As part of The Colorado Sun’s literature section — SunLit — we’re featuring staff picks from book stores across the state. >> Click here for more SunLit

This week’s bookstore: Old Firehouse Books, 232 Walnut St., Fort Collins | @OFirehouseBooks on Twitter, Instagram

The Love Hypothesis

By Ali Hazelwood
Sept. 14, 2021

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From the publisher: When a fake relationship between scientists meets the irresistible force of attraction, it throws one woman’s carefully calculated theories on love into chaos. As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships—but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

From Andrea, bookseller: Fake dating is my favorite! The pining between the two was so frustrating but, of course, fantastic at the same time. There was demisexual rep, so if you’re looking for a romance book with ace characters, I cannot recommend this enough. I also appreciated that the story was set in academia and addressed important issues that women deal with in STEM. Read it in essentially a day because I just needed to know what happened.

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The Last House on Needless Street

By Catorina Ward
Tor Nightfire
Sept. 28, 2021

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From the publisher: A gripping psychological horror novel that delivers twist after twist, this novel is a shocking exploration of the lengths we’ll go to protect ourselves from dark truths. A shocking and immersive read perfect for fans of ”Gone Girl” and ”The Haunting of Hill House.” In a boarded-up house on a dead-end street at the edge of the wild Washington woods lives a family of three: a teenage girl who isn’t allowed outside; a man who drinks alone in front of his TV trying to ignore the gaps in his memory; and a house cat who loves napping and reading the Bible. An unspeakable secret binds them together, but when a new neighbor moves in next door, what is buried out among the birch trees may come back to haunt them all.

From Andrea, bookseller: Genuinely one of my favorite manga. The story follows a high schooler that wants to get into art school, breaking away from all previous expectations for him. The considerations of developing your own artistic style and becoming your own person are so heartfelt and beautiful as the anxieties of life are expressed through artistic pieces. The cast of characters are each so unique as both artists and people. Highly recommend.

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Unfinished Business

By J.A. Jance
Gallery Books
June 1, 2021

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From the publisher: In this heart-pounding and sharply written thriller from J.A. Jance, Ali Reynolds’s personal life is thrown into turmoil just as two men show up on the scene—a former employee of her husband’s who has just been released from prison and a serial killer who sets his sights a little too close to home.

From Susie, owner: This is the most recent book in the author’s long running Ali Reynolds series which started as a blog when Jance was fired for being “too old” to host the news. Many successful books and new characters later, Jance’s heroes are trying to help a former employee who was just released from prison but may be innocent. This doesn’t mean the headaches of running their business got any easier since they have to deal with a tenant who stopped paying rent and all that entails. J.A. Jance tells great stories with well-written plots but it’s her characters that keep me reading.

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