‘Intimacy Idiot’ by Isaac Oliver
Based on an autobiographical blog turned off-Broadway solo show, Baltimore native Isaac Oliver—dubbed a “monstrous new talent,” by New York magazine—serves up a collection of ultra-personal essays and other laugh-inducing fragments. Over the kooky course, he hooks up romantically with a man who dresses as a dolphin, tries (and fails) to break through an impenetrable ring of beautiful singles at a cocktail party and bemoans the odor of other
people’s takeout. Oliver’s perspective on single life, gay life and urban frustrations proves the perfect vacation read, because on your own time you can feel free to laugh out loud and even snort.
‘Unmanned’ by Dan Fesperman
In Baltimore Sun reporter turned novelist Dan Fesperman’s disturbing new novel (just released in paperback in June),
former F-16 fighter pilot Darwin Cole finds himself plagued by alcoholism and the memories of the Predator drone he
“piloted,” especially the image of an Afghan child running in fear. As he
reluctantly joins forces with a trio of
investigative journalists searching the identity of the (possibly rogue) intelligence operative who directed Cole’s
ill-fated mission, tension mounts, and Cole soon finds himself and his new comrades running for their own lives. Mix an aviator cocktail and hold on tight.
‘Stone Harbor Bound’ by Madeleine Mysko
Baltimore-based author Madeleine Mysko’s second novel delivers an intoxicating sense of place. Soon after the loss of her partner, Bridget, Camille Pickett returns to Stone Harbor, N.J., to make a final decision about her inherited bungalow. Compelled by the lives of two young people she meets, Camille becomes embroiled in sorting their troubles. She meanwhile finds herself
unlocking a personal mystery, a mystery tied to her longstanding, unshakable love for Stone Harbor. With prose as pretty as the beach itself, it’s the perfect armchair (or lawn chair) vacation.
‘The House of Hawthorne’ by Erika Robuck
Author of “Hemingway’s Girl” and “Call Me Zelda,” best-selling historical novelist and Stevenson University alum Erika Robuck tackles the life of yet another sexy, sassy, should-have-been-famous female that time forgot. Here, Robuck fixes her lens on the talented artist Sophia Hawthorne, eventual wife of immortal novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne. Sophia’s health problems prompted doctors to advise her against marriage, but her passion for Hawthorne hit her hard. The generous read follows their tumultuous love affair and marriage that crossed continents. As she raised
children and stood by her fiction-writing man, Sophia found she couldn’t deny her own creative impulses. Read it—feel like a feminist in your bikini. 9