If you could choose your perfect world, what would it look like? The characters in Endurance of the Free by James Litherland, third in his Miraibanashi trilogy, are out to change their technologically superior world into something more human, but they'll have to ponder the implications of every change they make. Meanwhile they're striving to hide, fight or flee in an intriguingly futuristic Japanese world of overlords and underlings. There's lots of food for thought--what world would you choose? Drink some bold dark intense five-star coffee while you think.
The Japanese world of Miraibanashi stands in contrast to the starkly real and vividly different world of Then She Was Born by Cristiano Gentili. Both worlds might seem strange to modern American readers, but Then She Was Born is set in a very real present-day Tanzania, highlighting the plight of albino Africans and misfits everywhere. It's a terrifying, haunting tale--a difficult read at times, but powerful and evocative of the way we all should choose to change our world. Enjoy with some more bold dark intense five-star coffee.
The Maze by Tony Bertauski presents a similarly intriguing view into a future world, this one dominated by computer gaming pseudo-reality. Real-world genius and loss combine with cyber-world adventure, creating something deeply compelling and surprising. Drink some more bold dark intense five-star coffee as the protagonists seeks a way out.
Set the Night on Fire by Libby Fischer Hellmann takes readers to the 1960s to solve a mystery in the present day, as a young woman sees all the patterns of her life fall apart. It's smoothly evocative, scarily real, and surprisingly relevant to the present. Enjoy with, yes, more dark five-star coffee, and find the world of the recent past not so different from today.
But perhaps you'd rather choose a different part of the present world. My Italian Bulldozer by Alexander McCall Smith invites readers to share a few weeks in Italy--evocative, filled with wondrous wines, delicious food and glorious scenery, and viewed from the front seat of a ... bulldozer ... this novel invites, welcomes and rewards the willing suspension of disbelief and is thoroughly enjoyable. Drink some fine wine as you read, or a fine cup of smooth, full-flavored three-star coffee.
Blending present and distant past, The Last Oracle by James Rollins is an exciting action adventure novel, filled with political and historical intrigue, clever mystery, and genuine heart. It's part of a series, but it stands alone as a deeper Da Vinci Code with more terror and heart. Drink some dark five-star coffee again!
Finally Hag-seed by Margaret Atwood offers a tale set firmly in the real world, oddly influenced by a possible fantasy world, wholly devoted to the presentation of a Shakespearean world as revealed in the Tempest. It works, on every imaginable level, keeping the reader guessing, leading, misleading, and building to a wonderful climax. Enjoy with some elegantly complex four-star coffee. I loved it!
So, what world would you choose?