September 2018 Library Reads Picks

The 7 1/2 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle
by Stuart Turton

“Imagine the movie Groundhog Day, except this time Aiden Bishop wakes up each day in a deteriorating manor house, as a different person, and must work out who he is and how he relates to everyone else at the party commemorating the long ago death of a child. If he can’t solve the murder that occurs at the party, he is doomed to continue the loop every eight days. A riveting page turner.”

Becky Bowen, Kenton County Public Library, Erlanger, KY

Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating
by Christina Lauren

“Hazel is the eccentric, exuberant friend who’ll make you fall in love with her, and she’s not interested in being ‘dateable.’ Josh is busy being a workaholic, trying to make a long distance relationship work, and not pursuing romance with anyone else. But when his sister’s best friend Hazel blows back into his life, he is powerless to resist her genuine joie de vivre. If you’re looking for your next perfect read after The Kiss Quotient, look no further! A lovely slow burn.”

Elizabeth Gabriel, Milwaukee Public Library, Milwaukee, WI

Lies
by T.M. Logan

“When Joe unwittingly discovers that his wife has been having an affair with her friend’s husband, his life starts to unravel. It seems that her lover now wants Joe out of the picture. Follow the cat-and-mouse plot as it explodes with a shocking finish! Great fun for those readers who love a good psychological thriller.”

Paulette Brooks, Elm Grove Public Library, Elm Grove, WI

Night and Silence
by Seanan McGuire

“Toby is back in this latest installment of the October Daye series. Still reeling and recovering from the events of the last book, Toby and company are laying low. When her human daughter goes missing (again), Toby embarks on a twisty-turny race against time to find her. A solid entry and good choice for libraries with a strong demand for fantasy and urban fantasy.”

Mei-Ling Thomas, Rochester Hills Public Library, Rochester, MI

Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen
by Sarah Bird

“A fascinating work of historical fiction about Cathay/Cathy Williams, a former slave turned Buffalo Soldier in post-Civil War America. Her raw and powerful story is sure to be popular with book clubs.”

Sarah Fetterman, Upper St. Clair Township Library, Upper St. Clair, PA

Lake Success: A Novel
by Gary Shteyngart

“Shteyngart delivers another painfully funny novel about ambition, disappointment, and the darker side of the American dream. For fans of witty, offbeat, satirical humor.”

Jennifer Alexander, St. Louis County Public Library, St. Louis, MO

The Dinner List: A Novel
by Rebecca Serle

“If you could have dinner with any five people, living or dead, who would they be? On her thirtieth birthday, Sabrina finds herself at dinner with her best friend, her ex-fiance, her long lost father, her college mentor and Audrey Hepburn, all with something to say to her. A charming combination of magical realism and romance.”

Tracy Babiasz, Chapel Hill Public Library, Chapel Hill, NC

Transcription: A Novel
by Kate Atkinson

“In WWII era London, Juliet Armstrong is working as an espionage monitor for MI5. Ten years later she suddenly finds herself targeted by dangerous individuals from her past. For fans of smart, witty, suspenseful, historical or spy fiction and authors like Tana French, Laurie R. King, and John Le Carre.”

Janet Lockhart, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

When the Lights Go Out
by Mary Kubica

“After her mother’s death, Jessie is trying is trying to rebuild her life. In her way is her debilitating insomnia and a secret that shakes the core of her identity. Psychological suspense with an unreliable narrator. This one’s for you Gone Girl fans.”

Diane Gring, Chester County Library & District Center, Exton, PA

Hitting the Books
by Jenn McKinlay

“McKinlay’s Lindsay Norris is back for another adventure in Briar Creek. As a fellow librarian, I appreciate her spot on observations of the library world. An upbeat cozy mystery with great characters and strong sense of place. For fans of the Aurora Teagarden mysteries and the Isabel Dalhousie mysteries.”

Carly Budzynski, Salem Public Library, Salem, VA

August 2018 Library Reads Picks

Vox

by Christina Dalcher

“In the future world depicted in Vox, women are limited to speaking 100 words per day. Readers will want to shout every word in their heads, hoard every book in their libraries, and second guess the words of every person in their lives. A captivating, timely book that explores women’s rights in a fast-paced, compelling story.”
                                                                                                                          Jennifer Gaenzle, Fort Fairfield Public Library, Fort Fairfield, ME

Our House

by Louise Candlish

“Full of secrets and surprises, Our House poses the question, “How well do you know the person you live with?” An attempt to co-habitate for the sake of the children leaves divorced mom Fiona alone and out in the cold. Readers will have a hard time putting down this twisty domestic suspense novel. Even after the last page is turned, the characters will linger.”

