Summer has officially kicked off! It is definitely time to start picking up those new trendy summer reads to take with you on your vacation(s). Here are a few of the new releases this month that the Bounty Books team have put on our summer TBR (to be read) list.
1. Magic for liars by sarah gailey
Everything about this book that I have read so far has me acting like a little kid who is impatiently waiting for grandma to give me candy. Magic For Liars has everything you would want in a book –murder, magical academy, amazingly gifted magical professors, and estranged private investigator siblings. The book follows the character Ivy –someone who dislikes magic– and how she is investigating a murder, but also investigating the life she could have had… Releases June 4th, 2019.
2. Recursion by blake crouch
Blake Crouch is back at it again with another mind blowing novel. This novel takes everything we think about how the brain works and our memories and twists it in to a new phenomenon of thrills. By giving us the adventure of a neuroscientist who is working on a device to save people’s memories forever –allowing them to relive their first kiss or the greatest day of their life– but also uncovering ‘False Memory Syndrome’ which forces people’s brains to live a life they never lived, but while driving them absolutely crazy. Releases June 11th, 2019.
3. Dear wife by kimberly belle
This might be the next big psycho-thriller everyone has been waiting for after The Woman In the Window by A.J. Finn. This story is told in multiple perspectives and follows a plot that has many twists and turns. It will keep you guessing throughout the whole book and it will have you on a read-a-thon.
4. Sorcery of thorns by margaret rogerson
This book makes my life at the bookstore look like a travesty –because why can’t I be a battle ready bookseller who guards it from evil? Don’t get me wrong the love story part is all fine and dandy too, but I just want to slay demons. Okay, and maybe I want to live in a huge mansion too. Releases on June 4th, 2019.
5. Fix Her up by Tessa bailey
An old baseball star, Travis, gets injured and has to start anew. Travis goes back to his hometown to hammer out his frustrations in life working for a construction company that flips houses. He reconnects with old friends –especially his best-friends younger sister Georgie– who have all grown in to people that he doesn’t recognize anymore. This is a love story about re-connection, friendship morality, and re-discovery –everything that is perfect for a summer read! Releases June 11th, 2019.
6. Summer of ’69 by elin hilderbrand
This is the perfect flashback to the free love era. I mean, what happens when you go on vacation to enjoy chill vibes and have a good time on Nantucket Beach? The perfect summer read for all –full of drama and fun times– even being that it is a Historical Fiction Novel. Elin really did a great job taking us all back to 1969 and re-living a time that gave us Woodstock, short skirts, lava lamps, and Jimi Hendrix.. Releases June 18th, 2019.
7. Storm and fury by jennifer l. armentrout
Witches… Gargoyles… Ghosts… Angels… Demons… and a blind girl who can still see and communicate with them. A dangerous gift that Demons and Wardens are trying to devour to enhance their own power(s). A minor love story that is bound to develop through the rest of the series… This book is a spin-off from the Dark Elements series, and definitely brings in the cameos from characters in her other series as well. Jennifer has done a beautiful job at building her own fantasy world and making it come to life. Releases June 11th, 2019.
We had so many amazing books released this month that we just had to share some of our favorites!
1. “Shout” by Laurie Halse Anderson
This book is powerful in its own right. An amazing poetic memoir that is just captivating. Laurie is telling her story, the truth of what she went through, and the inspiration behind her novel “Speak.” I 10/10 recommend picking this book up. Especially if you want to know more about what Laurie, a sexual assault victim, has gone through in the last 25 years.
2. “Descendant Of The Crane” by Joan He
This book has been on my personal radar since the beginning of the year. The book is definitely based on a traditional plot, but Joan knows how to freshen it up and recapture the readers attention with his creativity. This book is a page turner where you are almost yelling out loud about what is happening next. Keeping you up until almost 3 AM when you have work in an hour because you have to figure out what happens next.
3. “Iola O” by G.M. Monks
Two words; MUST READ. This book grabs you in every which way and will have you laughing out loud at some points. This book is all about self discovery and self resilience. The plot has so many twists and turns you can never predict what will happen next. I can honestly see this being a sitcom or movie someday.
4. “The Red Scrolls Of Magic” by Cassandra Clare & Wesley Chu
This is the start of a new amazing trilogy continuing the shadow hunter series. The book takes place after the Mortal War, which; follows familiar characters Magnus Bane and Alec Lightwood. This book continues an epic story-line and gets you to fall in love more with characters you didn’t love before –or know much about.
5. “The Binding” by Bridget Collins
Unique, creative, and breathtaking. This book adds value to what it means to be able to write or read a book, or to just share your experiences on a written page. It takes you on an adventure in a world where books are used to capture memories that need to be locked away in the past. But this also a world, where someone could just reach out and winch a memory from you entirely. This is another page turner that will totally have you captivated throughout the whole read. 10/10 recommend it.
