THIS FEATURE HAS A TWO-FOLD PURPOSE: 1. TO ALLOW THOSE RECENTLY ADDED TO OUR FOLLOWER’S LIST TO LEARN ABOUT BOOKS THEY MIGHT HAVE MISSED AND 2. TO MAKE SURE PREVIOUSLY FEATURED AUTHORS AND THEIR WORK AREN’T FORGOTTEN. IF YOU’D LIKE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT ANY ONE OF THE BOOKS REVISITED HERE, SIMPLY CLICK ON THE “AUTHOR” PAGE, THEN ON THAT AUTHOR’S NAME.
“THE SHELTER OF LEAVES,” BY LENORE GAY.
Writes Lenore: “During the Cold War US citizens were preoccupied with the Red Menace and spy novels became popular with readers. Now there is concern about the degradation of the planet and global terrorist attacks. Since 9/11 there has been a growing preoccupation about terrorism. I wanted to write about an event that affected the country.
“In 2008 I decided to take on a big theme: terrorism and peoples’ responses to the fear and deprivation a crisis brings. I began writing Shelter of Leaves that year, and the growing concern about terrorism is reflected in the book’s imagining of a world of chaos. In my career as a therapist, I worked with people who had lived through various traumas and am familiar with the types of defenses people use to protect themselves. I created Sabine from experience with how people work to heal themselves. I put her in a chaotic situation and then created her inner and outer struggles as a way to discover how a previously traumatized person would respond to a crisis that would trigger more trauma. The book explores whether healing is possible and what it takes to heal and to survive.”
“THE MAN BACK THERE,” BY DAVID CROUSE.
From the author: “The Man Back There is about a certain kind of male psychology. Although on the surface the men in these stories might seem to be quite different—one is a farmer, another a divorced dog catcher, another a science fiction fanatic, another a United States senator—each of them suffers from an inability to confront his particular past. To look that past in the face would be admitting, that person who did those things, that person is me. When I was writing these particular stories it struck me that there was something particularly male about that inability of these characters to do that. I’m not exactly sure what that is, but it might have to do with machismo and it might have to do with a kind of bruised male romanticism.
“THIS ANGEL ON MY CHEST,” BY LESLIE PIETRZYK.
“The assignment I gave myself as I started this project was to place at the heart of each story a single, hard, true thing about my own experience as a young widow and to go from there. I take a lot of literary license, of course, but this is by far my most personal book. I wouldn’t expect readers to try guessing what’s true and what’s made-up; the book isn’t a puzzle to decipher. But I like to think that the parts of “real me” that are in there give the book a recognizable authenticity.
“And the start of this book came rather randomly: I was at an artists’ colony, chatting at breakfast about the literature of sub-cultures, and that afternoon I decided to write my own story about a sub-culture, which ended up being the young widow support group I had attended. The words spilled out, and I was fortunate to be in a place where I could follow the muse, as they say, and in that week I drafted several stories anchored by that “one true thing” that now appear in the book.”
“ARIEL: THE FIRST GUARDIAN,” BY SYDNEY SCROGHAM.
Abuse survivor Ariel Harte doesn’t need anyone. Ever. But her companion animal is infected with a dark, magical force. Only an ancient purification ritual, the mind link, performed with another human can cure this infection. Ariel must ask her ex-boyfriend, Ryan Tracey, for help.
But she’s racing time. She’s infected, too. All the walls will have to come down so Ariel can heal or she will lose herself to the darkness forever.Ariel: The First Guardian is a story of true love that wins over time, the power of second chances, and redemption from abuse. This is a prequel to Chase in the Guardians of Agalrae series but can be enjoyed as a standalone novel.
DAFFODILS AND FIREFLIES,” BY CLAUDIA TALLER
When her mother is dying, Betsy Kramer makes the uncharacteristic decision to return to her home at Windy Hill. At her mother’s funeral, Tom, the only man Betsy ever loved, returns and reminds her that daffodils were once her favorite flower. Lingering at Windy Hill, Betsy finds letters from her estranged father hidden in a hatbox and realizes the enormity of the lie perpetrated by her mother. As Betsy and Tom start spending time together, picking peaches and antiquing, Betsy faces her biggest demon, and even the fireflies hovering over the Magical Pond can’t help her. With vivid imagery and deep feeling, Daffodils and Fireflies chronicles one woman’s journey home again while rediscovering love. Although considered literary fiction, the book has a strong romance element to it.
“MANIAC DRIFTER,” BY LAURA MARELLO,
When Harper Martin drifts into a sleepy Cape Cod resort with a mysterious investment plan, he unleashes a firestorm involving the F.B.I., the State Department, the government of Nicaragua, and the J. Paul Getty Museum. Laura Marello’s hilarious new novel features a surreal cast of characters, among them the Souza Family (“Provincetown’s version of the Kennedys. They were handsome, glamorous, Catholic and doomed”), Voodoo Woman, and a parrot named Sydney Greenstreet.
We come to know them all—fishermen, artists, drug dealers, owners of bars both gay and straight—through the lens of a winsome young amnesiac whose own past is shrouded in mystery. Marello’s passion for art and film, seen in her earlier work, helps propel the action forward to its riotous conclusion; her love for the glorious foibles of our human nature, rendered with compassion as well as humor, keeps us caring about what happens. (Constance Solari)