BookTrib http://booktrib.com Find New Novels to Read on Booktrib Fri, 26 Aug 2016 22:31:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Woof Woof: Books to Get you Excited Because It’s National Dog Day! http://booktrib.com/2016/08/woof-woof-books-to-get-you-excited-because-its-national-dog-day/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/woof-woof-books-to-get-you-excited-because-its-national-dog-day/#comments Fri, 26 Aug 2016 22:27:26 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251377 Calling all dog lovers! Today is National Dog Day! So grab your four-legged friend(s), their favorite tennis ball and visit your local dog park. And while you’re sitting on the park bench watching your fur-baby frolic with their buddies, pick up one of these dog-themed books! (Slobber not included.)   Underwater Dogs by Seth Casteel […]]]>

Calling all dog lovers! Today is National Dog Day! So grab your four-legged friend(s), their favorite tennis ball and visit your local dog park. And while you’re sitting on the park bench watching your fur-baby frolic with their buddies, pick up one of these dog-themed books! (Slobber not included.)

 

Underwater Dogs by Seth Casteel (Little, Brown & Company, 2012)

51aaB8WCfcL._SY430_BO1,204,203,200_For anyone who has ever brought their pooch in a pool or a lake, you know the sight of a dog swimming is priceless, whether they know how to do it or not. But what does it look like when they dive down to the depths to reach their favorite ball? That’s a sight not all of us get to witness. But award-winning photographer, Seth Casteel, has captured these colorful hilarious moments for all of us to enjoy!

 

The Mountaintop School for Dogs and Other Second Chances by Ellen Cooney (Mariner Books, 2015)

41ud2++qU8L._SX330_BO1,204,203,200_Rescuing a shelter dog is a remarkable opportunity any future pet owner can be proud of. If you’ve ever stepped foot in a shelter then you know the stories that each of these wet-nosed furry friends have experienced just by looking into their warm eyes. In Ellen Cooney’s recent novel, we experience firsthand the triumph and heartache shelter dogs bring, and how we can each find ourselves with the help from a furry friend.

 

 

 

Jonathan Unleashed by Meg Rosoff (Viking, July 2016)

41LEtrwrO7L._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_After reading Lily and the Octopus, another doggy tale (see what I did there!), I was craving another story of “man’s best friend.” Meg Rosoff grabs you by the leash and takes you into an eye-opening coming of age story from two unlikely pals, a Border Collie and a Cocker Spaniel. If you consider yourself a cat person, this book will have you contemplating purchasing a hyper, happy, drooling pup. I mean just picture walking two dogs for the first time down the busy streets of New York City without tripping over your own feet. You’ll be laughing from the first page to the last.

 

 

 

Just Life by Neil Abramson (Center Street, May 2016)

51Cg3YcFmdL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_First of all, this book is my worst nightmare. Secondly, this book will have you glued to the edge of your favorite reading chair. Just Life is a story of survival, strength and power from a group of random misfits in order to protect our friends with no voices. You’ll be crying but we promise you won’t regret a single moment. Simply, Just Life is a moving novel for all animal lovers.

 

 

 

 

Marley & Me: Life and Love with the World’s Worst Dog by John Grogan (William Morrow, 2008)

51kESP5PtwL._SX330_BO1,204,203,200_I mean, do I really need to explain why this book is the ideal novel for National Dog Day? If you’ve ever had to bring home a puppy, attempt to housetrain or pull out numerous pairs of shoes from your tail-wagging pal’s wet mouth, you can completely sympathize with Marley’s owners. But at the end of the day, no matter how loud they bark or how much mud they track into the house, staying mad is just impossible.

 

 

 

 

 

And this is just a little something extra because, cute:

 

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Who Run the World?! 7 Books for Women’s Equality Day http://booktrib.com/2016/08/who-run-the-world-7-books-for-womens-equality-day/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/who-run-the-world-7-books-for-womens-equality-day/#comments Fri, 26 Aug 2016 21:39:54 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251346 First thing’s first – here’s the soundtrack for this article:   On this glorious day, August 26, in the glorious year of 1920, the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution was certified as law. For anyone not up on their Constitutional Amendments (YOU SHOULD BE), that’s the one that gave women the right to […]]]>

First thing’s first – here’s the soundtrack for this article:

 

On this glorious day, August 26, in the glorious year of 1920, the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution was certified as law. For anyone not up on their Constitutional Amendments (YOU SHOULD BE), that’s the one that gave women the right to vote. So, to commemorate the date, we have Women’s Equality Day, a holiday that celebrates ladies getting a right we should have had from the very beginning.

Women’s Equality Day is a well-intentioned holiday that’s still a bit touchy, mainly because the subject of women’s equality is still about as frustrating and divisive as it was in 1920. The gender wage gap is still a thing, along with rape culture on college campuses and the disproportionate targeting of women of color for heinous forms of internet abuse. In the face of all these real and complicated issues, it’s hard to believe that we’ll shatter the glass ceiling anytime soon, even if we happen to elect the first female President in November. Long story short? Being a lady is not easy.

However, despite all of the really complex issues facing women today, there’s still a lot to be hopeful about. To paraphrase our most jellybean-loving President, freedom is never more than a generation away from extinction — we have to keep earning it over and over again in order to maintain it. The same thing goes for women’s rights, and in the spirit of keeping the fight for women’s equality going, here’s a book list that should inspire you to be the most kick-butt female freedom fighter you can be!

 

We Should All Be Feminists, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Anchor Books, 2015)

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There seems to be a lot of weird divisiveness today about what the definition of the term “feminism” is. Well, allow BookTrib and Beyoncé-favorite Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie bring you up to speed on what feminism really means in the 21st century in this already classic essay that’s one of the essential reads of this decade.

 

 

 

 

 

Fight Like a Girl: 50 Feminists Who Changed the World, Laura Barcella (Zest Books, March 8, 2016)

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Even if you’re a scholar of women’s history, it’s hard not to enjoy this helpful history of some of the most prominent feminists in history. From Mary Wollstonecraft to Malala Yousafzai, this cute yet informative short collection of biographical notes on some of the coolest women ever will inspire you not only to learn more about women’s history, but to strive for equality where possible in your own surroundings.

 

 

 

 

 

Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman, Lindy West (Hachette Books, May 17, 2016)

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This provocative, half-hilarious half-heartfelt memoir is as entertaining to read as it is thought-provoking. Lindy West’s misadventures with rape-joking comedians, people calling her fat and Internet trolls are told with a mix of humor and vulnerability that’s really appealing. This is a great book to read if you’re tired of people telling you to be quiet.

