Several book-related things you might be interested in…
First…if you want a signed, personalized copies of my books shipped right to you just click here. If you get your order in by Friday they should arrive before Christmas and I am very happy to personalize them to you or to loved ones, or implicate you in a crime or surprise you with trivia about animal genitalia. Just make sure you specify what you want in the order comments so that you aren’t surprised with arson compliments unless you really want them. They make excellent gifts. (Books, I mean. Not arsonists.)
Second…here’s a little wrap-up if you’re looking for books and want to see some of my favorite books of 2022.
Third…Nowhere Bookshop is in the running for the Best of San Antonio awards! I would say that you should vote for us but honestly you should support all indie bookshops because they’re all worthy of your time and this year has been a bit harder for all indie bookshops across the board.
Fourth…If you’re already a member of the Fantastic Strangelings Book Club (CLICK HERE TO JOIN US, MAGNIFICENT WEIRDO) then you already know what this month’s book is, but just in case you missed my email (make sure to check it because we’re doing a live holiday online crafting cocktail hour this Thursday and you’ll want to watch) our book this month is Roses, in the Mouth of a Lion, by Bushra Rehman and it is so very good.
You know when you meet a fictional character in a book and they become so real to you that actually miss them when the book ends? Ones where you feel like you were falling in love with all of the people, and learning and growing and feeling like you found someone else who understood you even though they’re nothing like you? Me too. Francie from A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. Cecy from Bradbury’s From the Dust Returned. Every single person in the All-of-a-Kind Family books. And now, Razia Mirza from Roses, in the Mouth of a Lion.
Roses, in the Mouth of a Lion is a gorgeously written 1980s coming-of-age story about female friendship and queer love in a Muslim-American community that had me filled with strange nostalgia for people I never actually knew. It’s a powerful reminder that we are all so different, but we are all so alike. And like all good books, some of it is hard and some of it is sad and much of it is hopeful and heart-warming, but all of it is important.
This is where I would put a picture of Dorothy Barker with the book but Hunter S. Thomcat let his intrusive thoughts win and chewed up the book and it seemed fitting. Am I rewarding bad behavior by posting this? No, because he is a cat and doesn’t read the internet. Probably.
Need more than one book to get you through the cold, wintery month (or warmish, brown month if you live in Texas)? ME TOO. Here are a few I really liked that come out this month:
The Light Pirate by Lily Brooks-Dalton – A deeply emotional tale on the changes we’d rather not see and the future we’d rather not greet.
The Sorcerer of Pyongyang by Marcel Theroux – an experimental sort of novel about a North Korean boy whose life is irrevocably changed when he stumbles across a mysterious Western book—a guide to Dungeons & Dragons.
Our Book of Awesome by Neil Pasricha – a lovely celebration of the small joys that bring us together.
Alone with You in the Ether by Olivie Blake – I suspect this will be a big book this year and one that will polarize people about the choices the characters make (and made me want to shake them sometimes) but it is VERY good. A love story that explores what it means to be unwell, and how to face the fractures of yourself and still love as if you’re not broken.
A History of Fear by Luke Dumas – An eerie suspense debut following the harrowing downfall of a tortured graduate student who’s been nicknamed the Devil’s Advocate for murdering a classmate, then claiming the Devil made him do it.
The Lindbergh Nanny by Mariah Fredericks – Historical fiction that brings readers into the interior of the twentieth century’s most infamous crime.
How Far the Light Reaches: A Life in Ten Sea Creatures by Sabrina Imbler – Fascinating essays explore the themes of adaptation, survival, sexuality, and care, and weave the wonders of marine biology with stories of the authors own family, relationships, sexuality, race and coming of age.