The story below is from our July/August 2015 issue. For the full story download our FREE iOS app or view our digital edition for FREE today!
“Books are a uniquely portable magic,” said author Stephen King. Whether you plan to spend your summer relaxing at Smith Mountain Lake or enjoying the views from your backyard, we have a few suggestions when it comes to choosing your portable magic.
“My Best Everything” by Sarah Tomp
This debut novel by JMU graduate Sarah Tomp tells the story of Lulu Mendez who longs to leave behind her small Virginia town in favor of college in California. When her father loses her tuition money, Lulu embarks on a clandestine scheme to make and sell moonshine and turns to Mason, a boy with a troubled past and the know-how to make the new business work. Falling in love was never part of the plan, so Lulu must choose between what she’s always wanted and what she never knew she needed.
“Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good” by Jan Karon
In the latest installment in the bestselling Mitford series, Tim Kavanaugh and his wife return to the charming village of Mitford to find something missing. While Tim struggles to regain his passion, his adopted son wrestles with his own passion for the successful and beautiful country vet, Lace. Charlottesville-based author Jan Karon delivers yet another comic, feel-good story filled with lovable characters who call the rolling hills of Mitford home.
“Becoming Madison” by Michael Signer
Signer’s latest book is more than a biography; “Becoming Madison” chronicles the life of the fourth president before age 36 and explores how Madison’s intelligence, charisma and drive helped to lay the foundation for the country’s success. Author, advocate, political theorist and practicing attorney, Michael Signer reintroduces readers to the Virginia-born Founding Father who achieved the most, but is known the least.
“The Book of Speculation” by Erika Swyler
While his family’s home is falling apart, Simon, a young librarian, finds an old, water-damaged book on his doorstep: a log from the owner of a traveling circus in the 1700s. He begins to discover strange connections between the circus log and his own life, including the mysterious drowning of the women in his family. Simon works to reverse the curse that began hundreds of years earlier along the banks of a salt-water river in Virginia in order to save his sister’s life.