Tag Archives: Mystery Fiction

Books of the Week #36

Merde, It’s Not Easy to Learn French: A Story In Easy French with Translation Volume 1 by France Dubin

Reading a book in French can be difficult, even for advanced students. French novels are usually full of idiomatic expressions. They use complicated tenses, complex sentence structures, and often slang. This book is in simple French. It’s about the joys and the frustrations of an adult learning French. It includes a good dose of humor, a few exercises, and illustrations.

The book has two sections, allowing more levels of French students to enjoy it.
Section 1 has the story written completely in French, and includes grammar exercises.
Section 2 contains a list of the more difficult vocabulary translated into English and the complete text in English so students can check their comprehension.

https://books2read.com/u/4DyPd7

Der Tote im Strandkorb (Die Inselkommissarin 1) (German Edition) by Anna Johannsen

Auf Amrum, der kleinen nordfriesischen Insel, wird der Leiter eines Kinderheims tot am Strand aufgefunden. Die örtliche Polizei geht von einer natürlichen Todesursache aus, bis das Landeskriminalamt die Obduktion des Leichnams veranlasst und Ermittlungen einleitet. Hauptkommissarin Lena Lorenzen wundert sich darüber, dass Kriminaldirektor Warnke ausgerechnet ihr diesen Fall überträgt. Wenige Monate zuvor hatte er sie noch wegen eigenmächtiger Ermittlungen aus einer Sonderkommission abgezogen und ihre Herunterstufung beantragt.

Lena, die auf Amrum geboren und aufgewachsen ist, holt die Erinnerung ein: Sie hat die Insel vierzehn Jahre zuvor im Streit mit ihrem Vater verlassen. Während der Tage auf Amrum trifft sie ihre herzliche Tante Beke wieder und läuft schon am ersten Tag Erck über den Weg, ihrer einstigen großen Liebe.

Der Fall erweist sich als kompliziert. Nicht nur die Personen aus dem unmittelbaren Umfeld des Toten geraten unter Verdacht, sondern es tauchen auch mysteriöse Kontakte auf. Erst nach und nach wird Lena klar, warum ihr Chef ausgerechnet sie nach Amrum geschickt hat.

https://books2read.com/u/4Azv5e

Blancanieves y los siete enanitos: Un cuento de los hermanos Grimm (Mundo de cuentos) (Spanish Edition) by Karla S. Sommer (Author), Wolfgang Looskyll (Illustrator)

Espejito, espejito mágico… Cuando la malvada madrastra ve a Blancanieves en casa de los siete enanitos reflejada en su espejo, se llena de rabia y toma la decisión de ir al bosque y ofrecer a Blancanieves una manzana envenenada.

– Un cuento de los hermanos Grimm para leer- Magníficas ilustraciones- Para niñas y niños mayores de 4 años

https://books2read.com/u/47rgAj

Rose of Sarajevo by Ayse Kulin

Ever since Nimeta was a child, she’d done exactly what was expected of her. She married a responsible man she met in college, had two children, and established a busy journalism career—and there was no reason to think anything would ever change. Then one day, while reporting on a protest in Zagreb, Nimeta’s life takes a dramatic turn. Not only does she lay eyes on a handsome reporter who captures her heart, but a little-known politician by the name of Slobodan Milosevic delivers a speech fanning the flames of long-dormant Serbian nationalism. As her love affair intensifies and political tensions build, Nimeta is forced to reconsider everything she thought she knew about family, love, loyalty, and humanity itself. Navigating both the new landscape of her heart and that of her beloved war-torn city, Nimeta must draw upon her deepest reserves of inner strength to keep her family safe. A moving drama set against the backdrop of the crisis that rocked the Balkans in the 1990s, Rose of Sarajevo reveals the tremendous lengths people will go to in the name of love.

https://books2read.com/u/bwvrpP

The Scribe by Antonio Garrido

The year is 799, and King Charlemagne awaits coronation as the Holy Roman emperor. But in the town of Würzburg, the young, willful Theresa dreams only of following in the footsteps of her scholarly father—a quiet man who taught her the forbidden pleasures of reading and writing. Though it was unthinkable for a medieval woman to pursue a career as a craftsperson, headstrong Theresa convinces the parchment-makers’ guild to test her. If she passes, it means access to her beloved manuscripts and nothing less than true independence. But as she treats the skins before an audience of jeering workmen, unimaginable tragedy strikes—tearing apart Theresa’s family and setting in motion a cascade of mysteries that Theresa must solve if she hopes to stay alive and save her family.

A fugitive in the wilderness, Theresa is forced to rely on her bravery, her uncommon education, and the compassion of strangers. When she encounters Alcuin of York, a wise and influential monk with close ties to Charlemagne, she believes her luck might have finally changed. But the biggest secret lies between Charlemagne and her father. Theresa moves ever closer to the truth, bent on reuniting with her beloved father, only to discover that her family’s troubles are inextricably entwined with nothing less than the fate of an empire.

https://books2read.com/u/3LDNp0

The Museum of Abandoned Secrets by Oksana Zabuzhko

Spanning sixty tumultuous years of Ukrainian history, this multigenerational saga weaves a dramatic and intricate web of love, sex, friendship, and death. At its center: three women linked by the abandoned secrets of the past—secrets that refuse to remain hidden.

While researching a story, journalist Daryna unearths a worn photograph of Olena Dovgan, a member of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army killed in 1947 by Stalin’s secret police. Intrigued, Daryna sets out to make a documentary about the extraordinary woman—and unwittingly opens a door to the past that will change the course of the future. For even as she delves into the secrets of Olena’s life, Daryna grapples with the suspicious death of a painter who just may be the latest victim of a corrupt political power play.

From the dim days of World War II to the eve of Orange Revolution, The Museum of Abandoned Secrets is an “epic of enlightening force” that explores the enduring power of the dead over the living.

https://books2read.com/u/4XX0jL

Anns Krieg – Verrat (German Edition) by Hannah Howe (Author), Sandra Puhl (Translator)

Die Krimireihe Anns Krieg ist eine Reihe aus fünf Erzählungen, die in den Jahren 1944 bis 1945 spielen. Jede Geschichte ist circa 15.000 Wörter lang und beinhaltet einen in sich abgeschlossenen Fall. Die Geschichten sind: Betrayal (Verrat), Invasion (Invasion), Blackmail (Erpressung), Escape(Flucht) und Victory (Sieg). Der Handlungsbogen wird über die gesamte Reihe aufgebaut und findet seinen Abschluss im fünften Buch, Victory.

