New Year, New Books, New Pop!

Happy New Year, Everybody!

I actually spent my Christmas money, this year.

I had Amazon gift cards, and because many of the 2016 Goodreads Choice Awards books were 80% discounted for the Kindle versions.

I bought 7 kindle books for only $19. They are as follows:

America's First Daughter

From her earliest days, Patsy Jefferson knows that though her father loves his family dearly, his devotion to his country runs deeper still. As Thomas Jefferson’s oldest daughter, she becomes his helpmate, protector, and constant companion in the wake of her mother’s death, traveling with him when he becomes American minister to France.

It is in Paris, at the glittering court and among the first tumultuous days of revolution, that fifteen-year-old Patsy learns about her father’s troubling liaison with Sally Hemings, a slave girl her own age. Meanwhile, Patsy has fallen in love—with her father’s protégé William Short, a staunch abolitionist and ambitious diplomat. Torn between love, principles, and the bonds of family, Patsy questions whether she can choose a life as William’s wife and still be a devoted daughter.

Her choice will follow her in the years to come, to Virginia farmland, Monticello, and even the White House. And as scandal, tragedy, and poverty threaten her family, Patsy must decide how much she will sacrifice to protect her father’s reputation, in the process defining not just his political legacy, but that of the nation he founded.

Salt to the Sea

Winter, 1945. Four teenagers. Four secrets.

Each one born of a different homeland; each one hunted, and haunted, by tragedy, lies…and war.

As thousands of desperate refugees flock to the coast in the midst of a Soviet advance, four paths converge, vying for passage aboard the Wilhelm Gustloff, a ship that promises safety and freedom.

Yet not all promises can be kept.

Inspired by the single greatest tragedy in maritime history, bestselling and award-winning author Ruta Sepetys (Between Shades of Gray) lifts the veil on a shockingly little-known casualty of World War II. An illuminating and life-affirming tale of heart and hope.

I give this one the hightest possible recommendation. I’ve already reviewed it here!

Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man

Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner first crossed paths as actors on the set of The Man from U.N.C.L.E. Little did they know that their next roles, in a new science-fiction television series, would shape their lives in ways no one could have anticipated. In seventy-nine television episodes and six feature films, they grew to know each other more than most friends could ever imagine.

Over the course of half a century, Shatner and Nimoy saw each other through personal and professional highs and lows. In this powerfully emotional book, Shatner tells the story of a man who was his friend for five decades, recounting anecdotes and untold stories of their lives on and off set, as well as gathering stories from others who knew Nimoy well, to present a full picture of a rich life.

As much a biography of Nimoy as a story of their friendship, Leonard is a uniquely heartfelt book written by one legendary actor in celebration of another.

This is the one that I am currently reading, and it’s extremely interesting.
Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars
The riveting true story of the women who launched America into space.

In the 1940s and 50s, when the newly minted Jet Propulsion Laboratory needed quick-thinking mathematicians to calculate velocities and plot trajectories, they didn’t turn to male graduates. Rather, they recruited an elite group of young women who, with only pencil, paper, and mathematical prowess, transformed rocket design, helped bring about the first American satellites, and made the exploration of the solar system possible.

For the first time, Rise of the Rocket Girls tells the stories of these women–known as “human computers”–who broke the boundaries of both gender and science. Based on extensive research and interviews with all the living members of the team, Rise of the Rocket Girls offers a unique perspective on the role of women in science: both where we’ve been, and the far reaches of space to which we’re heading.

The Midnight Assassin: Panic, Scandal, and the Hunt for America's First Serial Killer
A sweeping narrative history of a terrifying serial killer–America’s first–who stalked Austin, Texas in 1885

In the late 1800s, the city of Austin, Texas was on the cusp of emerging from an isolated western outpost into a truly cosmopolitan metropolis. But beginning in December 1884, Austin was terrorized by someone equally as vicious and, in some ways, far more diabolical than London’s infamous Jack the Ripper. For almost exactly one year, the Midnight Assassin crisscrossed the entire city, striking on moonlit nights, using axes, knives, and long steel rods to rip apart women from every race and class. At the time the concept of a serial killer was unthinkable, but the murders continued, the killer became more brazen, and the citizens’ panic reached a fever pitch.

Before it was all over, at least a dozen men would be arrested in connection with the murders, and the crimes would expose what a newspaper described as “the most extensive and profound scandal ever known in Austin.” And yes, when Jack the Ripper began his attacks in 1888, London police investigators did wonder if the killer from Austin had crossed the ocean to terrorize their own city.

Blood Brothers: The Fatal Friendship Between Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X
(This description is to long to post; click here to see it.)
The Queen of the Night by [Chee, Alexander]
Lilliet Berne is a sensation of the Paris Opera, a legendary soprano with every accolade except an original role, every singer’s chance at immortality. When one is finally offered to her, she realizes with alarm that the libretto is based on a hidden piece of her past. Only four could have betrayed her: one is dead, one loves her, one wants to own her. And one, she hopes, never thinks of her at all.  As she mines her memories for clues, she recalls her life as an orphan who left the American frontier for Europe and was swept up into the glitzy, gritty world of Second Empire Paris. In order to survive, she transformed herself from hippodrome rider to courtesan, from empress’s maid to debut singer, all the while weaving a complicated web of romance, obligation, and political intrigue.

Featuring a cast of characters drawn from history, The Queen of the Night follows Lilliet as she moves ever closer to the truth behind the mysterious opera and the role that could secure her reputation — or destroy her with the secrets it reveals.

I bought myself a physical copy of this next book:
Bobby Rydell: Teen Idol on the Rocks: A Tale of Second Chances
At seventeen, Bobby Rydell was the face of American Bandstand — the kid from Italian South Philly with the smoothest voice, the highest pompadour, and the sweetest smile. And there were those hits: “Wild One,” “Volare,” and “Forget Him,” to name a few. He was far more than just a teen idol. Bobby’s voice and boy next door charm earned him a spot singing, acting, and dancing with Ann-Margret in the film adaptation of the hit musical comedy, Bye Bye Birdie. His comedic talents made him a nighttime fixture during the golden age of TV variety shows, and his phrasing and musicianship led to dozens of headlining gigs in the casino showrooms of Las Vegas and Atlantic City. Frank Sinatra anointed him as his favorite pop singer of the early ‘60s. But early success took a toll on his life.

Bobby Rydell’s brutally honest street corner narrative evolved during an eighteen-month collaboration with Allan Slutsky, the award-winning author and producer of the widely acclaimed book and documentary film, Standing in the Shadows of Motown.

Inspiring, gut-busting, and, at times, heartbreaking, Teen Idol On The Rocks gives you a front row seat to the turbulent, six decade journey of one of rock and roll’s earliest, and most celebrated teen idols.

~
I am looking forward to reviewing all of these books; I have high hopes and high expectations for them!
On a different note, I’ve liked the Funko Pop!s for a while, only I never purchased one because I had no where to put it.
However, recently having store credit and gift card money, I decided to go ahead and buy one.
Meet Eddie Munster, the newest edition to my shelves:
He currently resides near my wand and David Bowie CD.
Isn’t he just adorable?
Happy New Year! Did anyone make any resolutions?
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