Recommended Reading from Southern Indie Booksellers, culled from their websites, newsletters, emails, facebook and twitter posts, and from the moments when they stop us in the street to push a book in our hands saying, "You've got to read this!"

Ms. Bixby's Last Day

A kids' book that the world needs to read, Ms. Bixby's Last Day is an affirmation of the immeasurable difference that the Good Ones can make in a life.

Told in alternating chapters by Steve, Brand, and Topher, it is a story about friendship, the power of a teacher, and the challenge of facing grief with strength and hope.

With touches of humor, each boy reveals elements of himself and Ms. Bixby's imprint, as the trio responds to her illness. A perfect choice for fans of Rob Buyea's Because of Mr. Terupt, this book will spur you to profess and practice the doing of good things and to leave your footprint on the paths of those with whom you are making the journey of life.

For readers age 11 and up.

Ms. Bixby's Last Day by John David Anderson (Walden Pond) Recommended by Cindy at Quail Ridge Books Raleigh NC

 

Hex

I love to be scared--big Stephen King fan for decades. In Hex, author Thomas Olde Heuvelt outcreeps the King, and I mean that in the nicest way possible.

I'm also from the Hudson Valley area (where the American version of Hex is set). Heuvelt nails it, getting the feel of a region where you sense something very old can still exist not too far away from your modern world.

Social media versus a centuries-old curse--it sounds as though it'll be a lark, but you'll be keeping the lights on long before you finish Hex.

Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt (Tor). Recommended by Rosemary at Quail Ridge Books Raleigh NC

 

Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky Club

Benjamin Alire Sáenz's stories are of the knock-you-over-powerful variety.

These seven stories-- set in the border towns of Juárez and El Paso, with many of them touching on the wave of violence that engulfed Juárez in the '90s-- all have a connection to the Kentucky Club, a venerable Juárez institution.

Winner of the PEN/Faulkner award and a Lambda Literary award, this book deserves a wider audience.

Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky Club by Benjamin Alire Sáenz (Cinco Puntos Press) Recommended by Elese at Flyleaf Books Chapel Hill NC 

The Innocents

I wasn't much of a mystery reader until I read Ace Atkins!

Quinn Colson is a such a great character-- equal parts John Wayne, Elvis, and Clint Eastwood-- but it's the supporting cast that really brings his books to life.

Gritty and violent, but also charming, the Quinn Colson books are must-reads for fans of the genre.

The Innocents by Ace Atkins (G.P. Putnam's Sons) Recommended by Colin at Flyleaf Books Chapel Hill NC

Truly Madly Guilty

A busy couple formerly on the brink of realizing their dreams reflects on a fortuitous gathering with their best friends and another couple in a tale that explores the role of guilt in relationships and the power of everyday moments in family life.

Liane Moriarty's novels consistently feature spot-on observations about contemporary life, irresistible humor, and page-turning suspense. Her last two books, Big Little Lies and The Husband's Secret, were both massive #1 New York Times bestsellers.


Truly Madly Guilty by Liane Moriarty (Flatiron Books) Recommended by Bookstore1Sarasota Sarasota FL

Leaving Lucy Pear

A big, heartrending novel about the entangled lives of two women in 1920s New England, both mothers to the same unforgettable girl.

In 1917 Beatrice Haven—the unwed teenage daughter of wealthy Jewish industrialists—sneaks out of the house in the middle of the night to abandon her newborn baby at the foot of a pear tree hoping the girl will be discovered by a poor Irish Catholic family led by headstrong Emma Murphy.

Ten years later, Prohibition is in full swing and post–World War I America is in the grips of rampant xenophobia. Bea is inadvertently reunited with Emma Murphy and the abandoned child—now a bright, bold, cross-dressing girl named Lucy Pear—forever altering the fates of all three women.

Leaving Lucy Pear by Anna Solomon (Viking) Recommended by Bookstore1Sarasota Sarasota FL

WOMEN IN SCIENCE: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World

A recent U.S. Department of Education survey found that high school girls take the same number of math and science classes as boys and earn slightly higher grades, but only 15 percent of U.S. collegiate women major in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Encouraging young women and girls to pursue STEM career tracks has never been more important. Women in Science highlights notable women's contributions to various scientific fields. A fascinating collection full of striking, singular art, the book features 50 profiles and illustrated portraits of women in STEM from the ancient to the modern world, and also contains infographics about interesting and relevant topics such as lab equipment and rates of women currently working in STEM fields.