Annette Herbst, Columbia County Rural Library, Dayton, WA

Bellewether

by Susanna Kearsley

“A character-driven story with a nice surprise twist, this gothic-style fiction, set in 1759 Long Island, will not disappoint Kearsley’s many fans. Readers who enjoy good doses of romance, history, and magic will be pleased.”

Julie Raynor, High Point Public Library, High Point, NC

Good Luck with That

by Kristan Higgins

“Emerson, Georgia, and Marley met as teens at a “fat camp.” When one of them dies young, the others are forced to confront their own struggles with self-esteem and acceptance. With equal measures of humor and heartbreak, this book sparks questions about society’s idea of the perfect size and explores how body image can have far-reaching effects.”

Claudia Silk, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT

The Masterpiece: A Novel

by Fiona Davis

“Disparate decades of New York City are capably brought to life through two strong and resourceful female characters in Davis’s latest work. At the center is the Grand Central Terminal, which served as an art school in the 1920s, is threatened with demolition in the 1970s, and connects the threads of Clara Darden’s and Virginia Clay’s lives. Well researched and captivating.”

Kelly Baroletti, Wantagh Public Library, Wantagh, NY

The Other Woman: A Novel

by Sandie Jones

“Emily thinks she’s found the man of her dreams in Adam. But when she meets Pammie, the woman she hopes will be her future mother-in-law, things take a sinister turn. Fast-paced, gripping, and ultimately satisfying.”

Jenny Moore, Hillsboro Public Library, Hillsboro, OR

Rust & Stardust: A Novel

by T. Greenwood

“Disturbing crime fiction based on real events that inspired Nabokov’s Lolita. In 1948, fifth grade Sally Horner is kidnapped by a man pretending to be a police officer.”

Ninoshka Aviles, Osceola Library, Osceola, FL

Four Funerals and Maybe a Wedding

by Rhys Bowen

“The 12th book in the Royal Spyness mystery series finds our heroine, Georgie, juggling all manner of details as she prepares for her upcoming marriage to Darcy. A fun, breezy mystery.”

Cori Dodds, Derby Public Library, Derby, KS

Meet Me at the Museum: A Novel

by Ann Youngson

“A touching epistolary novel about an English farmer’s wife and a museum curator who may be in for an unexpected second act.”

Marilyn Sieb, L.D. Fargo Public Library, Lake Mills, WI

A River of Stars: A Novel

by Vanessa Hua

“A Chinese woman makes her way to America with her unborn daughter determined to make a life for them both. For readers who enjoy modern immigration stories like Behold the Dreamers and Little Fires Everywhere.”

Abby Johnson, New Albany-Floyd County Public Library, New Albany, IN

July 2018 Library Reads

Spinning Silver
by Naomi Novik

“A wonderful reimagining of the Rumpelstiltskin story. A tale of love, family, magic, and destiny, told from the perspective of three strong female characters.”

Melanie Liechty, Logan Library, Logan, UT

Clock Dance: A Novel
by Anne Tyler

“Willa Drake gets a second act when she steps in to care for a nine-year-old in a complicated situation. Character driven fiction and a sweeping storyline.”

Mary Anne Quinn, Warwick Public Library, Warwick, RI

Dear Mrs. Bird: A Novel
by AJ Pearce

“In 1940s London, Emmy takes a job as a typist that evolves into answering rejected letters sent to an advice columnist.”

Judy Hartman, Mechanicsville Public Library, Mechanicsville, IA

Baby Teeth: A Novel
by Zoje Stage

“A fragile woman struggles against her mute daughter’s schemes for her father’s undivided attention. Dark, creepy, and downright scary.”

Kathryn Neal, Skiatook Library, Skiatook, OK

Give Me Your Hand
by Megan Abbott

“Kit competes for her dream job with a rival who was once her closest friend. Gripping psychological suspense.”

Kristy Gates, Craighead County Jonesboro Public Library, Jonesboro, AR

Believe Me: A Novel
by JP Delaney

“An unemployed actress works for a divorce lawyer entrapping unsuspecting husbands until she finds herself ensnared in a murder investigation. This roller-coaster ride of a book will keep you guessing with an unreliable narrator and and a twisty plot.”

Linda Quinn, Fairfield Public Library, Fairfield, CT

Caught In Time: A Novel
by Julie McElwain

“The third book in the Kendra Donovan series finds our protagonist investigating the murder of a mill owner against the the backdrop of the Industrial Revolution.”

Melissa Barber, Lubbock Public Library, Lubbock, TX

Somebody’s Daughter
by David Bell

“Michael Frazier is searching for the missing daughter he never knew he had. A multi-layered plot with so many compelling, complex characters, this book grabbed me from the first sentences.”

Evelyn Cunningham, Norwalk Public Library, Norwalk, CT

The Romanov Empress: A Novel of Tsarina Maria Feodorovna by C. W. Gortner

“A look at Maria, Empress of Russia, and her trials before and after becoming the Russian Empress. Well written historical fiction.”

