Violeta , by Isabel Allende
Violeta comes into the world on a stormy day in 1920, the first girl in a family with five boisterous sons. From the start, her life is marked by extraordinary events, for the ripples of the Great War are still being felt, even as the Spanish flu arrives on the shores of her South American homeland almost at the moment of her birth.
Through her father’s prescience, the family will come through that crisis unscathed, only to face a new one as the Great Depression transforms the genteel city life she has known. Her family loses everything and is forced to retreat to a wild and beautiful but remote part of the country. There, she will come of age, and her first suitor will come calling.
She tells her story in the form of a letter to someone she loves above all others, recounting times of devastating heartbreak and passionate affairs, poverty and wealth, terrible loss and immense joy. Her life is shaped by some of the most important events of history: the fight for women’s rights, the rise and fall of tyrants, and ultimately not one, but two pandemics.
Through the eyes of a woman whose unforgettable passion, determination, and sense of humor carry her through a lifetime of upheaval, Isabel Allende once more brings us an epic that is both fiercely inspiring and deeply emotional.
The Match , by Harlan Coben
After months away, Wilde has returned to the Ramapo Mountains in the wake of a failed bid at domesticity that confirms what he’s known all along: He belongs on his own, free from the comforts and constraints of modern life.
Suddenly, a DNA match on an online ancestry database brings Wilde closer to his past than he’s ever dreamed, and finally gives Wilde the opening he needs to track down his father. But meeting the man brings up more questions than answers. So Wilde reaches out to his last, most desperate lead, a second cousin who disappears as quickly as he resurfaces, having experienced an epic fall from grace that can only be described as a waking nightmare.
Was his cousin’s downfall a long time coming? Or was he the victim of a conspiracy as cunning as it is complex? And how does it all connect to the man once known as The Stranger, a treacherous fugitive with a growing following whose mission and methods have only turned more dangerous with time?
Shadows Reel , by C. J. Box
A day before the three Pickett girls come home for Thanksgiving, Joe is called out for a moose poaching incident that turns out to be something much more sinister: a local fishing guide has been brutally tortured and murdered. At the same time, Marybeth opens an unmarked package at the library where she works and finds a photo album that belonged to an infamous Nazi official. Who left it there? And why?
She learns that during World War II, several Wyoming soldiers were in the group that fought to Hitler’s Eagles Nest retreat in the Alps—and one of them took the Fuhrer’s personal photo album. Did another take this one and keep it all these years? When a close neighbor is murdered, Joe and Marybeth face new questions: Who is after the book? And how will they solve its mystery before someone hurts them…or their girls?
Meanwhile, Nate Romanowski is on the hunt for the man who stole his falcons and attacked his wife. Using a network of fellow falconers, Nate tracks the man from one city to another. Even as he grasps the true threat his quarry presents, Nate swoops in for the kill—and a stunning final showdown.
The Atlas Six , by Olivie Blake
The Alexandrian Society, caretakers of lost knowledge from the greatest civilizations of antiquity, are the foremost secret society of magical academicians in the world. Those who earn a place among the Alexandrians will secure a life of wealth, power, and prestige beyond their wildest dreams, and each decade, only the six most uniquely talented magicians are selected to be considered for initiation.
Enter the latest round of six: Libby Rhodes and Nico de Varona, unwilling halves of an unfathomable whole, who exert uncanny control over every element of physicality. Reina Mori, a naturalist, who can intuit the language of life itself. Parisa Kamali, a telepath who can traverse the depths of the subconscious, navigating worlds inside the human mind. Callum Nova, an empath easily mistaken for a manipulative illusionist, who can influence the intimate workings of a person’s inner self. Finally, there is Tristan Caine, who can see through illusions to a new structure of reality―an ability so rare that neither he nor his peers can fully grasp its implications.