 

 

 

 

 

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, Nicolas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn (Vintage, 2010)

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Even though Women’s Equality Day is an American holiday, it’s important to also consider the plight of women around the world. This book will make you angry about what some women in the developing world have to go through, but it’ll also inspire you to do what you can to help. These stories of real women, complete with enough struggle and triumph to bring you to tears, is a deeply emotional experience that should be required reading for all humans.

 

 

 

 

Men Explain Things to Me, Rebecca Solnit (Haymarket Books, 2015)

men-explain-things-to-me-solnit

This short collection of essays is a scathingly humorous look at the relationships between men, women and society at large. Solnit addresses gender power dynamics with honest anecdotes, witty wisdom and a cool, collected voice that’s kind of irresistible to put down. It’s eye-opening, unflinching and empowering.

 

 

 

 

 

And, just for fun, here are two more books to look forward to:

Feminist Fight Club: An Office Survival Manual for a Sexist Workplace, Jessica Bennett (Harper Wave, September 13, 2016)

feminist-fight-club-bennett

For any woman who has had a difficult time at work with a weird male coworker who won’t leave her alone, this book sounds like a winner. While some of the examples and made-up terms in this book are hilarious, the point of the book is to give working women real advice on how to operate in a workplace that isn’t always structured to support them. Since working women need all the help they can get, we’re really looking forward to diving into this workbook.

 

 

 

 

You Can’t Touch My Hair: And Other Things I Still Have to Explain, Phoebe Robinson (Plume, October 4, 2016)

you-can't-touch-my-hair-phoebe-robinson

There are a lot of people who don’t really try to understand the plight of women who have to deal with subversive sexism and racism on a daily basis. Those people are dumb. Enter comedian Phoebe Robinson, co-host of the wildly popular 2 Dope Queens Podcast, who is here to explain the ridiculousness of everyday life as a black woman in America as best she can. Pairing unabashed call-outs of modern culture with charming humor, this book is something we’re definitely looking to get on our shelves, as well as everyone’s shelves to be honest, because empathy isn’t something a woman should have to explain.

 

 

 

 

 

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LISTEN: For All of the Readers and Writers Who Love Their Craft, We Welcome Gabriela Pereira’s DIY MFA Podcast! http://booktrib.com/2016/08/listen-for-all-of-the-readers-and-writers-who-love-their-craft-we-welcome-gabriela-pereiras-diy-mfa-podcast/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/listen-for-all-of-the-readers-and-writers-who-love-their-craft-we-welcome-gabriela-pereiras-diy-mfa-podcast/#comments Fri, 26 Aug 2016 21:29:48 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251342 Whether you’re a reader or a writer, a teacher or a student, a librarian or a publisher, DIY MFA is the perfect outlet to improve both your reading and writing techniques. Broken down into one simple formula, DIY MFA believes: “Writing + Reading + Community = MFA (Master of Fine Arts).” This do-it-yourself community provides tools, […]]]>

Whether you’re a reader or a writer, a teacher or a student, a librarian or a publisher, DIY MFA is the perfect outlet to improve both your reading and writing techniques. Broken down into one simple formula, DIY MFA believes: “Writing + Reading + Community = MFA (Master of Fine Arts).”
MJ ROSEThis do-it-yourself community provides tools, tips and insight into the world of writing, because as we all know, there is always room for improvement. This insanely helpful and well done podcast covers a range of topics from “Developing themes” to “What happens if your book doesn’t sell” to “Lessons from bestsellers” and even simply “Finding time to read.” When you feel like you’ve hit a lull in your writing career or you don’t know how to get around that frustrating writer’s block, check out DIY MFA for a bit of inspiration and guidance!

Be sure to check out our podcast page every Friday for the next podcast interview with many talented authors. For now, enjoy our first episode in collaboration with DIY MFA below!

Description: This episode begins our collaboration with DIY MFA Radio, a podcast for readers and writers. In this episode, Gabriela Pereira talks with bestselling author M.J. Rose about how to build buzz around your book. Rose shares her insights about book promotion and the best time to bring in an expert to market your book. She also speaks to the etiquette involved with approaching other authors on social media, and reveals the best thing writers can do to market their own books. For more detailed show notes, visit DIYMFA.com/109.

 

 

 

 

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Battle ‘Ships Never-Lose-Hope Edition: Delena vs. Klaroline! http://booktrib.com/2016/08/battle-ships-never-lose-hope-edition-delena-vs-klaroline/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/battle-ships-never-lose-hope-edition-delena-vs-klaroline/#comments Thu, 25 Aug 2016 21:26:30 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251232 Most of the time, I like to root for couples that I know stand a chance at Happily Ever After. Sometimes, I’m bitterly disappointed (don’t even get me started on How I Met Your Mother’s Barney & Robin), but I can usually spot a life-long love a mile away. It’s why I stuck around for […]]]>

Most of the time, I like to root for couples that I know stand a chance at Happily Ever After. Sometimes, I’m bitterly disappointed (don’t even get me started on How I Met Your Mother’s Barney & Robin), but I can usually spot a life-long love a mile away. It’s why I stuck around for the Blair & Chuck drama on Gossip Girl. It’s why I knew that Veronica & Logan would eventually make it work on Veronica Mars – even if it took 10 years and a Kickstarter movie. I’m just a true fan of true love.

So when my favorite couples get torn apart by outside circumstances, I have a hard time adjusting. Especially when it’s out of anyone’s control. Maybe an actor leaves the show, resulting in an unwelcome death. Maybe the series gets canceled well before its time. Regardless, these are the toughest breakups to swallow, as it seems like there’s no hope left and true love is officially dead.

Too dramatic? Tell it to my heart, which is still trying to finagle a way for Derek to come back from the dead and be with Meredith again on Grey’s Anatomy [Editor’s Note: YESSSSSS!]. But the worst offenders of this hopeless love are easily The Vampire Diaries, and its spin-off, The Originals.

Based on a series of Young Adult novels by L.J. Smith, TVD (The Vampire Diaries) tells the story of two vampire brothers who both fall in love with the same human girl, Elena Gilbert (Nina Dobrev). It sounds pretty straightforward, but the plot on this show moves at lightning speed, and at this point we’ve seen deaths, resurrections, brother swapping, werewolves, more deaths, magic…I could go on and on.

The show has set up some great romances over the years; some that even spilled over onto The Originals. But there have definitely been two that stand out as the best: Elena and Damon (“Delena”) and Klaus and Caroline (“Klaroline”).