Janette McMahon, Fremont County Library System, WY

Fruit of the Drunken Tree: A Novel
by Ingrid Rojas Contreras

“Set against the violence of 1990s Columbia, a young girl and a maid form an unlikely and dangerous relationship. Equal parts heartwrenching and beautiful.”

Alejandra Rodriguez, Osceola County Library, FL

June 2018 Library Reads Picks

Bring Me Back: A Novel
by B.A. Paris

“Intensifying psychological suspense. Twelve years after Finn’s girlfriend Layla disappeared, a discovery raises new questions.”

Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

There There
by Tommy Orange

“A large cast of interwoven characters depicts the experience of Native Americans living in urban settings. Perfect for readers of character-driven fiction with a strong sense of place.”

Abby Johnson, New Albany-Floyd County Public Library, New Albany, IN

Us Against You: A Novel
by Fredrik Backman

“The citizens of Beartown are about to lose their beloved hockey team and their rivals could not be happier. The narrator has you wondering who is going to die and why events occur as they do.”

Gail Christensen, Kitsap Regional Library, Bremerton, WA

The Word is Murder: A Novel
by Anthony Horowitz

“A playful commentary on the mystery genre itself and the first in a promising new series. The author, Horowitz, plays the part of the narrator, and gets caught up in solving a murder with Daniel Hawthorne, an out-of-work detective.”

Amy Whitfield, Wake County Public Libraries, Cary, NC

Jar of Hearts
by Jennifer Hillier

“A suspenseful thriller told from multiple perspectives. A Seattle detective must unravel a web of secrets dating back to his high school days.”

Gail Roberts, Fairfax County Public Library, Fairfax, VA

Dreams of Falling
by Karen White

“Set in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, this story does what Southern fiction does best: family, lies, and secrets. For fans of Patti Callahan Henry and Mary Alice Monroe.”

Leanne Milliman, Charlevoix Public Library, Charlevoix, MI

The Kiss Quotient
by Helen Hoang

“A wonderfully sweet and erotic romance featuring an autistic heroine who hires a hot male escort to teach her how to enjoy sex, but learns so much more.”

Elizabeth Gabriel, Milwaukee Public Library, Milwaukee, WI

All We Ever Wanted: A Novel
by Emily Giffin

“Great storyline that is relevant to issues both facing young people today and the people raising them. The story keeps you guessing.”

Sarah Trohoske, Erie County Public Library, Erie, PA

Little Big Love
by Katy Regan

“A portrait of a family and a boy’s search for the father who left them, told from multiple perspectives with authentic, likeable characters.”

Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis County Library, Austin, TX

How Hard Can It Be?: A Novel
by Allison Pearson

“Kate is holding it all together, unemployed husband, kids, and parents. So, she reinvents herself as someone younger to secure a job with the hedge fund.”

Toni Nako, The Public Library of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH

May 2018 Library Reads Picks

Furyborn
by Claire Legrand

“Fierce, independent women full of rage, determination, and fire. The first novel in the Empirium trilogy holds appeal for both young adult and adult readers. For fans of Game of Thrones, Once Upon a Time, and The Hunger Games.”

Kristin Friberg, Princeton Library, Princeton, NJ

The Other Lady Vanishes
by Amanda Quick

“Historical romantic suspense. Who would suspect that the quiet California seaside tea shop waitress is actually an escaped mental patient? The second book in Quick’s Burning Cove series has the same 1930s vibe and glamorous, gossipy Hollywood ambiance as The Girl Who Knew Too Much.”

Beth Mills, New Rochelle Public Library, New Rochelle, NY

The Death of Mrs. Westaway
by Ruth Ware

“Ware’s best book by far. I finally stopped trying to puzzle it out and just sat back to enjoy the ride.”

Susanne Guide, Union County Public Library, Liberty, IN

The Perfect Mother: A Novel
by Aimee Molloy

“A frank look at mommy culture wrapped in an original twist on the suburban, psychological thriller.”

Jennifer Winberry, Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ

Love and Ruin: A Novel
by Paula McLain

“Biographical and historical fiction. Another fascinating Hemingway wife from McLain who always writes interesting women and great period detail.”

Elizabeth Angelastro, Manilus Library, Manilus, NY

Tin Man: A Novel
by Sarah Winman

“A beautifully written story of love, loss, grief, friendship, and acceptance. The story winds in and out of time in a figure eight like waves reaching shore and receding again.”

Donna Burger, Bryant Library, Roslyn, NY

Our Kind of Cruelty: A Novel
by Araminta Hall

“Disturbing psychological suspense with an unreliable narrator. This is a love story. Or is it? It’s more a story of obsession.”

