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Upcoming Events for March 2017

[Frequently Updated]


Amor Towles, "A Gentleman in Moscow," (Viking, $27)      

Thursday, March 9 at 7 pm

"In all ways a great novel, a nonstop pleasure brimming with charm, personal wisdom, and philosophic insight . . . A masterly encapsulation of modern Russian history, this book more than fulfills the promise of Towles' stylish debut, Rules of Civility."
--Kirkus Reviews (starred)

From the New York Times bestselling author of Rules of Civility—a transporting novel about a man who is ordered to spend the rest of his life inside a luxury hotel.

In 1922, Count Alexander Rostov is deemed an unrepentant aristocrat by a Bolshevik tribunal, and is sentenced to house arrest in the Metropol, a grand hotel across the street from the Kremlin. Rostov, an indomitable man of erudition and wit, has never worked a day in his life, and must now live in an attic room while some of the most tumultuous decades in Russian history are unfolding outside the hotel’s doors. Unexpectedly, his reduced circumstances provide him entry into a much larger world of emotional discovery.

Brimming with humor, a glittering cast of characters, and one beautifully rendered scene after another, this singular novel casts a spell as it relates the count’s endeavor to gain a deeper understanding of what it means to be a man of purpose.

Amor Towles was born and raised in the Boston area. He graduated from Yale University and received an MA in English from Stanford University. An investment professional for more than twenty years, he now devotes himself full time to writing. Both his first novel, Rules of Civility, published in 2011, and A Gentleman in Moscow are New York Times bestsellers. Towles lives in Manhattan with his wife and two children.


Troy Ball, "Pure Heart: A Spirited Tale of Grace, Wit and Whiskey," (coauthor Bret Witter), (Dey Street Books, $26.99)

Saturday. March 11 at 7 pm

"The first woman ever licensed to distill hard liquor in North Carolina uncorks an emotionally charged memoir about traversing family heartache to become the "moonshine mama" of the South...A heart-stirring life story."--Kirkus ReviewsTro

Troy Ball is a classic Southern belle, with an easy charm, impeccable manners, a wide smile, and golden-blond hair.  But beneath that crisp white blouse and strand of pearls is a streak of tenacity a mile wide.  After she and her husband move to Asheville, she meets an Appalachian raconteur with a truck, a thousand stories, and a sip of moonshine he happily shares. What followed was a friendship and a journey into the heart of distilling old-fashioned corn whiskey.

Stretching back to Colonial times and forward to today and the Byzantine laws Troy had to navigate to become the first female legal moonshiner in the history of the South, this memoir is a true moonshine-making odyssey.

Troy Ball is the founder and principal owner of Asheville Distilling Company in Asheville, North Carolin which recently received a gold medal for moonshine, the highest possible rating. In 2004, Troy cofounded the Thoughtful House Center for Children in Austin, Texas, which has recently changed its name to the Johnson Center for Child Health and Development. Today, the center sees over 2,500 children with autism and spectrum disorders and coordinates international medical research studies. Troy lives outside Asheville, North Carolina, with her husband, Charlie, and two of their three grown sons, Marshall and Coulton, who have special needs.


Photo: © Sara Harris Photography

Brad Parks, "Say Nothing," (Dutton Books, $26)  [with Steve Berry]

Sunday March 12 at 3 pm

“Parks dispenses plot twists with a poisoned eyedropper… The nerve-shredding never lets up for a minute as Parks picks you up by the scruff of the neck, shakes you vigorously, and repeats over and over again till a climax so harrowing that you’ll be shaking with gratitude that it’s finally over.”
—Kirkus, Starred Review

Judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence suggests he does. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen his children. A man who warns the judge to do exactly as he is told in a drug case he is about to rule on. If the judge fails to follow his instructions, the consequences for the children will be dire.
 
For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told.

Brad Parks is the only author to have won the Shamus, Nero, and Lefty Awards, three of crime fiction’s most prestigious prizes. A former reporter with The Washington Post and The Star-Ledger (Newark), he lives in Virginia with his wife and two children.