WOMEN IN SCIENCE: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World by Rachel Ignotofsky (Ten Speed Press) Recommended by Bookstore1Sarasota Sarasota FL

A Princess of Mars

Written in 1912 the novel is considered a classic example of 20th century pulp fiction.  This was a book club pick and I wasn't sure if I'd like it; but I did, so much that I plan to read the entire series.

Let the adventures begin, as Captain John Carter finds himself transported to the alien landscape of Mars--where the low gravity increases his speed and strength exponentially. Taken prisoner by Martian warriors, he impresses them with his remarkable fighting skills, and quickly rises to a high-ranking chieftain.

But the heroic Carter's powers thrust him right in the middle of a deadly war raging across the planet--and a dangerous romance with a divine princess.


A Princess of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs (Fall River) Recommended by Cynthia at Book Swap of Carrollwood Tampa FL

Soulless

A light, funny read: think Buffy the Vampire Slayer meets Jane Austen in this wickedly funny debut novel. Soulless kicks off Carriger's new series set in an alternate 19th-century London that not only knows about vampires and werewolves, but accepts them into the upper tiers of society. There are 5 books in this series and all are worth reading!

Soulless by Gail Carriger (Orbit) Recommended by Cynthia at Book Swap of Carrollwood Tampa FL

One for the Money

A fun, light-hearted read with a likeable heroine (Stephanie Plum) who after losing her job seeks out her cousin Vinnie, a bail bondsman, about a filing job.

That job has just been filled, but there's an opening for a bounty hunter, and the money's good. Stephanie blackmails her way into the job.

Of course, Stephanie is unbelievably unqualified for this job, but a mixture of desperation, pride, and stubbornness take her a long way.

One for the Money by Janet Evanovich (St. Martin's Press) Recommended by Cynthia at Book Swap of Carrollwood Tampa FL

The Enchanted Files #1 Cursed

Reprint of the first Enchanted Files!

Meet ANGUS and ALEX! Angus is a brownie—a MAGICAL creature that secretly loves to do chores for humans. Alex is an ORDINARY kid. Angus has a TEMPER problem. Alex has the world’s MESSIEST room.

For better or worse (and things are going to get a whole lot worse!), the two are about to be thrown together by a centuries-old curse.

Can they work together to find a way to break it? Featuring diary entries, newspaper clippings, police transcripts, grumpy cats, annoying older brothers, terrible poetry, daring rescues, ancient magic, the occasional fit of temper, and more, Bruce Coville brings fantasy, adventure, and humor together in this one-of-a-kind tale of family and friendship.

The Enchanted Files #1  Cursed (Yearling Books)Recommended by Bookstore1Sarasota Sarasota FL

How to Set a Fire and Why

On page one of Ball's new novel, 16-year-old Lucia Stanton gets kicked out of school for stabbing the star basketball player in the neck with a pencil.

Lucia is a delinquent, a philosopher, a shard of glass. She's also an aspiring arsonist and an iconoclast, who is vibrant, alive, and charming in a misanthropic way.

Ball's prose is precise and deceptively spare, his message dynamic in what he doesn't write. Enlightenment thinkers used the symbol of the flame to represent the power and transmission of knowledge.It's in this tradition that How to Set a Fire and Why becomes Ball's pyrotechnic masterpiece.

How to Set a Fire and Why by Jesse Ball (Pantheon) Recommended by Matt at The Booksellers at Laurelwood Memphis TN

17 Carnations: The Royals, the Nazis, and the Biggest Cover-Up in History

Treat yourself to a riveting and real life royal war time thriller! 

Was American born and twice divorced Wallis Simpson truly in love and trying to win the heart of King Edward VIII, who was then demoted to a mere Duke as penance for loving her in return?

Author Andrew Morton provides sizzling and shocking details to provide some compelling answers to this key question, while raising many other questions along the way.

17 Carnations: The Royals, the Nazis, and the Biggest Cover-Up in History by Andrew Morton (Grand Central Publishing) Recommended by Diane at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

This Is Where It Ends

Taking you through an hour in Opportunity High School, during which a shooter comes in and changes everyone's lives, this book will also take you on an emotional roller coaster.

Told from multiple points of view, you get an idea of what the shooter is like, what has happened in his life that might have brought him to this point, and how he's affected the people close to him.