Share with us your favorite book released in April of 2019!
I got to see First Man, the bio pic about Neil Armstrong’s landing on the moon. The film is based on the James Hansen biography of Armstrong – I recommend the book for telling a larger story film can – but its vision is wholly that of its director, Damien Chazelle. It presents a well known story from a very different perspective. In presenting a side of the story not told before Chazelle is no more able than anyone else to capture the whole epic of man’s first visit to another world, but he presents an essential new dimension. It is well worth seeing.
The film has generated controversy over its alleged lack of patriotism. Some American leaders, – whom I respect – have slammed the film for omitting the planting of the American flag on the moon. Apparently these leaders did not see the movie before they spoke. Star Ryan Gosling muddied waters with a lame defense, saying it was really about how we came for all mankind. Reality is the flag is prominently displayed on the moon event though the planting itself is omitted; to show it – with the problems encountered setting it up – would have eaten screen time without adding to the story film-makers were meaning to tell. The plaque Armstrong left saying, “We came in peace for all mankind,” is never shown.
I get the dismay. It was American taxpayers who paid for Armstrong’s trip to the moon and American people who risked and sometimes gave their lives in the effort – not the world. That said, critics need to see the movie before judgment; they are wrong.
Chazelle set out to tell a subjective story of who Armstrong was as a human being, along with others in his life who endured much and contributed more. He tells it well. The story begins and – in a way – ends with the illness and death of his little girl, Karen, followed closely by his application and admission to the astronaut program. Asked in the interview process if he thinks that death will impact his participation in the space program, Armstrong – always buttoned up and self-contained emotionally and spiritually – answers dryly that it would be illogical to imagine otherwise.
The rest of the story features a man so armored he is unable to share himself fully with his wife and two sons. That feature of his personality is all that saves his life and his crewmate on at least two climactic occasions for himself and his country. It is his superpower, but also his personal Kryptonite.
Armstrong commanded Gemini 8, the first spacecraft to dock with another vehicle in space, an essential step toward the eventual moon landing. He was chosen for his coolness under pressure; that coolness saved his life within hours of the successful docking. A directional thruster on his ship began firing randomly, sending the craft into an uncontrollable and escalating tumble. Armstrong was able to analyze and isolate the problem in the seconds remaining before he would have lost consciousness and life – for himself and crewmate Dave Scott. A similar crisis erupts on Apollo 11 – the moon flight. When a radar goes out and a boulder free landing site is elusive Armstrong remains cool until he is able to land with less than two per cent of his fuel remaining. He and Aldrin are dedicated to landing – after all the lives and treasure sacrificed to get them there – and so an abort is virtually unthinkable. Armstrong is much more temperamentally suited to saving their lives and the mission than the much more volatile Aldrin.
What neither the film makers nor Armstrong understood (at the time) was the Kryptonite element of his character. His inability to be vulnerable – poignantly illustrated in scenes with his wife, sons, and a backyard non-conversation with his close friend, Ed White – will become more than Janet Armstrong can bear and they will divorce some years after the historic flight. His analytic gift was part of the personality God gave him at birth; yet exercised apart from a relationship with the Giver, all gifts lead only to destruction of one kind or another. Neil Armstrong gave his heart to Jesus Christ some years later and – presumably – learned how to become all of himself only then. This is mentioned in neither book nor movie, but my source is his guide on a pilgrimage he made to Israel late in life. Re-married, one hopes he was enabled to love his family as they deserved while remaining Armstrong.
Critics of First Man can fault it – if they will – because, for example, it omits the conflict with Buzz Aldrin over who would take the first step. It paints Aldrin as the abrasive character he is, while omitting the force of an abusive father that drives him; it omits the Lord’s Supper served by Aldrin on the moon, and gives him no credit for essentially inventing the math that enables docking in space. The film is not about Aldrin the person, but rather about Armstrong the person. That said, it does humanize Astronauts Elliot See and Ed White – two of the men who lost their lives in the race to the moon – because they were close to Neil Armstrong as Aldrin was not. Both choices fit with the mission of the film makers.
The film captures – beautifully and fearfully – the claustrophobia, the pressure, and the titanic explosiveness of space launch and flight as no other treatment has done. As elegantly as the launch and flight sequences are handled in Apollo 13, for example, it seems as though the rockets are blasting out of hell in this one. This film is a critically important counterpoint to earlier treatments. It is well worth seeing, pondering, and praying over.
James A. Wilson is the author of Living As Ambassadors of Relationships, The Holy Spirit and the End Times, Kingdom in Pursuit, and his first novel, Generation – available at Bounty Books, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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