All Our Shimmering Skies, by Trent Dalton
Motherless Molly Hook, the gravedigger’s daughter, turns once again to the sky for guidance. She carries a stone heart inside a duffel bag next to the map that leads to Longcoat Bob, the deep-country sorcerer who put a curse on her family. By her side are the most unlikely travelling companions: Greta, a razor-tongued actress and Yukio, a fallen Japanese fighter pilot. Run, Molly, run, says the daytime sky. Run to the vine forests. Run to northern Australia’s wild and magical monsoon lands. Run to friendship. Run to love. Run. Because the grave robber’s coming, Molly, and the night-time sky is coming with him. So run, Molly, run.
Pug Actually, by Matt Dunn
Doug the pug wants his rescuer, Julie, to be happy. He is loyal and loves her unconditionally–two things that can’t be said about Julie’s married boss and lover, Luke. Yet Julie is reluctant to break up, afraid to end up like her eccentric cat-owning neighbor. It’s a prospect that horrifies Doug, too.
Newly divorced Tom, on the other hand, is perfect for Julie. Everyone can see it–except for Julie and Tom. Doug is confident that with his help they will get over their initial animosity toward each other.
As Doug humorously navigates the quirks of human relationships, he knows he can’t give up on Julie–after all, being a “rescue” works both ways.
The Mystic’s Accomplice (Maddie Pastore Mystery #1), by Mary Miley
Grieving pregnant widow Maddie Pastore didn’t know what her husband did for a living, until the Chicago mob shows up at his 1924 funeral. She ends up broke and loses her house, but she’s determined to make a living without calling on the mob for help. When the mystic Madam Carlotta, asks her to a séance, Maddie sees opportunity. She offers to research Carlotta’s clients, and discovers she’s good at digging through newspapers and wills and talking with servants. One of the mystic’s clients always cancels her sessions, claiming illness; Maddie learns the woman lost her husband and a nephew to tragedy and she begins to worry that the client could be the target of a killer. Courageous Maddie uses her new skills to attempt to save a life and trap a murderer. VERDICT Miley (“Roaring Twenties” series) returns to the jazz age in this mystery introducing a remarkable amateur sleuth, widow, and mother. It skillfully combines the tantalizing atmosphere of a speakeasy- and mob-filled Chicago, historical figures, and an intriguing mystery.
Gumshoe in the Dark (Mortimer Angel #5), by Rob Leininger
Nevada’s attorney general is missing. At dusk on a deserted Nevada highway in a thunderstorm, ex-IRS agent and PI-in-training Mortimer Angel comes across a pretty, scantily-clad girl—Harper Leland. She’s cold and alone, thirty miles from the nearest town.
When Mort offers her a ride, she orders him out of his truck at gunpoint. She tries to take off, but he cuts the valve stem on the rear tire. Realizing she’s in trouble, he wants to help—but with no spare tire, he devises a creative way to get them out of the hills—slowly, precariously balanced on three tires. On their way down, a rough-looking man stops and asks Mort if he has “seen anyone up in the hills.” Mort realizes the guy is after Harper, who is hiding in the truck.
Thus begins a cat-and-mouse chase in northeast Nevada that continues even after Mort finds the attorney general—Harper’s mother—dead in the trunk of a car. In time, Mort’s wife, Lucy, is also pulled into the case, which becomes the deadliest of Mort’s career.
The Art of Betrayal (Kate Hamilton Mysteries #3), by Connie Berry
Spring is a magical time in England–bluebells massing along the woodland paths, primrose and wild thyme dotting the meadows. Antiques dealer Kate Hamilton is spending the month of May in the Suffolk village of Long Barston, enjoying precious time with Detective Inspector Tom Mallory. While attending the May Fair, the annual pageant based on a well-known Anglo-Saxon folktale, a body turns up in the middle of the festivities.
Kate is even more shocked when she learns the murder took place in antiquity shop owner Ivor Tweedy’s stockroom and a valuable Chinese pottery jar that she had been tasked with finding a buyer for has been stolen. Ivor may be ruined. Insurance won’t cover a fraction of the loss.
As Tom leads the investigation, Kate begins to see puzzling parallels between the murder and local legends. The more she learns, the more convinced she is that the solution to both crimes lies in the misty depths of Anglo-Saxon history and a generations-old pattern of betrayal. It’s up to Kate to unravel this Celtic knot of lies and deception to save Ivor’s business.
Mrs. Rochester’s Ghost, by Lindsay Marcott
Jane has lost everything: job, mother, relationship, even her home. A friend calls to offer an unusual deal—a cottage above the crashing surf of Big Sur on the estate of his employer, Evan Rochester. In return, Jane will tutor his teenage daughter. She accepts.
