Only the Wild Goose Knows

By Susan Yaruta-Young Saturday, November 10, 1984. Max and Charles are off on a “guys’ getaway” with their stepfather, Fred. The trip takes them to Kent and Queen Anne’s counties, located on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. It’s Veterans Day Weekend, and Fred has planned this trip around history to show the boys a few important sites from Colonial times and the Civil War era. Included in the “getaway package” is meeting old and new friends. And a very important reason for the trip is to find a new home for Miss Starry Eyes, a wild Canada goose who was rescued and raised by their grandparents. During the weekend, some plans will unfold as Fred hoped, but many new people, twists and turns, fill this Saturday-into-Sunday morning with unexpected adventures.  

Who’s Been Stealing Grandpa’s Fish?

By Susan Yaruta-Young The adventure begins at sunrise when a wide-awake Charles suggests to sleepy older brother Max: breakfast at their grandparents’ house might be a great fill-up. It’s only a dash away through the pony pasture. The spinning dish whirls, filled with breakfast goodies, while stories are told. Then Grandpa “caws” in a murder of crows. All is well until a troubling discovery is made. When Grandpa and the boys feed the fish their chow in the pond, they find that Grandpa’s pet trout is missing. Who could have done this? Max and Charles are on the case. And with the help of adults they make preparations for the end of the day. Follow the boys on nature adventures by swirling springs, dips in the cool stream, pony rides, watching salamanders slide, and flights through the air on a rope swing. There’s the bullfrog chorus, crayfish battle, yummy Greek …

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The Rifling

“A novel within a novel that’s well worth a read.” – Kirkus Reviews Adam Kyle, a valuable gunsmith for George Washington’s army in the Revolutionary War, loses his family to robber gang violence in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Grieving, he seeks to put the past behind him, forging a new life as a frontier blacksmith in Tennessee. Ten years after his traumatic loss, when he has long since renounced the creation of weaponry, he is induced to return to his original craft by a charismatic planter. John Cabell secretly commissions Adam to build the most powerful rifle of its time. Adam works overtime to fulfill his promise for the ambitious and scheming planter, even as the two men find themselves unexpected rivals for the favor of Constance Green, the high-spirited daughter of Judge Green. Increasingly, it is clear that no good can come from these bitter tensions. Mysterious killings cast a …

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Ninth Grade Blues

“For gritty content, readers should look elsewhere—no sex, drugs, or binge-drinking here. But these teens’ everyday interactions, doubts, and triumphs ring true, and readers should want to find out what happens to them next in Ingram’s upcoming second novel, Tenth Grade Angst.” – Kirkus Reviews   Ninth Grade Blues follows four teens through the adventures and misadventures, ups and downs of life in the first year of high school. They contend with classes and tests, worry about going out on dates, struggle with not being able to drive, and dread being called on by teachers they do not like. Interweaving first person stories are told by: Luke: a shy, hard working, poorly dressed boy from the wrong side of the tracks. Luke is mediocre at basketball, mediocre at baseball, and mediocre at school. But he has hidden talents in science–he is a budding fisherman, hunter, and naturalist– and he is …

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The Night Is Young

In sixteen remarkable stories, the award-winning author of Elizabeth’s Field and other books captures the flavor of Maryland’s Eastern Shore. While her characters are tied to the reality of the moment, their stories are about the secret life of the heart’s yearning. Barbara Lockhart is known for her ability to mine the rich ore of Eastern Shore history and culture. Her 2013 historical novel, Elizabeth’s Field, tells of the story of a free woman of African American and Indian descent and her struggle to hold onto a piece of land in the 1850s. It was recognized with a silver medal from the Independent Book Publishers Awards. Lockhart has also been the recipient of two Individual Artist Awards in Fiction from the Maryland State Arts Council for her short stories and Requiem for a Summer Cottage. A native of New York City, Barbara Lockhart lives on a nature preserve on the …