Jennifer Ohzourk, St. Louis Public Library, St. Louis, MO

Paper Ghosts: A Novel of Suspense
by Julia Heaberlin

“Grace has spent years secretly investigating the disappearance of her older sister. Grace’s prime suspect is Carl Feldman, a photographer, who has been acquitted of the crime and now suffers from dementia. Grace decides that a road trip may jog Carl’s memory.”

Galen Cunniff, Scituate Town Library, Scituate, MA

The Favorite Sister
by Jessica Knoll

“Perfect for the reality TV addicted, this book is gossip laden, full of edge, and contains plenty of surprises.”

Sharon Layburn, Huntington Public Library, Huntington Station, NY

The Ensemble: A Novel
by Aja Gabel

“Set against the backdrop of the highly-competitive and merciless world of classical music, this brilliantly written debut is an exquisite portrait of a group friendship spanning decades. Gabel weaves a lyrical tale of four young musician’s journeys and their complex, yet resilient, relationships with each other. For fans of The Interestings, A Little Life, and A Secret History.”

Mayleen Kelley, JV Fletcher Library, Westford MA

June 2017 Library Reads Picks

Magpie Murders
by Anthony Horowitz

“Susan Ryeland is a London book editor who has just received the latest manuscript from one of her most irascible authors, Alan Conway. But the manuscript’s ending appears to be missing and she learns that Conway has committed suicide. As Ryeland learns more about his death, she starts to question whether a murder has occurred and begins to investigate. Magpie Murders is a delightful, clever mystery-within-a-mystery. Horowitz shows real mastery of his craft. This is a terrific, modern take on the traditional mystery with ingenious puzzles to solve.”

-Andrea Larson, Cook Memorial Library, Libertyville, IL

 

Silver Silence
by Nalini Singh

“Silver Silence is a new chapter in the Psy/Changeling series. As the world tries to adjust after a peace accord, Silver Mercant takes center stage. As head of an aid organization reacting to rampant terrorism, she’s an obvious target. But Alpha Valentin Nikolaev has already decided she’s his to protect. Valentin and Silver start tracking down deadly shadow factions that want to undermine the Trinity Accords. Diverse and fascinating world-building are on full display along with a bumped up level of humor in the face of adversity.”

- Jessica Trotter, Capital District Area Libraries, Lansing, MI

The Waking Land
by Callie Bates

“Lady Elanna Voltai flees her adopted homeland when the king, who raised her like a daughter, dies under mysterious circumstances and Elanna is accused of murder. Forced to return to the magical homeland of her birth and her estranged father who was branded a traitor for inciting rebellion, Elanna must come to terms with the life she left behind and her destiny. I loved watching Elanna find her voice and her strength, and the rich world of magic around her makes this story even more fantastic!”

-Jessica Perham, Schaumburg Township Library, Schaumburg, IL

Down Among The Sticks And Bones
by Seanan McGuire

“In Every Heart a Doorway we met Jack and Jill, two sisters bound together yet alienated. In this installment, we learn how these two girls escape their parents when they exit the world we know for a realm of fairy-tale horror via a magic stairway, appearing in a trunk in a locked room. This is a story about two young women and the trauma that shapes them; a story about love, hate, and the thin line between. A captivating and emotional novella that irresistibly sweeps the reader along.”

-Tegan Mannino, Monson Free Library, Monson, MA

Do Not Become Alarmed: A Novel
by Maile Meloy

“Liv and Nora, who are cousins, decide to take their families on a cruise. Both have an eleven-year-old and a younger child as well. At one of the ports, the moms take the children out with another family they met on the ship. All goes well until the children, in a brief moment, aren’t observed and disappear. From here the nightmare begins, and the story alternates between what is happening to the children and the adults. The story is gripping and the characters are well-developed. The book explores family and marital dynamics, race, privilege, guilt, and responsibility.”

-Mary Bennett, Carmel Clay Public Library, Carmel, IN

The Alice Network: A Novel
by Kate Quinn

“Outstanding fictional account of the Alice network, women spies in World War I, tough and determined to defeat the Germans. The story centers on Eve Gardiner, aka Marguerite, a young woman trained to spy on the Germans, and Charlie St. Clair, a young woman post WWII, pregnant, lost and finding her direction. The two meet and the story alternates chapters as Charlie is determined to find her cousin, Rose presumed dead after the war, while Eve’s story of the Alice network unfolds. A fantastic book with strong female characters.”

-Ellen Firer, Merrick Library, Merrick, NY

The Child
by Fiona Barton

“When a baby skeleton is unearthed at a construction site, reporter Kate Waters thinks it is a story worth investigating. As she digs into the mystery of the child, she uncovers more than she bargained for. Told from the viewpoints of various characters, Barton tells an intriguing tale about the newborn baby and all the characters involved, leaving it up to the readers to put together the connections until the very end.”

