“When my publishing house assigned Paul Zablocki to copyedit my debut novel, The Promise Kitchen, my editor told me I’d won the lottery. She got that right. I write food-centric women’s fiction, and Mr. Zablocki handled my project with enthusiasm, intellect, passion, and vision. His willingness to be swept into my stories, his attention to detail, and the advice he gave me was astute and inspirational. I was thrilled when he was assigned to copyedit my second, soon-to-be-released book, The Welcome Home Diner. I heartily endorse Mr. Zablocki for your copyediting needs.”
Food, friendship, family, and a fresh start.
Shelby Preston, a young single mother, is at a crossroads. She feels suffocated by her hardscrabble life in rural Georgia and dreams of becoming a professional chef. Lord knows her family could use a pot of something good. In Atlanta, Mallory Lakes is reeling from a bad breakup. The newspaper food columnist is also bracing for major changes at work that could put her job at risk. Determined to find the perfect recipe for how to reinvent herself, she gets involved in the growing farm-to-table movement. But an emotional setback threatens to derail everything she’s worked for. — Amazon
“I want to note how much I enjoyed Paul’s work on the manuscript. I felt that we were really on the same page, and I appreciated his input and his expertise (and his sense of humor!).”
Shane Sullivan, a.k.a. the Transporter, channels his need for speed into top-secret delivery runs for the Hudson Kings, an elite band of mercenaries. His precious cargo has never talked back—until now. He’s riding to the rescue of his fellow team member’s sister, who’s fleeing her abusive boyfriend. His job: steer clear of trouble and get her to New York City in one piece. But he didn’t count on her driving him to distraction. Now he needs to keep both hands on the wheel—and off his best friend’s sister. Cecily Keegan has a poor track record when it comes to falling for charming bad guys. So although she’s grateful for this hard-bodied wheelman’s protection, she’s terrified of listening to her heart, which has been racing since she got into his backseat. But when she learns that the danger is far greater than a possessive ex, she has to trust Shane—and the strength inside herself—to deliver her from evil. — Amazon
“[C]opyeditor Paul Zablocki read the manuscript closely, attentively, and respectfully, appreciating its various charms, correcting its sundry lapses, and polishing the whole to a higher sheen.”
An unthinkable terrorist plot: The earth is shaking. The clock is ticking.
Astronomer Megan O’Malley sees things on a cosmic scale—hidden planets, colliding galaxies, imploding stars deep in the universe. But this time, she’s sensing something much closer to home. And she can feel it underfoot, too: explosive seismic shifts along a geologic fault line that could unleash an apocalyptic disaster. O’Malley also discovers something even more terrifying: the cataclysm is intentional. Someone is determined to trigger a mega tsunami. FBI Special Agent Chip Dawtry is a big-picture guy, too. He lost his brother on 9/11, and ever since, he’s focused on preventing the next massive terrorist attack. Now, it isn’t hypothetical—it’s unfolding fast. But only he and O’Malley see the peril. When O’Malley vanishes, Dawtry races to find her. It’s up to them to stop a 150-foot wall of water ready to roil—and wipe out America’s Eastern Seaboard. Each new terrifying rumble means it may be too late. — Amazon
Carol M. Cram
“I particularly wish to thank . . . Paul Zablocki for his insightful and much-appreciated copyedit. He did a great job. [His] comments and edits really did make a big difference for me.”
Abandoned at birth, the grandly christened Edward Plantagenet rises from London’s Foundling Hospital to take charge back stage at the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden, only to be blind-sided when he rescues Grace—a young woman escaping an abusive father. Through Ned, Grace finds an outlet for her passions in the theater. But a web of lies as tangled as any woven through a Shakespearean tragedy mars the pathway to stardom that Grace craves. Set against the backdrop of the Old Price Riots of 1809—the longest running theatrical riots in British history—Grace and Ned find common purpose in a quest that threatens to tear both their worlds apart.—Amazon
James W. Hall
An Amazon Charts bestseller.
After her journalist husband and infant son are brutally executed in a fire in their Florida home, photographer Harper McDaniel has nothing left to live for—except settling the score. When the local police fail to take the arson seriously, Harper takes the reins and discovers her husband was investigating some mysterious deaths at a cacao plantation on the Ivory Coast. Now she’s convinced he was targeted in a corporate conspiracy to silence him. Aided by her former mafioso grandfather and well-connected financier brother, Harper embarks on a global manhunt, flying first to Africa, then Zurich to expose a high-level cover-up inside a powerful chocolate conglomerate. But Harper has a few secrets of her own—starting with her lethal martial arts skills—and she’s not afraid to take on any hired guns or guerrillas standing in her way. In trying to cover their tracks, the conspirators made one fatal miscalculation: they didn’t count on Harper McDaniel coming for them.—Amazon
“I am particularly grateful . . . for the meticulous work of copy editor Paul Zablocki.”
