The sad life and tragic murder of René Descartes,
the world’s most famous philosopher
by Andrew Pessin
Who would want to murder the world’s most famous philosopher?
Turns out: nearly everyone.
The feminine spirit of the West comes alive in early twentieth century Montana.
by Milana Marsenich
Set in the Copper Camp of Butte, Montana in 1917, Copper Sky tells the story of two women with opposite lives. Kaly Shane, mired
In 1649, Descartes was invited by the Queen of Sweden to become her Court Philosopher. Though he was the world’s leading philosopher, his life had by this point fallen apart. He was 53, penniless, living in exile in Amsterdam, alone. With much trepidation but not much choice, he arrived in Stockholm in mid-October.
in prostitution, struggles to find a safe home for her unborn child. Marika Lailich, a Slavic immigrant, dodges a pre-ar-ranged marriage to become a doctor. As their paths cross, and they become unlikely friends, neither woman knows the family secret that ties them together.
"Copper Sky is a riveting story of darkness and redemption, rising from the ashes of two fiery tragedies in Butte, Montana. Marsenich creates two heroines whose great losses lead them ever closer to truth. And as their stories unfold, the Butte of one hundred years ago startles to full and undeniable life." -- Phil Condon, author of Clay Center, Montana Surround, and Nine Ten Again
Brought to New York from Puerto Rico when he was seven, Eddie Loperena grew up dreaming of returning to his island paradise. But by the time he matured, the island too had evolved, disowning those who had left. Growing up in los Estados Unidos had been an ill-ill fit from the beginning but, as he came of age in the late sixties, the country embraced him through minority scholarships that offered an exclusive education culminating at Harvard Law School. Purely a product of the seventies, Eddie
Featured Title 2018
Don't Let Me Die In Disneyland:
The 3-D Life of Eddie Loperena
by J. A. Marzán
A picaresque, smart, and smart-ass memoir of Harvard lawyer Eddie Loperena's Newyorican life in "the country I was offered."
But as he approaches forty in the Reagan eighties, he has just lost his wife, his leftist business partner from Seattle who has decided to return to his particular version of Aunt Polly America, not to mention his own idealism. The divorce and the loss of his partner have landed Eddie squarely at a crossroads, so he closes his practice and cleans out his office, intending to write again (as he had during his college years) when he gets a phone call from his estranged boyhood friend Carlos, his “big brother” in the neighborhood, now a well-known drug dealer.
Left behind in the Bronx, Carlos now extracts a favor from Eddie to hold two suitcases full of “valuable papers.” Eddie picks up the suitcases, then Carlos disappears and Eddie cannot reach him as he only communicates via public phones.
Meanwhile, local politicians, including the Governor of New York, are wooing Eddie to enter politics. He fears he will only generate unwanted curiosity if he declines such offers and drops out as planned, so to keep up appearances until Carlos reemerges, he feigns embarking on a political career. While in Los Angeles to speak on Hispanic Unity, he learns that his one-time “big brother” has been arrested, and the very next day is found hanging from prison plumbing. Eddie’s secret connection to Carlos is exposed and he is accused of absconding with Carlos’ drug money.
The resourceful Eddie survives cops gunning for him, a vindictive D.A.’s threat to prosecute, and citywide rumors that he has disappeared with Carlos’ illicit money. But Eddie cannot allow the New York newspapers to reduce his complex decision to help Carlos to a pseudo-social science portrayal of a two-dimensional, American minority puppet show. In self-exile, Eddie writes the third dimension of a tragicomic satire of the seventies, of the island of his birth that cast him adrift, and of his minority membership in “the country I was offered.” Writing from a place he calls Nowhere, Eddie Loperena implores: Don’t Let Me Die In Disneyland!
Beneath the Same Heaven is a love story of an American woman and a Pakistani-born Muslim man, who seem to have bridged the divide between Western and Islamic world views. But when the husband's
opened an activist law practice in the Bronx, where he won favor and renown as “The Community’s Lawyer.”