A heartbreaking novel that draws you into a small-town tragedy and somehow manages to not give up hope.

This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp (Sourcebooks Fire) Recommended by Melissa at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC


The Secret of Magic

Set in Mississippi at the close of WW2, The Secret of Magic is the story of the tragic treatment of a returning black GI, which draws in noted civil rights attorney Thurgood Marshall. But it also a story about the power of books and stories, especially those we encounter as children, to affect lives.

I loved this book and will be recommending it to fans of The Help and Mudbound.

The Secret of Magic by Deborah Johnson (Berkley) Recommended by Jill at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC 

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer

Children and teachers alike will fall in love with spunky Latina heroine Sophie Brown and the super powered chickens she has inherited and must keep safe from both chicken hawks and chicken thieves.

This exceptional debut is recommended for fans of Roald Dahl and all animal lovers.

Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer By Kelly Jones; Katie Kath (Illustrator) (Alfred A. Knopf) Recommended by Jill at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

Hold Still: A Memoir with Photographs

This beautifully written memoir cuts right to the heart of what it means to be an artist in the American South, and how the region’s history has molded the creative types it has produced.

The Virginia native shares family history and thoughts on her controversial work.

Hold Still: A Memoir with Photographs by Sally Mann (Back Bay Books) Recommended by Carl at Fountain Bookstore Richmond VA

Bone #1: Out from Boneville

This hugely-successful comic/graphic novel combines humor, darkness, distinct characters, cartoonish and not-so-cartoonish artwork with a great story to make something that is both appropriate and fun for young adults but engaging and clever enough for adult readers, as well.

Bone #1: Out from Boneville (Tribute Edition) by Inc. Scholastic, Jeff Smith (Graphix) Recommended by Frank at Fountain Bookstore Richmond VA

Red Queen

Imagine the violence of The Hunger Games, the backstabbing and betrayal of The Game of Thrones, more superpowers than The X-Men, and a simple girl, Mare Barrow, who becomes betrothed to a prince while falling in love with his brother and at the same trying to protect her childhood friend, Kilorn.

Red Queen is an amazing debut YA novel that will leave you waiting desperately for the next entry in the series.

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard (HarperTeen) Recommended by Jill and Melissa at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

American Gods

America is a bad land for gods.

This is a fantastic novel about the nature of worship and belief, and what that means for the ideas people leave behind on their way to the next thing.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman (HarperTorch) Recommended by MB at Octavia Books New Orleans LA

Captive Nation: Black Prison Organizing in the Civil Rights Era

Much like his previous book, The Outlaws of America: the Weather Underground and the Politics of Solidarity, Berger focuses herein on the radical edge of the 1960s/70s movement. 

His argument, hardly a new one, is what caused the radicalization of the civil rights movement was the attempt to imprison its most impassioned voices. The leadership of what came to be the Black Power movement was schooled for revolution behind the walls of the American supermax prison system.

Perhaps the most influential name of Black Power, George Jackson did not leave prison alive, yet he remains a powerful symbol near half a century after George Jackson was shot down in the prison yard at San Quentin.

Captive Nation: Black Prison Organizing in the Civil Rights Era by Dan Berger (University of North Carolina Press) Recommended by Glen at A Cappella Books Atlanta GA

The Plantagenets: The Warrior Kings and Queens Who Made England

A history book that is eminently readable, this is a great book for any anglophile to learn about British History from Henry II and Thomas Becket through Richard II and the houses of York and Lancaster.

The Plantagenets: The Warrior Kings and Queens Who Made England by Dan Jones (Penguin Books) Recommended by MB at Octavia Books
New Orleans LA

The Last of the Hippies: An Hysterical Romance

The Last Of the Hippies by Penny Rimbaud is a wonderful short book revolving around the story of Phil Russell (better known as Wally Hope) a British freethinker & revolutionary who was a great influence upon Rimbaud and his anarchist punk band, Crass.


This short title was originally written as an insert to the wonderful Crass double LP, "Christ, the album", and the book manages to tell much about the period of its original publication (circa 1982): its music, its politics, the band Crass, Wally Hope and much more in little more than 100 pages.

The Last of the Hippies: An Hysterical Romance by Penny Rimbaud (PM Press) Recommended by Glen at A Cappella Books Atlanta GA

But What If We're Wrong?: Thinking about the Present as If It Were the Past

Whether this is the most philosophical pop culture book I’ve ever read or the most pop-culture drenched philosophy book I’ve ever read, I don’t know.