Verrat

Während ihr Mann auf einer streng geheimen Mission ist, macht sich Ann Morgan für einen weiteren Tag als Sekretärin in Trevor Bowmans Detektivbüro bereit. Aber dieser Tag wird alles andere als alltäglich werden. Innerhalb von 24 Stunden wird Anns Leben auf den Kopf gestellt, denn sie findet eine Leiche, trifft den gut aussehenden Witwer Detective Inspector Max Deveraux und stellt den Mörder in einer Geschichte voller Versuchungen und Lügen.

Books of the Week #35

Beginner Belgium Cookbook: Deliciously Easy Belgium Recipes for the Whole Family by Stephanie Sharp

Food in Belgium is influenced by Dutch and French cooking and is highly respected,
Belgium has a variety of local specialties. Fresh produce such as games, endives and asparagus play a big role in Belgian cooking. Belgium borders the sea so Seafood plays a huge part also. Grey and brown prawns and mussels are very popular. High quality chocolate and a vast range of beers are also a specialty in Belgium.

French fries are also famous in Belgium. Actually, they are Belgian fries that originated there. The fries are served with a range of sauces.

Waffles, wow! We cannot forget waffles, made in a wide range of styles, served with exotic toppings.

https://books2read.com/u/m2VYr1

Nadia: The Girl Who Couldn’t Sit Still by Karlin Gray (Author), Christine Davenier (Illustrator)

Nadia Comaneci was a feisty and fearless little girl who went from climbing trees in the forests of Romania to swinging into history at the 1976 Olympic Games, where she received an unprecedented seven perfect scores in gymnastics. But as readers will see in this first-ever illustrated picture book about Nadia’s journey to Olympic gold, the road from small-town girl to world-class athlete was full of many imperfect moments.

Expert illustrations that capture the energy and fluidity of Nadia’s exuberant gymnastic routines and referential back matter round out this inspirational story of determination and overcoming adversity. A perfect 10.

https://books2read.com/u/4j2PNZ

The Greenest Branch: A Novel of Germany’s First Female Physician (Hildegard of Bingen Book 1) by P.K. Adams

The Greenest Branch is the first in a two-book series based on the true story of Hildegard of Bingen, Germany’s first female physician and one of the few women to attain that position in medieval Europe. Set against the backdrop of the lush oak forests and sparkling rivers of the Rhineland, it is a tale of courage, strength, sacrifice, and love that will appeal to fans of Ken Follett, Umberto Eco, Elizabeth Chadwick, Margaret Frazer, Bernard Cornwell, Conn Iggulden – and to anyone who enjoys strong female protagonists in historical fiction.

https://books2read.com/u/38Zy6r

The Crumpled Letter (Belle Epoque Mystery Book 1) by Alice Quinn

On the French Riviera during the belle époque, a murder draws two women into the dangerous shadows of Europe’s privileged elite…

One winter evening in 1884, beautiful young courtesan Lola Deslys discovers the lifeless body of a chambermaid hidden in the gardens of the Hôtel Beau Rivage in Cannes. Even more distressing is that Lola knows the girl well. When the inquiry into her murder fails to reveal a single substantial clue, Lola is persuaded by novelist Guy de Maupassant to delve into the case on her own.

Eager to exert her independence and defy conventions, Lola agrees. But she needs help in her investigation, and there’s no better partner in her pursuit—however unlikely—than Miss Gabriella Fletcher, a highborn, well-educated, and currently disgraced English governess.

To solve this dreadful crime, Lola and Miss Fletcher must navigate the depths of respectable society. But will their determination suffice in a city where fortune, secrets, men, and appearances reign supreme?

https://books2read.com/u/bP9yA7

Zmeykovo (Volume 1) (Bulgarian Edition) by Ronesa Aveela

Vsichko zavinagi se promenya za dvanadesetgodishniya Teo v denya, kogato ogun i led se izsipvat ot nebeto. Toi razbira, che drakonite deistvitelno sushtestvuvat, kogato triglavoto chudovishte Lamya otvlicha sestra mu. Veshtitsa i govoreshto svrache mu pomagat da otvori portala kum Zmeikovo – zemya, za koyato e chuval samo ot mitove, myasto, koeto e dom na strakhoviti sushtestva. Kogato se ozovava tam, toi se sreshta s mistichna gorska nimfa. Teo tryabva da se nauchi da se doveryava na instinktite si i na novite si chudati priyateli, dokato tursi Lamyata, predi tya da e pozhertvala sestra mu. Po vreme na svoeto puteshestvie momcheto otkriva sledi, koito sochat, che edinstveno toi mozhe da spasi tainstvenata zemya, narechena Zmeikovo.

https://www.amazon.com/Zmeykovo-1-Bulgarian-Ronesa-Aveela/dp/0999686194

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Books of the Week #34

Mikky dos Santos Art Thief Thrillers Vol 1-3 (Mikky dos Santos Thriller Series) by Janet Pywell

Follow Europe’s most cunning art thief, forger, and amateur sleuth as she tracks down priceless antiquities and foils nefarious plots, all while shocking the people she meets with her ruthless attitude and elaborately-inked body.

MASTERPIECE Mikky dos Santos leaps onto the London art scene like Mick Jagger as Jumpin’ Jack Flash. She’s playing the long game, waiting for her neighbor to die so she can steal nice Mrs. Green’s Vermeer. But some other art thief gets there first—one who’s not about to let a sweet old lady stand in the way. And they’ve unleashed Mikky’s wrath by killing her. So now it’s another long game—one of “who do you trust”?

BOOK OF HOURS A dear—but dangerous—friend tracks Mikky down and asks for her help in authenticating a beautiful and possibly priceless medieval prayer book, a Book of Hours. Suddenly, Mikky finds herself caught up in someone else’s web—a deadly game played out across three countries.

STOLEN SCRIPT Mikky can’t wait to jump on a plane when she hears her dear friend Simon needs someone to fly to Greece to locate a priceless 900-year-old Torah scroll. She lands in Greece only to discover a constellation of nefarious characters who all seem to have their own ideas about the fate of the scroll. And then the lawyer representing the Torah’s donor abruptly disappears…

https://books2read.com/u/4N9wox

The High Mountains of Portugal by Yann Martel

Lost in Portugal.

Lost to grief.

With nothing but a chimpanzee.

A man thrown backwards by heartbreak goes in search of an artefact that could unsettle history. A woman carries her husband to a doctor in a suitcase. A Canadian senator begins a new life, in a new country, in the company of a chimp called Odo. From these stories of journeying, of loss and faith, Yann Martel makes a novel unlike any other: moving, profound and magical.

https://books2read.com/u/mdz79l

Scandinavia: A History by Ewan Butler

Here is the dramatic story of Scandinavia – from its earliest Germanic origins and Viking sea raids to its battles for independence and its involvement in World War II. Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, writes award-winning historian Ewan Butler writes, struggled through unions and separations, with both outsiders and each other, developing their own personalities and languages yet retaining their ancient connections.

https://books2read.com/u/mYpZjY

The Story of Greece and Rome by Tony Spawforth

The extraordinary story of the intermingled civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome, spanning more than six millennia from the late Bronze Age to the seventh century.

