Today’s blog continues on last week’s theme of asking other writers to recommend gift books for friends and family. If you missed last week’s recommendations, you’ll find them here. https://lauralangston.com/the-gift-of-reading/
This week, the focus is on fiction for young and old. It’s an eclectic mix: two middle grade recommendations, a YA free verse novel, and fiction for adults ranging from romance and crime to historical and humor. As I mentioned last week, be sure to check out the bios and books of the authors who are offering suggestions. Many of their titles are ideal for gift giving as well.
Sylvia McNicoll: Bright Shining Moment by Deb Lougheed (Second Story Press). Perfect for a family read aloud before or after Christmas, Bright Shining Moment is a heartwarming story about old timey hard times when the people who seemed the poorest in material things turn out to be the richest in love. Francois Tisdale’s beautiful cover illustration evokes warm seasonal feelings. Ages 8 – 12.
Sylvia McNicoll’s latest book is The Diamond Mistake Mystery (Dundurn Press) sylviamcnicoll.com
Lee Edward Fodi: Finding Cooper by Stacey Matson (Scholastic). A mystery inspired by the real-life story of D.B Cooper, a famous skyjacker who escaped with a load of cash in 1971. Fodi loved the story because it’s set in the Pacific Northwest and has a lot of humor and heart. Ages 9 – 12.
Lee Edward Fodi’s latest book is The Secret of Zoone (https://www.leefodi.com/books/secret_of_zoone.html)
Darlene Foster: Baggage by Wendy Phillips (Coteau Books) One of the best YA novels Foster has read in a long time, Baggage is the story of a mysterious young African man who speaks no English and turns up abandoned at the Vancouver airport. Written in free verse, this contemporary and timely novel highlights the efforts over several months of three teens and two adults to overturn the government decision to deport him. Ages 13 and up.
Darlene Foster’s most recent release is Amanda in Holland: Missing in Action. http://www.darlenefoster.ca/
Charis Cotter: One for the Rock by Kevin Major (Breakwater Books). A Newfoundland murder mystery with a flawed but likeable detective, this clever story keeps you guessing until the end. Cotter is a murder mystery aficionado and says Major hits all the high notes of a whodunnit with charm and humor.
Charis Cotter’s latest book is The Ghost Road, also set in Newfoundland. http://chariscotter.ca/index.php/books/ghost-road/
Liz Walker: Learning to Swim by Sara J. Henry (Broadway Books). A single woman dives headlong from a ferry into Lake Champlain to rescue a child, and then must figure out what to do with him. A blend of mystery, women’s fiction and romance, Walker found the book so gripping she didn’t want to put it down.
Visit Liz Walker’s website here: www.lizwalkerwords.com
Barbara McDonell: Come, Thou Tortoise by Jessica Grant (Vintage Canada). Offbeat and charming, this novel features an opinionated tortoise named Winnifred and Audrey, a quirky heroine appropriately nicknamed Oddly. Her perspective (and the perspective of her pet tortoise Winnifred) are laugh-out-loud funny, even as the story deals with Audrey’s difficulty to accept the unexpected demise of her beloved father who raised her alone. A light-hearted read where the heroine applies the rules of the board game Clue to deal with many of life’s quandaries.
Barbara McDonell is the author of The Clutter Queen Spills: Insider Secrets Divulged in Three Simple Steps https://amzn.to/36bfBTO
Rachel Goldsworthy: News of the World by Paulette Jiles (William Morrow) Set in post-Civil War Texas, this is the story of 71-year-old Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd and his unlikely ward, a 10-year-old girl rescued by the U.S. Army after being captured by Kiowa. Kidd reluctantly agrees to transport the child safely back to her family. Goldsworthy called the novel a page turner and said as soon as she finished it, she searched out another novel by the same author.
Rachel Goldworth’s latest read is Green Spirits, a Corsair’s Cove Companion short story. https://rachelgoldsworthy.com