• The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy

    The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy by Megan Bannen

    RECOMMENDED: The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy by Megan Bannen is still $2.99! Sarah loved this one and gave it an A-:

    If you like fantasy with characters that might sound like your neighbors sometimes, in a world with big stakes and little stakes and magical talking animals who deliver the mail, and especially if you like epistolary novels that lead to characters becoming more of themselves, you’ll like this undertaking. (Bad dum bum.)

    Hart Ralston is a demigod and a marshal, tasked with patrolling the wasteland of Tanria. The realm the exiled old gods once called home is now a forsaken place where humans with no better options or no better sense come seeking adventure or spoils, but more often end up as drudges: reanimated corpses inhabited by the souls of those who’ve died in Tanria before. Hart tells himself that his job is simple: neutralize the drudges with a quick zap to the appendix and deliver them back to polite society at the nearest undertaker’s, leaving the whys and hows of the drudge problem for men without the complexities of a god in their family tree. But working alone, Hart’s got nothing but time to ponder exactly those questions he’d most like to avoid.

    Too much time alone is the opposite of Mercy Birdsall’s problem. Since her father’s decline, she’s been single-handedly keeping Birdsall & Son undertakers afloat in small-town Eternity—despite definitely not being a son, and in defiance of sullen jerks like Hart Ralston, who seems to have a gift for showing up right when her patience is thinnest. The work’s not the problem—Mercy’s good at it, better than any other Birdsall—but keeping all her family’s plates spinning singlehandedly, forever, isn’t how Mercy envisioned her future.

    After yet another run-in with the sharp-tongued Mercy, Hart considers she might have a point about his utter loneliness being a bit of a liability. In a moment of sentimentality, he pens a letter addressed simply to “A Friend,” and entrusts it to a nimkilim, an anthropomorphic animal messenger with an uncanny connection to the gods, (and in Hart’s case, a bit of a drinking problem). Much to his surprise, an anonymous letter comes back in return, and a tentative friendship is born.

    If only Hart knew he’s been baring his soul to the person who infuriates him most–Mercy. As the two unlikely pen pals grow closer, the truth about Hart’s parentage and the nature of the drudges creeps in. And suddenly their old animosity seems so small in comparison to what they might be able to do: end the drudges forever. But at what cost?

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  • Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe

    Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe by Heather Webber

    Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe by Heather Webber is $1.99! This seems to be women’s fiction with some magical realism and yummy food descriptions. Seeing as I love Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen a lot, this should be right up my alley, but I’ve been hesitant to add it to my TBR.

    Nestled in the mountain shadows of Alabama lies the little town of Wicklow. It is here that Anna Kate has returned to bury her beloved Granny Zee, owner of the Blackbird Café.

    It was supposed to be a quick trip to close the café and settle her grandmother’s estate, but despite her best intentions to avoid forming ties or even getting to know her father’s side of the family, Anna Kate finds herself inexplicably drawn to the quirky Southern town her mother ran away from so many years ago, and the mysterious blackbird pie everybody can’t stop talking about.

    As the truth about her past slowly becomes clear, Anna Kate will need to decide if this lone blackbird will finally be able to take her broken wings and fly.

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  • Fly with Me

    Fly with Me by Andie Burke

    Fly with Me by Andie Burke is $2.99! Dahlia featured this one on a previous, monthly queer romance round-up. Dahlia was excited about a new-to-her sapphic romance author.

    A one-way ticket to love or a bumpy ride ahead?

    Flying-phobic ER nurse Olive Murphy is still gripping the armrest from her first-ever take-off when the pilot announces an in-flight medical emergency. Olive leaps into action and saves a life, but ends up getting stuck in the airport hours away from the marathon she’s running in honor of her brother. Luckily for her, Stella Soriano, the stunning type A copilot, offers to give her a ride.

    After the two spend a magical day together, Stella makes a surprising Will Olive be her fake girlfriend?

    A video of Olive saving a life has gone viral and started generating big sales for Stella’s airline. Stella sees their union as the perfect opportunity to get to the boys’ club executives at her company who keep overlooking her for a long-deserved promotion. Realizing this arrangement could help her too, Olive dives into memorizing Stella’s comically comprehensive three-ring-binder guide to fake dating. As the two grow closer, what’s supposed to be a ruse feels more and more real. Could this be the romantic ride of their lives, or an epic crash and burn?

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  • World of Wonders

    World of Wonders by Aimee Nezhukumatathil

    World of Wonders by Aimee Nezhukumatathil is $3.99! I mentioned this one on a previous Get Rec’d! It’s great if you love learning cool things about nature.

    From beloved, award-winning poet Aimee Nezhukumatathil comes a debut work of nonfiction–a collection of essays about the natural world, and the way its inhabitants can teach, support, and inspire us.

    As a child, Nezhukumatathil called many places home: the grounds of a Kansas mental institution, where her Filipina mother was a doctor; the open skies and tall mountains of Arizona, where she hiked with her Indian father; and the chillier climes of western New York and Ohio. But no matter where she was transplanted–no matter how awkward the fit or forbidding the landscape–she was able to turn to our world’s fierce and funny creatures for guidance.

    “What the peacock can do,” she tells us, “is remind you of a home you will run away from and run back to all your life.” The axolotl teaches us to smile, even in the face of unkindness; the touch-me-not plant shows us how to shake off unwanted advances; the narwhal demonstrates how to survive in hostile environments. Even in the strange and the unlovely, Nezhukumatathil finds beauty and kinship. For it is this way with wonder: it requires that we are curious enough to look past the distractions in order to fully appreciate the world’s gifts.

    Warm, lyrical, and gorgeously illustrated by Fumi Nakamura, World of Wonders is a book of sustenance and joy.

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