Rona Recommends for NOW meeting

Wednesday, March 15 at 7 pm

The BookMark and the Jacksonville Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) are partnering to celebrate Women's History Month.

Light Refreshiments,will be served beginning at 6:30 pm and Rona will talk about good books by/and or about women at 7 pm.

This is the 15th annual BookMark/NOW event to celebrate Women’s History Month and the sixth year for the “Rona Recommends” program.  It is a great way to enjoy lively conversation,

get great reading recommendations, and to find out more about Women’s History Month. 


Tricia Booker, "The Place of Peace and Cookies," (Twisted Road Publications. $15.95)
Saturday, March 18, 7 pm

When journalist Tricia Booker and her husband had trouble conceiving, they followed the well-worn footsteps of couples exploring in-vitro fertilization. Two years and  thousands of dollars later, they decided to have a long fulfilling life without children. Instead, they became immersed in the world of international adoption. Their first child, born in Vietnam, introduced them to a poor but loving orphanage where infants slept with their caretakers. Then came Guatemala, a beautiful, impoverished country where Booker's two younger children lived in tiny cribs with little human interaction.  In candid, raw prose, Booker tells the story of her family, including her son's diagnosis of Anxious-Attachment Disorder, the service dog she trained to help him, and her and her husband's chaotic attempts to simplify their lives in order to heal their son.


Randy Wayne White, Mangrove Lightning (Doc Ford #21)

 (G. P. Putnam's Sons, $27)

Monday, March 27 at 7 pm


Doc Ford has been involved in many strange cases. This may be one of the strangest. A legendary charter captain and guide named Tootsie Barlow has come to him, muttering about a curse. The members of his extended family have suffered a bizarre series of attacks, and Barlow is convinced it has something to do with a multiple murder in 1925 in which his family had a shameful part. Ford doesn't believe in curses, but as he and his friend Tomlinson begin to investigate, following the trail of the attacks from Key Largo to Tallahassee, they, too, suffer a series of near-fatal mishaps. Is it really a curse? Or just a crime spree? The answer lies in solving a near-hundred-year-old murder . . . and probing the mind of a madman.


Greg Iles, Mississippi Blood (William Morrow & Co, $28.99)

Thursday, March 30, 7 pm

"Faulkner meets John D. MacDonald, and that's all to the good. A boisterous, spills-and-chills entertainment from start to finish." Kirkus Reviews

Delta whodunit master Iles brings his politically charged, timely trilogy of Mississippi murder and mayhem to a thunderous close.  Readers of this series will be thrilled with this final installment.  Newcomers will be equally delighted.  

Life for Penn Cage is never a bowl of cherries. Now he's in a bloodier mess than ever, depressed, and full of bitter self-awareness.  "When someone you love is murdered," he reflects, "you learn things about yourself you'd give a great deal not to know." Other questions loom. Why is his jailed father stubbornly clinging to a secret guaranteed to shake up otherwise sleepy Natchez? Now that the Klan-on-steroids villains have come under new management, what kind of awful mischief are they going to make for the place?  And how do they figure in that secret, anyway? Finding answers to these questions gives Penn plenty to worry about while he tries to maintain his even keel.

Greg Iles spent most of his youth in Natchez, Mississippi. His first novel, Spandau Phoenix, was the first of thirteen New York Times bestsellers, and his new trilogy continues the story of Penn Cage, protagonist of The Quiet Game, Turning Angel, and #1 New York Times bestseller The Devil's Punchbowl. Iles' novels have been made into films and published in more than thirty-five countries. He lives in Natchez with his wife and has two children


Recent Events


Will Schwalbe, "Books for Living." (Knopf Publishing, $25.95)

Friday, March 3 at 7 pm

"Schwalbe's tremendous experience with reading and his stellar taste make for a fine guide to the varied and idiosyncratic list of books for which he advocates. By the end of the book, all serious readers will have added some titles to their to-read lists." --Publishers Weekly *starred review*

 From the author of the beloved New York Times best-selling The End of Your Life Book Club, an inspiring and magical exploration of the power of books to shape our lives in an era of constant connectivity.