-Annice Sevett, New Hanover County Public Library, Wilmington, NC

 

The Little French Bistro: A Novel
by Nina George

“Terribly depressed by the emptiness of her long marriage, Marianne decides to end it all by jumping off a Paris bridge. Her unwanted rescue and ensuing marital abandonment jolt Marianne into ditching her tour group and setting out for Finistere, the westernmost coast of Brittany. Keeping body and soul together by working at a seaside bistro, Marianne finds herself healing through the company of a diverse group of quirky locals. The Little French Bistro is merveilleux. It refreshes like the sea breeze sweeping the Breton coast.”

-Sarah Nagle, Carver County Library, Chaska, MN

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel
by Taylor Jenkins Reid

“The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo is a delightful tale of old Hollywood, so full of detail, that you’ll swear Evelyn was a real actor. Monique Grant is tasked with writing an article about the famous woman, so she interviews Evelyn who tells us all about her career, starting in the 1950s — and her many marriages. This novel will enchant you, and Evelyn will stay with you long after you finish reading.”

- Lauren McLaughlin, Wilton Library Association, Wilton, CT

Midnight At The Bright Ideas Bookstore: A Novel
by Matthew Sullivan

“Lydia Smith is enjoying her comfortable life. She has a job she loves at the Bright Ideas Bookstore. Then one of her favorite “bookfrogs” (code word for eccentric bookstore regulars) commits suicide and leaves her his small horde of books. She discovers a strangely methodical defacement which is a kind of code. A delicate spiderweb of connections leading back to a murderous incident in Lydia’s childhood is revealed. This pushed me into reading ‘just one more chapter’ until late into the night.”

- Joan Hipp, Florham Park Public Library, Florham Park, NJ

May 2017 Library Reads Picks

Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine:A Novel
by Gail Honeyman

“I loved this book about the quirky Eleanor, who struggles to relate to other people and lives a very solitary life. When she and the new work IT guy happen to be walking down the street together, they witness an elderly man collapse on the sidewalk and suddenly Eleanor’s orderly routines are disrupted. This is a lovely novel about loneliness and how a little bit of kindness can change a person forever. Highly recommended for fans of A Man Called Ove and The Rosie Project – this would make a great book club read.”

- Halle Eisenman, Beaufort County Library, Blufton, SC

The Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women
by Kate Moore

“This is the story of hundreds of young, vibrant women who were sentenced to death by their employers. The so-called “Radium Girls” painted luminescent faces on clock and watch dials using a paint mixture that contained radium. Instructed to “lip-point”their brushes as they painted, they absorbed high doses of radium into their bodies. When the effects of the radium led to horrific disfigurement and pain, the company refused to take responsibility. This heartrending book was one I could not put down.”

- Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Since We Fell: A Novel
by Dennis Lehane

“Rachel is a journalist who, after her online breakdown, becomes a recluse scared to resume her daily life. She is recently divorced and meets an old friend who wants to help her overcome her fear. They fall in love, marry and appear to have the perfect life, until Rachel ventures out of the house one day and sees something that makes her question everything she knows about her new husband. Once a reporter, always a reporter and Rachel has to get to the bottom of her story.”

- Michele Coleman, Iredell County Public Library, Statesville, NC

The Leavers: A Novel
by Lisa Ko

“One morning, eleven-year-old Deming Guo’s mother, an undocumented Chinese immigrant named Polly, goes to her job and never comes home. Deming is eventually adopted by two white college professors who move him from the Bronx to a small town. This is a poignant story of a boy who struggles to find his footing in a new world. It’s also an unflinching look at the difficult decisions a mother faces. This novel explores what it means to be a family and the duality of lives, especially through adoption.”

- Jennifer Ohzourk, St. Louis Public Library, St. Louis MO

Ginny Moon: A Novel
by Benjamin Ludwig

“What an amazing debut novel! Ludwig effectively captures the voice, thought process, and behaviors of a young autistic girl who has escaped a harrowing living situation and has finally settled into a new”forever”home. Unfortunately, she becomes obsessed with returning to her old home to find her “baby doll,”jeopardizing both her own and her new family’s safety. Ginny truly is an original, and readers will be captivated by her story.”

- Vicki Nesting, St. Charles Parish Library, Destrehan, LA

Saints For All Occasions: A Novel
by J. Courtney Sullivan

“Sisters Nora and Theresa Flynn leave their home in Ireland for a new life in 1958 Boston. Each adjusts to life in America in her own way. Steady Nora watches younger Theresa, until choices made by each woman drive the sisters apart. We follow the story from 1958 to contemporary New England, Ireland, and New York, exploring how siblings and children relate to their parents and each other as they age. Novels about Irish immigrant families and their American descendants are a weakness of mine and the way this story unfolds from everyone’s perspectives is very satisfying!”

