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The feminine spirit of the West comes alive in early twentieth century Montana.

Copper Sky
by Milana Marsenich
(Fiction) 

Set in the Copper Camp of Butte, Montana in 1917, Copper Sky tells the story of two women with opposite lives. Kaly Shane, mired in prostitution, struggles to
find a safe home for her unborn child. Marika Lailich, a Slavic immigrant, dodges a pre-ar-ranged marriage to become a doctor. As their paths cross, and they become unlikely friends, neither woman knows the family secret that ties them together. 

"Copper Sky is a riveting story of darkness and redemption, rising from the ashes of two fiery tragedies in Butte, Montana. Marsenich creates two heroines whose great losses lead them ever closer to truth. And as their stories unfold, the Butte of one hundred years ago startles to full and undeniable life." -- Phil Condon, author of Clay CenterMontana Surround, and Nine Ten Again 



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​By turns smart, funny, and heart-wrenching, Bright College Years tracks Jeff and an ensemble cast 
as they navigate the shortest, gladdest, most complex years of life.



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Wings of a Flying Tiger
by Iris Yang

World War Two. Japanese occupied China. One cousin's courage, and another's determination to help a wounded American pilot.

In the summer of 1942, Danny Hardy bails out of his fighter plane into a remote region of western China. With multiple injuries, malaria, and Japanese troops searching for him, 

 the America npilot’s odds of survival are slim. 

Jasmine Bai, an art student who had been saved by Americans during the notorious Nanking Massacre, seems an unlikely heroine to rescue the wounded Flying Tiger. Daisy Bai, Jasmine’s younger cousin, also falls in love with the courageous American.

With the help of Daisy’s brother, an entire village opens its arms to heal a Flying Tiger with injured wings, but as a result of their charity the serenity of their community is forever shattered.

Love, sacrifice, kindness, and bravery all play a part in this heroic tale that takes place during one of the darkest hours of Chinese history.


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With candor, beauty, and unusual insight, their story reveals both how decent people can justify horrific acts, and the emotional power required to heal.
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Mr. Wizard
by Jeff Wallach

Two brothers. One mother. One big question.

Two days before her death, Jenny Elliot suggests to her fifty-year-old son Phillip that, being half-Irish, he should be more careful about his drinking. Phillip, along with his brother Spencer, has grown up believing they were the fully Jewish-American offspring of 





Jenny and her late husband who died in the Vietnam War. Was his mother uttering some dementia-inspired fantasy, or was her true character shining through in her last moments to leave the brothers a clue to their real heritage? After her death, Philip decides to take a DNA test.

The brothers set off on a genetic treasure hunt in search of who they really are—and what that might mean. Are they purely products of their genetics; or were they formed more completely by their social interactions and upbringing? Are they merely victims of randomness; or are they some combination of those factors? And who, exactly, is Mr. Wizard? 

Open Books Featured Titles
Who Are You, Fred?
by Eileen Maloney Ryan

High school isn't easy, especially with a learning disability.


While Fred is sure his learning disability is the reason he can never find his shoes, he mostly believes his LD is the reason he will never feel normal.

Trailers, Quotes, The World of Literature, Did you know? 
Much, much more!
​​Fred and his best friend Henry, who has ADHD, attend Mrs. Hogan’s resource class where she teaches them what LD and ADHD mean, and more importantly, what role the disorders will play in their lives. 

As Fred navigates four years of high school—confronting bullies, struggling with homework and tests, losing his shoes, and trying to answer the question, Who are you, Fred?—readers will gain an understanding about the complexities of 
learning disabilities.

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Scholarly and Academic titles from around the world

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"A stunning 
debut novel"
--Amazon Vine Voice

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Trigger Warning 
by Robert Klose

Within these halls of learning, one must proceed with caution.

Happily ensconced as a tenured Professor of Biology at the small Skowhegan College in the wilds of Maine, Tymoteusz Tarnaszewski—who goes by the moniker "T"—suddenly finds himself in unknown 

​territory when an incident in a colleague's classroom motivates the college administration to issue a blanket policy requiring the installation of "trigger warnings" in all syllabi. 

T, believing that this would constrain his teaching, refuses to comply, even after one of his own students lodges a complaint about something T said during the course of a genetics lecture. The administration's judgment is swift: T will be terminated at semester's end for insubordination.

