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All Books

Author:

Marie Brennan

This is a short and inventive retelling of the story of Penelope (from the Odyssey). It is beautifully told, and well worth the short time it will take to read.

Favorite Thing:
The way it reimagines the purpose of Penelope's actions
Cover of Daughter of Necessity
Book Length:
Shortest
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Disclosures:
None
Author:

J.P. Seewald

This is a novella about family and resilience, set in the Pennsylvania coal country. George Ferris has worked hard to build a good life for himself and his family, but there's a coal fire burning underground, and it threatens all that he has built. The story follows him as he tries to figure out how to respond and struggles to protect his family from the slow-moving disaster. It was inspired by actual events in Centralia, Pennsylvania, and provides a gripping dramatization of how an external catastrophe can shake the foundations of your life. This novella is published by my company, Annorlunda Books.

Favorite Thing:
The depiction of family dynamics
Book cover for The Burning, a house with smoke effects
Book Length:
Short
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Disclosures:
Published by TH owner
Author:

John Scalzi

This is a detective story set in a strange near future in which anyone who is intentionally killed almost always returns to life, naked, at home. It seems like a ridiculous premise, but Scalzi makes it believable, and provides a great, fast-paced detective story, too.

Favorite Thing:
The strange premise, and how Scalzi makes it so plausible.
The Dispatcher book cover. A man crouching by a dead body, with a woman standing in the background.
Book Length:
Short
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Categories:
Disclosures:
None
Author:

Charlie Jane Anders

This is a really fun story, told from the perspective of aliens. To tell you too much about the plot would ruin some of the fun of reading the story, so I'll just say that the aliens are among the most interesting and believable I've ever come across in my reading, and the story leaves you thinking.

Favorite Thing:
The aliens
The Fermi Paradox is Our Business Model book cover: a picture of an alien
Book Length:
Shortest
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
No
Stickiness:
Moderate
Categories:
Disclosures:
None
Author:

Sara Paretsky

I've always enjoyed Sara Paretsky's V.I. Warshawski detective novels, so I come to Wildcat as someone who already knows and loves the adult V.I. This short ebook is not about the adult V.I., though. It is about Warshawski when she is still Victoria, a 10 year old girl worried about her police officer father during a turbulent and ugly time in Chicago's history. Although the backstory it provides for fans of V.I. Warshawski may be the strongest thing about this ebook, it does stand alone as a solid short detective/action story, and I think people who have never read any of Paretsky's other books would enjoy it. One note of warning: the story is set during the Civil Rights movement, when Martin Luther King came to Chicago to try to work on desegregation. It accurately reflects his reception by some of the white people of Chicago, and as such some of the language used by characters is very ugly.

Favorite Thing:
The character of Victoria.
Wildcat book cover: a view of downtown Chicago.
Book Length:
Shorter
Part of Series:
Short story/novella related to a series of long books
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Categories:
Disclosures:
None
Author:

Jyoti Guptara

This is the story of a boy in rural India who tries to break the boundaries imposed by his caste and attend school. The cost of this decision is beyond what he or anyone else in is family expects. This story has a clear message, but it is an important message and the storytelling is good enough to support it.

Favorite Thing:
The ending
The Promise of the Sky book cover: a young Indian boy, looking through barbed wire.
Book Length:
Shorter
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Disclosures:
None
Author:

Mary H.K. Choi

This is a set of linked essays ostensibly about loving New York City and then leaving it, but really about growing into adulthood and learning to be comfortable in your own skin. Choi's writing is funny and insightful, and the book is a lot of fun to read.

Favorite Thing:
The wry, humorous tone
Oh Never Mind book cover
Book Length:
Shorter
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Categories:
Disclosures:
None
Author:

Joyce Chng

This is the story of Xin, who inherits a vineyard on a distant planet and moves there to build a new life, only to have an interstellar war intervene. It is very much a sci fi novella, but the focus of the story is on how everyday people survive and build a life in the midst of war, and on the meaning of family and identity. This novella is published by my company, Annorlunda Books, and it is a great example of the type of fiction I like to publish: entertaining to read, but thought-provoking, too.

Favorite Thing:
The relationship between the main character and their mother.
Water into Wine book cover: Main character standing in front of a vineyard
Book Length:
Short
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Categories:
Disclosures:
Published by TH owner
Author:

Stephan Henighan

This is a short story about a man struggling to figure out what he wants from life, and what happens when meeting a young woman in his field upends his routines. I was skeptical when I read the summary, because so often this sort of premise is little more than an excuse for a middle aged male writer to fantasize about having a young woman fall in love with him. But this book avoids that trap, and is a multi-layered story looking at what we control in life and what we don't.

Favorite Thing:
The descriptions of Guatemala
The Blue River Hotel book cover: a wooden door in a wall painted light blue
Book Length:
Shorter
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
Yes
Stickiness:
Moderate
Disclosures:
Received free copy
Author:

Jass Richards

This is the story of a woman who buys a cabin in the woods for some peace and quiet... and then neighbors arrive. In short, it is the story of the destruction of one woman's paradise, slightly exaggerated for creative effect and told in a tongue-in-cheek style. The result is a short book that is fun to read, but makes some solid points about our relationship with nature and rural spaces, and how we can sometimes destroy the thing we say we love about a place.

Favorite Thing:
The humorous tone of the writing
Turbo Jetslams cover: Cartoon of two kids on a jet ski over a picture of a peaceful lake
Book Length:
Short
Part of Series:
Not part of a series
Stand Alone:
No
Stickiness:
Moderate
Disclosures:
Received free copy

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