To stay sane, Andie Tilly must keep her mind on her work. Her job as a pediatric occupational therapist is the perfect distraction from the unspeakable tragedy she experienced as a child. But when she meets alternative-energy magnate Rhys Griffiths and his autistic toddler, Will, she quickly realizes her heart will never be the same. Especially when her name becomes Will’s first word. After accepting a position as a live-in therapist for Will, Andie steels herself against the appeal of the disconcertingly attractive—and attracted—Rhys. But their chemistry can no longer be denied, and their heated affair seems destined for happily ever after. A destiny Andie’s terrified to embrace. When Andie’s guilt, Rhys’s awkwardness, and the abrupt appearance of an erratic ex threaten to dismantle their delicately blooming relationship, they must decide if love is worth the challenge. Can Andie and Rhys find their way back to each other? Or will the demons of the past simply prove too strong? — Amazon
“How lucky I am to have a kindred spirit copyedit this book. Your enthusiasm for my characters , not to mention your culinary expertise, was so very much appreciated.”
Betting on the city of Detroit’s eventual comeback, cousins Addie and Samantha decide to risk it all on an affordable new house and a culinary career that starts with renovating a vintage diner in a depressed area of town. There’s just one little snag in their vision. Angus, a weary, beloved local, is strongly opposed to his neighborhood’s gentrification—and his concerns reflect the suspicion of the community. Shocked by their reception, Addie and Samantha begin to have second thoughts. As the long hours, problematic love interests, and underhanded pressures mount, the two women find themselves increasingly at odds, and soon their problems threaten everything they’ve worked for. If they are going to realize their dreams, Addie and Samantha must focus on rebuilding their relationship. But will the neighborhood open their hearts to welcome them home?— Amazon
Speculative Historical Fiction
What if Branwell Bronte had not died before Emily? What if Charlotte was able to marry her “Mr. Rochester”? What if the Misses Bronte's Establishment actually found a pupil: one who is taught by three geniuses? Meet Maria Shelby, spoiled—and rich—daughter of a knight in mid-Victorian England. Maria has a habit of getting in trouble: at eighteen, she’s already been sacked from six London schools and no one else will have her. Except: “The Misses Bronte’s Establishment,” in the remote Yorkshire village of Haworth. Maria is bundled off to Exile, to a land as strange to her as the Bronte’s imagined Gondal: she finds herself constantly freezing; the strange family she resides with actually recite Shakespeare at the table(!); the brother is a poesy-spouting firebrand; and as for the median Miss Bronte: let’s just say she’s a bit “lacking” when it comes to social skills. Yet with the passage of time, Maria—so ignorant she cannot add a simple sum or say “Hello” in French—comes to value her teachers: Charlotte, Emily, and Anne . . . Part suspense, part high comedy, part Victorian novel, The Misses Bronte’s Establishment takes the reader on a profound literary journey along with young Maria. — Amazon
The Cabots, Book 1
Author Jamie Beck returns with an engrossing series about family, friendship, and starting over. In this first Cabot novel, a legacy of secrets tests old friends seeking a second chance at life and love.
On the second anniversary of her husband’s suicide, Colby Cabot-Baxter is ready to let go of her grief and the mistakes made during her turbulent marriage. Her fresh start comes in the form of A CertainTea, the restaurant she’s set to open along Lake Sandy, Oregon, with help from her family. But when her executive chef quits just weeks before the grand opening, Colby is pressured to hire old family friend Alec Morgan. His award-winning reputation could generate buzz, but their friendship has withered since her husband’s reckless dare cost Alec’s brother his life. Distracted by guilty secrets concerning the tragedy that changed his and Colby’s lives, Alec self-destructed and lost his famed restaurant. With his career in tatters, he’s determined to use this opportunity to redeem his reputation and to help the woman he’s loved from afar find happiness again. But secrets have a way of coming out.—Amazon
When retired police detective Joe Heller is called in to investigate what might be Antarctica’s first murder, he quickly discovers that winter at McMurdo Station comes with a unique set of challenges: darkness, isolation, and the eccentric behavior of the research facility’s 157 inhabitants. But a difficult investigation turns much tougher when all communication with the outside world is suddenly cut off.
