Another Friday, but not just any Friday. Today is a day to remember a day that changed us forever and pay our respects to those who are lost but never forgotten.
Books, like people, can change us for the better. And in that vein, we offer you this week’s list. #WeWillNeverForget
The Beethoven Sequence by Gerald Elias (Political Thriller)
What if the president was a political outsider with no experience in government? What if he was mentally unstable? What if he started eliminating his political opponents, one by one?
What if the President of the United States was insane?
It was as terrifying as it was implausible. Layton Stolz, a humble laborer, concealed a burning core of monomania and suppressed violence. Against all odds, Stolz is swept into the presidency of the United States. Coverup leads to murder as he consolidates authoritarian power.
Ballard Whitmore, a young teacher falsely imprisoned for sexual misconduct, narrowly escapes assassination. Will high-spirited female reporter Sandy Duckworthy’s desperate exposé, laying bare the corruption of a president who lost his grasp of reality, save him in time?
Case 32 by Mason Sabre (Urban Fantasy)
When a Human chid is kidnapped in the middle of the night, everything points to a member of the Other society. This could have devastating consequences on the law they hope to pass, one which would give all Others the right to freedom, a chance to shake off the shackles the Humans insist they wear.
To date, Detective Cade MacDonald has dealt with thirty-five cases where Others were proven to have ruthlessly killed Humans. Now, it seems, case thirty-six may have landed on his desk.
Casey Mire is six years old when he spots a wolf in the woods. Unaware of the war between his species and the Others, he sneaks out in the middle of the night to find the elusive wolf.
But little Casey never returns.
It is now Cade’s job to uncover what happened to the young boy. At the same time, he has crucial decisions to make—about himself and about the rest of his life.
When Harlie Was One by David Gerrold (Science Fiction)
H.A.R.L.I.E. (Human Analog Replication, Lethetic Intelligence Engine) is an artificially intelligent machine. David Auberson, the psychologist responsible for guiding HARLIE from childhood into adulthood, struggles to understand his erratic behavior.
When humans begin vocalizing their wishes that HARLIE be shut down, he has to prove his existence and value to his warm-blooded counterparts. Throughout HARLIE’s fight to stay alive, Auberson discovers the machine has a vast knowledge and understanding of life, love, and logic, posing the philosophical question of whether or not HARLIE is human, and for that matter, what it means to be human.
Junkyard Cats by Faith Hunter (Post-Apocalyptic)
After the Final War, after the appearance of the Bug aliens and their enforced peace, Shining Smith is still alive, still doing business from the old scrapyard bequeathed to her by her father. But Shining is now something more than human. And the scrapyard is no longer just a scrapyard, but a place full of secrets that she has guarded for years.
This life she has built, while empty, is predictable and safe. Until the only friend left from her previous life shows up, dead, in the back of a scrapped Tesla warplane. Clutched in her cold fingers is a note to Shining—warning her of a coming attack.
With dread, Shining realizes: Someone knows who she is. Someone knows what she is guarding. Will she be able to protect the scrapyard? Will she even survive? Or will Shining have to destroy everything she loves to keep her secrets out of the wrong hands?
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer L. Armentrout (Fantasy Romance)
Is Love Stronger Than Vengeance?
Everything Poppy has ever believed in is a lie, including the man she was falling in love with. Thrust among those who see her as a symbol of a monstrous kingdom, she barely knows who she is without the veil of the Maiden. But what she does know is that nothing is as dangerous to her as him. The Dark One. The Prince of Atlantia. He wants her to fight him, and that’s one order she’s more than happy to obey. He may have taken her, but he will never have her.
Casteel Da’Neer is known by many names and many faces. His lies are as seductive as his touch. His truths as sensual as his bite. Poppy knows better than to trust him. He needs her alive, healthy, and whole to achieve his goals. But he’s the only way for her to get what she wants—to find her brother Ian and see for herself if he has become a soulless Ascended. Working with Casteel instead of against him presents its own risks. He still tempts her with every breath, offering up all she’s ever wanted. Casteel has plans for her. Ones that could expose her to unimaginable pleasure and unfathomable pain. Plans that will force her to look beyond everything she thought she knew about herself—about him. Plans that could bind their lives together in unexpected ways that neither kingdom is prepared for. And she’s far too reckless, too hungry, to resist the temptation.
But unrest has grown in Atlantia as they await the return of their Prince. Whispers of war have become stronger, and Poppy is at the very heart of it all. The King wants to use her to send a message. The Descenters want her dead. The wolven are growing more unpredictable. And as her abilities to feel pain and emotion begin to grow and strengthen, the Atlantians start to fear her. Dark secrets are at play, ones steeped in the blood-drenched sins of two kingdoms that would do anything to keep the truth hidden. But when the earth begins to shake, and the skies start to bleed, it may already be too late.
The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (YA Romantic Mystery)
Avery Grambs has a plan for a better future: survive high school, win a scholarship, and get out. But her fortunes change in an instant when billionaire Tobias Hawthorne dies and leaves Avery virtually his entire fortune. The catch? Avery has no idea why — or even who Tobias Hawthorne is.
To receive her inheritance, Avery must move into sprawling, secret passage-filled Hawthorne House, where every room bears the old man’s touch — and his love of puzzles, riddles, and codes. Unfortunately for Avery, Hawthorne House is also occupied by the family that Tobias Hawthorne just dispossessed. This includes the four Hawthorne grandsons: dangerous, magnetic, brilliant boys who grew up with every expectation that one day, they would inherit billions. Heir apparent Grayson Hawthorne is convinced that Avery must be a conwoman, and he’s determined to take her down. His brother, Jameson, views her as their grandfather’s last hurrah: a twisted riddle, a puzzle to be solved. Caught in a world of wealth and privilege, with danger around every turn, Avery will have to play the game herself just to survive.
Find Layla by Meg Elison (YA)
A neglected girl’s chaotic coming-of-age becomes a trending new hashtag in a novel about growing up and getting away by an award-winning author.
Underprivileged and keenly self-aware, SoCal fourteen-year-old Layla Bailey isn’t used to being noticed. Except by mean girls who tweet about her ragged appearance. All she wants to do is indulge in her love of science, protect her vulnerable younger brother, and steer clear of her unstable mother.
Then a school competition calls for a biome. Layla chooses her own home, a hostile ecosystem of indoor fungi and secret shame. With a borrowed video camera, she captures it all. The mushrooms growing in her brother’s dresser. The black mold blooming up the apartment walls. The unmentionable things living in the dead fridge. All the inevitable exotic toxins that are Layla’s life. Then the video goes viral.
When Child Protective Services comes to call, Layla loses her family and her home. Defiant, she must face her bullies and friends alike, on her own. Unafraid at last of being seen, Layla accepts the mortifying reality of visibility. Now she has to figure out how to stay whole and stand behind the truth she has shown the world.