But I do know I can’t stop thinking--and as my family and co-workers can attest, talking--about the ideas Klosterman ponders here. Whether reflecting on Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions or the internet’s reaction to the death of Dusty Rhodes, Klosterman has a breadth and depth of knowledge to cover a lot of cultural ground here.

A most rewarding read!

But What If We're Wrong?: Thinking about the Present as If It Were the Past by Chuck Klosterman (Blue Rider Press) Recommended by Frank at A Cappella Books Atlanta GA

A School for Unusual Girls

Georgiana is a disgrace to her family. 

She does not act properly in social settings. Her physical appearance is unbecoming to those around her. And her aptitude for science and experimentation has caused more than a little ruckus among her family and neighbors.

When one of Georgiana’s more bold experiments leads to a near fatal fire, her family decided to be rid of her in the only way available to them. They send her to the Stranje House, a school for unruly girls. When they first arrive to the school, Georgiana is horrified by the sights that she witnesses…young ladies strapped to medieval racks or suffering inside an iron maiden. Yet, her family is more than happy to leave her with the head mistress Miss Stranje.

However, the school might not be all that it seems. Soon Georgiana will find secret passageways, long-forgotten smuggler’s coves, unusual curriculum, and unexpected allies. Georgiana will discover her real purpose at this school is to create an invisible ink that will save many lives across Europe.

Yet, if she fails, the cost many be more than she could ever imagine.

Danger lurks in every corner, often from Georgiana herself. Will she be able to find the perfect mixture for the invisible ink, or will her failure create a disaster that will lead to the fall of Europe. Only time will tell. A thrilling tale that will keep you on your toes, and leave you yearning for more!

Fans of The Jane Austen mysteries, The Agency series, and Wrapped will love A School for Unusual Girls!

A School for Unusual Girls ...A Stranje House Novel by Kathleen BaldwinGretchen (Tor Books) Recommended by Melissa at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

False Positive

A seven year old child has been kidnapped and Det. Cooper Devereaux, just returned from one of his many suspensions, is given the case.

Though Devereaux doesn’t often play well with others, and isn’t a stickler for the rules he is a great detective and his boss – one of his only supporters – knows if anyone can find this child he can.

I really liked Devereaux even before his back story was slowly revealed. And by the end of the book he was truly a hero – flawed and vulnerable but full of the right stuff. As Devereaux dug farther and farther into things his intuition told him were connected to the kidnapping he discovered many truths about himself and others in his life -- truths about mass murderers, bloodlines, mental illness and obsession.

This twisty, totally unpredictable page turner is the beginning, I hope, of a long line of Det. Cooper Devereaux stories.

False Positive by Andrew Grant (Ballantine Books) Recommended by Nancy M. at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

When Friendship Followed Me Home

Change has always followed Ben Coffin.

He was a foster kid for most of his life, until his mom adopted him two years ago. That's the closest thing he's ever had to a family, to permanence. Then he finds a scruffy little dog, Flip, and feels a little bit closer to normalcy. And when he meets the librarian's daughter, Halley, on one of his many trips to the library, he makes a friend for maybe the first time in his life.

But Ben has to learn that even the good things can't stay around forever...but they're what make life good.

A truly touching story of family and friendship that just might help you see the magic in your own life.

When Friendship Followed Me Home by Paul Griffin (The Dial Press) Recommended by Melissa at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

No One Knows

J.T. Ellison’s newest novel, which has been compared to Gillian Flynn, Paula Hawkins, and Liane Moriarty, releases today. While the book is a departure from Ellison’s other books (this one is a stand-alone and, rather than having a protagonist who is either in law enforcement or is closely connected to someone who is, this lead character is distrustful of the police), regular readers will recognize her suspenseful pacing and quick dialogue.

Aubrey’s husband disappeared five years ago, when he failed to meet up with friends at the Opryland Hotel, and has now been declared legally dead. Aubrey has been through a hellacious five years. First, her husband went missing and then she had to endure a trial, as she was the prime suspect for his murder. Her mother-in-law testified against her and is now poised to start a legal battle over the life insurance money due to Aubrey. On this day of finality, the day she receives the official declaration of Josh’s death, Aubrey meets a man who reminds her of her husband. Chase’s mannerisms, his posture, and his intonation all match Josh’s…but Josh is dead, right?