The Swan Keeper
by Milana Marsenich
Author of Copper Sky
Girlhood, courage, nature, and flight from a tyrant’s hand in post-frontier Montana
The Swan Keeper is an historical, coming of age novel set in Northwest Montana's Mission Valley in the late 1920s.
Lillian Connelly loves trumpeter swans and vows to protect them from a hunter who is killing them and leaving their carcasses for the wolves and coyotes to ravage.
On her eleventh birthday Lilly’s family visits the Cattail Marsh to see the newly hatched cygnets. The family outing turns tragic when Dean Drake shows up with his shotgun and fires on not only the swans, but on Lilly’s family. Unable to prevent tragedy, Lillian witnesses Drake kill her father, injure her mother, and slaughter the bevy of trumpeter swans.
The sheriff, Charlie West, thinks that Lilly is reacting to the trauma and blaming Drake because of a previous conflict between Drake and her father. Lilly’s mother, sister, and her best friend, Jerome West, the sheriff’s son, all think the same thing: that Lilly is trying to make sense of a senseless accident.
Left alone to bring Dean Drake to justice, Lilly’s effort is subverted when Drake woos her sister, courts her mother, and moves into their home.
World War Two. Japanese occupied China. One cousin's courage, another's determination to help a wounded American pilot.
In the summer of 1942, Danny Hardy bails out of his fighter plane into a remote region of western China. With multiple injuries, malaria, and Japan-
ese troops searching for him, the American pilot’s odds of survival are slim.
Jasmine Bai, an art student who had been saved by Americans during the notorious Nanking Massacre, seems an unlikely heroine to rescue the wounded Flying Tiger. Daisy Bai, Jasmine’s younger cousin, also falls in love with the courageous American.
With the help of Daisy’s brother, an entire village opens its arms to heal a Flying Tiger with injured wings, but as a result of their charity the serenity of their community is forever shattered.
Love, sacrifice, kindness, and bravery all play a part in this heroic tale that takes place during one of the darkest hours of Chinese history.
Stephen Spotte's imaginative novel recounts the tales of a scroungy former alley cat named Jinx, whose memories aren't just his own but those of other cats who existed before him, one of which was Annipe, Cleopatra's pampered pet. Through Annipe's eyes the ancient Mediterranean world of Cleopatra and her legendary lovers, Caesar and Antony, is spread before us in all its glory, pathos, and absurdity. Jinx reveals these stories telepathically one night to his stoned and inebriated owner just home after gall bladder surgery. Annipe's memories are bookended by Jinx's own that detail his early scavenging days in bleak urban alleys.
“A gripping adventure in which 13 young Anishinaabe (Ojibwe) seek to regain the honor of their band. A delightful work of historical fiction.”
—Midwest Book Review
As the Anishinaabe (Ojibwe) slowly migrated into the Lake Superior region centuries ago, they were met by a potent adversary—the Dakota (Sioux) who fiercely resisted their spread into its territory. Gradually the Anishinaabe pushed them out of the northern woodlands and into the plains to the south. This long-running and bloody conflict lies at the heart of the story of Ashi-niswi, The 13.
Following a devastating raid on their camp, 13 Anishinaabe teenagers vow to restore the honor of their band by tracking down and savaging the Dakota raiders. The story is a parable posing the universal question: “What is the price of honor?” It is also a poignant coming-of-age story as the youngest of the youthful warriors struggles to come to grips with the aftermath of the quest.
Passionate and forbidden love clashes with tradition and caste in a changing India.
Kamala Kumari is more than a Gemini Studio starlet: she’s a classical dancer trained in the age-old line of Devadasis, a caste set in place a thousand years ago when girls were first dedicated in south Indian temples to serve the gods and men. From the promise of art and devotion, the sacred dancers fell into the hands of priests who both exalted and betrayed them. Beautiful, brilliant and proud, Kamala struggles to escape the old ways, entangling her Indian assistant, Dutch lover, and his young American wife.
father is killed by a US drone attack near the Afghan border, their cross-cultural family descends into conflicting ideas of loyalty, justice, identity, revenge, and terrorism. With candor, beauty, and unusual insight, their story reveals both how decent people can justify horrific acts, and the emotional power required to heal.