What recourse, if any, does T have to save his position? And what will he do when he learns the higher-ups knew, early on, that the student who lodged the complaint against him is actually a threat to the school?



Featured Title 2023
A Flame Worth the Candle
Arthur Kevin Rein

Will a family curse lead to an ultimate sacrifice?

It's been less than two months since Sam Robel and Diane Warren took down the Manticores and their connections to organized crime. The disgraced family is a wounded but still dangerous animal, crouched in the Northwoods, licking its wounds. Sam and Diane think the fireworks for the summer of 2013 are over, but then Diane's father suddenly appears at Noquebay Resort, released from prison under suspicious circumstances with only half of a twenty-year sentence for negligent homicide completed. And then a girl that Sam thought was gone forever visits him with news that transforms his and Diane's lives forever.

In a far-away city there hides a woman who unwittingly holds the key to the future for both Sam and Diane. But there is fear in this woman's eyes and words she will not speak. Will solving her riddle prove fatal? Can a family curse be put to rest? In this story of heroism and sacrifice, Sam and Diane are swept to a place where nothing is guaranteed and everything is at stake.


Such Stuff as Dreams 
by Thomas Garlinghouse 

A struggling Hollywood Golden Age screenwriter collaborates with the world's greatest playwright

It’s 1936 and Hollywood screen- writer Joe Holliday has a secret. He can see and communicate with ghosts. But because of a difficult childhood, he has long suppressed his ability. 


Goldfinch in the Thistle 
Khristy Reibel

Is love strong enough to save a kingdom and stop history from repeating itself?

Goldfinch in the Thistle follows the lifelong love story of James V, King of Scotland, and his mistress, Maggie Erskine. Marriage is impossible, even after Maggie gives birth to a royal son. Margaret Tudor, the king’s mother, longs to bring her son and her brother Henry VIII into an alliance with a marriage to an English noble or princess and fulfill her promise to her father to join Scotland and England together. 

Set in sixteenth century Scotland against the background of the Protestant Reformation, the Renaissance in northern Europe, and the reign of Henry VIII, Goldfinch in the Thistle is a story of unfulfilled promises, loyalties, and shifting perspectives.
Getting Over Vivian
by Jill Carstens

Jill Carstens developed her identity as a child running through the vacant fields of the neighborhood where her parents built their house on Vivian Street within a stone’s throw of Colorado’s front range. 

It was an unspoken assumption that they would live happily on Vivian Street forever. But it is lost and so is she, at the age of 16, by an ugly divorce. Carstens and her brother are evicted from the only life they know, displaced on unexpected detours.

“Soon the only role my brother and I seem to have is to stretch ourselves, impossibly, like tightropes, spanning the frustrating distance between our parents’ new houses.”

Yet if it weren’t for that exodus, she might not have set off to find new places of belonging. Her searching validates her notion that place does matter. And that finding a community within those places is vital. As Carstens’ journey evolves, she faces continued loss while Denver goes through a disruptive gentrification.

Eventually, through milestones and adventures, using her lens of perpetual self-reflection, she will discover unlikely coordinates, places that begin to connect, creating junctions leading to a new life-map.

These 10 must-read novels about professors feature some of the most well-known professors in literature, from hapless lecturers and eccentric misfits to scapegoated faculty members, and more. Spend some time with your favorite prof with these must-read novels about professors.
OB Author Eileen Ryan launches her new novel, Who Are You, Fred? in Chicago
As for the shoes, you just have to read the book!
BookFest Award Winner for Fall 2023
Nevergreen
by Andrew Pessin

A smart, fast, funny, and incisive portrait of today's liberal arts college scene, cancel culture—and more!

A chance encounter—if it is by chance—gives J. the opportunity he’s been hoping for but never expected would present itself. A physician in a midlife funk, obsessed with paintings of corpses and dissections, he is asked to speak about his subject of 

interest at the beautiful and secluded island campus of Nevergreen College. “Welcome to the asylum!” announces the woman who arranged the invitation and greets him at the dock, and his restless stomach seems an eerie harbinger of what is to come—an initially curious and ultimately terrifying overview of academentia. No one actually shows up for his lecture, but that doesn’t stop it from becoming the center of a firestorm of controversy—with potentially fatal consequences. 


Bright College Years
Andrew Pessin

Coming of age doesn't only happen to the young.