The two couples have a lot in common. Both Klaus and Damon are bad boy vampires who’ve seemed well-beyond redemption at certain points. They both pined after their lady loves for years before Caroline and Elena gave them each a chance. And every time they so much as looked at the two female vampires, our TV screens burst into flames.

But then Dobrev decided to leave TVD, effectively putting an end to Delena. And Klaus moved over to star on The Originals, a vampire-driven spinoff set in New Orleans, which left Caroline free to be romanced by Stefan. So now both of my couples are split apart, with no resolution in sight. I’m not crying, you’re crying. Shut up.

Hope isn’t lost though: there are rumors that Elena might be returning for the eighth and final season of TVD this year. And Klaus and Caroline just shared an intimate phone call on a TVD crossover that proves there are still lingering feelings between the two. So I’m choosing to look on the bright side, certain that my OTPs (One True Pairs) are endgame at some point. Here’s hoping Caroline makes a move to New Orleans in 2017!

But let’s say I can only get one of these couples back together for good. Who will it be? Let’s break it down, in this ‘Never Lose Hope’ edition of Battle ‘Ships:

“Delena”: Damon and Elena

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via salvatore-love.tumblr.com

When TVD first aired, it was clear that the show was angling for a Stefan Salvatore (Paul Wesley) and Elena endgame. And I was okay with that: the two had decent chemistry, and the nice guy vampire seemed perfect for the strong, good girl Elena. But then Damon rolled onto the scene and all my good intentions (and Elena’s) went out the window.

Damon Salvatore, played by Ian Somerhalder, is dark, chiseled, angry, quippy and OMG stupid hot. From the beginning, he was painted as the bad brother, the villain to Stefan’s natural good guy. But he softened over time, mostly because of his unrequited love for Elena. She makes him better, and he brings out her wild side, creating a balance that works for both of them. It took four seasons and Elena turning into a vampire for the two to get together, but when they finally did, their chemistry was off the charts.

They’ve definitely had some ups and downs as a couple, but things were looking up at the end of season 6. Unfortunately, that’s also when Dobrev decided to leave the show, putting an end to their romance. Now Elena is wasting away in a coffin, her life forfeited to save her best friend, Bonnie. Honestly, I’m filled with rage at the thought that Elena and Damon might not end up together (especially as Bonnie and Damon are circling each other lately — blegh!). Still, these two seem destined for each other, and the thought that Dobrev might be returning — at least for the last episode of the series — is like a little flame of hope burning deep in my heart.

 

“Klaroline”: Klaus and Caroline

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via klaroline-secret.tumblr.com

Everyone loves “Klaroline,” and we have the poll results to prove it. And why wouldn’t you love the tortured couple? From the beginning, Klaus Mikaelson (Joseph Morgan) knew he wanted Caroline Forbes (Candice King), and Klaus is used to getting whatever he wants. Caroline put up a good fight against the mostly-evil original vampire, but chemistry like that can’t be denied. While the two have never officially dated, they did finally consummate their relationship in TVD season 5. It was rough, sexy, hot and everything fans could have hoped for. Klaus lives in the gray area — never quite good, never quite bad — but Caroline gives him a humanity he desperately needs.

It was clear that these two would be endgame, until Klaus left for his own show, that is. Now Caroline is with Stefan and Klaus is heartbroken after losing his latest love Cami. But when Klaroline shared a heartfelt phone call last season on TVD, it became obvious that these two aren’t done:

Now we just have to wait desperately to see how it all turns out. Will Caroline move over to The Originals when TVD ends this year? Or will Klaus show up in the series finale to confess his love and beat out Stefan once and for all? Hint hint hint, show writers.

Verdict:

Both.

I can’t decide. I just can’t. This is like making me choose between my two perfect, though slightly dysfunctional, children. Both Damon and Klaus need Elena and Caroline. They are vampires on the edge of redemption, and if they lose their true loves there’s no turning back. Similarly, Caroline and Elena never light up with anyone else the way they do with their dark vampires. They fought against Klaus and Damon’s advances out of fear, because this is the real thing, the kind of love that only comes around once in a long, long vampire lifetime. Not even death — or spinoffs — can keep them apart. The hope is alive, my friends, and I’m choosing to believe in both these ‘ships until the very bitter end.

Can you do a better job of choosing between Delena and Klaroline? Root for your favorite ‘ship below!

 

 

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Video: Interview with award-winning Actress and Life Coach, Brooke Lewis and Coaching from a Professed Hot Mess http://booktrib.com/2016/08/video-interview-with-award-winning-actress-and-life-coach-brooke-lewis-and-coaching-from-a-professed-hot-mess/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/video-interview-with-award-winning-actress-and-life-coach-brooke-lewis-and-coaching-from-a-professed-hot-mess/#comments Thu, 25 Aug 2016 19:12:52 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251330 TIPS to help you embrace your HOT MESS, BE FEARLESS and OWN IT! Life can be crazy! So, in 2016, I chose to embrace my “crazy” and use my blessed and beautiful bedside table book to profess…”I am a HOT MESS!” Yup…I said it, rock it and OWN IT! Now, being an Actress, Life Coach […]]]>

TIPS to help you embrace your HOT MESS, BE FEARLESS and OWN IT!

FRONTCOVERLife can be crazy! So, in 2016, I chose to embrace my “crazy” and use my blessed and beautiful bedside table book to profess…”I am a HOT MESS!” Yup…I said it, rock it and OWN IT! Now, being an Actress, Life Coach and Dating Expert in the public eye, some may think I am really “crazy” sharing this with the world! I know some of you are thinking (and, judging!) that a Board Certified Life and Dating Coach, professional and working actress should not “air her dirty laundry.” Well, I cannot tell you how good it feels to be self-aware enough to admit and embrace my “flaws.” Along with my strengths, my “flaws” and weaknesses make me vulnerable, special and unique. I also believe that by sharing my HOT MESS quirks with you, it will support you in embracing your HOT MESS quirks, too! Let’s break the ‘rules’ and stop chasing “perfection.” It gets tiring trying to be “perfect” all the time, doesn’t it? I have felt a great sense of joy and accomplishment writing this and I only hope that something I share on the pages to come, helps, supports or inspires you in some way. There is something valuable in these pages for everyone. You will find advice and tips for Life, Love, Female Empowerment, LGBT Support, Self-esteem, Body Image, Bullying, Ageism, Dating and Online Dating. If one thing I coach helps you, this was worth all the frustration. If you only read one chapter that speaks to you, this was worth it. If you keep this book on your bedside table to turn to when you need a tip or reminder, this was worth it. If you learn to love your body, no matter what number is on the scale, this was worth it. If you learn to face your fears, this was worth it. If you feel compelled to get back out there and date after a breakup or divorce, this was worth it. If you choose to try online dating, this was worth it. If you learn to honor yourself and your choices, no matter what (flaws and all!), this was worth it. And, last, but not least, if you accept coaching and advice from a professed HOT MESS, this was so worth it!

