I didn't get to write an IMM post last week, so this one will be a bit longer than usual!
Silent in the Grave by Deanna Raybourn: "LET THE WICKED BE ASHAMED, AMD LET THEM BE SILENT IN THE GRAVE."
These ominous words, slashed from the pages of a book of Psalms, are the last threat that the darling of London society, Sir Edward Grey, receives from his killer. Before he can show them to Nicholas Brisbane, the private inquiry agent he has retained for his protection, Sir Edward collapses and dies at his London home, in the presence of his wife, Julia, and a roomful of dinner guests.
Prepared to accept that Edward's death was due to a long-standing physical infirmity, Julia is outraged when Brisbane visits and suggests that Sir Edward has been murdered. It is a reaction she comes to regret when she discovers the damning paper for herself, and realizes the truth.
Determined to bring her husband's murderer to justice, Julia engages the enigmatic Brisbane to help her investigate Edward's demise. Dismissing his warnings that the investigation will be difficult, if not impossible, Julia presses forward, following a trail of clues that lead her to even more unpleasant truths, and ever closer to a killer who waits expectantly for her arrival.
Murder? Mystery? Romance? ENGLISH MEN? I'm there.
Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors by Carl Sagan and Ann Druyan: The world's most celebrated team of science writers explores the origins of human life on Earth--a wonderfully entertaining and awe-inspiring excursion through more than a billion years of evolution. Beginning with a vivid account of Darwin and his theory of evolution, the authors set out to reconstruct the forgotten links in our chain of being, thus illuminating our ability to understand and change ourselves.
This sounds like a fascinating read! I adored Sagan's Dragons of Eden, and I hear this one is even better, so I can't wait!
Survival of the Prettiest by Nancy L. Etcoff: In this provocative, witty, and thoroughly researched inquiry into what we find beautiful and why, Nancy Etcoff skewers one of our culture's most enduring myths, that the pursuit of beauty is a learned behavior. Etcoff, a faculty member at Harvard Medical School and a practicing psychologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, skewers the enduring myth that the pursuit of beauty is a learned behavior.
Etcoff puts forth that beauty is neither a cultural construction, an invention of the fashion industry, nor a backlash against feminism, but instead is in our biology. It's an essential and ineradicable part of human nature that is revered and ferociously pursued in nearly every civilizatoin—and for good reason. Those features to which we are most attracted are often signals of fertility and fecundity. When seen in the context of a Darwinian struggle for survival, our sometimes extreme attempts to attain beauty—both to become beautiful ourselves and to acquire an attractive partner—become understandable. Moreover, if we come to understand how the desire for beauty is innate, then we can begin to work in our interests, and not soley for the interests of our genetic tendencies.
This one sounds intriguing! I'm actually quite excited to begin this.
Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr: All teenagers have problems, but few of them can match those of Aislinn, who has the power to see faeries. Quite understandably, she wishes that she could share her friends' obliviousness and tries hard to avoid these invisible intruders. But one faery in particular refuses to leave her alone. Keenan the Summer King is convinced beyond all reasoning that Aislinn is the queen he has been seeking for nine centuries. What's a 21st-century girl to do when she's stalked by a suitor nobody else can see? A debut fantasy romance for the ages; superlative summer read.
I'm a bit tired of all the fairy-vampire-werewolf-zombie-angel stories out there, but I've heard so many good things about this one, I just had to give it a try.
Grace by Elizabeth Scott: Grace was raised to be an Angel, a herald of death by suicide bomb. But she refuses to die for the cause, and now Grace is on the run, daring to dream of freedom. In search of a border she may never reach, she travels among malevolent soldiers on a decrepit train crawling through the desert. Accompanied by the mysterious Kerr, Grace struggles to be invisible, but the fear of discovery looms large as she recalls the history and events that delivered her uncertain fate.
Told in spare, powerful prose by acclaimed author Elizabeth Scott, this tale of a dystopian near future will haunt readers long after they've reached the final page.
Scott has beautiful writing, and that made me fall in love with her Living Dead Girl, so I'm sure this one will be just as good, if not better!
Logic of Demons by H. A. Goodman: Received for review. I've already read it, and the review will be up tomorrow.
Zan-Gah by Allan Richard Schickman : Received for review.