The magnificent civilization created by the ancient Greeks and Romans is the greatest legacy of the classical world. However, narratives about the “civilized” Greek and Roman empires resisting the barbarians at the gate are far from accurate. Tony Spawforth, an esteemed scholar, author, and media contributor, follows the thread of civilization through more than six millennia of history. His story reveals that Greek and Roman civilization, to varying degrees, was supremely and surprisingly receptive to external influences, particularly from the East.

From the rise of the Mycenaean world of the sixteenth century B.C., Spawforth traces a path through the ancient Aegean to the zenith of the Hellenic state and the rise of the Roman empire, the coming of Christianity and the consequences of the first caliphate. Deeply informed, provocative, and entirely fresh, this is the first and only accessible work that tells the extraordinary story of the classical world in its entirety.

https://books2read.com/u/mKDww9

Juegos de la mente: Un misterio de Sam Smith (Spanish Edition) by Hannah Howe (Author), Gloria Elizabeth Tosoratti (Translator)

Un acertijo envuelto en un misterio dentro de un enigma. Sasha Pryce, una prodigiosa ajedrecista adolescente, me trajo un problema. Quería que siga la pista de Steve Chapin, su asistente entrenador. Steve había desaparecido misteriosamente sin dejar rastros sobre su paradero. Sin embargo, Sasha insistió que debía seguir sus instrucciones estrictamente. Su padre, el Profesor Christian Pryce, un eminente farmacólogo, no debía saber sobre su investigación.

Mientras tanto, el Profesor Pryce había contratado a un apuesto guardaespaldas, Blake, para proteger a Sasha. ¿Por qué? No tenía idea. Y para complicar aún más las cosas, Blake decidió poner sus ojos lascivos en mi tímida y romántica asistente y amiga, Faye Collister.

Juegos de la mente, un acertijo envuelto en un misterio dentro de un enigma, una exploración sobre los diferentes aspectos del amor.

https://books2read.com/u/47rOPE

Books of the Week #32

The Promise of Provence (Love in Provence Book 1) by Patricia Sands

On the evening of her twenty-second wedding anniversary, Katherine Price can’t wait to celebrate. But instead of receiving an anniversary card from her husband, she finds a note asking for a divorce.

Fifty-five and suddenly alone, Katherine begins the daunting task of starting over. She has her friends, her aging mother, and her career to occupy her, but the future seems to hold little promise—until, after a winter of heartbreak, Katherine is persuaded to try a home exchange holiday in the South of France.

In Provence, bright fields of flowers bloom below medieval hilltop villages with winding cobblestone streets. Charmed by the picturesque countryside, the breathtaking Côte d’Azur, and the enchantment-filled boulevards of Paris, Katherine feels life opening up once again. Lavender perfumes the air, and chance encounters hint at romance and passion. But memories of heartbreak and betrayal linger—and her former life waits for her back home. Can she find the courage to begin again?

https://books2read.com/u/3nvpL9

The Ragged Edge of Night by Olivia Hawker

Germany, 1942. Franciscan friar Anton Starzmann is stripped of his place in the world when his school is seized by the Nazis. He relocates to a small German hamlet to wed Elisabeth Herter, a widow who seeks a marriage—in name only—to a man who can help raise her three children. Anton seeks something too—atonement for failing to protect his young students from the wrath of the Nazis. But neither he nor Elisabeth expects their lives to be shaken once again by the inescapable rumble of war.

As Anton struggles to adapt to the roles of husband and father, he learns of the Red Orchestra, an underground network of resisters plotting to assassinate Hitler. Despite Elisabeth’s reservations, Anton joins this army of shadows. But when the SS discovers his schemes, Anton will embark on a final act of defiance that may cost him his life—even if it means saying goodbye to the family he has come to love more than he ever believed possible.

https://books2read.com/u/31GrzD

The Beast, the Emperor and the Milkman: A Bone-shaking Tour through Cycling’s Flemish Heartlands by Harry Pearson

Every nation shapes sport to test the character traits it most admires.

In The Beast, the Emperor and the Milkman, committed Belgophile and road cycling obsessive Harry Pearson takes you on a journey across Flanders, through the lumpy horizontal rain, up the elbow juddering cobbled inclines, past the fans dressed as chickens and the shop window displays of constipation medicines, as he follows races big, small and even smaller through one glorious, muddy spring.

Ranging over 500 years of Flemish and European history, across windswept polders, along back roads and through an awful lot of beer cafes, Pearson examines the characters, the myths and rivalries that make Flanders a place where cycling is a religion and the riders its lycra-clad priests.

https://books2read.com/u/4XXXZ6

My Grandmother Sends Her Regards and Apologises by Fredrik Backman

Everyone remembers the smell of their grandmother’s house.
Everyone remembers the stories their grandmother told them.

But does everyone remember their grandmother flirting with policemen? Driving illegally?Breaking into a zoo in the middle of the night? Firing a paintball gun from a balcony in her dressing gown?

Seven-year-old Elsa does.

Some might call Elsa’s granny ‘eccentric’, or even ‘crazy’. Elsa calls her a superhero. And granny’s stories, of knights and princesses and dragons and castles, are her superpower. Because, as Elsa is starting to learn, heroes and villains don’t always exist in imaginary kingdoms; they could live just down the hallway.

As Christmas draws near, even the best superhero grandmothers may have one or two things they’d like to apologise for. And, in the process, Elsa can have some breath-taking adventures of her own . . .

https://books2read.com/u/bzooBL

El honor de la familia: Un misterio de Sam Smith (Spanish Edition) by Hannah Howe

Cuando el mayor mafioso del país te hace una oferta que no puedes rechazar, ¿qué deberías hacer? En mi caso, decidí aceptar la oferta que me hizo el Sr. Vincent Vanzetti. Vanzetti me contrató para encontrar a su hija desaparecida, Vittoria, enfrentándome a la amenaza de represalias si fracasaba en mi tarea. Mientras buscaba a Vittoria, tuve que tratar con otros miembros del clan Vanzetti: Sherri, la segunda mujer de Vanzetti, de la misma edad que Vittoria, Sherri era una «actriz», una estrella del porno cuya ambición era aparecer en un reality de televisión; Catrin, la exmujer de Vanzetti, dura como el granito, el poder detrás de su imperio criminal; y V. J. Parks, el novio de Vittoria, boxeador, un joven en plenitud entrenándose para intentar conseguir un título mundial.