Meet the Author

Brooke1603 Credit_ Birdie ThompsonBROOKE LEWIS is an award-winning Actress, Producer, Board Certified Life Coach and Dating and Online Dating Coach and Expert. She has done writing, speaking and TV segments in media such as San Diego Living CW6, CBS 8 Las Vegas Now, John Kerwin Live, AfterBuzz TV, Pop Trigger TV, Huffington Post, She Knows, Your Tango, Dirty And Thirty, Girls Life, Woman’s Day, Female First and Meet Mindful. Brooke is also known as the sassy Co-host on the dating talk show Breaking Dating. In 2016, Brooke earned the title Tempted.com Dating Expert & Spokesperson. She has empowered women and men around the world, giving them knowledge they can use in their everyday lives and giving them the confidence they need to go after dating, love and their dreams. Her motto is…BE FEARLESS!

www.beyouandbefearlesslifecoach.com

www.brookelewis.com

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0506989/

 

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Author Adam Ehrlich Sachs Answers One Question About ‘Inherited Disorders’ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/author-adam-ehrlich-sachs-answers-one-question-about-inherited-disorders/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/author-adam-ehrlich-sachs-answers-one-question-about-inherited-disorders/#comments Wed, 24 Aug 2016 19:00:51 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251278 Rarely do writers compose a great piece by sitting down and just doing it. Countless hours of thought and uncertainty go into writing a poem, story or novel before typing a single word. Writers are often inspired to create something but many just don’t know where to start. Our most recent addition to the One […]]]>

Rarely do writers compose a great piece by sitting down and just doing it. Countless hours of thought and uncertainty go into writing a poem, story or novel before typing a single word. Writers are often inspired to create something but many just don’t know where to start. Our most recent addition to the One Question and Answer series features Adam Ehrlich Sachs’ Inherited Disorders: Stories, Parables, & Problems (Regan Arts, May 3, 2016). Written in over 100 vignettes this short, short story collection spans over thousands of years exploring the often absurd dynamic between fathers and sons. So, that begs the question of how Sachs came to write so extensively on this subject.

Question: What did you find so fascinating about the relationships between fathers and sons that you wrote over 100 short stories on the subject?

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Adam Ehrlich Sachs: I actually arrived at the subject matter by process of elimination. All I had at first was the desire to write a book, any book. You want to write a book, any book, and get acclaim for it: that always comes first. Before the urge to express yourself or, you know, investigate your trauma, or whatever. Then you look around for your subject—something hopefully that’ll get you that acclaim. (You really want that acclaim!) Thankfully there’s a limited set of subjects that can get you literary acclaim: War, Sex, Race, Class, God, and a few others. The others are: Grief, Artistic Obsession, Scientific Hubris/Heroism, The Falsifications of Memory, Capitalism/Bureaucracy, Trauma (Personal), Trauma (Public, incl. the Holocaust), The Opacity of Oneself to Oneself, The Body (either the existential uncanniness of having one at all or the sociocultural pressure to make it conform to a certain ideal), and finally Family Dynamics. Next, I wrote down each of these on its own index card and just sort of shuffled through them for a while. Sex? No. War, Race, Class? No, no, and no. God or Grief? No and nope. Artistic Obsession or Scientific Hubris/Heroism? No. The Falsifications of Memory? Nah. Capitalism/Bureaucracy? No. How about one of the two popular trauma categories, the opacity of oneself to oneself, or something sort-of vaguely philosophical about the body? No.

So that left Family Dynamics.

Then within Family Dynamics there are: Sibling Dynamics, Mother-Daughter Dynamics, Father-Daughter Dynamics, Mother-Son Dynamics, Father-Son Dynamics, and Successive Generations Shaped Without Quite Realizing it by the Reverberations Through Time of Some Original Sin or Trauma (incl. the Holocaust). I did a lot of research and determined that all of these subjects are taken seriously by literary people and win literary prizes, etc., so it was just a matter of picking one. The last one seemed like the most work so I cut that first. Then, for reasons probably not worth delving into here, I cut both of the Mother ones. This left Sibling Dynamics and Father-Son Dynamics. Either of these seemed fine, so at that point I just flipped a coin, which came up tails (Father-Son Dynamics). Turned out to be an interesting topic, though.

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Video: Interview with Ryan Aldred and Rum Luck (A Bar on a Beach Mystery) http://booktrib.com/2016/08/video-interview-with-ryan-aldred-and-rum-luck-a-bar-on-a-beach-mystery/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/video-interview-with-ryan-aldred-and-rum-luck-a-bar-on-a-beach-mystery/#comments Wed, 24 Aug 2016 17:35:16 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251315 Sand. Monkeys. Murder. Ben Cooper was supposed to be on his Pacific honeymoon. Not waking up in a Costa Rican prison cell with no memory of the night before.Then again, Ben never thought he would catch his fiancée with some clown – literally. Or that his friend Miguel would drag him to the surf paradise […]]]>

Sand. Monkeys. Murder.

Ben Cooper was supposed to be on his Pacific honeymoon. Not waking up in a Costa Rican prison cell with no memory of the night before.Then again, Ben never thought he would catch his fiancée with some clown – literally. Or that his friend Miguel would drag him to the surf paradise of Tamarindo before Aunt Mildred could ask why they cancelled the open bar reception.

But surely his friend and lawyer Victoria didn’t need to fly down from Toronto overnight. After all, the police would let him go once he sobered up and paid his fine. Right?

Except for the little matter of a murder. And Ben’s buying a beachside bar from the victim, hours before the man’s death.

With foreclosure looming and death threats piling up on the rum-soaked bar, they must turn to the wild idea that got them into this mess – building a business around those who’ve always wanted to run their own bar on a beach somewhere, even for just a week.

But to survive, they’ll need every skill at their disposal – including those they’d rather forget they have.

Meet the Author

When not writing, Ryan Aldred runs a small Canadian charity that supports education in Afghanistan, Tanzania, Uganda, and other at-risk regions.

Ryan previously worked as a defense analyst and continues to serve as a Sergeant in the Canadian Forces Reserve. Ryan and his family live in beautiful Prince Edward County. He’s never met a beach he doesn’t like.