While Heller works diligently to reconstruct the scene of the crime, evidence mounts that a pathogenic event could be ravaging the rest of the planet. As night descends, fear mounts, and confusion reigns, the killer strikes again. If this is a global cataclysm, is someone now picking off the human race’s few remaining survivors? Is this the end of the world—or just the end of Joe Heller’s? — Amazon
A Heartbreaker Novel, Book 1
Dani Botelli has vowed to step out of her demanding movie star mother’s shadow, and is determined to start a new chapter in her life. But two men vying for her attention are making for double the trouble. There’s Jake, her police detective almost-ex who wasn’t so hot as a husband but still has the hots for Dani. And as usual, he needs her intuition and visions to help him solve a crime. Then there’s her high school crush, Michael, a former NFL pro who’s now her mom’s hunky lawyer. Working alongside Jake, while keeping her special gifts under wraps, is proving to be more dangerous than Dani realized. She needs to stay out of harm’s way—and out of Jake’s flirtatious path—long enough to find out if Michael is the one. But will her hard-to-explain hunches be the secret that comes between them?—Amazon
Contemporary Courtroom Drama
Attorney Ben Kincaid is back with the most controversial case of his career. Ben’s former friend, Oscar Kirby, an Iraq war vet subjected by the CIA to “enhanced interrogation techniques,” is the primary suspect when his “interrogator” is murdered. A dramatic trial unfolds in the courtroom–loaded with pitfalls, surprises, and a breathtaking betrayal. Something else, something very dangerous lurks on the perimeter of this case, and Ben must pull every trick he knows to uncover the truth—before it’s too late.—Amazon
M. R. Pritchard
Contemporary Otherworldly Fiction
“I am so grateful for and really appreciate Paul’s thoroughness, explanations, and commentary (many of the comments made me smile).”
Things aren’t so wonderful within the Seven Kingdoms of Heaven. Meg promised on Sparrow’s life not to leave, but Sparrow’s starting to act a little . . . strange. Again. The daughter of an Archangel and the Devil’s own spawn should know better than to expect two tickets to paradise without complications. But sometimes falling in love can change a world-weary country girl. Sometimes following your heart means losing your mind. — Amazon
He started the game. She’ll end it.
FBI special agent Clarke Sinclair doesn’t give up easily. She’s spent years tracking serial killer Simon Cross, forced to follow his twisted clues and photographs across the country. Clarke knows that Cross selects only redheaded women and that he doesn’t target another victim until Clarke discovers the previous one. He’s never broken pattern…until now. A girl has already gone missing in upstate New York when a second one is kidnapped—a blonde. The killer’s MO has changed, sending Clarke back to the drawing board. The closer she gets to the truth, the deeper she’s drawn into an inescapable trap made just for Clarke. Whatever Cross’s ultimate game is, it ends with her.—Amazon
This sexy romantic drama from New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Megan Hart explores the tangled lives—and loves—of childhood friends.
Everyone knew Alicia Harrison’s marriage to Ilya Stern wouldn’t last. They’d grown up on a remote stretch of Quarry Street, where there were two houses, two sets of siblings, and eventually, a tangled mess of betrayal, longing, and loss. Tragedy catapulted Allie and Ilya together, but divorce—even as neighbors—has been relatively uncomplicated. Then Ilya’s brother, Nikolai, comes home for their grandmother’s last days. He’s the guy who teased and fought with Allie, infuriated her, then fled town without a good-bye. Now Niko makes her feel something else entirely—a rush of connection and pure desire that she’s been trying to quench since one secret kiss years ago. Niko’s not sticking around. She’s not going to leave. And after all that’s happened between their families, this can’t be anything more than brief pleasure and a bad idea. But the lies we tell ourselves can’t compete with the truths our hearts refuse to let go . . . — Amazon
Contemporary Romantic Thriller
Nothing is more important to Blake Anderson than the work he does with his brothers at Ace Security. At least that’s what he thinks until he meets the fiercely independent Alexis Grant. The security firm’s new intern pushes all his buttons—and makes his temperature rise. But giving in to temptation might be risky business. Alexis can tell that Blake has his doubts about her ability to commit. But while most people look at her and see only a flighty rich girl, she knows he sees much more. Determined to prove herself to Blake, Alexis jumps at the chance to work undercover. And when her case takes a dangerous turn, she puts her trust—and her heart—in his hands. Now, as Alexis digs into the deadly secrets of a local gang, Blake will lay everything on the line to protect the woman he’s come to love.—Amazon
The Cabots, Book 2
For Hunter and Sara, getting married was easy. It’s staying together that’s the true test of love . . .