Mientras tanto, en el terreno personal, era hora de que una servidora y su pareja, el Dr. Alan Storey, tomásemos decisiones. Alan tenía muchas ganas de casarse, mientras que yo todavía estaba aceptando mi pasado y los años de abuso físico. ¿Sería capaz de encontrar el coraje para, por fin, dejar a un lado los fantasmas del pasado y comprometerme a un futuro con Alan?

El honor de la familia, la historia de un mafioso y su familia, la historia de un dilema moral. ¿Debería matar en nombre de la justicia o debería dejar que un delincuente quedara libre? Al responder a tal pregunta descubrí mucho sobre mí misma y sobre la persona que quería ser.

https://books2read.com/u/m0OONy

Books of the Week #30

The Supreme Victory of the Heart: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Synchronicity by Sharon Rawlette

When her French fiancé told her about the other woman in his life, she began to wonder if there was more to love–and the universe–than she had dared imagine.At 29, Sharon Hewitt was about to see her dreams come true. For the past decade, she’d been living the academic high life in New York, Paris, and Boston but struggling to feel at ease far from her rural roots and the religious faith she’d left behind in college. Now, engaged to a Frenchman and about to settle on a beautiful farm in the rolling countryside of Brittany, she felt she’d finally come home…

…until a girl her fiancé had known in high school unexpectedly resurfaced, changing everything.

The Supreme Victory of the Heart is Sharon’s candid account of the months following her French fiancé’s tearful admission that he wasn’t sure he could marry her after all, when she stood to lose not only the man she deeply loved, but the country she had inwardly adopted as her own. Torn between rage and sorrow, sympathy and steely resolve, Sharon found herself plumbing the depths of human love, as well as encountering the distinct possibility of something she’d given up on long ago: a higher purpose behind it all. This book tells the story of her challenging personal journey, and of the intriguing synchronicities that left her with a growing suspicion that love just might be destined to emerge victorious after all.

https://books2read.com/u/bP958j

The Beatrice Stubbs Boxset Two (Beatrice Stubbs Series Boxset Book 2) by JJ Marsh

For lovers of intelligent crime fiction, three more heart-racing European adventures in one boxset.

Beatrice Stubbs of Scotland Yard: detective inspector, metaphor mixer and stubborn survivor. Battling crime by day and her own demons by night, the question is always the same.
Justice or the law?

Cold Pressed: “Two things people fear the most? Change and death.”

Santorini. Turquoise seas, ancient ruins and beautiful sunsets. And a woman thrown from a cliff. The violent death shocks fellow passengers of the Empress Louise, a grand cruise liner packed with British tourists. DI Beatrice Stubbs flies to Greece to assist. When another lady is killed in her cabin, terror spreads like contagion. Murder is aboard and someone has Beatrice in his sights. Revenge is a dish best served cold.

Human Rites: “Judgement is in the eye of the beholder.”

Adrian Harvey has a stalker. Someone is stealing his post, vandalising his shop and making allegations to the police. And who is that nun? When DI Beatrice Stubbs is dispatched to Germany to investigate art theft, Adrian seizes the chance to flee the city. Yet the stalker is still on his heels. Adrian runs from danger to the remote island of Sylt. But danger follows and Adrian has run too far.

Bad Apples: “Some people are just rotten to the core.”

A police conference in Portugal is hardly a dangerous assignment, so Beatrice Stubbs invites family and friends for a holiday. It should be the perfect work-life balance. Until one of her colleagues is murdered. An eclectic alliance of international detectives forms to find the assassin. But are they really on the same side? Meanwhile, tensions rise at the holiday villa. A clash of egos sours the atmosphere and when a five-year-old child disappears, their idyll turns hellish. Trust can be a fatal mistake.

https://books2read.com/u/mZKPME

Murder in Mykonos (Chief Inspector Andreas Kaldis Series Book 1) by Jeffrey Siger

First in a series of “thoughtful police procedurals set in picturesque but not untroubled Greek locales” (The New York Times), revealing the wildly lucrative dark side of an internationally renowned Greek island playground for the world’s rich and famous, those battling for control of its vices, and the innocents affected by it all.

Politically incorrect detective Andreas Kaldis, promoted out of Athens to serve as police chief for Mykonos, is certain his homicide days are over. Murders don’t happen in tourist heaven. At least that’s what he’s thinking as he stares at the remains of a young woman, ritually bound and buried on a pile of human bones inside a remote mountain church.

Teamed with the nearly-retired local homicide chief, Andreas tries to find the killer before the media can destroy the island’s fabled reputation with a barrage of world-wide attention on a mystery that’s haunted Mykonos undetected for decades.

When another young woman disappears, political niceties no longer matter. With the investigation now a rescue operation, Andreas races against a killer intent on claiming a new victim…

https://books2read.com/u/3yEDB6

Trailing the Hunter: A Novel of Misconception, Truth, and Love by Heidi Eljarbo

Opposition, courage, and determination. Not the most pleasing qualities for a young, eligible woman.But to some, her strength could mean life or death.

1661 in Norway.Clara Dahl has made a decision. She has seen the dread and sorrow witch-finder Angus Hill has caused in her hometown and sets out to find him. Her goal is to fight the wrongful and wicked misconceptions about witch hunting. But the witch-finder’s influence is strong. How can she warn the villagers of something they don’t understand?

Clara’s heartfelt desire is to protect and rescue the women who are in danger without causing more harm. As Clara develops secret plots to thwart the plans of the notorious witch-finder and works to help the villagers, she finds friendship and the possibility of true love.

From the bestselling author of Catching a Witch comes the continuing story of a brave, unwavering woman who defends the innocent. Set during a tumultuous time in history, Trailing the Hunter will captivate readers.

https://books2read.com/u/4AzJKo

Le chant de Sam par Hannah Howe

L’amour fait mal. Pour Derwena de Caro, chanteuse, icône de la pop et des ados, le succès a apporté avec lui drogues, alcool et un petit ami coureur de jupons. Le succès a également apporté la fortune, la gloire et un harceleur, selon ses dires. Et c’est là que j’entre en scène : pour enquêter sur l’identité de ce soi-disant harceleur, en étant loin de m’imaginer que la piste me mènera jusqu’au meurtre et un scandale qui fera la une des journaux pendant des mois.

L’amour fait mal. Pour moi, Samantha Smith, détective privée, l’amour est toujours arrivé au bout d’un coup de poing. D’abord avec ma mère alcoolique, qui se défoulait sur moi quand j’étais plus jeune, puis avec mon mari, Dan, qui considérait les violences conjugales comme faisant partie intégrante du mariage. Mais j’ai survécu. J’ai obtenu le divorce, conservé mon sens de l’humour et un semblant d’optimisme. J’ai lancé ma société et gagné le respect de mes pairs. Mais je n’étais ni prête à ce que Dan refasse irruption dans ma vie ni pour l’affection que le Dr. Alan Storey me porte – un psychologue empathique et assez alléchant.

