The time for the festival is almost approaching, and as bloggers and authors get ready for their special Saturday in Orlando, I grow more and more excited by the wonderful literary offerings I’m uncovering daily. Here’s the second installment of some of the wonderful books that will be featured at the UCF Orlando Book Festival, and they are some good books indeed. If you’re considering attending the event, it will be held on April 16th at the UCF Arena, and not only will there be some great opportunities to find that perfect book, there will be numerous panels and chances to hobnob with some great authors. Take a peek at some of the great books that will be featured!
The Weird Sisters, by Elenor Brown
The Andreas sisters were raised on books – their family motto might as well be, "There’s no problem a library card can’t solve." Their father, a renowned, eccentric professor of Shakespearean studies, named them after three of the Bard’s most famous characters: Rose (Rosalind – As You Like It), Bean (Bianca – The Taming of the Shrew), and Cordy (Cordelia – King Lear), but they’ve inherited those characters’ failures along with their strengths.
Now the sisters have returned home to the small college town where they grew up – partly because their mother is ill, but mostly because their lives are falling apart and they don’t know where to go next. Rose, a staid mathematics professor, has the chance to break away from her quiet life and join her devoted fiancé in England, if she could only summon up the courage to do more than she’s thought she could. Bean left home as soon as she could, running to the glamour of New York City, only to come back ashamed of the person she has become. And Cordy, who has been wandering the country for years, has been brought back to earth with a resounding thud, realizing it’s finally time for her to grow up.
The sisters never thought they would find the answers to their problems in each other, but over the course of one long summer, they find that everything they’ve been running from - each other, their histories, and their small hometown - might offer more than they ever expected.
Sex and Death, I Suppose, by Michael Colonnese
Pete Lomardo, the blue-collar private eye who narrates Sex and Death, I Suppose, isn't the kind of hard-boiled investigator that discriminating readers normally encounter in noir fiction. Pete's kinky, bankrupt, alcoholic, and bookish; he'll take all the divorce work he can get. But with an unfaithful psychoanalyst as his girlfriend and a rotten reputation with the mob, if Pete should so happen to run afoul of a cadre of lesbian Islamic terrorist while attempting to broker a sweet little real estate deal on the side, he might discover true love and solve a fifty-year-old murder mystery.
This Lovely Life, by Vicki Forman
Vicki Forman gave birth to Evan and Ellie at twenty-three weeks gestation and weighing just a pound at birth. During the delivery, she begged the doctors to "let her babies go"–she knew all too well that at twenty three weeks they could very well die, and if they survived, they would face a high risk of permanent disabilities. However, California law demanded resuscitation. Her daughter died just four days later; her son survived and was indeed multiply-disabled.
Winner of the PEN Center Literary Award in Creative Nonfiction and the Bread Loaf Writers Conference Bakeless Prize in Creative Nonfiction, This Lovely Life tells, with brilliant intensity, of what became of the Forman family after the birth of the twins–the harrowing medical interventions; and, ethical considerations involving the sanctity of life and death. In the end, the long-delayed first steps of a five-year-old child will seem like the fist-pumping stuff of a triumph narrative. Forman's intelligent voice gives a sensitive, nuanced rendering of her guilt, her anger, and her eventual acceptance in this portrait of a mother's fierce love for her children.
Rattlesnakes and the Moon, by Darlin’ Neal
These are haunting stories of people bearing the burdens of ordinary life a lot more completely than most of us ever do. Wives and mothers of inmates, sisters of sisters killed in motorcycle accidents, that wonderful-but-dreary Louisiana swampishness pervasive in these eloquent and exquisitely rendered tales of hardship. These are dark stories lit by headlights and lightning, fluorescent signs and tall highway lights, tough stories so real that they have the scent of the lived-through about them, which is testament to Darlin' Neal's extraordinary gift for prose and story.
Delirious by Daniel Palmer
Charlie Giles is at the top of his game. An electronics superstar, he's sold his start-up company to a giant Boston firm, where he's now a senior director. With his dog, Monte, at his side, Charlie is treated like a VIP everywhere he goes.
Then one day, everything in Charlie's neatly ordered world starts to go terrifyingly wrong. His prestigious job and his inventions are wrenched away from him. His family is targeted, and his former employers are dying gruesomely, picked off one by one. Every sign, every shred of evidence, points to Charlie as a cold-blooded killer. And soon Charlie is unable to tell whether he's succumbed to the pressures of work and become the architect of his own destruction, or whether he's the victim of a relentless, diabolical attack.
In a desperate struggle to save his life, Charlie races to uncover the truth, all the while realizing that nothing can be trusted—least of all his own fractured mind…
See what I mean? The selection and range of these books are incredible and impressive, and I can’t wait to be immersed in the bookishness of it all! Stay tuned for more information on the event.