When a former close friend and rival is murdered, world-weary but still aspiring optimist Jeffrey goes back to the beginning, to those fraught college years at Yale University during the 1980s and to her, to make 

Upcoming Titles for 2024
Numerous novels have been inspired by William Shakespeare’s works, themes, characters, and life. These novels take inspiration from Shakespeare’s plays and characters, as well as the famous playwright himself, offering new and creative interpretations of his timeless stories and lasting impact on the world of literature. Here are 10 novels that draw inspiration from Shakespeare:
OB  Author Arthur Kevin Rein discusses his writing process and reads from new novel, 
A Flame Worth the Candle
Arthur Kevin Rein recently met readers at Burlington Public Library in Burlington, Wisconsin to present 
his new novel, 
A Flame Worth the Candle.

And Then You Apply Ice is a collection of twenty-one poignant and humorous short stories by Pamela Gwyn Kripke, author of the Open Books novel, At The Seams.

An eight-year-old beauty pageant winner experiences objectification on a summer camp stage. A middle-aged single mother watches her boyfriend, a cosmetic surgeon, suction liquid fat out of a patient, confronting her own insecurities about appearance, worth and love. Through a slit in a door, an eyeball tracks the comings and goings of its neighbor, a young interior designer who is robbed in the walkup apartment across the hall. A Dixie Mafia don pushes a television reporter to question her ethics. Two dogs discover intertwined feet under a dinner party table and struggle to reveal the infidelity to their preferred human parent.

The women and girls in these twenty-one stories encounter hurt—to their emotions, bodies, beliefs and ideas—confronting who they are or will become. Their predicaments reveal the subtleties of human interaction, the power in one's decisions and ultimately, the complex resilience that imbues women's lives. A captivating look at managing transgression, the collection is an honest, funny and astute portrayal of the female experience.


Quantum Voices
by Stephen Spotte

Anax Grayson, a neuroscientist and physicist, enlists in the Marine Corps during the Vietnam War and is assigned to an undermanned reconnaissance team. One member, Skeeter Hatfield, came of age in a southern West Virginia coal camp and suffered since childhood from a rare malady known as heautoscopic

Rolling in the Deep
by Arthur Kevin Rein

How far will Sam and his friends go to discover what secrets lay at the bottom of the lake?

Seventeen-year-old Sam Robel knows about loss. After the death of his older brother, his family bought 
interest at the beautiful and secluded island campus of Nevergreen College. “Welcome to the asylum!” announces the woman who arranged the invitation and greets him at the dock, and his restless stomach seems an eerie harbinger of what is to come—an initially curious and ultimately terrifying overview of academentia. No one actually shows up for his lecture, but that doesn’t stop it from becoming the center of a firestorm of controversy—with potentially fatal consequences. 


Bright College Years
Andrew Pessin

Coming of age doesn't only happen to the young.

When a former close friend and rival is murdered, world-weary but still aspiring optimist Jeffrey goes back to the beginning, to those fraught college years at Yale University during the 1980s and to her, to make sense of what happened—only to discover that what needs most making sense of is himself. 

By turns smart, funny, and heart-wrenching, Bright College Years tracks Jeff and an ensemble cast as they navigate the shortest, gladdest, most complex years of life.
Open Books author 
Isabella Grosso
is the force behind 'She Is', 
a non-profit organization to teach dance to sexually abused girls.

Full video available on Amazon Prime
Dr. Rein will also greet readers at Crivitz Public Library in Crivitz, WI on February 8, 2024 at 5:00 pm

And at Waterford Public Library in Waterford, WI on March 27, 2024 at 5:30 pm
Coming of age doesn't only happen to the young
When the mercurial head of Apex Studios tasks him with writing a modern version of a Shakespeare play, Joe gradually regains his ability. Reopening himself to the spirit world brings him into contact with an old acquaintance—someone from his very distant past. This persistent, and very illustrious, spirit has a different writing task for him—some unfinished business the two had embarked upon over 400 years ago. 

When these two tasks ultimately come into conflict, Joe is forced to make a decision that will have far-reaching, life-changing consequences. 