Le chant de Sam est l’histoire d’une semaine qui a pour toujours changé ma vie.

https://books2read.com/u/mKxkoV

Books of the Week #28

Skitnikut – usmivki I sulzi: Rasmisleniata na edin bulgarski emigrant (Bulgarian) by Ronesa Aveela

Vseki chovek e edin postoyanen proekt: promenya se, adaptira se – ponyakoga kum po-dobro, drug put– kum po-losho. Tsyal jivot nie se skitame, za da namerim po-dobro myasto za zhivot, po-dobra rabota, da usvoim novi umeniya, da napravim otkritie ili da izobretim neshto stoinostno.

V nashi dni tekhnologiite premakhnakha fizicheskite granitsi. Skitame ne samo putuvaiki do razlichni mesta po sveta, no vuv virtualnoto prostranstvo s lekota „ot·skachame“ v mrezhata, kudeto suzdavame poznanstva v sveta okolo nas. Kogato putuvame, nie gradim novi domove, namirame novi priyateli, otglezhdame detsata si, vdigame svatbi i kazvame posledno sbogom na priyateli i blizki, izprashtame gi v otvudnia svyat. Dori na khilyadi kilometri ot myastoto, kudeto sme otgledani i vuzpitani, nie produlgavame da spazvame nashite obichai i da praktikuvame traditsiite, s koito sme zakurmeni. Spodelyame gi s novi priyateli, koito imat razlichno kulturno nasledstvo, mirogled i vyara; i na svoi red priemame novi. Tryabva da se nauchim da pochitame drugite kulturi tolkova, kolkoto podkrepyame horata ot sobstvenata si obshtnost.

Traditsiite sa chudesen nachin da nauchim detsata na kulturnata i religiozna istoriya na roda, kato im dadem sobstvena samolichnost i koreni.

Kulturata e khram za choveshkata dusha. Tova e neshtoto, koeto nosim sus sebe si, dokato se skitame; neshtoto, koeto razvivame, kogato se prisposobyavame kŭm myastoto, koeto izberem da narichame svoi dom.


The Wanderer – A Tear and A Smile: Reflections of an Immigrant by Ronesa Aveela

A memoir of the life of Ronesa Aveela, relating stories of life in Bulgaria and abroad.

Each person is a constant project: changing and adapting—sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. All our lives we wander to find a better place to live or a better job, to learn new skills, to make a discovery, or to invent something of value.

Today, technology has removed boundaries. We can easily physically travel to different places in the world, but we can also “bounce” around the virtual space of the web, where we make acquaintances worldwide.

In our travels, we build our homes, make new friends, raise our children, attend weddings, and say goodbye to friends and family, sending them to the world beyond. Even thousands of miles from where we were born and raised, we keep our customs and practice the traditions that we have been nourished with. We share them with friends who have a different cultural heritage, upbringing, and faith; and we in turn accept new ones. We must learn to respect other cultures as much as we support people in our own community.

Traditions are a great way to teach children the cultural and religious history of mankind by giving them their own identity and roots.

Culture is a temple for the human soul. This is what we carry with us as we wander, what we develop as we adapt to the place we choose to call our home.

https://books2read.com/u/3Raq5j

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? / Oso pardo, oso pardo, ¿qué ves ahí? (Bilingual board book – English / Spanish) (Brown Bear and Friends) by Bill Martin, Jr and Eric Carle

A big happy frog, a plump purple cat, a handsome blue horse, and a soft yellow duck– all parade across the pages of this delightful bilingual edition of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you See? (Oso pardo, oso parado, que ves ¿qué ves ahí?). Children will immediately respond to Eric Carle’s flat, boldly colored collages. Combined with Bill Martin’s singsong text, they create unforgettable images of these endearing animals.

https://books2read.com/u/31rEAr

My Brilliant Friend (Neapolitan Novels Book 1) by Elena Ferrante

From one of Italy’s most acclaimed authors, comes this ravishing and generous-hearted novel about a friendship that lasts a lifetime. The story of Elena and Lila begins in the 1950s in a poor but vibrant neighborhood on the outskirts of Naples. Growing up on these tough streets the two girls learn to rely on each other ahead of anyone or anything else, as their friendship, beautifully and meticulously rendered, becomes a not always perfect shelter from hardship. Ferrante has created a memorable portrait of two women, but My Brilliant Friend is also the story of a nation. Through the lives of Elena and Lila, Ferrante gives her readers the story of a neighborhood, a city, and a country undergoing momentous change.

Elena Ferrante is the author of three previous works of critically acclaimed fiction: The Days of Abandonment, Troubling Love, and The Lost Daughter. With this stylishly plotted novel, the first in a series dubbed the “Neapolitan Novels,” she proves herself to be one of Italy’s greatest storytellers.

https://books2read.com/u/baW17L

A Solitary Reaper: A Captain Savva Mystery by Rachael Wright

Secrets, lies, and pain lie under the beautiful and serene mask of the isle of Lesvos, Greece. Captain Alexandros Savva of the Hellenic Police knows all three first hand. The decade-old murder of his only child haunts him and pushes him to solve every case regardless of how undeserving its victim.

Savva and his team are called to Mount Lepetimnos by an American tourist who finds a man murdered on the summit. After fingerprints identify the victim as Matthias Papatonis, a former Greek mafia enforcer, locals and police brass alike label the murder a revenge killing and declare the case closed.

Amid the arrival of a trafficked woman in his home, rescued by the efforts of Syrian refugees, Savva and his newly-minted Lieutenant, Stelios Booras, question what really happened to Matthias. Twenty years ago Matthias ruined countless lives during his tenure in Athens. As Savva investigates to see if there’s more to the brutal murder than the mafia tying up loose ends, long-buried secrets resurface, as do the people who are haunted by them. For not on the small island of Lesvos, nor on the quiet streets of Mitilini, can secrets be kept forever.

A gritty, emotionally-charged mystery, A Solitary Reaper, is a profound exploration of the love which binds us and the secrets which tear us apart.

https://books2read.com/u/b68yO6

Saving Grace: A Victorian Mystery by Hannah Howe

Based on a true story and written by Hannah Howe, author of the Amazon #1 Sam Smith Mystery Series, Saving Grace, “the courtroom drama of the year.”

The Western Mail

2 August 1876

Sensation in the Charles Petrie Case!