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by Kery Arquette
(Poetry / Social Conscience)
As long as I reside in their minds and hearts, I will never truly be gone.
The devastation caused by World War II is described by historians in terms of military strategies and battles, the toll on economics, and
the numbers of dead. But only the stories of those whose lives were changed or lost, can convey the true horror of the war. These were people very much like ourselves—men, women, children, siblings, poets, soldiers, students, professionals, laborers, givers, takers, jokers, dancers, lovers, dreamers, cowards and brave.
Like all of us, they want to be heard. They want to be understood. Most of all…they want to be remembered.
With its turbulent passions amid social upheavals, The Last Devadasi takes readers on a sensual feast in the 1970s palm-shaded trading city of Madras.
Debut Novel 2018
Rosemary in Bloom
by Khristy Reibel
What if war separated you from your true love? What if you married the wrong man? What if the power of love brought you together again?
When Rosemary meets Albert it is instant chemistry. But it is also the summer of 1942, and scores of young men—Albert included—feel compelled to enlist to fight the war against Hitler. Albert wants to marry Rosemary before he leaves for Europe, but she just can't commit. Like so many young women of her time, Rosemary finds herself left behind to work and worry, desperate for love but frightened of abandonment.
Three years later, and with Albert's fate still unknown, Rosemary meets Harry, a charming and handsome man. Rosemary feels guilty for spending so much time with Harry, but she has all but lost faith that Albert will make it safely back home, especially when she receives news of her brother's serious combat injury. Should she wait for Albert, or settle for second best?
Inspired by a true story, Rosemary in Bloom explores faith, forgiveness, enduring love against all odds, and the difficult decisions that strong, smart women on the home front had to make during World War II.
“Spotte has an eye for ironic detail, couched in vigorous, pragmatic prose. In him, Hemmingway meets Kafka.”
—Bruce R. Powers, co-author (with Marshall McLuhan) of The Global Village
The 19 stories in marine scientist Stephen Spotte's latest collection penetrate the stormy, watery depth of the human psyche, blending elements of make-believe with sharp, systematic observations and insights into the twisted manifestations of life, love, and death. The tales skip across genres at breakneck speed, mixing humor and pathos with fantasy, sometimes in settings that juxtapose gritty reality with magical realism. Throughout, Spotte scrapes aside the thin patina of everyday existence, offering a glimpse into the strange abyssal world of his imagination.
A native of North Little Rock, Arkansas, Jayne Ritchie Boisvert first became interested in French in high school. She began her college career as a major in the language at Webster College (now Webster University) in St. Louis, Missouri. It was the experience of a year abroad, however, which really solidified her desire for a lifelong study of the country’s language, history, and culture. She went on to obtain a Master of Art’s degree in French from Boston College and a Ph.D. from the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures at the State University at Albany, New York. Her dissertation examined the role of female characters in the Haitian Francophone novel.
Dr. Boisvert taught French on the secondary level in Atlanta, Georgia and Albany, New York before completing her doctoral degree. At Russell Sage College in Troy, New York, she
went on to develop and teach courses in French language, literature, history, and film. By the time of her retirement as professor emerita in 2010, she had attained the rank of associate professor of French and Comparative Literature.
An ardent traveler, she has visited many different areas of France and the Francophone world. Her publications include several pieces on Haitian literature in the Journal of Haitian Studies and dozens of entries in the Encyclopedia of Caribbean Literature for which she served on the advisory board. In April 2012 Dr. Boisvert published a French Review article on celebrated Parisian mystery writer Fred Vargas. In the spring semester of 2013 she had the opportunity to spend five months living in Paris, and during that time, she researched information for her guidebook on the French capital, examining ways to visit the city inexpensively, as well as developing short biographies and finding addresses of famous Americans who called the city home from the early nineteenth century to the present day.