To learn more visit www.ryanaldred.com.

 

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Author Sally Allen Suggests 10 Twists on the Same Ole Book Club http://booktrib.com/2016/08/author-sally-allen-suggests-10-twists-on-the-same-ole-book-club/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/author-sally-allen-suggests-10-twists-on-the-same-ole-book-club/#comments Tue, 23 Aug 2016 19:55:07 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251310 I love books. I love reading them, collecting them, talking about them, writing about them. I’ve even been known to hug a book, now and again. I am that person who is forever shoving books into friends’ hands, urging, “Read this!” I have an “Oh! That reminds me of this book I read” moment for […]]]>

I love books. I love reading them, collecting them, talking about them, writing about them. I’ve even been known to hug a book, now and again. I am that person who is forever shoving books into friends’ hands, urging, “Read this!” I have an “Oh! That reminds me of this book I read” moment for every occasion and a “You know what book you should read?” suggestion for every issue.

And yet … I have a hard time sticking with book clubs. Confession time: I’ve participated – and quit – at least eight book clubs over the last 12 years. It’s not that I lacked appreciation for discovering new books I never would have read without book club. It’s not that I lacked respect for the book choices or club participants. It’s not that interesting, thought-provoking discussions were missing-in-action. Despite all of the above being more than satisfying, at some point, my 29,901-mile long to-be-read list and overstuffed bookshelves (literal and virtual) began prickling my conscience. The idea of buying yet another new book, especially one not already on my list, overwhelmed me. And I did a bunk from book club.

I haven’t given up, though. Miraculously, my current book club is in its third year – a record for me! We often read a single book together, but we’ve also stepped away from that traditional script. And that is what I attribute the group’s longevity to, at least in part: We continue to find new ways to share our love of books and reading. These are 10 of my favorite twists on the familiar book club concept:

Read aloud

Remember that cozy feeling of being read to as a child? Well, in oldie times, reading aloud wasn’t just for littles. I say if bell bottoms and vinyl can come back in style, so can reading aloud as entertainment. Reading to your friends may feel weird at first, but it’s addictive and soothing.

Read together

You want to read. Really you do. It’s just so hard to find the time. So how about setting aside time to read with like-minded friends? No pressure – just good friends and good books, in the same room. You can meet in private homes, public libraries, coffee shops, even pubs and read, together, in companionable silence. Maybe you talk about the books at some point; maybe you don’t.

Drop-in discussion

With my current book club, even when we read the same book, we inevitably end up veering away from it to talk about the best books we read since we last met. Sometimes I wonder why we ever pick a single book since we seem to have so many different titles to rehash at our meetings. If your book club is made up of heavy readers with to-be-read lists roughly as long as the circumference of the earth (see paragraph two above for the exact figure), maybe you don’t need to pick a single book. Get together over dinner and talk about whatever books you’ve been reading.

Literary supper clubs

And speaking of dinner, a literary supper would pair well with any of the above options. You’ll find a tall stack of related reads to choose from, whether it’s memoirs with recipes like Cara Nicoletti’s Voracious or literature-inspired cookbooks like Barbara Scrafford’s Literary Feasts. Version 2.0: Pick a significant food or favorite food scene from whatever book you’re reading, and find or create your own recipe.

Read single themes (instead of single books)

Maybe you liked the idea of reading Anthony Doerr’s fabulous All The Light We Cannot See, but you’re more of a nonfiction reader, or a memoir reader, or a book-that’s-under-500-pages reader. Why not invite book club participants to choose whatever book they want to read within a common theme? For example: World War II novels, contemporary literary fiction, mother-daughter memoirs, books about books, novels set in Paris, bestsellers published in 2005. Any one of these themes – among many, many others – can lead to a fascinating discussion of how different authors circle around and explore the same questions, problems and longings.

Read single authors (instead of single books)

The concept also works with single authors who are prolific. One club member might be keen to read Edith Wharton’s The House of Mirth. Meanwhile, the others are willing to read Wharton … just not 300 pages of her. So one member reads the full-length novel while others opt for selections from Tales of Men and Ghosts, or the short story Roman Fever, or the novella Ethan Frome. It works as well with classic authors like Charles Dickens, Jane Austen and Fyodor Dostoyevsky as it does with contemporary ones like Haruki Murakami, Nick Hornby and Jacqueline Woodson.

Literary game night

You know being bookish is having a moment when we get our own Scrabble edition. Jenga, Trivial Pursuit and Memory also have book lover editions. And those are just the famous franchises. Do a quick search of “literary games” and you’ll find options galore. They’ll all keep you talking books all night long, in the context of friendly competition.

Book and movie night

If you were going to invest tens (or hundreds) of millions of dollars into making a film, it would be nice to know that film comes with a built in fan base, wouldn’t it? Ergo, book-to-film adaptations. With so many contemporary and classic options, your book club can plan to hit a theater or stay in and screen from the comfort of your living room. Discussing the book before or after (just not during!) is optional.

Classics (and their reboots) book club

You might be thinking, “Wait, I thought these were supposed to be fun book club ideas! Only joking. What could be more fun that reclaiming the books you (were supposed to) read in school? Finally, you get to gossip about the characters as if they’re real people. And if you really just can’t with Pride and Prejudice again, you could revert to thematizing: Whoever wants to read Austen’s Pride and Prejudice can have at it, while the rest of the members pick reboots like Bridget Jones’ Diary, P. D. James’ Death Comes to Pemberley, or any of the roughly hundreds of thousands of titles that riff on Austen and her books. Authors like Mary Shelley, Charles Dickens, Bram Stoker, H. G. Wells and the Brontë sisters may not present quite as many titles as Jane Austen, but you won’t struggle for options.

Literary road tripping

For book clubbers with wanderlust, making a pilgrimage to a literary landmark together is a bonding experience … that segues into a book discussion (what else?). Researching these together is fun too. Libraries or cafés where well-known authors penned their bestsellers, local attractions that appear in famous novels, book talks by your favorite authors – you might be surprised to discover how much bookish history and entertainment is in your own backyard!

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

SallyAllen

Sally Allen is the author of Unlocking Worlds: A Reading Companion for Book Lovers. 
She is the founder of Books, Ink at HamletHub, a website dedicated to Connecticut books news,
 where her writing has earned her three Connecticut Press Club awards.  

UnlockingWorlds

More information about Sally Allen can be found at www.sallyallenbooks.comFacebookTwitterPinterest, and Goodreads.

