July 29, 2018

The Day the Angels Fell by Shawn Smucker propels young Samuel Chambers on an unexpected journey after his mother’s death, as three strange carnival fortune-tellers and a mysterious neighbor help him search for the Tree of Life–the only thing that could possibly bring his mother back. When the quest entangles him in an ancient conflict, Sam is forced to grapple with an unwelcome question: could it be possible that death is a gift?

Brokeheart by Kevin Wolf produces the perfect framework for a good western tale after frontiersman Kepler finds work as a gravedigger and then a newspaper reporter in the Colorado mining town of Brokeheart. A sudden spate of deaths throughout the region, deemed murder or suicide, catches Kepler’s notice. Finding the same strange marks on all the bodies, Kepler puts his investigative journalism to use trying to find a killer.

A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza opens at the wedding of Hadia, the eldest child of Layla and Rafiq, an Indian-American Muslim family. Though the family is clearly very traditional, Hadia’s wedding is remarkable for two reasons: first, she has married for love rather than through arrangement, and second, it marks the family’s reunion with their youngest son, Amar. Seen through the eyes of Hadia, Layla and Amar, their lives paint a stunning portrait of a family forced to reconcile their pasts with their present.

Into the Great White Sands by Craig Varjabedian reveals the many moods of the magnificent and ever-changing landscape of New Mexico’s White Sands National Monument. Evocative color photographs of snow-white dunes, striking landforms, storms and stillness, panoramic vistas and breathtaking sunsets, intricate wind-blown patterns, ancient animal tracks, and exquisite desert plants, provide an almost palpable sense of this extraordinary place.

The Fragile Brain by Kathleen Taylor explores the newest research into the cause and cure of neurodegenerative diseases, such as stroke, Alzheimer’s, and dementia, all now tragically commonplace within the western world. As instances of these diseases rise in our aging populations, many harbor anxieties concerning the future. This book, for those who suffer, and those who care about them, is about knowing the enemy.

Lessons From Tara by David Rosenfelt describes the lessons learned from the author’s first dog, Tara. Lessons about dating, sharing his emotions, who gets to use the pillow if several dogs are sleeping in your bed (clue: it’s not the human) and why random barking will never be something that can be eliminated, elicit both tears and laughter through David’s true stories infused with a wry and self-deprecating sense of humor.