Three Stages of Amazement by Carol Edgarian
Charlie Pepper and Lena Rusch live in San Francisco in a modest pink bungalow they cannot afford. On the hill above them sit the great houses of the rich, with their servants and gardens and glorious views of the bay. Charlie and Lena grew up believing they could have it all -- sex, love, marriage, children, career, brilliance. Now, in early middle age, life has delivered surprises and tests -- a stillborn twin, an economic crash, a relentless rival in Charlie's business and a seductive lover from Lena's past. Touched by tragedy, imbued with hope, Lena and Charlie must face, for the first time, real limitations.
When the Thrill is Gone by Walter Mosley
The economy has hit the private investigator business hard, even for Leonid McGill. Lately, he is getting job offers only from the criminals he's worked so hard to leave behind. Meanwhile, his personal life grows ever more complicated: his favorite stepson, Twill, has dropped out of school for mysteriously lucrative pursuits; his best friend, Gordo, has been diagnosed with cancer and is living on his couch; his wife has taken a new lover, and seems to be endangering the McGill family; and his girlfriend, Aura, is back in his life but intent on some serious conversations. So how can McGill say no to the beautiful young woman who walks into his office with a stack of cash?
One of Our Thursdays is Missing by Jasper Fforde
It is a time of unrest in the bookworld. Only the diplomatic skills of ace literary detective Thursday Next can avert a devastating genre war. But a week before the peace talks, Thursday vanishes. Has she simply returned home to the RealWorld or is this something more sinister?