 

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Leave Your Reading Comfort Zone — Go on a Blind Date with a Book! http://booktrib.com/2016/08/leave-your-reading-comfort-zone-go-on-a-blind-date-with-a-book/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/leave-your-reading-comfort-zone-go-on-a-blind-date-with-a-book/#comments Mon, 22 Aug 2016 21:30:14 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251258 A few weeks ago I took a trip to one of my favorite U.S. cities, Asheville, North Carolina. In between hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains, strolls through the River Arts District and lazy river tubing down the French Broad River, I also found some time to pop into one of their local literary gems, […]]]>

A few weeks ago I took a trip to one of my favorite U.S. cities, Asheville, North Carolina. In between hikes in the Blue Ridge Mountains, strolls through the River Arts District and lazy river tubing down the French Broad River, I also found some time to pop into one of their local literary gems, Malaprop’s Bookstore.

My friends and I all went our separate ways into our own preferred book worlds; I found myself going back and forth to the new fiction section and the DIY stacks, but nothing seemed to tempt me until their “Blind Date with a Book” shelf caught my attention. Each book was wrapped in brown paper with the description, price and ISBN written on the front. No title or book cover was in plain sight. I chose a book with a description that fit nicely with my reading interests:

Blind_date_book

When I checked out my book, the sales clerk said that it was just like a blind date: If you don’t like it, you can always leave, aka, return or exchange your date. A fan of speed dating? Pick up a couple reads at once and see which one engages you the most within the first few pages. Genius idea!blind-date-logo

I was so enamored with this concept and luckily, I ended up loving my choice (The Historian by Elizabeth Kostava)! After I returned home from Asheville I decided to do a little research on the “Blind Date with a Book” phenomenon and I made a wonderful discovery: there’s a website, Blind Date with a Book. If you can’t make it to a bookstore near you, you can certainly get your fix here (or you know, if you happen to be in the Australia area, check out Elizabeth’s Bookshops). Choose from escapist romance, catch the killer, art obsession, oedipal envy, erotica noir and many more.

I had such a wonderful first date that I couldn’t resist hooking up a few of our readers with a blind date of their own. This is a wonderfully unique way to take yourself out of your reading comfort zone and try something new.

So, because I loved it so much, 3 lucky readers will win their own Blind Date with a Book!

Click the image to enter to win!

Image via krstinasaurusrex

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If You Like Starz’ Outlander, You’ll Fall in Love with These 10 Books http://booktrib.com/2016/08/if-you-like-starz-outlander-youll-fall-in-love-with-these-10-books/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/if-you-like-starz-outlander-youll-fall-in-love-with-these-10-books/#comments Mon, 22 Aug 2016 18:30:13 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=250890 As a self-proclaimed Outlander junkie, I’m always on the lookout for different books that are just as romantic and compelling as my favorite series. Claire and Jamie are a force to be reckoned with, and it’s not easy to live up to that kind of love. Not to mention the historical details that Diana Gabaldon brings […]]]>

As a self-proclaimed Outlander junkie, I’m always on the lookout for different books that are just as romantic and compelling as my favorite series. Claire and Jamie are a force to be reckoned with, and it’s not easy to live up to that kind of love. Not to mention the historical details that Diana Gabaldon brings to the narrative, or her unique touches of fantasy and mystery. But over the years, I have found a few books that come close.

Here they are, along with this guarantee: if you like Outlander, you’ll love these 10 books. Promise.

Into the Wilderness, Sara Donati (Delta, 2008)

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This is the first book in a series that Gabaldon herself recommends to readers — and Donati even includes mentions of Claire and Jamie in the narrative. Set in America in 1792, Into the Wilderness tells the story of Elizabeth Middleton, an English girl who travels to New York to live with her family in a small mountain village. While there, she meets Nathaniel Bonner, a rugged white man with connections to the local Indians, who call him “Between-Two-Lives.” Though he’s nothing like the man she’s supposed to marry, they fall in love anyway, setting Elizabeth’s life on a path she never thought possible.

The Bronze Horseman, Paullina Simons (William Morrow Paperbacks, 2009)

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I might love this World War II story of romance and adventure even more than Outlander. Sacrilegious, I know, but it’s just that good. Alexander is a Russian soldier who falls in love with Tatiana as soon as he sees her. Only, he’s already dating her sister and war has just broken out, bringing with it the siege of Leningrad. Alexander and Tatiana have one of the most epic love stories of all time, giving Claire and Jamie a real run for their money.

America’s First Daughter, Stephanie Dray & Laura Kamoie (William Morrow Paperbacks, March 1, 2016)

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Outlander weaves real historical figures into the narrative, like Thomas Jefferson, who’s daughter Patsy is at the heart of this romantic, richly told story. After she falls in love with a political rival, Patsy is torn between love and duty to her family as her life takes her from Paris to Monticello to the White House.

The Time Traveler’s Wife, Audrey Niffenegger (Scribner, 2014)

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There’s just something so romantic about a love that transcends time and space. While time travel mostly functions as a way for our couple to meet in Outlander, it’s the entire premise of The Time Traveler’s Wife, which tells the story of how Clare and Henry meet and fall in love at different points in their lives. It’s sooo romantic, perfectly tragic and exactly the kind of book that an Outlander fan would eat up.

The Secret Language of Stones: The Daughters of La Lune; Book 2, M.J. Rose (Atria Books, July 19, 2016)

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Like Gabaldon, Rose combines history and the paranormal in this lush follow up to last year’s The Witch of Painted Sorrows. During WWI, young and gifted Opaline Duplessi works as a jewelry maker, weaving her own unique magic into each piece she makes. When the ghost of a soldier contacts her as she’s working, it sends her on a journey that will change her life forever.

Lord John and the Private Matter, Diana Gabaldon (Dell, 2008)

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Any fan of Gabaldon has to read the Lord John series, which takes a supporting character from her Outlander books and turns him into the star. Lord John Grey is always a witty delight, and in his own series we get to learn more about his past, and watch him solve mysteries as he navigates what it means to be a gay man in the mid-1700s.

The Pillars of the Earth, Ken Follet (Penguin Books, 2010)

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I fell hard for Follet’s insanely detailed medieval-set novel about all the different players who come together to build a cathedral. It doesn’t sound like a sexy topic, but it is, trust me. Particularly the tortured-but-epic love between master builder Jack and the strong, independent Aliena.

