Kirkus Reviews Stars & Recommendations

The Optical Lasso by Marc Corwin

"A campy but engrossing adventure."
Corwin tells the story of a soldier and his powerful invention in this debut sci-fi novel. Read full book review >

"A vivid, moving account of addiction, trauma, and hard-won triumph by two survivors."
Two adults overcome damaging childhoods and addictions to find each other and rebuild their lives together in this affecting debut memoir. Read full book review >

Until My Heart Stops by Jameson Currier
Released: Dec. 1, 2015

"A remarkable collection of hard-earned, melancholic wisdom."
Novelist Currier (A Gathering Storm, 2014, etc.) collects four decades of essays in this nonfiction volume.Read full book review >
Whispers in Eternity by Jacinda Buchmann
Released: May 15, 2015

"A well-crafted love story about music, mortality, and living life to the fullest."
Fantasy author Buchmann (Indigo Infinity, 2014, etc.) begins a new series with a romance that reaches across the border between life and death.Read full book review >
Tragedy Transformed by Gordon Grose
Released: April 27, 2015

"A pragmatic, uplifting examination of the role that tragedy plays in people's lives."
A debut guide to the redemptive power of suffering, as seen through the prism of the book of Job. Read full book review >

Girl in the River by Patricia Kullberg
Released: Aug. 20, 2015

"A historical novel whose empathetic view of women's lives—and the decisions they faced—is welcome in any time period."
Kullberg offers a debut historical novel set amid the illegal sex and abortion trades of mid-20th-century Portland, Oregon. Read full book review >
Bouncing Forward by Michaela Haas
Released: Oct. 6, 2015

"An often masterful hybrid of self-help and firsthand history."
Haas (Dakini Power, 2013) offers a combination of science reportage, memoir, and advice on the subject of trauma.Read full book review >
Hell's Game by Teresa Lo
Released: Dec. 24, 2013

"There's nothing tongue-in-cheek here; just terror, sturdy characters, and unadulterated entertainment."
The only way for teens to free a condemned soul and prevent their own damnation is to endure seven levels of hell's infernal game in Lo's (The Red Lantern Scandals, 2013, etc.) chilling YA horror novel.Read full book review >
Money by A. J. Mahler
Released: Sept. 18, 2015

"An often engaging tale of a woman who's just as comfortable with melodrama as she is with harrowing espionage."
An attorney moonlighting as a covert agent helps a U.S. black-ops group target a powerful but diabolical organization bent on world domination in Mahler's (Smoking Kills, 2010) thriller.Read full book review >
Power by A. J. Mahler
Released: Sept. 18, 2015

"A dizzyingly enjoyable spy plot that offers consistent suspense."
In Mahler's (Money, 2011, etc.) latest thriller, secret agent Betty Thursten ends up in the cross hairs of her black-ops employer, who thinks that she's gone rogue.Read full book review >

A well-wrought memoir that turns simple observations and memories into powerful illustrations of grief and illness.
A writer recounts the emotions and memories of losing her mother and battling cancer. Read full book review >
To Be A SOLDIER by Julian M. Olejniczak
Released: Feb. 6, 2015

"A straightforward account of the careers of famous and little-known West Point characters."
A collection of columns surveys the history of the U.S. armed forces, particularly as it touches on the United States Military Academy at West Point. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jason Gay
November 17, 2015

In the 1990s, copies of Richard Carlson’s Don't Sweat the Small Stuff (and its many sequels) were seemingly everywhere, giving readers either the confidence to prioritize their stresses or despondence over the slender volume’s not addressing their particular set of problems. While not the first book of its kind, it kicked open the door for an industry of self-help, worry-reduction advice guides. In his first book, Little Victories, Wall Street Journal sports columnist Gay takes less of a guru approach, though he has drawn an audience of readers appreciative of reportage that balances insights with a droll, self-deprecating outlook. He occasionally focuses his columns on “the Rules” (of Thanksgiving family touch football, the gym, the office holiday party, etc.), which started as a genial poke in the eye at the proliferation of self-help books and, over time, came to explore actual advice “both practical and ridiculous” and “neither perfect nor universal.” The author admirably combines those elements in every piece in the book. View video >