Readers may recall that a young banker, by name Mr Charles Petrie, with every opportunity of succeeding in his profession, and commanding a not illiberal income, returned home after riding his horse to dine with his wife, Grace, and her companion, Mrs Quinn. During and after dinner he had nothing to excite him save the receipt of a letter which somewhat annoyed him, and that his wife consumed rather more wine than he considered to be good for her health. Immediately after retiring to his room he was seized with symptoms of irritant poisoning, and despite every effort made on his behalf, he succumbed to its effects. An inquest was held, which vexed the minds of the Coroner’s jury to a degree without precedent in Coroners’ Inquest Law, and an open verdict was returned. However, the matter will not rest there, for after questions in Parliament, a second inquest has been called under suspicion that Mr Charles Petrie was murdered.


* * *

Who poisoned Charles Petrie? Dr James Collymore, a man familiar with poisons, a man harbouring a dark secret that, if exposed, would ruin his career; Florrie, the maid who supplied Charles with his bedtime drink; Bert Kemp, a disgruntled groom, who used poisons in his work, who four months previously had predicted Charles’ dying day; Mrs Jennet Quinn, a lady’s companion with a deep knowledge of poisons, and a deep fear of dismissal; or Grace Petrie, Charles’ wife of four months, a woman with a scandalous past, a woman shunned by polite society.

With crowds flocking to the courtroom and the shadow of suspicion falling upon Grace in the shape of the hangman’s noose, could dashing young advocate, Daniel Morgan, save her?

Finnish, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish versions are also available.

https://books2read.com/u/bpO09W

Books of the Week #26

Rise: Life Lessons in Speaking Out, Standing Tall & Leading the Way by Gina Miller

Gina Miller came to prominence when she brought one of the most significant constitutional cases ever to be heard in the British Supreme Court. Gina successfully challenged the UK government’s authority to trigger Article 50 – the formal notification to leave the European Union – without parliamentary approval. For standing up for what she believed was right, Miller became the target of not just racist and sexist verbal abuse, but physical threats to her and her family.

One question she kept being asked was how could she keep going at the cost of so much pain and aggravation? To her the answer was obvious: she’d been doing it all her life.
In Rise, Gina Miller draws on a lifetime of fighting injustice and looks at the moments that made her; the trauma, failures and successes that gave her the confidence in her voice, the ability to know how to use it and the strength not to let others diminish it, even when it came at incredible cost. To those who say one person cannot make a difference, this memoir demonstrates irrefutably how you can.

https://books2read.com/u/brVkN7

Black Sea by Caroline Eden

The next best thing to actually travelling with Caroline Eden – a warm, erudite and greedy guide – is to read her. This is my kind of book. ‘ Diana Henry ‘A wonderfully inspiring book about a magical part of the world’ Viv Groskop, author of The Anna Karenina Fix ‘Part travelogue, part recipe book, this is a love letter to “the sea that welcomes strangers”, soaked in colour, history, myth and the flavours of many cultures. ‘ Nick Hunt author of Where the Wild Winds Are This is the tale of a journey between three great cities – Odessa, built on a dream by Catherine the Great, through Istanbul, the fulcrum balancing Europe and Asia and on to tough, stoic, lyrical Trabzon. With a nose for a good recipe and an ear for an extraordinary story, Caroline Eden travels from Odessa to Bessarabia, Romania, Bulgaria and Turkey’s Black Sea region, exploring interconnecting culinary cultures. From the Jewish table of Odessa, to meeting the last fisherwoman of Bulgaria and charting the legacies of the White Russian émigrés in Istanbul, Caroline gives readers a unique insight into a part of the world that is both shaded by darkness and illuminated by light. Meticulously researched and documenting unprecedented meetings with remarkable individuals, Black Sea is like no other piece of travel writing. Packed with rich photography and sumptuous food, this biography of a region, its people and its recipes truly breaks new ground.

https://books2read.com/u/4NQ2LJ

Norwegian Christmas – Foods & Traditions: Dinners – Desserts – Cookies – Traditions – Songs – Lores (About Norway Book 1) by Henrik H. Koch

Norwegian Christmas – Foods & Traditions Dinners – Desserts – Cookies – Traditions – Songs – Lores. The book contains two sections:#Part 1: Norwegian History, Tradition and Customs#Part 2: Norwegian Christmas Dinners, Desserts and Cookies

In this book, Mr. Koch has worked on collecting his favorite Christmas Dishes and Christmas Cookies from Norway.This book covers the context, history, reason and meaning behind the Norwegian Christmas Traditions. In depth explanations are given throughout this book with illustrations and pictures. The book shows you how to cook up Amazing Dinners to impress Family and Friends.

This book also contains sections – Some Norwegian Christmas Words Translated- Norwegian Folklore – In Viking times: Converting from Norse Heathendom to Christendom- Covering the time from the 1st Sunday in Advent until New Years Eve, including, Advent Traditions and Rituals, Norwegian Christmas, Little Christmas Eve, Christmas Eve, 25th to 30th and New Year’s Eve, as well as.- Christmas Songs and Common Norwegian words cross-translated.

https://books2read.com/u/4XZ9Ng

A Ghost Tale for Christmas Time (Magic Tree House: Merlin Missions Book 16) by Mary Pope Osborne

Jack and Annie are ready for their next fantasy adventure in the bestselling middle-grade series—the Magic Tree House!

Jack and Annie’s mission from Merlin the Magician? To help the famous writer Charles Dickens! In a magical whirl, the brother and sister are whisked back in time to Victorian England and the foggy streets of London.

There, Jack and Annie discover that Charles Dickens has everything he could possibly want. How can they help him? It is not until Mr. Dickens rescues them from being thrown in jail that they discover his secret past and the sad memories that haunt him. They will need all their magic—and help from three ghosts—to keep the great writer from ruining his life!

Mary Pope Osborne mixes magic, humor, history, a little spookiness, and a lot of heart to create this tale, which celebrates the joys of writing—something she knows a lot about, thanks to millions of readers all over the world!

This is the perfect book for boys and girls about to see the classic play A Christmas Carol.

https://books2read.com/u/4DEd7A

Boston: A Sam Smith Mystery (The Sam Smith Mystery Series Book 14) by Hannah Howe

Welsh detective Samantha Smith is on her travels…

“Morgan Brooks is a fine man,” Alan said, “a great psychologist and my mentor. He’s invited us to spend Christmas with him and his family. Should we accept?” Of course, I said, “Yes.”

And so, I met Morgan Brooks in snowy Boston, on my first trip to America. I also met Amelia, his celebrity chef wife and Madison, his somewhat reticent daughter. Furthermore, I encountered Dexter Trask, a businessman, a megalomaniac, the self-styled ‘King of Boston’.

The holiday started well. Then the first body appeared, a young man murdered in the woods. That murder led to a kidnapping and further murders. The clues pointed in one direction.