Hunter Cabot deeply loves two things: the international tea company he’s helped his father build, and his wife, Sara. From the moment he first saw her wide smile on their college campus years ago, Hunter fell hard. Yet now, with other family members pushing to sell the thriving business and Sara grieving their failure to start a family, he’s suddenly facing the crushing loss of both. The relentless ambition that Sara once admired in Hunter is now driving them apart. Each missed doctor’s appointment, neglected dinner date, and family squabble accentuates their differing priorities. Still, Sara struggles to create the home life they’d envisioned, until unsettling developments—both personal and professional—push them to the breaking point. When love is put to the ultimate test, can Hunter and Sara stop fighting each other long enough to fight for their marriage?—Amazon
A Heartbrealker Novel, Book 2
Archaeologist Gabby Knight has been living under an assumed identity to steer clear of her mobster father’s enemies. But when she suspects her father of plotting to steal a priceless statue buried in New Mexico, she risks everything and sets out for the desert to beat him to it—and to save him from making a grave mistake. Breaking into a secluded cabin to wait out a blizzard, she’s not worried about visitors. It’s not like anyone would be traveling in this kind of weather…right? Wrong. Detective Jake Morris has been ordered to take an overdue vacation, so he’s looking for some quiet time in the isolated retreat. But getting clobbered over the head by an auburn-haired firecracker wielding a cast-iron pan wasn’t the relaxing start he had in mind. Using a lot of charm and a little help from his prophetic ex-wife, Dani, he soon discovers who the sexy intruder really is. Serving justice is in Jake’s blood, so he can’t help but join Gabby on her quest to protect the statue and catch a thief. To properly do his job, Jake knows he can flirt but better not fall. After all, what kind of future could a cop and a mobster’s daughter hope to have?—Amazon
A pious princess determined to take the veil, and a warlord who will have her as his bride.
Ermenilda, a Kentish princess, is devastated when her father promises her to the exiled Mercian Prince, Wulfhere of Mercia. All Wulfhere has to do is renounce his pagan ways, convert to Christianity, and take back his territory from the Northumbrians. Initially, Ermenilda is sure Wulfhere will not succeed—however, her hopes are dashed when, crowned King of Mercia, he returns to her father’s hall to claim her. Trapped in a marriage she does not want, Ermenilda struggles between her unexpected passion for her husband and her hatred for his harsh, warmongering ways. Wulfhere, initially secure in the knowledge that he has claimed the only woman he will ever want, soon begins to realize that possessing a woman and owning her heart are not the same thing. — Amazon
In the tumultuous 1860s, David Whitlock enlists in the hellish Civil War, leaving his wife, Suzanna, to manage the family lumber mill. With a son keeping a Pony Express station in Paiute Indian country and a daughter campaigning for women's rights in mid-century Chicago, Suzanna finds herself a lone woman in a man's world. When reports of her husband’s death place the future of the mill at risk, she battles prejudice, loneliness, and greed to keep the estate intact as she struggles to reunite her scattered family. Set in what is arguably the most impactful decade in American history, Wild Whistling Blackbirds is a story of courage, love, independence, and resilience—immersing the reader in the fears, hopes, and possibilities that were reshaping a divided nation.
Tavish MacCraig, thirty-three-year-old Highlander, forsook his medical and military career, after being a POW for six months in Afghanistan, to run his family’s internationally renowned art gallery in London, The Blue Dot. Despite being surrounded by wealth and beauty, Tavish’s days are bleak, his nights, living nightmares, and his heart, an empty shell. But when he meets Irish painter Laetitia Galen, a powerful and sizzling attraction ignites between them. Laetitia, who fled hell on earth when she was sixteen, now works as a well-paid housekeeper in a forsaken country manor in Warwickshire and sells her paintings in an obscure gallery. To preserve her new life and recently found peace, she resists Tavish and The Blue Dot's enticing offer of an exclusive contract. Laetitia becomes Tavish’s obsession; Tavish, Laetitia’s unattainable dream. Meanwhile, a man with a burning grudge plots his long-awaited revenge which could destroy them all over again. Tavish and Laetitia will discover that falling in love is life's greatest risk! A thrilling romance made of loss, lust, and love.
