Joanna Burkhardt

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The Art of Pretend

A well-constructed story with a disappointing ending that will, nonetheless, engage readers.


Award-winning Bieker’s (Godshot; Heartbroke) psychological exposé unfolds as an imaginary letter that C is writing to her mother, through which Bieker explores the results of domestic abuse on a family. The surprise ending supplies a satisfying but somewhat unrealistic resolution to C’s conflict.

All This and More

Readers who relish novels of self-discovery and those who like plotting their own course through a story will enjoy this unusual book by the always-inventive Shepherd (The Cartographers).

Wild and Distant Seas

The quest for family is deep-rooted. Listeners will enjoy this tale of the search for the elusive Ishmael.

Redwood Court

A heartwarming, kaleidoscopic portrait of a Black American family.

Kings of Coweetsee

Readers will appreciate the timely relevance of this story and the way Neal (Appalachian Book of the Dead) captures the struggle between tradition and change and offers a poignant picture of poverty, abuse, crime, and punishment.

The Rich People Have Gone Away

Readers will enjoy the variety of characters and their emotional chaos, as human interactions and relationships come under scrutiny in this deft and recommended novel.

Fourteen Days: A Collaborative Novel

A unique and absorbing literary endeavor, skillfully realized in audio.

Chasing Beauty: The Life of Isabella Stewart Gardner

Reed’s elegant delivery and diction enhance Dykstra’s delightful portrait of a visionary Gilded Age art collector. Recommended for art history buffs and those who enjoyed Douglass Shand-Tucci’s The Art of Scandal.

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