Kushiel’s Dart: Kushiel’s Legacy; Book 1, Jacqueline Carey (Tor Books, 2015)

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This series is definitely more fantasy-driven than Outlander, but it’s still romantic and filled with minute details about a specific time and place. That place just happens to be Terre d’Ange, an angelic kingdom whose motto is “Love as Thou Wilt,” because all forms of love (physical and beyond) are socially accepted. As such, courtesans are highly valued members of society, and our heroine, Phèdre, happens to have been born pricked by “Kushiel’s Dart,” a red mote in her eye that indicates an affinity for sadomasochism. Trained from childhood as a medieval super-spy and courtesan, the story follows Phèdre’s journey as she works to thwart a complicated plot that threatens to unravel her entire society.

The Rivals of Versailles: The Mistresses of Versailles Trilogy; Book 2, Sally Christie (Atria Books, April 5, 2016)

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The Marquise de Pompadour might be one of the most interesting women in history. As the mistress of King Louis XV, she ruled the halls of Versailles, taking down rivals and making herself indispensable to one of the most powerful men in the world. But on the cusp of the French Revolution, everything could change in an instant. Christie captures the life and loves of the famous middle-class girl who clawed her way to the top of the social world.

Ransom, Julie Garwood (Pocket Books, 1999)

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Garwood’s historical romances are definitely her strongest, and Ransom is the best of the best. Like many of her others, it’s set in Scotland around the year 1200 and involves a feisty English girl and the Scottish Laird she can’t help but falling for. This story also has kidnappings, evil English Barons and loads of Claire and Jamie style chemistry.

 

Main image via STARZ

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Check Out This Week’s Featured Stories http://booktrib.com/2016/08/check-out-this-weeks-featured-stories/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/check-out-this-weeks-featured-stories/#comments Mon, 22 Aug 2016 16:16:31 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251355 Dear Reader, See what this week’s authors have to say! In each AuthorBuzz note you’ll receive invitations to join contests, get free books, bookplates or bookmarks, read personal stories, and more. Dear Reader, The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend is about an unlikely long-distance friendship between two women whose plan to meet in person after months of […]]]>

Dear Reader,

See what this week’s authors have to say! In each AuthorBuzz note you’ll receive invitations to join contests, get free books, bookplates or bookmarks, read personal stories, and more.

Swash_ornamentTheReadersofBrokenWheelDear Reader,

The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend is about an unlikely long-distance friendship between two women whose plan to meet in person after months of writing letters goes terribly awry, leaving one of them marooned in a small Iowa farm town so broken it’s almost beyond repair.

katarinaBivaldIt’s a heartwarming reminder of how books find us, change us, and connect us.

A New York Times bestseller!

Send an email to tiffany.schultz@sourcebooks.com to win one of five copies.

Katarina Bivald

http://katarinabivald.se/

Swash_ornamentwhendarknesscomesDear Reader,

Paris: 1942:

Three lives intertwined in Nazi-occupied Paris: Paul, a brooding banker, Rachel, a teenage Jew, Claire, a bookstore owner – all confronted by an infamous Nazi collaborator. They hide thousands of Jewish refugees, leading them to safety – until an innocent bystander notices something amiss and John-Anthony-Millertheir entire world collapses around them.

“The author is able to quickly create a suspenseful scene & place you in the center of it ….” Amazon

Email me at authorjamiller@gmail.com to win one of five signed copies.

John Anthony Miller

https://authorjamiller.wordpress.com/

 

 

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Video: Interview with Denise Hunter, author of Just a Kiss (A Summer Harbor Novel) http://booktrib.com/2016/08/video-interview-with-denise-hunter-author-of-just-a-kiss-a-summer-harbor-novel/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/video-interview-with-denise-hunter-author-of-just-a-kiss-a-summer-harbor-novel/#comments Fri, 19 Aug 2016 18:53:24 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251248 Riley Callahan’s plans to reveal his secret feelings for his best friend are derailed when his life is drastically altered in Afghanistan. Watching the love of his life fall for his brother was enough to send Riley straight to boot camp. But over a year later, he’s officially a marine, and Beau and Paige are […]]]>

JustAKiss_hiresRiley Callahan’s plans to reveal his secret feelings for his best friend are derailed when his life is drastically altered in Afghanistan.

Watching the love of his life fall for his brother was enough to send Riley straight to boot camp. But over a year later, he’s officially a marine, and Beau and Paige are no longer an item. When Riley’s tour in Afghanistan is up, he intends to confess his feelings to Paige and win his best friend’s heart once and for all.

But all that changes when an IED takes the life of a comrade and leaves Riley an amputee. Now he’s heading home, injured and troubled. His plans to win Paige are a distant dream. She deserves so much more than the man that’s left. All he can do now is put some healthy distance between them. But upon his return he discovers his family has arranged for him to stay with Paige.

Paige is a nurturer at heart and happy to take care of her best buddy. By all appearances Riley is adjusting miraculously well to his disability. But as the days pass, Paige begins to see that the smiles and laughter are just a mask for the pain he’s hiding. To make matters worse, her job is in serious jeopardy. The animal shelter that she’s poured her heart into has lost its funding, and she has three months to come up with the money needed to save it.

As the weeks wear on, Paige’s feelings for Riley begin to shift into uncharted territory. Why is she suddenly noticing his arm muscles and the way his lips curl at the corners? Will she be able to deny her feelings for another Callahan brother? And will Riley let his heart heal so he can let Paige in?

Meet the Author

DENISE HUNTER is the internationally published bestselling author of more than 20 books, including Dancing with Fireflies and The Convenient Groom. She has won The Holt Medallion Award, The Reader’s Choice Award, The Foreword Book of the Year Award, and is a RITA finalist. When Denise isn’t orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling with her family, drinking green tea, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana where she and her husband are raising three boys. You can learn more about Denise through her website DeniseHunterBooks.com or by visiting her FaceBook page at facebook.com/authordenisehunter

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Summer Reading: Books for Firefly Evenings http://booktrib.com/2016/08/summer-reading-books-for-firefly-evenings/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/summer-reading-books-for-firefly-evenings/#comments Fri, 19 Aug 2016 18:01:49 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251249 It is a truth universally acknowledged that fireflies are one of the best things about summer. They’re the beautiful glowy harbingers of lazy evenings that you stay outside to watch, even if the mosquitoes are getting at your ankles.    So, as summer dwindles down, let’s take a moment to appreciate one of nature’s most […]]]>

It is a truth universally acknowledged that fireflies are one of the best things about summer. They’re the beautiful glowy harbingers of lazy evenings that you stay outside to watch, even if the mosquitoes are getting at your ankles.

  

So, as summer dwindles down, let’s take a moment to appreciate one of nature’s most hypnotizing and lovely creatures! Well, actually, we’ll need more than a few moments, because we’ve picked out the perfect firefly-themed books for you to read during summer evenings before the season ends.