M. R. Pritchard
A second chance at love is a fight to the very end. Guys like Alex Sullivan don’t come around every day, but when they do, they aren’t looking for girls like Morgan. She is the unexpected one, the unplanned daughter of parents who don’t want her; she has always stood in the shadow of her beautiful-but-dead twin sister. So when Morgan lands a marriage proposal from the handsome businessman, she pounces on the opportunity. While Morgan is basking in the joy of feeling wanted for once, Alex’s untimely death sends her life into a downward spiral, and she’s left picking up the pieces while the tabloids, pesky neighbors, and an eight-point buck haunt her. The only thing keeping Morgan grounded is her new found love of running. And then there’s her newly acquired business partner, stoic MMA fighter Nick “The Strangler” Stacks. Morgan and Nick have never been able to get along, but Alex’s tragic death forces them to interact when he leaves the two as owners of his successful gym. After years of tepid interactions, Morgan and Nick finally find that they have more in common than they previously thought, and it’s enough to make one of them want to tap out on their disastrous relationship for good. — Amazon
The events of one horrible night left Lady Abigail Langdon prisoner to a secret. A secret that would change the rest of her life. Something so important that protecting it would prevent her from loving a man she wasn’t sure she could live without. Ethan Cambridge, second son of the late Earl of Burnhaven, left his Caribbean hideout—the home of his heart—to try and salvage the mess his brother had made of the family’s estate. Just stepping onto English soil put his life at risk, but once he met the reclusive Lady Abigail Langdon, the only home he wanted was at her side. Except, he knew she was harboring a secret that prevented her from giving him her heart. — Amazon
Total solar eclipses are rare occurrences at any given location. The last one visible from anywhere in the continental United States was in 1979, in the Pacific Northwest. That's why the August 21, 2017, eclipse is a very big deal. It will offer an estimated sixty-five million people the chance to participate in this celestial phenomenon. Astronomy educator Chap Percival is passionate about this eclipse, especially about inspiring children to view it. This occasion will not only provide a teachable moment, it will also be an extraordinary experience that can't be appreciated through video or photographs. You really do have to be there! Go See the Eclipse explains what an eclipse is and why it's so special, describes the thrill of seeing a total solar eclipse, and gives specific advice on where to go, what to take, and how to prepare. The book also includes activities you can do with children to help them (and you!) understand what is happening in an eclipse and calls on everyone to do what they can to help the children in their lives witness this exciting, potentially life-changing spectacle. — Amazon
Memoir for Middle Schoolers
In the fifth book in the New York Times bestselling middle grade series inspired by the life of iconic New York Yankee Derek Jeter, Derek spends the summer with his grandparents in Pequannock Township, New Jersey.—Simon & Schuster
Contemporary Young Adult Fiction
Fox Benwell delivers a harrowing and beautifully written novel that explores the relationship between two girls obsessed with music, the practice of corrective rape, and the risks and power of using your voice. Neo loves music, and all she ever wanted was a life sharing this passion, on the radio. When she meets Tale, the lead singer in a local South African band, their shared love of music grows. So does their love for each other. But not everyone approves. Then Neo lands her dream job of working at a popular radio station, and she discovers that using your voice is sometimes harder than expected, and there are always consequences.—Amazon
Elena Delle Donne
Memoir for Young Adults
Elena Delle Donne, 2015 WNBA MVP and 2016 Olympic gold medalist, shares her inspirational story of being a young basketball prodigy who gave up an impressive basketball scholarship for family and self-discovery. Elena Delle Donne has always forged her own path. During her first year of college, she walked away from a scholarship and chance to play for Geno Aurriema at UConn—the most prestigious women’s college basketball program—so she could stay in her home state of Delaware and be close to her older sister, Lizzie, who has several disabilities and can only communicate through hand-over-hand signing. Burned out and questioning her passion for basketball, she attended the University of Delaware and took up volleyball for a year. Eventually she found her way back to her first love, playing basketball for the Blue Hens, ultimately leading them, a mid-major team, to the Sweet Sixteen. She went on to become the second overall selection during the 2013 WNBA draft and the WNBA’s 2015 MVP. Elena Delle Donne delivers a powerful and motivational story of overcoming the challenges of competitive sports through balancing hard work and the support of a loving family.—Amazon
