Following the great panel discussion the Center and the L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library hosted in Writing OUT, March's books showcase the talents and imaginations of the panelists who visited and shared their knowledge, experience, and wisdom. In fact, all four of the books for this month come from the event itself, and are even signed by the authors!
We start with the contemporary urban fantasy duology, Silver Moon and Blood Moon by Catherine Lundoff. The books shift the spotlight from the kind of characters normally centered in the genre to introduce Becca Thornton, a woman who's already lived a bit of life and whose personal history has its shares of ups and downs. There are plenty of new things to do and learn, though, when she finds herself shifting into wolf form and dragged into the local shapeshifter politics. From the publisher, about Silver Moon:
"Becca Thornton, divorced, middle-aged and trying to embrace her quiet life, discovers that life still holds plenty of surprises when menopause comes with bonus lycanthropy. And she’s not the only one. The dull and seemingly peaceful town of Wolf’s Point has its own all-female werewolf pack and Becca is about to become its newest member. But it’s not all midnight meetings at the Women’s Club, monthly runs through the woods and keeping the town safe. Becca’s cute lesbian neighbor, Erin, is starting to haunt her dreams as well as her doorstep. And there are werewolf hunters in town and they’ve got Becca and the Wolf’s Point Pack in their sights."
Kat Weaver and Emily Bergslien's Uncommon Charm is a mix of genres unfolding in a gothic-tinged 1920s. Part ghost story, part adventure, the book balances hope and horror as the characters navigate the thorny path from repression to freedom. From the publisher:
"In the 1920s gothic comedy Uncommon Charm, bright young socialite Julia and shy Jewish magician Simon decide they aren’t beholden to their families’ unhappy history. Together they confront such horrors as murdered ghosts, alive children, magic philosophy, a milieu that slides far too easily into surrealist metaphor, and, worst of all, serious adult conversation."
And finally, even further into history, J.M. Lee imagines two youths joining up with the Pony Express in the antebellum past in The Nightland Express. Each of the pair have different reasons for wanting to take the dangerous assignment of crossing the fledgling country, and both will find something on the way that they weren't expecting that just might help them to understand themselves better. From the author:
"In antebellum America, two teens bury their secrets and join the historic Pony Express, soon discovering that the mortal world is not the only one on the brink of war. When bright, brash Jessamine Murphy finds a recruitment poster for the Pony Express, her tomboy heart skips a beat: not only for adventure, but for the chance to track down her wayward father in California. Eager to reunite her fractured family, Jessamine cuts her hair, dons a pair of trousers, and steps into the world as Jesse. With a bit of trickery, Jesse wins a special assignment—as does Ben Foley, a quiet but determined boy who guards secrets as closely as Jesse does. The two are to transport unusual cargo along an unusual route: the Nightland Express. They ride west together, one excitedly navigating the world as a boy, the other passing as white to escape the monsters of his past."