The Unnatural History of Cypress Parish, by Elise Blackwell,Unbridled Books Publisher. March 2007.
Excellent literary novel written by Elise Blackwell, Creative Writing teacher at the University of South Carolina. She writes beautifully, even though her subject is the flooding of communities around New Orleans in 1926. Naturally, you can't forget the recent disaster in New Orleans as you read the novel. One theme: History repeats itself, if we refuse to learn from it. "
"Secrets From Lulu's Cafe, Desperate Pastors' Wives," by Ginger Kolbaba & Christy Scannell, Howard Fiction, publisher, 2007.
The title is a little "off-putting," but I think this book probably has more depth than its cover betrays.
Looks to be a very honest portrayal of the difficulties pastors' wives have dealing with the problems of living life: except, that we expect, no, demand is more likely, that they be perfect. No mistakes allowed, and "she'd better speak to me first!"
The Watchers, by Mark Anderson Olsen, bestselling author of The Assignment, Bethany House, 2007.
This is an excellent 'spiritual thriller. It has the high-stakes suspense similar to "Left Behind" series, but the writing is excellent. I love the opening passage that describes a murder scene through the unusual perspective of a freshly, but bloodied, murdered woman!
"The blue flickers of her television danced across the housekeeper's unmoving pupils. She never budged a muscle, nor leveled the odd tilt of her head, nor wiped the crimson trickles crisscrossing her neck, nor rose from the stain darkening the sofa cushions beneath her. Nor did she notice that, twenty feet away, a man gripping the weapon of her murder had now reached the bedroom door of her 'angelic one... No, deep in the final tremors of her death, the housekeeper did not hear her assailant turn the bedroom's door handle or seem him enter the room. Nor did she scream when he took two padded strides into shadow."
And it gets much more intense after that.
Sacred Causes, The Clash of Religion and Politics, From the Great War to the War on Terror, by Michael Burleigh, HarperCollins Publishers, 2007.
An excellent social history detailing how religion can be usurped and camouflaged by politics. A favorite tantalizing thought: "The 1960s era brought to the forefront "forces that seemed to be turning Europe into a post-Christian desert, in which "wisdom" would be represented by the lyrics of John Lennon."