TH

2021 book recs

5 Books | by Tori H

Stray

Stray

Books

From the bestselling author of Sweetbitter, a memoir of growing up in a family shattered by lies and addiction, and of one woman's attempts to find a life beyond the limits of her past. Stray is a moving, sometimes devastating, brilliantly written and ultimately inspiring exploration of the landscapes of damage and survival.After selling her first novel--a dream she'd worked long and hard for--Stephanie Danler knew she should be happy. Instead, she found herself driven to face the difficult past she'd left behind a decade ago: a mother disabled by years of alcoholism, further handicapped by a tragic brain aneurysm; a father who abandoned the family when she was three, now a meth addict in and out of recovery. After years in New York City she's pulled home to Southern California by forces she doesn't totally understand, haunted by questions of legacy and trauma. Here, she works toward answers, uncovering hard truths about her parents and herself as she explores whether it's possible to change the course of her history. Lucid and honest, heart-breaking and full of hope, Stray is an examination of what we inherit and what we don't have to, of what we have to face in ourselves to move forward, and what it's like to let go of one's parents in order to find peace--and a family--of one's own.

The Water Cure

The Water Cure

Books

A gripping, sinister fable!--Margaret Atwood, via Twitter LONGLISTED FOR THE 2018 MAN BOOKER PRIZE Ingenious and incendiary.--THE NEW YORKER A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK OF 2019 BY VOGUE, ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY, WASHINGTON POST, HUFFINGTON POST, VULTURE, LITHUB, REFINERY29 and more The Handmaid's Tale meets The Virgin Suicides in this dystopic feminist revenge fantasy about three sisters on an isolated island, raised to fear men King has tenderly staked out a territory for his wife and three daughters: Grace, Lia, and Sky. He has laid the barbed wire; he has anchored the buoys in the water; he has marked out a clear message: Do not enter. Or, viewed from another angle: Not safe to leave. Here women are protected from the chaos and violence of men on the mainland. The cultlike rituals and therapies they endure fortify them against the spreading toxicity of a degrading world. When their father, the only man they have ever seen, disappears, they retreat further inward until the day two strange men and a boy wash ashore. Over the span of one blisteringly hot week, a psychological cat-and-mouse game plays out. Sexual tensions and sibling rivalries flare as the sisters confront the amorphous threat the strangers represent. Can they survive the men? A haunting, riveting debut about our capacity for violence and the potency of female desire, The Water Cure both devastates and astonishes as it reflects our own world back at us.

Captive Prince

Captive Prince

Books

From global phenomenon C. S. Pacat comes the first in her critically acclaimed trilogy?with a bonus story. Damen is a warrior hero to his people, and the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos. But when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity, and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave. Beautiful, manipulative, and deadly, his new master, Prince Laurent, epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent to survive and save his country. For Damen, there is just one rule: never, ever reveal his true identity. Because the one man Damen needs is the one man who has more reason to hate him than anyone else? Includes an exclusive extra story!

Left to Tell

Left to Tell

Books

Immaculee Ilibagiza grew up in a country she loved, surrounded by a family she cherished. But in 1994 her idyllic world was ripped apart as Rwanda descended into a bloody genocide. Immaculee’s family was brutally murdered during a killing spree that lasted three months and claimed the lives of nearly a million Rwandans.Incredibly, Immaculee survived the slaughter. For 91 days, she and seven other women huddled silently together in the cramped bathroom of a local pastor while hundreds of machete-wielding killers hunted for them. It was during those endless hours of unspeakable terror that Immaculee discovered the power of prayer, eventually shedding her fear of death and forging a profound and lasting relationship with God.She emerged from her bathroom hideout having discovered the meaning of truly unconditional love—a love so strong she was able seek out and forgive her family’s killers. The triumphant story of this remarkable young woman’s journey through the darkness of genocide will inspire anyone whose life has been touched by fear, suffering, and loss.

Boyfriend Material

Boyfriend Material

Books

"It's a fun, frothy quintessentially British romcom about a certified chaos demon and a stern brunch daddy with a heart of gold faking a relationship."—New York Times bestselling author Talia HibbertAMAZON BEST BOOK OF THE MONTHNamed a best book of the year by Oprah Magazine, Entertainment Weekly, Goodreads, The Washington Post, and more!WANTED:One (fake) boyfriendPractically perfect in every wayLuc O'Donnell is tangentially—and reluctantly—famous. His rock star parents split when he was young, and the father he's never met spent the next twenty years cruising in and out of rehab. Now that his dad's making a comeback, Luc's back in the public eye, and one compromising photo is enough to ruin everything.To clean up his image, Luc has to find a nice, normal relationship...and Oliver Blackwood is as nice and normal as they come. He's a barrister, an ethical vegetarian, and he's never inspired a moment of scandal in his life. In other words: perfect boyfriend material. Unfortunately, apart from being gay, single, and really, really in need of a date for a big event, Luc and Oliver have nothing in common. So they strike a deal to be publicity-friendly (fake) boyfriends until the dust has settled. Then they can go their separate ways and pretend it never happened.But the thing about fake-dating is that it can feel a lot like real-dating. And that's when you get used to someone. Start falling for them. Don't ever want to let them go.Discover the LGBT romance about exact opposites falling in perfectly imperfect love that New York Times and USA Today bestselling author CHRISTINA LAUREN calls "hilarious, witty, tender, and stunning."

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