Why is it that we read? Is it to pass time? To learn something new? To escape from reality? For Will Schwalbe, reading is a way to entertain himself but also to make sense of the world, to become a better person, and to find the answers to the big (and small) questions about how to live his life. In this delightful celebration of reading, Schwalbe invites us along on his quest for books that speak to the specific challenges of living in our modern world, with all its noise and distractions.  Throughout, Schwalbe focuses on the way certain books can help us honor those we've loved and lost, and also figure out how to live each day more fully. Rich with stories and recommendations, Books for Living is a treasure for everyone who loves books and loves to hear the answer to the question: "What are you reading?"

WILL SCHWALBE has worked in publishing; digital media, as the founder and CEO of Cookstr.com; and as a journalist, writing for various publications, including The New York Times and the South China Morning Post. He is the author of the New York Times best seller The End of Your Life Book Club and coauthor, with David Shipley, of Send: Why People Email So Badly and How to Do It Better


Trudy Nan Boyce, "Old Bones," G.P. Putnam's Sons ($27)

Wednesday, March 1 at 7 pm

“Boyce lunges at the caldron of Atlanta racial/sexual/institutional politics as if she can’t wait to tear the lid off. Readers prepared for the deep dive will find themselves enlightened, sobered, and maybe even cautiously uplifted by the heroine’s reckless courage.”—Kirkus Reviews

During a vigil calling for police reform, students from Spelman College, a historically black women's institution, are assaulted by rifle fire from a passing vehicle.

While other detectives take the lead on the Spelman murders, Salt is tasked to investigate the case of a recently discovered decomposed body. When she combs through the missing-persons reports, it becomes clear the victim is a girl Salt took into custody two years before, and Salt feels a grave responsibility to learn the truth.  A gripping and astute story about what it means to serve and protect, Old Bones solidifies Trudy Nan Boyce as an evocative, authoritative voice in crime fiction.

Trudy Nan Boyce received her Ph.D. in community counseling before becoming a police officer for the City of Atlanta. During her more-than-thirty-year career she served as a beat cop, homicide detective, senior hostage negotiator, and lieutenant. Boyce retired from the police department in 2008 and still lives in Atlanta. She is the author of Out of the Blues.


T.L. Williams, "Zero Day: China's Cyber Wars (Logan Alexander #3) First Coast Publishers, $15.95)

Thursday, February 16 at 7 pm

" ... Williams has produced a believable, timely tale brimming with cinematic power.  A skillfully rendered account of superpowers locked in covert war."  Kirkus Review

Moving between Chongqing, China and Langley, Virginia, this fast-paced spy thriller revolves around a plot by the Chinese government to seize the edge on global power by undermining the U.S. economy. Armed with an underground force of hackers, China's Ministry of Public Security (MPS) has a mission: to destroy confidence in the dollar by launching persistent, aggressive cyberattacks on America's banking system. Revenge against the Communist Party for his father's shameful death, Li Jiang, a senior Public Security Bureau officer in Chongqing, lets America in on the covert details of China's masterful cyberattack plan. To vet and handle this potential asset, the CIA dispatches Logan Alexander, a former Navy SEAL, working undercover in Hong Kong, to China. Logan quickly comes to trust Li. But the brass back in Langley have doubts. Could Li be a double agent? Or could a trusted American be spying for the Chinese? Reviewed by the CIA, ZERO DAY is packed with authentic insider details.

Terrence L. Williams is a retired Central Intelligence Agency Operations Officer with over thirty years of experience conducting and managing covert operations.  ZERO DAY, the third book in the Logan Alexander series, follows the award-winning Cooper's Revenge and Unit 400: The Assassins.
 