What follows is a suspenseful, page-turning story as Aubrey searches for answers, sure to suck you in until you’ve finished. Adding to the book’s appeal, readers familiar with Nashville will recognize several locations, such as Dragon Park and the Tin Angel restaurant. If you loved The Husband’s Secret, Gone Girl, or The Girl on the Train, you owe it to yourself to read No One Knows.

No One Knows by J.T. Ellison (Gallery Books) Recommended by Laura at Reading Rock Books Dixon TN

Miss Jane

A subtle, yet powerful portrait of an extraordinary character, Miss Jane thrills with some of the most gorgeous prose I have ever encountered. 

Jane Chisholm is born with a genital defect that, in rural Mississippi in the early 20th century, somewhat limits her prospects for a “normal” life. Populated with lovingly wrought characters, sly humor, and keen observations of the human heart, Watson's novel is a beautiful and rare bird indeed.

Miss Jane by Brad Watson (W. W. Norton & Company) Recommended by Tony at Quail Ridge Books Raleigh NC

Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are?

If you’ve ever been interested in what your dog or your cat really thinks about your tuxedo t-shirt (or whether they think at all), then Frans de Waal’s new book is a must-read for you.

De Waal is the renowned primatologist and writer of The Bonobo and the Atheist, as well as other essays on morality and intelligence in the animal kingdom. And in this book de Waal argues that certain animal intelligence–though different—is not inferior or superior to others (including us human folk).

De Waal makes it clear that we should examine animals in relation to their own specific traits and capabilities in order to understand their true intelligence, rather than comparing them to the things that we humans excel it.

By trying to get us to embody a point of view outside of our own species', this book will forever change the way we look at animal intelligence and consciousness.

Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are? by Frans de Waal, F. B. M. De Waal (W. W. Norton) Recommended by Donovan at Inkwood Books Tampa FL

The Gunning of America: Business and the Making of American Gun Culture

With a focus on the manufacturers rather than the consumers, Haag’s book helps unravel the mythic existence of the American gun. 

And don’t worry, the book is also completely free from Second-Amendment-bashing tirades. Instead, Haag offers a clear-eyed historical account of how guns became so pervasive in our

culture and what we should do moving forward.

This book makes clear that Americans were not inherently gun-happy, that they had to be sold on them like any other product. This book is essential for anyone interested in what’s actually being said in the current debate over guns.

The Gunning of America: Business and the Making of American Gun Culture by Pamela Haag (Basic Books) Recommended by Donovan at Inkwood Books Tampa FL

Zero K

A new novel by one of the greatest authors of all time, need I say more?

I needn’t… but I’m contractually obligated to. 

With this new book, DeLillo packs the intellectual punch of White Noise or Mao II—big, expansive books that are seemingly about everything—yet this one reads as quick as his slimmer late novels. It’s all about cryogenic preservation of the brain/body, while still managing to be funny and absurdly entertaining.

So read it. Death is not the end.

Zero K by Don DeLillo (Scribner) Recommended by Donovan at Inkwood Books Tampa FL

Imagine Me Gone

Nancy and I loved Adam Haslett's story collection, We Are Not Strangers Here. His new book, a novel entitled Imagine Me Gone, incorporates the same exquisite writing and intriguing characterization.

He has created a beautiful story of a family haunted by mental illness. Early in the book, the father commits suicide to escape his demons, and the family is left to pick up the pieces. The oldest son suffers from the same demons, the youngest son is the peace-maker of the family, and the daughter struggles with balancing the needs of the family with a troubled but safe relationship.

There is a Christmas scene that makes me think Haslett was eavesdropping in my living room this year! The characters are so vibrant and their situations so moving that I continue to think of them now that I've read the book to its compelling ending. Haslett has been a Pulitzer and National Book Award Finalist; I predict this will make top ten lists for 2016.

Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett (Little Brown and Company) Recommended by Mamie at Quail Ridge Books Raleigh NC

 

Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet

An around the world tour of all of the tangible workings behind that seemingly intangible construct known as the internet.

Lots of great information on where & how your news, emails and favorite adorable kitten videos are stored & transmitted to your computer monitor. Great for techies but also great for readers interested in history or just good non-fiction. No computer science degree required.

Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet by Andrew Blum (Ecco Press) Recommended by John at Cavalier House Books Denham Springs LA

Another Brooklyn

Do not be fooled by the length of this book. It is short but powerful. 

It brought me right into the world of a young African-American girl and her friends in language that is both compact and lyrical. Publishers Weekly gave Another Brooklyn a well-deserved star review and said: Woodson…combines grit and beauty in a series of stunning vignettes, painting a vivid mural of what it was like to grow up African-American in Brooklyn during the 1970s…Woodson draws on all the senses to trace the milestones in a woman’s life and how her early experiences shaped her identity.

It is a book that will stay with me for a long time.

Another Brooklyn by Jaqueline Woodson (Amistad Press) Recommended by Rene at Quail Ridge Books Raleigh NC

 

Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold, and the Fate of the American Revolution

In this fascinating history, big personalities emerge. 

Benedict Arnold, charismatic, arrogant, and reckless, verges on madness in battle.  George Washington, indecisive at first, evolves into a strategic military leader and eventually figures out how to win. 

You realize that things like the direction of the wind or when a river freezes or who gets promoted determine victory or defeat.

This book includes 100 pages of notes and sources, lots of maps, many portraits, and Benedict Arnold's treasonous coded letter!

Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold, and the Fate of the American Revolution by Nathaniel Philbrick (Viking) Recommended by Helen at Quail Ridge Books Raleigh NC

 

Everyone Brave Is Forgiven

Written with surprising clarity and insight, this novel gives a heartbreaking account of life in England before the US joined in World War II.

Mary North comes from an aristocratic family who detests her involvement teaching the children who have no way of escaping the violence in the city. Mary learns about love and trust through her time as a teacher and later as an ambulance driver helping victims of the relentless bombing of the city. Her boyfriend, Tom, and his roommate, Alistair, learn that doing your part in the war effort often becomes the greatest sacrifice.

This novel will stay with you for a long time!

Everyone Brave Is Forgiven by Chris Cleave (Simon & Schuster) Recommended by Linda at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

 

The Fifth Avenue Artists Society

 A realistic look at life in 1890s New York. 

Callaway's prose will awaken all your senses to everyday life in the growing city. She tells the story of Virginia, a writer in a family full of creativity. Virginia finds that you can never forget your first love and that finding love elsewhere can also be problematic.

The society of artists that Ginny discovers helps her find a new focus on her life. Through several tragedies, she finds purpose in her writing even while losing those who are closest to her.

The Fifth Avenue Artists Society by Joy Callaway (Harper) Recommended by Linda at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

The Witch Hunter

Elizabeth has devoted her life to being a witch hunter, and she's one of the best in the land.

Then she's accused of being a witch herself and sentenced to burn at the stake. On the run from the most powerful man in the kingdom, she makes new friends with actual witches and wizards, people she'd always thought were her enemies but who end up becoming more of a family than she's ever had.

Fans of Graceling will love the action and romance in this medieval fantasy.

 

The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers) Recommended by Melissa at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC

Everything She Forgot

Georgiana is a disgrace to her family.

She does not act properly in social settings. Her physical appearance is unbecoming to those around her. And her aptitude for science and experimentation has caused more than a little ruckus among her family and neighbors.

When one of Georgiana’s more bold experiments leads to a near fatal fire, her family decided to be rid of her in the only way available to them. They send her to the Stranje House, a school for unruly girls. When they first arrive to the school, Georgiana is horrified by the sights that she witnesses…young ladies strapped to medieval racks or suffering inside an iron maiden.

Yet, her family is more than happy to leave her with the head mistress Miss Stranje. However, the school might not be all that it seems. Soon Georgiana will find secret passageways, long-forgotten smuggler’s coves, unusual curriculum, and unexpected allies. Georgiana will discover her real purpose at this school is to create an invisible ink that will save many lives across Europe. Yet, if she fails, the cost many be more than she could ever imagine.

Danger lurks in every corner, often from Georgiana herself. Will she be able to find the perfect mixture for the invisible ink, or will her failure create a disaster that will lead to the fall of Europe. Only time will tell. A thrilling tale that will keep you on your toes, and leave you yearning for more! Fans of The Jane Austen mysteries, The Agency series, and Wrapped will love A School for Unusual Girls!

Everything She Forgot by Lisa Ballantyne (William Morrow)Recommended by Gretchen at Fiction Addiction Greenville SC