Friday Favorites – Books to Recommend to Others

An Easy Death – by Charlaine Harris

Technically an alternate fiction read, this story takes place after the Great Depression and assassination of Franklin Roosevelt, where the United States saw itself fractured into smaller territories. It’s about a young woman, who happens to be a very talented shooter for hire, who goes on an adventure that takes her across the territories of the Southwest with a couple of Russian Grigori (wizards).

Minor Mage – by T. Kingfisher

A young ‘minor’ mage goes on a quest to save his town. He is accompanied by his armadillo familiar. It is a great short read with a lot of interesting happenings, unusual characters, and some fantastical elements. T. Kingfisher writes a great middle grade story. This book felt like it was in the same world as her other book A Wizard’s Guide to Defensive Baking (which you should also check out if you have haven’t already).

Spider Woman’s Daughter – by Anne Hillerman

Murder mystery series set on the Navajo Nation features Officer Bernadette Manuelito and series original characters Jim Chee and Joe Leaphorn. The series was continued by Anne Hillerman after her father Tony died. She tells the stories now mostly from Bernadette’s POV but it’s a great, fresh spin on an old classic.

Highway of Tears by Jessica McDiarmid

A non-fiction about missing and murder cases involving indigenous women along Highway 16 in NW British Columbia, known as “Highway of Tears”. This book covers several individual cases and digs deep into the systematic racism and inaction by the RCMP and the Canadian Government.

Fallen Dragon – by Peter F. Hamilton

In this sci-fi masterpiece, two lives converge in a remote planet that harbors a celestial secret. The story mostly follows Lawrence Newton, a 25th century soldier known as a Skin. His job is to loot planets for the corporation (faction) he’s signed on with. After 20 years on the job, he’s lost his interest in the work and finds a possible solution with guerilla resistance leader Denise Ebourn.

Empire of Silence – by Christopher Ruocchio

This space opera has so much packed into it’s 900 pages. Hadrian attempts to escape the jail-like noble life he was born into and ends up alone, poor, and lost on a far flung planet. He spends years as a homeless beggar in the slums before the path of his decisions takes him to places other beggars could only dream of – but it’s just a different kind of jail he had originally hoped to escape. With his eyes on getting a ship and getting off planet, he has to make tough decisions, possibly compromise his beliefs, and gather the few friends he makes along the way.

Ghosts of the Tsunami – by Richard Lloyd Parry

Non-fiction about the 2011 Japanese Tsunami. This book focuses on the 84 people who died at Okawa Elementary School – of which, 74 were school children. Parry interviews many parents and residents of the Miyagi prefecture and tells the tale of their loss, pain, sadness, and search for justice. Why did the school officials not move the kids up the nearby hill, where they would have been safe from incoming tsunami wave? Who was to blame for the lack of leadership that day? Who is responsible for so many children dying? A heartbreaking read, but an important one.

If you have a chance, check out some of these lesser-known reads. They might surprise you!

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