Open Books will publish her unique guidebook, Pilgrimage to Paris: The Cheapo Snob’s Guide to the City and Americans Who Lived There, in Fall 2018.
The Cheapo Snob’s Guide to the City and Americans Who Lived There
by Jayne R. Boisvert
An easy-to-use guide devoted to Paris, Pilgrimage to Paris: The Cheapo Snob’s Guide to the City and Americans Who Lived There includes travel tips, main attractions, free (and nearly free) things to do, shopping, museums, churches, cafes, restaurants, as well as short biographies and addresses associated with famous Americans who spent time living la belle vie in the French capital.
As a novelist, journalist, editor, teacher and actor, Wayzata native Anne Marie Ruff Grewal has spent most of her life capturing ideas and shaping
OB Author Barbara L. Baer
will read from her newest novel
The Last Devadasi
November 15th from 3:00 - 5:00
Save the Date!
You are invited to the launch of
Don’t Let Me Die in Disneyland:
The 3-D Life of Eddie Loperena
by J.A Marzán, with Lori Carlson-Hijuelos.
Reading, wine reception and book signing:
Friday, October 26, 6-7:30 at McNally Jackson Soho, 52 Prince Street, New York
A picaresque, smart, and smartass memoir of Harvard lawyer Eddie Loperena’s Newyorican life in “the country I was offered.”
Swiss Cheese and Sibling Rivalry:
Whine & Cheese Cozy Mystery Series: Book 4
by Judy Volhart
Can Amalia cut through the cheese and find the killer before she goes Emmental?
When her wine and cheese tasting class gets creamed due to a brutal murder, she soon finds that investigating a case proves to be more challenging when it involves family.
Nathan’s never-before-mentioned sister returns to the town of Robin, only to get jacked before he has a chance to see her. The ex-lawyer had swindled many, including her family, before fleeing across the country and disappearing from their lives, leaving behind a mystery that fermented in their hearts for years.
As if that’s not bad enough, it seems Stephan has gotten himself into some financial trouble. Is he responsible for the latest break-in at the bistro? What type of Muenster would do that to his own sister?
In this story of cheese, greed, lust, wine, deception, love and soul searching, Amalia is left questioning not only those around her, but her future and her very own sexuality.
In her last mystery, and with more stress on her shoulders than she Camembert, Amalia must stay sharp as she muddles through this case that has more holes than Swiss cheese.
Sworn brothers—one American, one Chinese—captured, imprisoned, tortured. Survival is just the beginning of the battle...
In 1942, Birch Bai, a Chinese pilot, and Danny Hardy, a downed American pilot, become sworn brothers and best friends.
In the summer of 1945, both airmen’s planes go down in Yunnan Province of China during one of many daring missions. They are captured, imprisoned, and tortured by the Japanese for information about the
atomic bomb. Just days before the end of WWII, Danny makes an irrevocable decision to save Birch's life.
For Birch, surviving the war is only the beginning of the battle. He must deal with the dreadful reality in China—the civil war, the separation of the country, the death of one friend in the Communist-controlled Mainland and another under the Nationalist government, and his wrongful imprisonment in Taiwan.
From Chungking to Yunnan, and from Taiwan to San Francisco, the sequel to Wings of a Flying Tiger takes readers along on an epic journey.
Now living in Las Vegas, Khristy Reibel grew up in rural Illinois and is still a Midwestern girl at heart. After graduating high school, she attended the University of Illinois where she received a B.S. in Marketing, which enabled her to hone her writing skills by creating advertising copy for a trade show company. In 2008, she enrolled at UNLV and later graduated with an M.Ed. In addition to writing, she now teaches high school English and German. She believes that teaching students to support their ideas in writing is the most important skill she can help them to learn.
Open Books published her debut novel, Rosemary In Bloom, in August 2018.
