Friday, October 23, 2009

bookfinds @ Kittling: Books

It never ceases to amaze me how I continue to find books without really making an effort to look for them. It all boils down to having the right newsletters land in my inbox, I suppose. Checking Paperback Swap's Daily Wish List can also alert me to new books, and of course I pay attention to the titles recommended on my favorite book blogs!

[Well now, that was a first. I just looked out in time to see a butterfly fly over the birdbath and scare off the birds that were perched on the rim. Must be the Arnold Schwarzenegger of butterflies!]

Anyway, let's get back to books. I thought I'd share three titles with you that I've just learned about:

Brady, Rachel. Final Approach (Poisoned Pen $25 Oct. 30). A grieving Emily Locke, knocked way off course four years ago by the boating accident that killed her husband and baby daughter, hears from Richard Cole. Cole was a cop working a case where Emily had helped recover a kidnapped child. She’s still furious with Cole, now a PI, about his conduct of the case. But Cole asks for her help for another missing child. It will require her to
perform undercover reconnaissance at a skydiving establishment near Houston, nearly 1000 miles away. Shaky but resolute, Rachel agrees, posing as a new recruit to NASA and a genuine skydiving enthusiast when she arrives at the airstrip.

Goodman, Pete. Smoking Frog Lives (Cambri $15 Nov. 8). The scene is Yaxnax, a minor Maya city, abandoned for over a thousand years. Someone dressed as Smoking Frog, a great war chief of the pre-classic period, decapitates a bound captive in a Maya ritual slaying. Nick Michaels, a private investigator is trying to change professions, but his old life will not go quietly. His career in archaeology will have to wait while he chases the elusive Smoking Frog. Finally, Nick discovers what Smoking Frog is looking for, an ancient statue of Tlaloc, the Maya god of blood and blood sacrifice. Knowing this, Nick stages a long con. He lures Smoking Frog to a meeting at a sacred cenote where the location of the statue will be revealed and captures him in an explosive finish. Smoking Frog Lives features a terrific sense of place and exotic details, including native hallucinogens and poisons in a rousing PI/adventure novel with an authentic Maya setting.

Dudgeon, Piers. Neverland: JM Barrie, The DuMauriers, and the Dark Side of Peter Pan. (Pegasus $27). This expose of Barrie’s “fascination and obsession with the Du Maurier family” is supposed to be “a shocking study of greed and psychological abuse, as we observe Barrie as he applies these lessons in mind control to captivate George’s daughter Sylvia, his son Gerald, as well as their children— who became the inspiration for the Darling family in Barrie’s immortal Peter Pan. Barrie later altered Sylvia’s will after her death so that he could become the boys’ legal guardian, while pushing several members of the family to nervous breakdown and suicide. Barrie’s compulsion to dominate was so apparent to those around him that D. H. Lawrence once wrote: "J. M Barrie has a fatal touch for those he loves. They die.” Wow.

Thanks once again to the Poisoned Pen for adding books to my wish list!


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