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Winter Rage

by Charles McRaven A bitter feud spirals out of control, bringing suspicion, accusations, and violent assault to members of two neighboring families in the Ozark Mountains. When a stand of oak trees is felled for their timber, questions of property lines come into play. A struggling family of hardscrabble farmers – consisting of an attractive young divorcée, Andy Millard; her ne’er do well brother Charlie; her teenage nephew Nate; and Nate’s crippled grandfather Elijah – find themselves fighting for their good names, their freedom, and even their very lives against their distant neighbors, a dynastic clan headed by Montgomery Mabry, the most powerful lawyer in the mountains, and his spoiled son Barry. As the attacks multiply and murder after murder ensues, it becomes clear that a cunning and remorseless killer is compounding the chaos. One by one, Charlie, Andy and Nate are driven off their small farm, fleeing the reach …

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The Life and Deaths of Blanche Nero

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By Ken Brigham At fifteen, Blanche Nero watches the electrocution of her Italian immigrant father, punishment for the inexplicable brutal murder of his recently acquired friend Old Man Flaherty. She resolves to do something with her life that values humanity over justice, mercy over sacrifice. But she is forever haunted by the mystery of her father. She is also drawn irresistibly to the bigger human mysteries of violence and death. After a grueling but successful academic career at some of the nation’s finest university hospitals, Blanche is almost sixty. Her long career as a trauma surgeon at Charity Hospital in New Orleans has been abruptly ended by Hurricane Katrina. She takes a year sabbatical from the medical school and leases a small flat in Venice, seeking an understanding of her father in the place where he lived his formative years—and of herself by reliving and recording her own remarkable life. …

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Build Me a Tower

By Charles McRaven Theo MacBain is known from coast to coast as a stonemason’s mason, master of the art of finding just the right rock at the right time. Word of mouth alone guarantees him all the high-end stonework he can handle. His face is weathered, his craftsman’s arms sinewed.Stones are easy, but people are hard. The pieces of Theo’s life are out of plumb. His ex-wife is estranged. His two grown children rarely call. When Hanson Blair, a troubled young woman with a sketchy past, apprentices herself to Theo, his solitude begins to show cracks. Young enough to be his daughter, Hannie works like a stevedore, hiding her vulnerability under a flinty veneer that matches his own. But when she smiles, her face lights up and her eyes are irresistible. In Theo, she unlocks a dawning capacity for tenderness, whose flip side is a stunning aptitude for violence. When …

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Shadow of Whimsy

By Ann Hymes Several generations of one family have lived, loved, and lied at Whimsy Towers, a unique oceanfront house in Chatham, Massachusetts. Strong women who refuse to be suffocated by marriage have found excitement and refuge in this house filled with artists and parties. Love surfaces in unexpected ways. The newest owner, Theresa Alston Crandall, has just inherited the property and leaves her too-predictable husband in Virginia to spend time on the Cape and unravel family secrets and history. She swims, reflects, explores, and watches dramatic cloud formations float high over the ocean as she sorts through the choices in her path forward. Romance arrives in the form of a young widower and landscape gardener with an awesome pickup truck, who likes Theresa’s dog and provides temptation to stay at Whimsy Towers. Tips of tree branches dance with the weight of birds that seem to scream warnings of danger, …

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Hard-Boiled Anxiety

Praise for Hard-Boiled Anxiety Named one of the Indie Best Books of the Month, August 2016, by Kirkus Reviews. “Curl up on the analyst’s couch with all your favorite mystery scribes, as Karen Huston Karydes sleuths out the neurotic, personal threads that make up the warp and the weft of their greatest fictions. A dark, yet illuminating read.” — Kim Cooper, author of The Raymond Chandler Map of Los Angeles and The Kept Girl “Karen Huston Karydes makes a major contribution to mystery-fiction scholarship with her bold and inventive work, Hard-Boiled Anxiety. Don’t be alarmed by its exotic subtitle: This swift-reading book is short on jargon and long on penetrating insight.  ‘An existential man in a nihilistic world’ is one definition of hard-boiled fiction; Ms. Karydes’s breakthrough move is to apply the same psycho-literary analysis to the biographies of hard-boiled’s ‘Holy Trinity’ of authors as she does to their private-eye protagonists — …

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