Rein creates a powerful portrait of young lives in flux, buffeted by special interests in a gripping saga of transformation that both entertains and leads readers to think more deeply about the ramifications of choices that separate the main players, then brings them back together in an unusual way.
Heautoscopic hallucinations, also known as autoscopy or out-of-body experiences, are intriguing phenomena that have been explored in various literary works. While novels explicitly focused solely on heautoscopic hallucinations might be rare, there are several novels that incorporate these experiences as part of broader themes related to consciousness, identity, or the supernatural. Here are a few novels that feature heautoscopic hallucinations or related themes.

Featured Title 2024
hallucinations during which he sees ghostly, extra-corporeal projections of his dead twin brother. In a journal Grayson records life as a field Marine, his observations of Hatfield’s neurological condition, and speculates about matter and time. Hatfield survives a mortar attack and returns home with debilitating wounds. He marries a childhood acquaintance and with her help tries to overcome the terrifying hallucinations of his antagonistic Other. Spotte’s narrative mosaic juxtaposes the dysfunctional, barely literate Hatfield family against Grayson’s sympathetic erudition, weaving a mesmerizing disquisition on friendship, love, notions of time and space, neuroscience, quantum physics, consciousness, and the myths of agency and selfhood.


2024 Bestseller
sense of what happened—only to discover that what needs most making sense of is himself. 

By turns smart, funny, and heart-wrenching, Bright College Years tracks Jeff and an ensemble cast as they navigate the shortest, 




Children of Saturn is a literary novel of the French Revolution. Continuing the literary tradition advanced by Hilary Mantel, Children of Saturn is a revisionist historical novel rooted in deep research, which dramatizes the past in order to speak to the present—the ambition, idealism, corruption, and social unrest of the French Revolution highlighting contradictions that still haunt us today. Children of Saturn dramatizes historical figures who were ahead of their time, hewing close to the bones of history while vividly imagining the inner lives of its cast.

Children of Saturn is told through the fates of three contrasting real-life historical figures—the English/American political activist Thomas Paine; the French Revolution’s leading radical journalist Camille Desmoulins; and the Machiavellian politician Joseph Fouché. In stark contrast to his triumph during the American Revolution, Paine’s dreams for global democracy are tested to the limit by the dark realities of revolutionary Paris. Meanwhile, Camille finds himself hunted by the very political hysteria he helps to incite with his incendiary newspaper. And Fouché discovers a talent for ruthlessness and treachery both in the halls of government and on the field of battle. Finally, vexing and beguiling them all is the charismatic Marguerite Brazier, a lover to both Paine and Camille, a fierce advocate for the rights of women, and a character who is never quite who she seems. 



CHILDREN
OF SATURN

by 
John Neeleman

Cover coming soon
THE ONE BOOK TO READ ABOUT PREPARING FOR THE CLIMATE CRISIS

Surviving the coming world of the warming will pose significant challenges for the world’s eight billion people. And, despite America’s status as the world's richest, most technologically advanced country, Americans will fare no better than others.

Elevated temperatures, rising ocean levels, and more numerous damaging storms will, within several decades, render large portions of the United States inhospitable to human habitation and bring with it economic and social chaos.

The author maintains that the heat of the warming will crack, blister and peel away what has always been the thin veneer of civilization—leading over time to the demise of civil society and the collapse of major institutions.

While continued efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are laudable, they are too little, too late. As he demonstrates, we are already long past the tipping point after which the worst of the warming cannot be avoided. It has become baked in—irreversible. Instead, we need to increase our focus on how to adapt and survive the developing long-term climate calamity.

The book explores coming changes in housing, the economy, family finances, food, water, employment, energy, healthcare, safety and security and suggests ways in which families can prepare for them—starting now!






Open Books Welcomes 
Author John Neeleman
John Neeleman's second novel, Children of Saturn, is a revisionist historical novel of the French Revolution rooted in deep research, which dramatizes the past in order to speak to the present.

John's first novel, Logos, dramatizing Christianity’s origin, approached first century Palestine and Europe with a revisionist eye. Logos won both the 2016 Utah Book Award for fiction and the 2016 Independent Publisher Book Award Gold Medal for Religious Fiction. 

In the print edition of Kirkus ReviewsLogos was described as 
“a staggeringly impressive feat: a rigorously researched historical novel that carries its scholarliness lightly and grips the reader with personal drama.” 

Open Books author Lorin Robinson, author of the fictional short story collection, Tales from the Warming, returns with an up-to-date and  startling nonfiction account of the climate crisis, and proposes generational coping strategies for our very survival.
Surviving the Warming