But nothing is quite as it seems at the Rochester estate. Though he’s been accused of murdering his glamorous and troubled wife, Evan Rochester insists she drowned herself. Jane is skeptical, but she still finds herself falling for the brilliant and secretive entrepreneur and growing close to his daughter.
And yet her deepening feelings for Evan can’t disguise dark suspicions aroused when a ghostly presence repeatedly appears in the night’s mist and fog. Jane embarks on an intense search for answers and uncovers evidence that soon puts Evan’s innocence into question. She’s determined to discover what really happened that fateful night, but what will the truth cost her?
Sleeping Bear, by Connor Sullivan
After her young husband’s untimely death, Army veteran Cassie Gale decides to take a few days of solitude in the Alaska wilderness before she starts her new job. But when she fails to show up on her first day and her dog is discovered injured at her wrecked campsite, her father knows that this is much more than a camping trip gone awry.
As it turns out, Cassie’s not the first person to disappear without a trace in Alaska’s northern interior. Bears. Wolves. Avalanches. Frostbite. Starvation. There are many ways to die in here. But not all disappearances can be explained. Cassie’s is one of them, along with a number of other outdoor enthusiasts who have vanished in recent years.
Regaining consciousness in a Russian prison, Cassie finds herself trapped in a system designed to ensure that no one ever escapes alive. It will require all her grit and skills to survive. Meanwhile, her father rushes to outrun the clock, scouring thousands of acres, only to realize she’s been taken by a far more nefarious adversary—one with the power of the Eastern Bloc behind it. Ties to his past life, one full of secrets, threaten to surface. He knows there’s a price to be paid, but he’s determined it won’t be his daughter.
When Stars Collide (Chicago Stars #9), by Susan Elizabeth Phillips
Thaddeus Walker Bowman Owens, the backup quarterback for the Chicago Stars, is a team player, talented sideline coach, occasional male underwear model, and a man with a low tolerance for Divas.
Olivia Shore, international opera superstar, is a driven diva with a passion for perfection, a craving for justice, too many secrets—and a monumental grudge against the egotistical, lowbrow jock she’s been stuck with.
It’s Mozart meets Monday Night Football as the temperamental soprano and stubborn jock embark on a nationwide tour promoting a luxury watch brand. Along the way, the combatants will engage in soul-searching and trash talk, backstage drama and, for sure, a quarterback pass. But they’ll also face trouble as threatening letters, haunting photographs, and a series of dangerous encounters complicate their lives. Is it the work of an overzealous fan or something more sinister?
This is the emotional journey of a brilliant woman whose career is everything and a talented man who’ll never be happy with second place. Tender and funny, passionate and insightful, this irresistible romantic adventure proves that anything can happen…when two superstars collide.
The Missing Treasures of Amy Ashton, by Eleanor Ray
Amy Ashton once dreamed of becoming an artist—of creating beautiful objects. But now she simply collects them. Aquamarine bottles, bright yellow crockery, deep Tuscan red pots (and the odd slow-cooker) take up every available inch of space in her house. Having suffered a terrible tragedy—one she staunchly refuses to let herself think about, thank you very much—she’s decided that it’s easier to love things than people. Things are safe. Things will never leave you.
But when a new family moves in next door with two young boys, one of whom has a collection of his own, Amy’s carefully managed life starts to unravel, prompting her to question why she began to close herself off in the first place. As Amy embarks on a journey back into her past, she has to contend with nosy neighbors, a meddlesome government worker, the inept police, and a little boy whose love of bulldozers might just let Amy open up her heart—and her home—again.
Quirky and charming, big-hearted and moving, The Missing Treasures of Amy Ashton proves that it’s never too late to let go of the things that don’t matter…and welcome the people who do.
Our Woman in Moscow, by Beatriz Williams
In the autumn of 1948, Iris Digby vanishes from her London home with her American diplomat husband and their two children. The world is shocked by the family’s sensational disappearance. Were they eliminated by the Soviet intelligence service? Or have the Digbys defected to Moscow with a trove of the West’s most vital secrets?
Four years later, Ruth Macallister receives a postcard from the twin sister she hasn’t seen since their catastrophic parting in Rome in the summer of 1940, as war engulfed the continent and Iris fell desperately in love with an enigmatic United States Embassy official named Sasha Digby. Within days, Ruth is on her way to Moscow, posing as the wife of counterintelligence agent Sumner Fox in a precarious plot to extract the Digbys from behind the Iron Curtain.
But the complex truth behind Iris’s marriage defies Ruth’s understanding, and as the sisters race toward safety, a dogged Soviet KGB officer forces them to make a heartbreaking choice between two irreconcilable loyalties.