- Trisha Rigsby, Deerfield Public Library, Deerfield, WI

White Hot: A Hidden Legacy Novel
by Ilona Andrews

“After rereading the first Hidden Legacy book, I plunged immediately into White Hot. I wasn’t disappointed. Nevada is trying to return her life to a semblance of normal, “normal” being without powerful, sexy, and very dangerous Prime Rogan. Rogan hasn’t stopped thinking about Nevada and hasn’t stopped wanting her. And what Rogan wants, he eventually gets. The action in White Hot was faster, the plot more intricate, and the characters became even more real. I cannot wait to read book three!”

- Heather Cover, Homewood Library, Birmingham, AL

 

Sycamore: A Novel
by Bryn Chancellor

“A newly divorced woman is starting life over in a small Arizona town. She comes across the skeletal remains of what the locals think is the body of a seventeen-year-old girl named Jess who disappeared almost two decades ago. The discovery forces community members to recall memories and secrets that have been buried a long time. Readers are treated to a cast of characters with distinct personalities who, with each piece of the puzzle, form a patchwork that reveals the truth surrounding Jess’s disappearance.”

- Sharon Layburn, South Huntington Public Library, Huntington, NY

Astrophysics For People In A Hurry
by Neil deGrasse Tyson

“Tyson’s writing style is always approachable and entertaining, and his latest book is no exception. Clear and concise, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry gives readers exactly what the title promises, a basic understanding of a deeply fascinating subject. Highly recommended for readers who want to understand our universe better.”

- Mary Vernau, Tyler Public Library, Tyler, TX

The Jane Austen Project: A Novel
by Kathleen A. Flynn

“The Austen fan genre is expanded by an original new novel set both in the past and the near future. Two employees of a time travel company are assigned to go back to Austen’s day, ostensibly to retrieve the full copy of “The Watsons,” lost for all time…until now. The blending of historical fiction, fantasy, and romance with a beloved classic author thrown in the mix is a daring combination which succeeds.”

- Leslie DeLooze, Richmond Memorial Library, Batavia, NY

April 2017 Library Reads Picks

Anything Is Possible: A Novel
by Elizabeth Strout

“Strout does not disappoint with her newest work. Her brilliant collection takes up where her novel, My Name is Lucy Barton, leaves off. The chapters read like short stories with Lucy Barton as the thread that runs between them. The characters populate Amgash, Illinois and their stories are woven together carefully and wonderfully. No one captures the inner workings of small town characters better than Strout. Written to be read and enjoyed many times, I highly recommend for readers of fine literary fiction.”

- Mary Vernau, Tyler Public Library, Tyler, TX

Beartown: A Novel
by Fredrik Backman

“Backman’s most complex novel to date takes place in the small, hockey-crazed village of Beartown. He deftly weaves together the stories of the players, the coaches, the parents, and the fans as Beartown’s hockey team chases its dream of winning a championship. Weighty themes are explored. How high a price is too high for success? How deadly is silence? Who can you trust with your secrets? How far will you compromise your beliefs in the name of friendship? There are no easy answers. A great book club choice.”

- Janet Lockhart, Wake County Public Library, Cary, NC

Waking Gods: Book 2 of the Themis Files
by Sylvain Neuvel

“The sequel to Sleeping Giants contains just as much action and page-turning suspense. The story begins four years later and is told through interviews, memos, and news reports relating to the first robot, after Themis, lands in London. Soon Earth is in an uproar and Themis and her crew are once again called upon to make contact. Read the first book before you tackle this one but the good news is that you will have a shorter time than the rest of us waiting for the next installment.”

- Kimberly McGee, Lake Travis Community Library, Austin TX

Miss You: A Novel
by Kate Eberlen

“Tess and Gus meet at when they are both eighteen and on holiday in Italy. Their meeting is one of those instant connections, but they go in different directions. Tess returns home, expecting to go to university, but instead her mother dies leaving her to care for her much younger sister. Gus goes to medical school and must deal with the death of his brother. Tess and Gus’ lives momentarily intersect at various points over the years. I enjoyed both of their stories and the anticipation of hoping they would meet again and make a final connection.”

- Mary Bennett, Carmel Clay Public Library, Carmel, IN

The Stars Are Fire: A Novel
by Anita Shreve

“Grace, a young woman with two small children, lives by the coast in Maine in 1947. Her marriage isn’t very happy, but she’s dutiful and devoted to her children. After escaping a devastating fire that wiped out her town and nearby forests, Grace has to become braver, stronger, and more resourceful than she’s ever had to be before. She manages it, and it’s lovely to watch happen, until something unexpected makes her life contract once more. This was deeply engaging and opened a real window on what it would have been like to be a woman in a small town in the 1940s.”

