behind her family, her boyfriend, Jesse, and the body they buried. Now, thirty years later, forced to return to in order to help care for her sick mother, she can feel the past closing around her. And Jesse, who never forgave her for leaving in the first place, is finally threatening to expose the truth.

Marianne will do anything to protect the life she’s built, the husband and daughter who must never know what happened all those years ago. Even if it means turning to her worst enemy for help… But Marianne may not know the whole story – and she isn’t the only one with secrets they’d kill to keep.

There’s a third person involved in this; the enemy that Marianne will turn to in order to help deal with Jesse — so who is that, and why do they not warrant a mention in the blurb at all? And, was Jesse hiding something else from her too? So many secrets!

Once a Liar

From the author of The Blindcomes an electrifying story of deception, duplicity and suspense

Peter Caine, a cutthroat Manhattan defense attorney, is extremely adept at his job. On the surface, he is charming and handsome, but inside he is cold and heartless. A sociopath practically incapable of human emotions, he has no remorse when he fights to acquit murderers, pedophiles and rapists.

When Charlie Doyle, the daughter of the Manhattan DA—and Peter’s former lover—is murdered, Peter’s world is quickly sent into a tailspin as the DA, a professional enemy of Peter’s, embarks on a witch hunt to avenge his daughter’s death, stopping at nothing to ensure Peter is found guilty of the murder.

Peter sets out to prove his innocence, and as he pieces together his defense, he finds that it’s those closest to us who are capable of the greatest harm.

An oldie, but a goodie that poses an interesting question: Can a sociopath be a the hero of a story? 

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