K. J. Howe, The Freedom Broker (Querces Books, $26.99)

 Saturday, February 11, 7 pm (with Steve Berry)

"With an alpha female heroine and a plot that's smart, detailed, and highly engaging, The Freedom Broker introduces a new name to the thriller genre: K.J. Howe. It's a fantastic debut . . . a pulse-pounding treat for anyone who loves action and adventure." Steve Berry, New York Times bestselling author of The Patriot Threat

"A fast-moving thriller featuring kidnapped oil tycoon Christos Paris and his kidnap-negotiator daughter, Thea. She's tough. She's smart. She's diabetic. The best scene--and who cares if it's plausible--involves bungee jumping over the Zambezi River. It's worth the price of the book. A spectacular start for what promises be a great Thea Paris series."
Kirkus, starred review

Personal tragedy has made Thea Paris what she is today: a world-class freedom broker. Most hostage-recovery work is done at the negotiation table, but when diplomacy fails, Thea leads Quantum Security International's black-ops team on highly sensitive rescue missions to political hot spots around the globe.  Her childhood nightmare resurfaces when her oil magnate father, Christos Paris, is snatched from his yacht off Santorini on his sixtieth birthday, days away from the biggest deal of his career. The brutal kidnappers left the entire crew slaughtered in their wake, but strangely, there are no ransom demands, no political appeals, no prisoner release requests-,-just obscure and foreboding texts written in Latin sent from burner phones. Knowing the survival window for kidnap victims is small, Thea throws herself into the most urgent and challenging rescue mission of her life but will she be able to prevent this kidnapping from destroying her family for good?


Tim Dorsey, "Clownfish Blues" ( Serge Storms #21 )

 (William Morrow & Co. $26.99)

Friday, February 3 at 7 pm

"Readers will find plenty of sharp cultural commentary."--Publishers Weekly

If you're loud and proud Floridian Serge A. Storms, how do you follow up your very own remake of Easy Rider? You shoot your own "episodes" of your favorite classic television show, Route 66!

With Coleman riding shotgun, Serge is rolling down the highway of his dreams in a vintage silver convertible Corvette just like the snazzy car Martin Milner drove. It doesn't matter that the actual Route 66 didn't pass through Florida, for Serge discovers that a dozen episodes near the series' end were filmed (really!) in his beloved home state.

But their adventure traveling the byways of the Sunshine State's underbelly is about to take a detour. Someone is trying to tilt the odds in the state lottery amidst a conga line of huge jackpots spinning off more chaos than any hurricane season. 

Throw in Brooke Campanella, Serge's old flame, as well as the perpetually star-crossed Reevis, and it's a sure bet that the ever lucky Serge will hit it big. Winning has never been this deadly--or this much fun!

Tim Dorsey was a reporter and editor for the Tampa Tribune from 1987 to 1999, and is the author of twenty other novels. He lives in Tampa, Florida.


Lisa Gardner, "Right Behind You," (Dutton Books, $27)

Thursday, February 2 at 7 pm

"Devilishly clever twists propel Gardner’s tale of family bonds fractured, mended, and sometimes destroyed." - Starred Review - Publishers Weekly

One of the most famous and succesful authors of the psychological thriller will discuss her newest mystery and the return of her popular FBI Profiler Series characters.

Is he a hero? ... Eight years ago, Sharlah May Nash's older brother beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat in order to save both of their lives. Now thirteen years old, Sharlah has finally moved on. About to be adopted by retired FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie Conner, Sharlah loves one thing best about her new family: They are all experts on monsters.


Is he a killer?  ...Then the call comes in. A double murder at a local gas station, followed by reports of an armed suspect shooting his way through the wilds of Oregon. As Quincy and Rainie race to assist, they are forced to confront mounting evidence: The shooter may very well be Sharlah's older brother, Telly Ray Nash, and it appears his killing spree has only just begun.


All she knows for sure: He's back. Sharlah's big brother saved her life. Now, she has two questions of her own: Is her brother a hero or a killerAnd how much will it cost to find out?

Lisa Gardner is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of eighteen previous novels, including her most recent, Find Her. Her Detective D. D. Warren novels include Find Her, Fear Nothing, Catch Me, Love You More, and The Neighbor, which won the International Thriller of the Year Award. Her FBI Profiler Novels include Gone, The Next Accident, and The Third Victim. She lives with her family in New England.