- Diana Armstrong Multomah County Library, Portland, OR

American War: A Novel
by Omar El Akkad

“In the not too distant future, the United States is again at war with itself. Fossil fuels, which have decimated the environment, are banned, but the states rich in them refuse to comply and thus break away from the union. Biological warfare, drones as killing machines, and state fighting against state contribute to make this a prescient novel. Multiple narration and differing viewpoints combine to make this an absorbing, shocking read of what could be. A must read that will be discussed by all who read it.”

- Marika Zemke, Commerce Township Public Library, Commerce, MI

Killers of the Flower Moon: The Osage Murders and the Birth of the FBI
by David Grann

“In the 1920s, a string of unsolved murders rocked the Osage Indian Nation in Oklahoma. Made rich by oil rights, the Osage were already victimized by unscrupulous businessmen and societal prejudice, but these murders were so egregious, the newly formed FBI was brought in to investigate. Immensely readable, this book brings a shameful part of U.S. history alive and will keep readers thinking long after they have finished the book.”

- Jenna Persick, Chester County Library, Exton, PA

The Shadow Land: A Novel
by Elizabeth Kostova

“Twentysomething Alexandra heads to Bulgaria to teach English and attempt to escape the pain of losing a family member. She ends up searching for a family when she realizes she accidentally kept one of their bags after helping them on her first day in the country. With the help of Bobby, a Bulgarian taxi driver, and many other entrancing characters, the search takes her all over Bulgaria and even back in time as she learns more about the family she is trying to find. Beautifully written and completely enthralling.”

- Caitlin Loving, Bedford Public Library, Bedford, NH

A Twist In Time: A Novel
by Julie McElwain

“Time-traveling FBI Agent Kendra Donovan remains stranded in 1858 England. When her confidante and potential lover, Alec is accused of murdering his former mistress, Kendra must use her modern investigative skills to work through the list of suspects and clear Alec’s name. Kendra must also decide whether to stay in the past with Alec or to continue to try to find a way back to the present. If she makes it home, what will be waiting for her? Highly recommended to readers of historical romance, romantic suspense, and time travel.”

- Glenda Ramsey, Catawba County Library System, Newton, NC

Gone Without a Trace
by Mary Torjussen

“Hannah is eager to return home to her boyfriend, Matt Stone, with news of her impending work promotion. Hannah’s joy quickly turns to terror when she finds Matt missing and the house empty of all evidence of his presence. She begins to feel she is being stalked and receives messages that she is certain are from Matt. Little by little, Hannah descends into darkness as all the truths start to unravel and a different tale emerges. This dark debut is one to devour yet savor at the same time.”

- Jennifer Winberry,Hunterdon County Library, Flemington, NJ

MAY 2017 BOOK DISCUSSIONS

Check out these books we are discussing in May! Pick up a copy today @ the Harnish Adult Services desk!

BOOK CLUBBERS

Wonder

By: R.J. Palacio

Date: Thursday, May 4th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 7:00 pm

August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He's about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you've ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie's just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he's just like them, despite appearances?

SPINE CRACKERS

The Nightingale

By: Kristin Hannah

Date: Friday, May 5th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 10:00 am

France, 1939. In the quiet village of Carriveau, Vianne Mauriac says goodbye to her husband, Antoine, as he heads for the Front. She doesn’t believe that the Nazis will invade France...but invade they do, in droves of marching soldiers, in caravans of trucks and tanks, in planes that fill the skies and drop bombs upon the innocent. When a German captain requisitions Vianne’s home, she and her daughter must live with the enemy or lose everything. Without food or money or hope, as danger escalates all around them, she is forced to make one impossible choice after another to keep her family alive. Vianne’s sister, Isabelle, is a rebellious eighteen-year-old girl, searching for purpose with all the reckless passion of youth.  While thousands of Parisians march into the unknown terrors of war, she meets Gäetan, a partisan who believes the French can fight the Nazis from within France, and she falls in love as only the young can...completely. But when he betrays her, Isabelle joins the Resistance and never looks back, risking her life time and again to save others.

BOOKALICIOUS

The Alex Crow

By: Andrew Smith

Date: Monday, May 8th, 2017 @ Village Vintner

Start Time: 7:00 pm

Once again blending multiple story strands that transcend time and place, Grasshopper Jungle author Andrew Smith tells the story of 15-year-old Ariel, a refugee from the Middle East who is the sole survivor of an attack on his small village. Now living with an adoptive family in Sunday, West Virginia, Ariel's story of his summer at a boys' camp for tech detox is juxtaposed against those of a schizophrenic bomber and the diaries of a failed arctic expedition from the late nineteenth century. Oh, and there’s also a depressed bionic reincarnated crow.

