In My Hands Today…

The Graphologist’s Apprentice – Whiti Hereaka

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When January’s obsession with a married man begins to jeopardise her emotional stability, she decides to risk it all and respond to a mysterious card with the words Tell me a secret? Not content with her home life or workplace, January takes comfort in reading romance novels but is suddenly brought back to reality when she meets the secret keeper, Mae, a graphologist. The Graphologists Apprentice is a story about friendship and love and how both can be found in unexpected places.

In My Hands Today…

The Firemaker – Peter May

939097Margaret Campbell, a Chicago forensic pathologist, has been invited by the Chinese government to teach at the Beijing police university. She has accepted the six-week assignment with misgivings but is desperate to escape a troubled life in America. Arriving in Beijing, she checks “nothing to declare” on the health declaration they gave her on the plane – nothing, that is, “except a broken heart and a wasted life, neither of which was contagious.”

She gets off to a bad start when her car knocks senior detective Li Yan off his bicycle. In a furious clash, he dresses her down in perfect English. But Li soon finds himself reintroduced to Margaret by his superiors when the newly promoted detective’s first case requires Margaret’s special expertise to identify a horribly burned corpse. Thrown together to track down the killer, Margaret and Li must bury their personal and cultural differences when they uncover a conspiracy that threatens not only their lives but the lives of millions.

In My Hands Today…

Sloane Hall – Libby Sternberg

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It is the 1920s in Old Hollywood. Talking pictures are the new thing. John Doyle learns the craft of cinematography when a stupid mistake costs him his job. On a tip, he gets hired as a chauffeur for a famous silent screen actress, Pauline Sloane. Despite his best efforts to resist, John falls hopelessly in love with his employer. But something is in the attic…

In My Hands Today…

The Red Kimono: A Novel – Jan Morrill

17074998In 1941, racial tensions are rising in the California community where nine-year-old Sachiko Kimura and her seventeen-year-old brother, Nobu, live. Japan has attacked Pearl Harbor, people are angry, and one night, Sachiko and Nobu witness three teenage boys taunting and beating their father in the park. Sachiko especially remembers Terrence Harris, the boy with dark skin and hazel eyes, and Nobu cannot believe the boys capable of such violence toward his father are actually his friends.

What Sachiko and Nobu do not know is that Terrence’s family had received a telegram that morning with news that Terrence’s father was killed at Pearl Harbor. Desperate to escape his pain, Terrence rushes from his home and runs into two high-school friends who convince him to find a Japanese man and get revenge. They do not know the man they attacked is Sachiko and Nobu’s father.

In the months that follow, Terrence is convicted of his crime and Sachiko and Nobu are sent to an internment camp in Arkansas, a fictionalised version of the two camps that actually existed in Arkansas during the war. While behind bars and barbed wire, each of the three young people will go through dramatic changes. One will learn acceptance. One will remain imprisoned by resentment, and one will seek a path to forgiveness.

In My Hands Today…

My Lost Cuba – Celso Gonzalez-Falla

18086453Dramatic history, lush scenery, and a colorful cast transport us to the time of Cuba’s turning point – the late 1950s Set against the tropical landscape of Cuba’s countryside and the glamour of 1950s Havana, this moving story of Cuban life at a pivotal time in the country’s rich history will resonate with anyone who has experienced the loss of family or homeland.

It is 1958, the last year of Fulgencio Batista’s dictatorship. Mike, the son of Don Miguel, a wealthy land owner and rancher, is summoned home from his MBA studies in the United States because of his father’s failing health. Still recovering from the loss of his wife, Mike’s return is an immediate tonic for Don Miguel. Caught between his family obligations and his desire to pursue his own dreams, Mike quickly finds himself succumbing to his father’s desire for him to take over the responsibilities of running the family ranch.

As Mike settles back into the life he was groomed for, Don Miguel, reinvigorated, spends more and more time socialising in Havana. Changes are happening everywhere. The government is encroaching on civil liberties and social and political upheaval is in the air. There are rumblings about Castro’s guerillas organising in the mountains. On the ranch, long-time employees of Don Miguel resent the changes that Mike is making, setting the stage for a confrontation that changes the lives of everyone involved.

In My Hands Today…

City of Veils – Zoë Ferraris

7168509The body of a young woman is discovered on the grimy sands of Jeddah beach; soon afterwards, a strong-minded American woman finds herself alone and afraid in the most repressive city on earth when her husband suddenly disappears.

Investigating police officer Osama Ibrahim, forensic scientist Katya Hijazi and her friend, the strictly devout Bedouin guide Nayir Sharqi join forces to search out the truth in the scorching city streets and the vast, lethal emptiness of the desert beyond.

Breathtakingly fast-paced, sure-footed and thrilling, this novel paints in dazzling colours a city of veils in which more is hidden than is revealed, and nothing is what it seems.