John Lescroart, "Fatal," (Atria Books, $26.99)

Thursday, January 26 at 7pm

From New York Times bestselling author John Lescroart, a riveting stand-alone novel about the unexpected, shattering, and lethal consequences of a one-night stand on a seemingly happily married couple. 

Kate is happily married to Ron with two children and a beautiful home in San Francisco.

But everything changes when Kate meets Peter. What begins as a passing fancy develops into a dangerous obsession and one intense, passionate encounter.

Confident that life can go back to normal, Kate never considers that Peter may not be so willing to move on.

Until a masked man fires a weapon into the crowd of a cafe that Kate is in with her best friend. This tragedy is just the first in a series of horrifying events that will show exactly how fatal the consequences of one mistake can be...

John Lescroart is the author of twenty-five previous novels, including the New York Times bestsellers The Ophelia Cut, The Keeper, and The Fall. He lives in Northern California.


Karen White, "The Guests on South Battery," (Berkley Books, $26)

Thursday, January 19 at 7pm

New York Times bestselling author Karen White invites you to explore the brick-walked streets of Charleston, where historic mansions house the memories of years gone by, and restless spirits refuse to fade away...

With her extended maternity leave at its end, Melanie Trenholm is less than thrilled to leave her new husband and beautiful twins to return to work, especially when she's awoken by a phone call with no voice on the other end - and the uneasy feeling that the ghostly apparitions that have stayed silent for more than a year are about to invade her life once more.

But her return to the realty office goes better than she could have hoped, with a new client eager to sell the home she recently inherited on South Battery. Most would treasure living in one of the grandest old homes in the famous historic district of Charleston, but Jayne Smith would rather sell hers as soon as possible, guaranteeing Melanie a quick commission.

Despite her stroke of luck, Melanie can't deny that spirits - both malevolent and benign - have started to show themselves to her again. One is shrouded from sight, but appears whenever Jayne is near. Another arrives when an old cistern is discovered in Melanie's backyard on Tradd Street.

Melanie knows nothing good can come from unearthing the past. But some secrets refuse to stay buried....

Karen White is the New York Times bestselling author of twenty novels, including Flight Patterns, The Sound of Glass, A Long Time Gone, and The Time Between, and the coauthor of The Forgotton Room with New York Times bestselling authors Beatriz Williams and Lauren Willig.


Chris Bohjalian, "The Sleepwalker," (Doubleday, $26.95)

Tuesday, January 10 at 7pm

From the New York Times bestselling author of "The Guest Room" comes a spine-tingling novel of lies, loss, and buried desire.

When Annalee Ahlberg goes missing, her children fear the worst. Annalee is a sleepwalker whose affliction manifests in ways both bizarre and devastating. Once, she merely destroyed the hydrangeas in front of her Vermont home. More terrifying was the night her older daughter, Lianna, pulled her back from the precipice of the Gale River bridge.

The morning of Annalee's disappearance, a search party combs the nearby woods. Annalee's husband, Warren, flies home from a business trip. Lianna is questioned by a young, hazel-eyed detective. And her little sister, Paige, takes to swimming the Gale to look for clues. When the police discover a small swatch of fabric, a nightshirt, ripped and hanging from a tree branch, it seems certain Annalee is dead, but Gavin Rikert, the hazel-eyed detective, continues to call, continues to stop by the Ahlbergs' Victorian home.

As Lianna peels back the layers of mystery surrounding Annalee's disappearance, she finds herself drawn to Gavin, but she must ask herself: Why does the detective know so much about her mother? Why did Annalee leave her bed only when her father was away? And if she really died while sleepwalking, where was the body? 

CHRIS BOHJALIAN is the author of eighteen books, including The Guest Room; Close Your Eyes, Hold Hands; The Sandcastle Girls; Skeletons at the Feast; The Double Bind; and Midwives. His novel Midwives was a number one New York Times bestseller and a selection of Oprah's Book Club. His work has been translated into more than thirty languages, and three of his novels have become movies (Secrets of Eden, Midwives, and Past the Bleachers).


Additional events/authors are updated as they are confirmed.  Be sure to check back for additional information.

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