Have No Shame by Melissa Foster (2013). Coming-of-age story set in 1967 Arkansas. Alison “Pixie” Tillman, age 18, experiences a perfect storm of things that cause her to question the world around her and her status of privilege as a young white woman in a segregated society. She finds a body in the river—a black man beaten to death. She meets Jackson, a young black man who is going to become very important to her. Her sister comes back for a visit from New York with talk of what’s happening in other places in terms of civil rights. Pixie’s path in life is permanently altered.
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum (1900). I read this classic tale to Maya a few chapters a night at bedtime. I remember seeing parts of the Judy Garland movie as a child, particularly the terrifying flying monkeys, yet this was my first experience with reading the book. The story is engaging and imaginative, and I don’t know why I waited so long to read it.
Sick Bastard (Sick and Twisted Series) by Jaci J (2015). This is definitely a cliffhanger, and the second book isn’t out yet. Dante is determined to infiltrate London’s life. She calls him her stalker, and he definitely is a stalker. The author does a good job of having Dante grow on the reader the same way he grows on London, though, helped by the fact that we alternate between the characters’ points of view. Then, just when it seems like the two might be settled into a relationship, the truth about Dante’s initial interest in London is revealed. Will the second book be about revenge, compromise, or something else entirely? I’ll be interested to see.