CLASSICS

The Way of All Flesh 

By: Samuel Butler

Date: Wednesday, May 17th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 7:00 pm

Written between 1873 and 1884 and published posthumously in 1903, The Way of All Flesh is regarded by some as the first twentieth-century novel. Samuel Butler's autobiographical account of a harsh upbringing and troubled adulthood shines an iconoclastic light on the hypocrisy of a Victorian clerical family's domestic life. It also foreshadows the crumbling of nineteenth-century bourgeois ideals in the aftermath of the First World War, as well as the ways in which succeeding generations have questioned conventional values. Hailed by George Bernard Shaw as "one of the summits of human achievement," this chronicle of the life and loves of Ernest Pontifex spans four generations, focusing chiefly on the relationship between Ernest and his father, Theobald. Written in the wake of Darwin's Origin of Species, it reflects the dawning consciousness of heredity and environment as determinants of character. Along the way, it offers a powerfully satirical indictment of Victorian England's major institutions—the family, the church, and the rigidly hierarchical class structure.

NITE READERS

Flight of Dreams

By: Ariel Lawhon

Date: Thursday, May 18th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 7:00 pm

On the evening of May 3rd, 1937, ninety-seven people board the Hindenburg for its final, doomed flight to Lakehurst, New Jersey. Among them are a frightened stewardess who is not what she seems; the steadfast navigator determined to win her heart; a naive cabin boy eager to earn a permanent spot on the world’s largest airship; an impetuous journalist who has been blacklisted in her native Germany; and an enigmatic American businessman with a score to settle. Over the course of three hazy, champagne-soaked days their lies, fears, agendas, and hopes for the future are revealed.

 

APRIL 2017 BOOK DISCUSSIONS

Check out what our book clubs are discussing in April! Stop by the Adult Services desk @ Harnish to pick up a copy!

BOOK CLUBBERS

The Summer Before the War

By: Helen Simonson

Date: Thursday, April 6th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 7:00pm

It's the summer of 1914 and life in the sleepy village of Rye, England, is about to take an interesting turn. Agatha Kent is expecting an unusual candidate to be the school's Latin teacher: Beatrice Nash, a young woman of good breeding in search of a position after the death of her father. Agatha's nephews, meanwhile, have come to spend the summer months, as always, both with dreams of their own. When Hugh is sent to pick up Beatrice from the train station life, of course, changes. Here, these characters and others we come to love and root for become characters we hope and pray for when the shadow of the Great War looms ever closer to home.

 

SPINE CRACKERS

The Book That Matters Most

By: Ann Hood

Date: Friday, April 7th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 10:00am

Ava's twenty-five-year marriage has fallen apart, and her two grown children are pursuing their own lives outside of the country. Ava joins a book group, not only for her love of reading but also out of sheer desperation for companionship. The group's goal throughout the year is for each member to present the book that matters most to them. Ava rediscovers a mysterious book from her childhood--one that helped her through the traumas of the untimely deaths of her sister and mother. Alternating with Ava's story is that of her troubled daughter Maggie, who, living in Paris, descends into a destructive relationship with an older man. Ava's mission to find that book and its enigmatic author takes her on a quest that unravels the secrets of her past and offers her and Maggie the chance to remake their lives.

BOOKALICIOUS

The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B

By: Teresa Toten

Date: Monday, April 10th, 2017 @ Village Vintner

Start Time: 7:00pm

When Adam meets Robyn at a support group for kids coping with obsessive-compulsive disorder, he is drawn to her almost before he can take a breath. He's determined to protect and defend her--to play Batman to her Robyn--whatever the cost. But when you're fourteen and the everyday problems of dealing with divorced parents and step-siblings are supplemented by the challenges of OCD, it's hard to imagine yourself falling in love. How can you have a "normal" relationship when your life is so fraught with problems? And that's not even to mention the small matter of those threatening letters Adam's mother has started to receive . . .

 

CLASSICS

The Invisible Man

By: H.G. Wells

Date: Wednesday, April 19th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 7:00pm

With his face swaddled in bandages, his eyes hidden behind dark glasses, and his hands covered even indoors, Griffin--the new guest at the Coach and Horses--is at first assumed to be a shy accident victim. But the true reason for his disguise is far more chilling: he has developed a process that has made him invisible and is locked in a struggle to discover the antidote. Forced from the village and driven to murder, he seeks the aid of an old friend, Kemp. The horror of his fate has affected his mind, however, and when Kemp refuses to help, he resolves to wreak his revenge.

 

NITE READERS

Quartet: Four Tales from the Crossroads

By: George R.R. Martin

Date: Thursday, April 20th, 2017 @ Harnish

Start Time: 7:00pm

Quartet is a short story collection by George R.R. Martin and contains the following stories: The Skin Trade, Blood of the Dragon, Black and White and Red All Over, and Starport.