Firefly Summer, Nan Rossiter (Kensington, July 26, 2016)

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This moving novel of love and loss is a really contemplative read that’s perfect for peaceful summer evenings. It tells the story of the four Quinn sisters, whose close-knit Cape Cod family is disrupted when tragedy strikes during their childhood. The novel then picks up after the sisters are well into their adulthood, where they return home and are struck by their memories of capturing fireflies in jars together. A tale of heartbreak, triumph and ultimately sisterhood, this slow-burn will really affect you.

 

 

 

 

Firefly Lane, Kristin Hannah (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2009)

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This modern classic is a novel of friendship and epiphany. It tells the twin stories of best friends Kate and Tully, whose lives intertwine in unexpected, heartbreaking and beautiful ways. This tearjerker will challenge your ideas of what it really means to be a true friend. Traversing several decades – the ’70s until now – this story also gives you the feeling of slipping into your favorite cozy sweater without actually having to (since it’s too hot for cozy sweaters right now, obviously). Travel down both memory lane and Firefly Lane to experience an incredible story of perseverance, friendship and love.

 

 

 

Silent Sparks: The Wondrous World of Fireflies, Sara Lewis (Princeton University Press, April 26, 2016)

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So after you’ve devoured these two emotionally deep novels of friendship and memories, relax your brain by diving into this engaging nonfiction history of fireflies themselves. What do their flashes actually mean? What has been the historical significance of fireflies over time? This informative book is written with a passion for fireflies you probably didn’t realize existed, and it’ll inspire you to reconnect with nature.

 

 

 

 

First two GIFs via Giphy; final GIF from Grave of the Fireflies (1988) via Tumblr

 

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Jonesin’ For a Fix: Books for TV Addicts — Gilmore Girls Edition http://booktrib.com/2016/08/jonesin-for-a-fix-books-for-tv-addicts-gilmore-girls-edition/ http://booktrib.com/2016/08/jonesin-for-a-fix-books-for-tv-addicts-gilmore-girls-edition/#comments Thu, 18 Aug 2016 21:00:15 +0000 http://booktrib.com/?p=251147 Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life finally has a release date and I could not be more excited. I’ve made no secret of my Gilmore Girl love and it’s only getting worse as we get closer to the reboot. How are we possibly going to wait until November 25 to find out what’s going on with […]]]>

Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life finally has a release date and I could not be more excited. I’ve made no secret of my Gilmore Girl love and it’s only getting worse as we get closer to the reboot. How are we possibly going to wait until November 25 to find out what’s going on with Rory, Lorelai, Luke and the gang? I mean, just look at this awesome sneak peak:

Bantering! Fast talking! THE MUSIC. I can’t even, you guys.

The new ‘season’ will be broken up into four 90-minute episodes, each one capturing a different season in Stars Hollow. When last we left our favorite small town, Rory had turned down Logan’s wedding proposal, Luke and Lorelai finally got back together, Lane had twins, and everyone else was being their usual quirky selves. Spoilers for the new show are hinting at a possible engagement and wedding (it better be Rory & Jess, is all I’m saying) and some awesome Luke and Lorelai scenes. SQUEE!! I seriously cannot contain how excited I am about all of this.

Since November is about a million years away, here are the four Gilmore Girls-inspired books I’m planning on using to distract myself while the time (slooowwly) passes:

510CZfOj8QL._SX328_BO1,204,203,200_Daughters of the Bride, Susan Mallery (HQN Books, July 12, 2016)

It’s all about mothers and daughters and finding love in Mallery’s latest, which are themes that will definitely appeal to any Gilmore Girls fans out there. After being widowed for 24 years, Maggie Watson is thrilled to be marrying again. She’s only concerned about her daughters, who lost their father at a young age and are still dealing with the aftermath of how that tragedy affected their lives. Rachel is the oldest, used to having control and not great at dealing with flaws in others. She has to confront her pride when her ex-husband shows up at the wedding, begging for a second chance. Sienna, the middle child, is a beauty and a free spirit, conflicted over whether this latest fiancée is the one she should finally marry. The youngest, Courtney, has always struggled to find her place in the world, which is why she keeps so many secrets from the people she loves. Each sister has to face some hard truths and learn to rely on each other as they come together to celebrate one of the happiest days of their mother’s life.

51UYThB3bpLTalking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls and Everything in Between, Lauren Graham (Ballantine Books, November 29, 2016)

Hear from Lorelai herself in Graham’s first memoir, which comes out just a few days after the new season of Gilmore Girls airs. Graham isn’t unlike her most famous role, and her memoir is funny, sharp and compulsively readable. Her essays recount her time as kid, how she fell in love with acting, and hints into her love life. Not only does she talk about what it was like to play Lorelai Gilmore, she also describes the process of picking up the role again years later. For a candid and fun take on the world of Hollywood and what it means to be a professional actress, Graham’s memoir is a must read.

414qT80GOyL._SX304_BO1,204,203,200_Smooth Talking Stranger, Lisa Kleypas (St. Martin’s Paperbacks, 2010)

No one writes sexy contemporary romance quite like Kleypas, and Smooth Talking Stranger – another Travis family novel, is one of her very best. Jack Travis is from one of the wealthiest families in Texas, but he’s worked hard to make it on his own. He enjoys being outside, hunting, fishing and, most of all, dating a lot of different women. But that changes when he meets Ella Varner, a liberal hippie from Austen who suddenly finds herself taking care of her troubled sister’s infant. Ella can’t rely on her non-monogamous boyfriend for help, and it’s only through Jack that she finds any comfort or support. The two banter and bicker and heat up the pages as they fall almost instantly in love. Fans of Gilmore Girls will love the Luke/Lorelai style back-and-forth between Ella and Jack, as well as (*SPOILER*) the unexpected baby that changes every vision Ella had for her future.

51HGuoYiOZLCravings: Recipes for All the Food You Want to Eat, Chrissy Teigen & Adeena Sussman (Clarkson Potter Publishers, February 23, 2016)

Teigen is delightful on Twitter and basically an all-around national treasure. Her cookbook is no exception, featuring feel-good meals and a few healthy options thrown in for good measure. From fried chicken to her mom’s Thai recipes, this is one of those cooking bibles that you’ll turn to again and again. We just know that Lorelai and Rory would love the food in here — though cooking it themselves is another story. But for those more ambitious readers, give these recipes a try ASAP. Plus, Teigen is hilarious, teaching us things like, “how not to overthink men or Brussels sprouts.”
 

Main image via entertainmentwallpaper.com

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