However, did the truth lie in that direction? With the aid of Gabe, Morgan’s friend and neighbour, and a fellow private detective, I wandered through the snow-kissed maze.
And the solution? That surprised everyone.

Boston, ten days in a winter wonderland, ten days that confirmed that people are multi-faceted, multi-layered, and that everyone has at least one skeleton ready to fall out of their closet.

https://books2read.com/u/meBMQz

Books of the Week #24

Bring me to Light: Embracing my Bipolar and Social Anxiety by Eleanor Segall

Eleanor Segall’s life was beginning. An aspiring actress and a family girl, she never thought her future would be derailed by mental illness. After a spate of depressive episodes, panic attacks and social anxiety, Eleanor found herself in The Priory at age 16. The diagnosis? Bipolar affective disorder.

But Eleanor didn’t let it stop her for long. Now a successful blogger, journalist, and pillar of the mental health and Jewish communities, she writes about finding recovery and hope after being unwell. Her story is of picking herself back up again and surviving against the odds. It will resonate with many – and it can help them find that light in the darkness too.

https://books2read.com/u/3npRO8

Mercy Roadby Ann Howard Creel

Inspired by the true story of the World War I American Women’s Hospital, Mercy Road is a novel about love, courage, and a female ambulance driver who risks everything.
In 1917, after Arlene Favier’s home burns to the ground, taking her father with it, she must find a way to support her mother and younger brother. If she doesn’t succeed, they will all be impoverished. Job opportunities are scarce, but then a daring possibility arises: the American Women’s Hospital needs ambulance drivers to join a trailblazing, all-female team of doctors and nurses bound for war-torn France.

On the front lines, Arlene and her fellow ambulance drivers work day and night to aid injured soldiers and civilians. In between dangerous ambulance runs, Arlene reunites with a childhood friend, Jimmy Tucker, now a soldier, who opens her heart like no one before. But she has also caught the attention of Felix Brohammer, a charismatic army captain who harbors a dark, treacherous secret.

To expose Brohammer means risking her family’s future and the promise of love. Arlene must make a choice: stay in the safety of silence or take the greatest chance of her life.

https://books2read.com/u/bxvRRo

An Elderly Lady Is Up to No Good by Helene Tursten

Maud is an irascible 88-year-old Swedish woman with no family, no friends, and… no qualms about a little murder. This funny, irreverent story collection by Helene Tursten, author of the Irene Huss investigations, features two-never-before translated stories that will keep you laughing all the way to the retirement home.

Ever since her darling father’s untimely death when she was only eighteen, Maud has lived in the family’s spacious apartment in downtown Gothenburg rent-free, thanks to a minor clause in a hastily negotiated contract. That was how Maud learned that good things can come from tragedy. Now in her late eighties, Maud contents herself with traveling the world and surfing the net from the comfort of her father’s ancient armchair. It’s a solitary existence, and she likes it that way. 

Over the course of her adventures—or misadventures—this little bold lady will handle a crisis with a local celebrity who has her eyes on Maud’s apartment, foil the engagement of her long-ago lover, and dispose of some pesky neighbors. But when the local authorities are called to investigate a dead body found in Maud’s apartment, will Maud finally become a suspect?

What Is Climate Change? by Gail Herman (Author), John Hinderliter (Illustrator)

Learn more about what climate change means and how it’s affecting our planet.

The earth is definitely getting warmer. There’s no argument about that, but who or what is the cause? And why has climate change become a political issue? Are humans at fault? Is this just a natural development? While the vast majority of scientists who study the environment agree that humans play a large part in climate change, there is a counterargument. Author Gail Herman presents both sides of the debate in this fact-based, fair-minded, and well-researched book that looks at the subject from many perspectives, including scientific, social, and political.

Grade level 3 – 7

https://books2read.com/u/b6kwpJ

Mind Games: A Sam Smith Mystery (The Sam Smith Mystery Series Book 11) by Hannah Howe

A riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. Sasha Pryce, a teenage chess prodigy, presented me with a problem. She wanted me to track down Steve Chapin, her coaching assistant. Steve had mysteriously disappeared, leaving no clue as to his whereabouts. However, Sasha insisted that I should follow her strict instructions – her father, eminent pharmacologist Professor Christian Pryce, must not learn of my investigation.

Meanwhile, Professor Pryce had hired a handsome bodyguard, Blake, to protect Sasha. For what reason? She had no idea. And to complicate matters further, Blake decided to cast a lascivious eye over my romance-shy friend and assistant, Faye Collister.

Mind Games, a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma, an exploration of the many aspects of love.

https://books2read.com/u/49QyzX

Books of the Week #22

The Vine Witch by Luanne G. Smith

A young witch emerges from a curse to find her world upended in this gripping fantasy set in turn-of-the-century France.
For centuries, the vineyards at Château Renard have depended on the talent of their vine witches, whose spells help create the world-renowned wine of the Chanceaux Valley. Then the skill of divining harvests fell into ruin when sorcière Elena Boureanu was blindsided by a curse. Now, after breaking the spell that confined her to the shallows of a marshland and weakened her magic, Elena is struggling to return to her former life. And the vineyard she was destined to inherit is now in the possession of a handsome stranger.
Vigneron Jean-Paul Martel naively favors science over superstition, and he certainly doesn’t endorse the locals’ belief in witches. But Elena knows a hex when she sees one, and the vineyard is covered in them. To stay on and help the vines recover, she’ll have to hide her true identity, along with her plans for revenge against whoever stole seven winters of her life. And she won’t rest until she can defy the evil powers that are still a threat to herself, Jean-Paul, and the ancient vine-witch legacy in the rolling hills of the Chanceaux Valley.
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The House by the River by Lena Manta

From acclaimed Greek writer Lena Manta comes an emotionally powerful saga following five young women as they realize that no matter where life leads them, the only constant is home.
Theodora knows she can’t keep her five beautiful daughters at home forever—they’re too curious, too free spirited, too like their late father. And so, before each girl leaves the small house on the riverside at the foot of Mount Olympus, Theodora makes sure they know they are always welcome to return.
Having survived World War II, the Nazi occupation of Greece, and her husband’s death, Theodora now endures the twenty-year-long silence of her daughters’ absence. Her children have their own lives—they’ve married, traveled the world, and courted romance, fame, and even tragedy. But as they become modern, independent women in pursuit of their dreams, Theodora knows they need her—and each other—more than ever. Have they grown so far apart that they’ve forgotten their childhood home, or will their broken hearts finally lead them back again?
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Never Stop Walking: A Memoir of Finding Home Across the World by Christina Rickardsson

