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Rona's First Coast Living Recommendations 

Monday, February 13, 2017

The Second Mrs. Hockady  by Susan Powers ($25.95) is a historical novel about the South during the civil war as revealed through the letters and diaries of the famillies left at home.

Signals: New and Selected Stories by Tim Geaugtreaux ($26.95) explore the enduring challenges and strengths of residents in Louisiann.and North Carolina.

Also see current events.

Monday, December 12, 2016

To Capture What We Cannot Keep by Beatrice Colin ($25.99) ... Set against the construction of the Eiffel Tower, this novel charts the relationship between a young Scottish widow and a French engineer.

And Every Morning The Way Home Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman ($18) ... a little book with a big heart from the author of A Man Called Ove and My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry.

The Boat Rocker by Ha Jin ($25.95) ... From the award-winning author of Waiting and War Trash: an urgent, timely novel that follows an aspiring author, an outrageous book idea, and a lone journalist's dogged quest for truth in the Internet age, and explores the pull of homeland China and the U.S. 

Atlas Obscura by Joshua Foer, Dylan Thuras & Ella Morton ($35) ... Inspiring equal parts wonder and wanderlust, Atlas Obscura celebrates over 700 of the strangest and most curious places in the world. 

Monday, November 14, 2016

A Lowcountry Heart: Reflections on a Writing Life by Pat Conroy ($25) ... Final words and heartfelt remembrances from bestselling author Pat Conroy. 

The Dollhouse by Fiona Davis ($26) ...  pulls readers into the lush world of New York City's glamorous Barbizon Hotel for Women.

Mercury by Margot Livesey ($26.99) ... a tense psychological drama and a taut emotional thriller exploring love, obsession, and the deceits that pull a family apart

El Paso by Winston Groom ($27.95) ... three decades after the first publication of Forrest Gump, Winston Groom returns to fiction with this sweeping American epic. 

The Twenty-Three by Linwood Barclay ($27) ... jaw-dropping finale of the Promise Falls Trilogy.

Monday, September 12, 2016

A Gentleman from Moscow by Amor Towles ($27) ... The author of Rules of Civility delivers again with a historical novel set during Stalin's rule.

Nutshell by Ian McEwan ($24.95) ... a novel narrated by a fetus.  This is a very original retelling of Shakespeare's Hamlet.       

The Hamilton Affair by Elizabeth Cobbs ($25.99) ... without the catchy tunes of Broadway, this is the love affair that both defined and haunted  one of the nation's Founding  Fathers.

Dear Mr. M by Herman Koch ($26) ... a dark novel that weaves together the lives of a teenager, a missing teacher and the author and his wife.

Razor Girl by Carl Hiaasen ($27.95) ... reviewer's agree that this is one of the best Hiassen takes on Florida ever.

Best State Ever: A Florida Man Defends His Homeland by Dave Barry ($27) ... another expose that tries to explain why Florida is  "never boring" by one of the state's funniest commentators.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Good as Gone by Amy Gentry ($23.00)  A kidnapped girl returns home 8 years later ... or does she? 

Truly Madly Guilty by Liana Moriarty ($26.99). Three couples go to a barbeque and spend years wondering what if we hadn't gone?

The Book That Matters Most by Ann Hood ($25.95). A woman joins an unusual bookclub where each member selects the book that matters the most to them for discussion.  A tribute to the power of the story. 

The House at the Edge of Night by Catherine Banner ($27.00). Generations of a family run a cafe on a small island off the coast of Italy ... through wars, recessions and torrid love affairs.

The Girls by Emma Cline ($27.00). Based on the true story of Charles Manson and his followers, a young girl is seduced into a cult during the turbulent 1960s.

Dinner with Edward by Isabel Vincent ($23.95). A memoir of a middle-aged woman and a 90-year-old man  who deal with their recent losses through cooking.

Lab Girl by Hope Jahren ($26.95) A combination of science, the beauty of plants and the importance of finding your passion in iife.

Julian Fellowes Belgravia ($27.00)

Julian Fellowes's Belgravia is the story of a secret. A secret that unravels behind the porticoed doors of London's grandest postcode. Set in the 1840s when the upper echelons of society began to rub shoulders with the emerging industrial nouveau riche, Belgravia is peopled by a rich cast of characters. But the story begins on the eve of the Battle of Waterloo in 1815. At the Duchess of Richmond's now legendary ball, one family's life will change forever.

Miss Jane by Brad Watson ($25.95)

Set in Mercury, Mississippi, in the early 20th century, Miss Jane is the story of Jane Chisolm, a woman born with a genital birth defect that renders her "useless" in a time when a woman was intended for two purposes: marriage and motherhood. Contrary to other independent-minded literary heroines like Edna Pontellier in Kate Chopin's "The Awakening" or the unnamed narrator in Charlotte Perkins Gilman's short story "The Yellow Wallpaper, " Jane is not actively shunning social expectations, but rather forced into a life of solitude by circumstances beyond her control. 

I Am No One by Patrick Flanery ($27.00)

A mesmerizing novel about memory, privacy, fear, and what happens when our past catches up with us.

After a decade living in England, Jeremy O'Keefe returns to New York, where he has been hired as a professor of German history at New York University. But soon, Jeremy's life begins taking strange turns: boxes containing records of his online activity are delivered to his apartment, a young man seems to be following him, and his elderly mother receives anonymous phone calls slandering her son. As Jeremy takes stock of the entanglements that marked his years abroad, he wonders if he has unwittingly committed a crime and reassesses what it means to be free in a time of ever more intrusive surveillance,

What We Become by Arturo Perez-Reverte $28.00)

Perez-Reverte, best known for his literary thrillers (and who should be best known for "The Painter of Battles", one of the most brilliantly uncompromising war novels written in the last two or three decades), returns with the story of an enduring love between gorgeous, high-society Mecha and Max, a sleekly sophisticated thief. They first meet on a transatlantic cruise ship en route from Lisbon to Buenos Aires in 1928; then in 1937 Nice, when their rekindled romance is snuffed by an encounter with a Spanish spy; and finally in 1966 Sorrento.

A story of romance, adventure, and espionage, this novel solidifies Perez-Reverte as an international literary giant

Oh, Florida by Craig Pittman ($26.99)

Every place has its idiosyncrasies, but journalist Pittman ("The Scent of Scandal") makes a strong case for Florida being the strangest state in the nation. He relates bizarre events with assorted characters from Florida's current culture and modern history. Covering diverse topics such as politics, plastic surgery, civil rights, Scientology, sinkholes, and NASCAR, the author shares news reports and scandals representing the oddity that is Florida.

Carrying Albert Home by Homer Hickam (now in pbk, $15.99)

"Carrying Albert Home" is the funny, sweet, and sometimes tragic tale of a young couple and a special alligator on a crazy 1,000-mile adventure. Told with the warmth and down-home charm that made "Rocket Boys" a beloved bestseller, Homer Hickam's rollicking tale is ultimately a testament to that strange and marvelous emotion we inadequately call love.