Veterinarian Alphonse Vallerone dreams out this novel of dreamers dreaming, going back 50 years to the day after the Flood, when he assisted the surviving Indians. Riding from one devastated ranch to another, he tends to the surviving yet devastated animals and tries to mend the grief wrought by the Flood.
Underpinned by the lingering and harsh reminders of the Blackfeet Nation’s heroic, tragic, and vibrant past, Gustafson’s third novel chronicles the heartrending drama of the Blackfeet people.
Heartbeats will quite literally "warm your heart...
Heartbeats is a light-hearted memoir of one of the pioneers in modern cardiac surgery, Constantine "Dino" Tatooles, M.D. Dino's stories, as told to his brother James E. Tatooles, will quite literally "warm your heart" as well as provide a background to the advances in cardiac surgery made over the past fifty years.
Ironically, Dr. Tatooles recently had some difficult medicine of his own to swallow when he discovered that he needed a quintuple bypass. As his brother James E. Tatooles relates in Heartbeats, a procedure that Dino helped to develop eventually saved his life.
There is something lurking beneath the layers of everyday life that fills Madame Lune with fear.
In their midst is a watcher, and he has identified his next victim.
by Kathleen Curtin
Who is the mysterious Madame Lune and why has watching Rue
Lepic become a terrifying obsession for her? To the ordinary observer, Rue Lepic is a colourful street that meanders and climbs the northern part of Paris, from the Moulin Rouge in Pigalle’s red light district to Montmartre, where stands the lofty basilica of Sacre Coeur. It is full of character and characters, with its open-air markets and traders, street cleaners and concierges. It plays host to waves of tourists teaming past cafés, restaurants and souvenir shops.
When a Marine fireteam searches an isolated Vietnamese village believed to be a supply depot for the Viet Cong an IED explodes, leaving only one survivor of the five-man unit. But who is he: Bunny, Hillbilly, Poke, Injun, or "the LT"? Because he is horribly burned, disfigured, and unable to speak, the military doctors don't know, but the people back home in a coal mining camp in southern West Virginia think they know. Most unsettling of all the survivor himself isn't certain who he is.
Spanning the landscape from Vietnam's warn-torn jungles to hardscrabble Appalachia, In An Empty Room is a gripping examination of time, memory, consciousness, and selfhood and suggests
unanticipated conclusions about the nature of human identity.
The Ballet Lover exposes the beauty and cruelty of ballet, the performances, the back stage moments, and the personal dramas of the famous ballet dancers Rudolf Nureyev and Natalia Makarova as seen through the eyes of an American female journalist.
Paris, 1970s: the orchestra plays the first ominous note of Swan Lake. In the audience sits Geneva, an American journalist and ballet lover, waiting for the heart-stopping beauty and seduction of the romantic duet to start, but instead she witnesses Rudolf Nureyev failing to catch his Russian partner Natalia Makarova, allowing her to fall with a crash upon the stage.
Geneva interprets the fall as an act of cruelty, a man with all the fame and power in the world brutally letting fall his delicate, wraith-like artistic partner. When other critics defend Nureyev and accuse Makarova of causing her own tumble, Geneva vows revenge on the page, creating havoc in her own career and discovering surprising parallels between herself and the fallen ballerina.
The Ballet Lover is a refined, mesmerizing, fictional account of two of the most celebrated dancers in the dance world, how one compromised the other, and how the drama on the stage often mirrors those played out in real life.
Stunning beauties, elaborate sets, and captivating song-and-dance numbers. Forget Hollywood. Hindi cinema—otherwise known as Bollywood—is the world’s largest film industry with an estimated 3.6 billion tickets sold annually across the globe.
Sworn brothers—one American, one Chinese—captured, imprisoned, tortured. Survival is just the beginning of the battle...
From the review...
Told in the straightforward language of a young Native American boy, The 13 gives voice to the ceremonies of the tribe, the actions of the spirit guide, the imagery of the forest and the raven, and the prophesy of dream. There is power as well as music in simplicity that leaves readers to define the boundaries of honor, duty, respect, and love and to appreciate the burden of Aajim.