An extraordinary memoir of one woman’s fight to find her true self between the life into which she was born and the one she was given.
Christiana Mara Coelho was born into extreme poverty in Brazil. After spending the first seven years of her life with her loving mother in the forest caves outside São Paulo and then on the city streets, where they begged for food, she and her younger brother were suddenly put up for adoption. When one door closed on the only life Christiana had ever known and on the woman who protected her with all her heart, a new one opened.
As Christina Rickardsson, she’s raised by caring adoptive parents in Sweden, far from the despairing favelas of her childhood. Accomplished and outwardly “normal,” Christina is also filled with rage over what she’s lost and having to adapt to a new reality while struggling with the traumas of her youth. When her world falls apart again as an adult, Christina returns to Brazil to finally confront her past and unlock the truth of what really happened to Christiana Mara Coelho.
A memoir of two selves, Never Stop Walking is the moving story of the profound love between families and one woman’s journey from grief and loss to survival and self-discovery.
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Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman

Andre Aciman’s Call Me by Your Name is the story of a sudden and powerful romance that blossoms between an adolescent boy and a summer guest at his parents’ cliffside mansion on the Italian Riviera. Each is unprepared for the consequences of their attraction, when, during the restless summer weeks, unrelenting currents of obsession, fascination, and desire intensify their passion and test the charged ground between them. Recklessly, the two verge toward the one thing both fear they may never truly find again: total intimacy. It is an instant classic and one of the great love stories of our time.
Now a Major Motion Picture from Director Luca Guadagnino, Starring Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet, and Written by James Ivory
WINNER BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY ACADEMY AWARD
Nominated for Four Oscars

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Stardust: A Sam Smith Mystery (The Sam Smith Mystery Series Book 10) by Hannah Howe

Hired by multimillionaire Jeremy Loudon, my task was simple – find his missing briefcase. Loudon claimed that his briefcase held ten thousand pounds, his winnings from a poker game. However, as the trail unravelled and led to Europe my suspicions deepened. What was in Loudon’s briefcase, beyond the money? Why was he being so evasive? Why did he insist on no police involvement?
My search for the missing briefcase took me to pimps, pornographers, radical feminists, gun runners and the Red Light District of Amsterdam.
Meanwhile, my investigation held a mirror to my own life. Loudon had everything – more money than he could spend, a successful business and a beautiful lover. My business was doing well and my marriage offered plenty of love and happiness. Yet, encounters with my Dutch colleagues raised the question – should I ask for more out of life?
Stardust, the story of one woman’s dream and my hopes for the future.
Also available in Dutch.
9905B7D0-4916-4E53-B129-075842CF810C

Books of the Week #20

Led by Donkeys: How four friends with a ladder took on Brexit by LedByDonkeys

Seeking to highlight the hypocrisy of our politicians on Brexit four friends armed with nothing more than ladders, roller brushes and a treasure trove of damning statements from our leaders slapped up the politicians’ biggest lies on billboards around the country.
This guerrilla operation wasn’t easy, but it wasn’t long before the British public enabled them to take things into their own hands – and the rest is history.
Leave the EU or remain? An apparently simple question divided the nation in historic fashion. Many of us believed the words of these politicians. By putting up their quotes as billboards, self-styled ‘Led By Donkeys’ had clear intentions – to compare the promises that have been made across the years with the damning reality.
The official visual account of how four ordinary people managed to expose the government’s hypocrisies through a nationwide guerrilla advertising campaign.
2257825E-C38C-4A1D-8FDE-35EDF4C61328

Poland: A Novel by James A. Michener

In this sweeping novel, James A. Michener chronicles eight tumultuous centuries as three Polish families live out their destinies. The Counts Lubonski, the petty nobles Bukowksi, and the peasants Buk are at some times fiercely united, at others tragically divided. With an inspiring tradition of resistance to brutal invaders, from the barbarians to the Nazis, and a heritage of pride that burns through eras of romantic passion and courageous solidarity, their common story reaches a breathtaking culmination in the historic showdown between the ruthless Communists and rebellious farmers of the modern age. Like the heroic land that is its subject, Poland teems with vivid events, unforgettable characters, and the unfolding drama of an entire nation.
BB97D40E-CBDB-44E1-B95E-FC9335EFCC2C

Norwegian by Night by Derek B. Miller

He will not admit it to Rhea and Lars – never, of course not – but Sheldon can’t help but wonder what it is he’s doing here…
Eighty-two years old, and recently widowed, Sheldon Horowitz has grudgingly moved to Oslo, with his grand-daughter and her Norwegian husband. An ex-Marine, he talks often to the ghosts of his past – the friends he lost in the Pacific and the son who followed him into the US Army, and to his death in Vietnam.
When Sheldon witnesses the murder of a woman in his apartment complex, he rescues her six-year-old son and decides to run. Pursued by both the Balkan gang responsible for the murder, and the Norwegian police, he has to rely on training from over half a century before to try and keep the boy safe. Against a strange and foreign landscape, this unlikely couple, who can’t speak the same language, start to form a bond that may just save them both.
An extraordinary debut, featuring a memorable hero, Norwegian by Night is the last adventure of a man still trying to come to terms with the tragedies of his life. Compelling and sophisticated, it is both a chase through the woods thriller and an emotionally haunting novel about ageing and regret.
069ED1A7-EB9C-4CCA-AE62-96D7EB34117F

Under a Maltese Sky (The Malta Saga Book 1) by Nicola Kearns

Being caught up in war is not what Ana Mellor expects when she lands in Malta to join her Wing-Commander father. In the midst of horror and destruction, the courage and resilience of the Maltese people is revealed as they struggle to survive. Ana falls in love but treachery intervenes with catastrophic consequences.
Meanwhile, disillusioned with Ireland’s fight for political independence, Ernie McGuill leaves home to join the British Army. Due to the outbreak of war he trains as a fighter pilot and is posted to Malta.It is against this background that the characters of Ana, Ernie and many others are interwoven in a story of betrayal and intrigue. This is not unravelled until generations later when two women make a journey to Malta – a journey that is to have astonishing consequences.
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Smoke and Mirrors by Hannah Howe

The man in my office held a dark secret, a secret to kill for. That man was Tony Ryland, husband of local madam, Maria de Costa. Unfortunately for me, truth and justice, Tony Ryland was dead.
 
What was Ryland doing in my office? Who had murdered him? What was the nature of his dark secret? The trail led to Ryland’s wife, Maria de Costa, to her network of prostitutes and clients. Questions led to evasive answers, and more deaths.
 
Someone was out to muddy the waters, to distort the truth, to bury the secret along with Tony Ryland. As I probed and prodded, I placed myself, family and friends in danger. Ultimately, Ryland’s murder left me with a question: what is of greater value, love or the truth?
 
Smoke and Mirrors, a tale of treachery, of duplicity and cover-ups, the story of a scandal that simmers within our society.
 
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