When the candidates are recruited by the mysterious Atlas Blakely, they are told they will have one year to qualify for initiation, during which time they will be permitted preliminary access to the Society’s archives and judged based on their contributions to various subjects of impossibility: time and space, luck and thought, life and death. Five, they are told, will be initiated. One will be eliminated. The six potential initiates will fight to survive the next year of their lives, and if they can prove themselves to be the best among their rivals, most of them will.
The Book of Cold Cases , by Simone St. James
In 1977, Claire Lake, Oregon, was shaken by the Lady Killer Murders: Two men, seemingly randomly, were murdered with the same gun, with strange notes left behind. Beth Greer was the perfect suspect—a rich, eccentric twenty-three-year-old woman, seen fleeing one of the crimes. But she was acquitted, and she retreated to the isolation of her mansion.
Oregon, 2017. Shea Collins is a receptionist, but by night, she runs a true crime website, the Book of Cold Cases—a passion fueled by the attempted abduction she escaped as a child. When she meets Beth by chance, Shea asks her for an interview. To Shea’s surprise, Beth says yes.
They meet regularly at Beth’s mansion, though Shea is never comfortable there. Items move when she’s not looking, and she could swear she’s seen a girl outside the window. The allure of learning the truth about the case from the smart, charming Beth is too much to resist, but even as they grow closer, Shea senses something isn’t right. Is she making friends with a manipulative murderer, or are there other dangers lurking in the darkness of the Greer house?
High Stakes , by Danielle Steel
Jane Addison is an ambitious young woman with big dreams of owning her own company someday. At twenty-eight, she arrives in New York to start a job at Fletcher and Benson, a prestigious talent agency. Eager to impress her new colleagues, Jane jumps right in as an assistant to Hailey West, one of the agents in the literary department.
Hailey is dedicated to the authors she represents, but her home life is chaotic and challenging. After her husband’s tragic and untimely death, she was left widowed with three children to raise on her own.
Then there’s Francine Rivers, the stern and accomplished head of the literary department. Also a single mom after her husband’s affair with the nanny, she has overcome the resulting financial hardships, but only with unbearable sacrifice.
Compared to Hailey and Francine, drama agent Allie Moore’s life seems much more carefree and uncomplicated. She relishes her success and loves working with the talented actors they represent—until a passionate relationship with one of her rising star clients threatens to derail her career.
Merriwether Jones is the CFO for the agency. She appears to have it all—beauty, success, and a perfect marriage until her husband's jealousy over her career threatens to blow everything up.
Even though she’s a newcomer, Jane quickly realizes that there are damaging secrets hidden behind the doors of Fletcher and Benson. As one of the youngest employees, she has the least power, but is also the least willing to accept things as they have been for years. When she puts everything on the line to right these wrongs, the consequences will leave no one unscathed.
In this riveting novel, Danielle Steel tells the story of a group of remarkable women navigating the challenges of balancing their families, their personal lives and the high stakes of ambition at the top of their game.
The 1619 Project , by Nikole Hannah-Jones
In late August 1619, a ship arrived in the British colony of Virginia bearing a cargo of twenty to thirty enslaved people from Africa. Their arrival led to the barbaric and unprecedented system of American chattel slavery that would last for the next 250 years. This is sometimes referred to as the country’s original sin, but it is more than that: It is the source of so much that still defines the United States.
The New York Times Magazine’s award-winning “1619 Project” issue reframed our understanding of American history by placing slavery and its continuing legacy at the center of our national narrative. This new book substantially expands on that work, weaving together eighteen essays that explore the legacy of slavery in present-day America with thirty-six poems and works of fiction that illuminate key moments of oppression, struggle, and resistance. The essays show how the inheritance of 1619 reaches into every part of contemporary American society, from politics, music, diet, traffic, and citizenship to capitalism, religion, and our democracy itself.
This is a book that speaks directly to our current moment, contextualizing the systems of race and caste within which we operate today. It reveals long-glossed-over truths around our nation’s founding and construction—and the way that the legacy of slavery did not end with emancipation, but continues to shape contemporary American life.