From Emily Calandrelli—host of Xploration Outer Space, correspondent on Bill Nye Saves the World, and graduate of MIT—comes the third novel in a fun illustrated chapter book series about an eight-year-old girl with a knack for science, math, and solving mysteries with technology. Third grader and inventor extraordinaire Ada Lace likes nothing more than to tinker with mechanics like her robot, George. Her latest project is to fix up a ham radio, something that she could use to contact people on this planet…and beyond. The only problem is that she just can’t get it to work properly. During a sleepover, Ada’s best friend Nina hears something strange coming from the radio in the middle of the night. A distant voice says, “Release the swarm!” convincing Nina that aliens are about to invade planet Earth. Could Ada and Nina have stumbled upon something . . . extraterrestrial?—Amazon
Classic Young Adult Fiction
Celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the Newbery Honor–winning survival novel Hatchet with a pocket-sized edition perfect for travelers to take along on their own adventures. This special anniversary edition includes a new introduction and commentary by author Gary Paulsen, pen-and-ink illustrations by Drew Willis, and a water resistant cover. Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson, haunted by his secret knowledge of his mother’s infidelity, is traveling by single-engine plane to visit his father for the first time since the divorce. When the plane crashes, killing the pilot, the sole survivor is Brian. He is alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but his clothing, a tattered windbreaker, and the hatchet his mother had given him as a present. At first consumed by despair and self-pity, Brian slowly learns survival skills—how to make a shelter for himself, how to hunt and fish and forage for food, how to make a fire—and even finds the courage to start over from scratch when a tornado ravages his campsite. When Brian is finally rescued after fifty-four days in the wild, he emerges from his ordeal with new patience and maturity, and a greater understanding of himself and his parents.—Amazon
Arc of a Scythe Series
Contemporary Young Adult Thriller
Two teens must learn the “art of killing” in this Printz Honor–winning book, the first in a chilling new series from Neal Shusterman, author of the New York Times bestselling Unwind dystology. A world with no hunger, no disease, no war, no misery: humanity has conquered all those things, and has even conquered death. Now Scythes are the only ones who can end life—and they are commanded to do so, in order to keep the size of the population under control. Citra and Rowan are chosen to apprentice to a scythe—a role that neither wants. These teens must master the “art” of taking life, knowing that the consequence of failure could mean losing their own. Scythe is the first novel of a thrilling new series by National Book Award–winning author Neal Shusterman in which Citra and Rowan learn that a perfect world comes only with a heavy price.—Amazon
Contemporary Young Adult Fiction
After a shout-out from one of the Internet's superstar vloggers, Natasha “Tash” Zelenka suddenly finds herself and her obscure, amateur web series, Unhappy Families, thrust in the limelight: She's gone viral. Her show is a modern adaption of Anna Karenina—written by Tash's literary love Count Lev Nikolayevich “Leo” Tolstoy. Tash is a fan of the 40,000 new subscribers, their gushing tweets, and flashy Tumblr gifs. Not so much the pressure to deliver the best web series ever. — Amazon
S. K. Ali
Contemporary Young Adult Fiction
Saints and Misfits is an unforgettable debut novel that feels like a modern-day My So-Called Life . . . starring a Muslim teen.
“There are three kinds of people in my world: 1. Saints, those special people moving the world forward. Sometimes you glaze over them. Or, at least, I do. They’re in your face so much, you can’t see them, like how you can’t see your nose. 2. Misfits, people who don’t belong. Like me—the way I don’t fit into Dad’s brand-new family or in the leftover one composed of Mom and my older brother, Mama’s-Boy-Muhammad. Also, there’s Jeremy and me. Misfits. Because although, alliteratively speaking, Janna and Jeremy sound good together, we don’t go together. Same planet, different worlds. But sometimes worlds collide and beautiful things happen, right? 3. Monsters. Well, monsters wearing saint masks, like in Flannery O’Connor’s stories. Like the monster at my mosque. People think he’s holy, untouchable, but nobody has seen under the mask. Except me.”
Contemporary Young Adult Fantasy
A trio of friends from New York City find themselves trapped inside a mechanical board game that they must dismantle in order to save themselves and generations of other children in this action-packed debut that’s a steampunk Jumanji with a Middle Eastern flair. Nothing can prepare you for The Gauntlet . . . It didn’t look dangerous, exactly. When twelve-year-old Farah first laid eyes on the old-fashioned board game, she thought it looked . . . elegant. It is made of wood, etched with exquisite images—a palace with domes and turrets, lattice-work windows that cast eerie shadows, a large spider—and at the very center of its cover, in broad letters, is written: The Gauntlet of Blood and Sand. The Gauntlet is more than a game, though. It is the most ancient, the most dangerous kind of magic. It holds worlds inside worlds. And it takes players as prisoners. — Amazon