Monday, August 28, 2017

Kathy recommends Chapter One

Looking for something to read?  My favorite titles of the year so far are August Snow and Behind Her Eyes.

August Snow by Stephen Mack Jones is a classic private eye story that takes place in Detroit and is written by a Detroiter.  Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough is a psychological thriller, ala Girl on the Train, with a big twist at the end.  It has it’s very own hashtag on social media:  #wtfthatending! 

Both titles are recommended for adult audiences.

For other adult reading recommendations, join librarians Kate, Meghan and myself at CHAPTER ONE on Wednesday, September 13 at 7 pm in the Main Library Auditorium.  We will discuss a curated list of twenty plus titles, both fiction and non-fiction, and print and audio.  We will also give a sneak preview of upcoming hot reads for Fall! Register here.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Kara recommends "All the Ugly and Wonderful Things"

This book is not for everyone, but I found it to be the best book I have read so far this year.  The writing was beautiful, and the story and characters were touching and disturbing at the same time.  This would be a great book for book clubs to read, as it would make for a great discussion.  I recommend this book for adult readers.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Gretchen recommends "Takeover"

Takeover by Lisa Black is the first book in a series featuring Theresa MacLean in a tense hostage situation.  Like the author, Theresa is a forensic scientist.  She is swept up in the drama when her fiancĂ© becomes a hostage in a takeover at the Federal Reserve Bank related to a recent murder investigation.  Hostage negotiations take place from the public library across the street from the Federal Reserve.  The thriller features several plot turns with an unexpected twist at the end.  Set in the sweltering Cleveland summer heat, this is a quick mystery read for adults.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Lisa recommends "Real Friends"

For anyone who has ever had a hard time making friends, dealt with cliques, or struggled through friendships, this graphic novel memoir is for you.  Shannon Hale shares her experience with elementary friendships, from feeling like the odd one out, to those moments of high anxiety, to making friends who accept you as you are.  I highly recommend picking this one up, no matter what your age is.

P.S. I even gave this one to my mom to read!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Emily recommends "The Good Widow"

If you’re looking for a quick, easy thriller to read this summer, I recommend “The Good Widow” by Liz Fenton and Lisa Steinke.

Elementary school teacher Jacqueline “Jacks” Morales’s marriage was far from perfect, but even in its ups and downs it was predictable, familiar. Or at least she thought it was…until two police officers showed up at her door with devastating news. Her husband of eight years, the one who should have been on a business trip to Kansas, had suffered a fatal car accident in Hawaii. And he wasn’t alone.

For Jacks, laying her husband to rest was hard. But it was even harder to think that his final moments belonged to another woman—one who had left behind her own grieving and bewildered fiancĂ©. Nick, just as blindsided by the affair, wants answers. So he suggests that he and Jacks search for the truth together, retracing the doomed lovers’ last days in paradise.

Now, following the twisting path of that fateful road, Jacks is learning that nothing is ever as it seems. Not her marriage. Not her husband. And most certainly not his death…

This one definitely kept me reading! It’s not an overly complicated book (perfect as a beach read) but the suspense and Hawaiian setting were solid.

Recommended for older teens and adults. Also recommended for fans of Joy Fielding, Jennifer Weiner, and Nicci French.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Michelle recommends "I Found You"

Looking for the next suspenseful, psychological fiction to add to your reading list? Check out I Found You by Lisa Jewell. Sometimes reading a multiple character storyline can get tedious, but Lisa Jewell develops the characters and their stories in an intriguing and balanced way.

      We start with a single mom, Alice, that comes across a man near her home who has lost his memory. His memory of everything; from his name, to his likes and dislikes, to why he ended up on the beach in front of Alice’s home. So she decides to welcome him into her chaotic life and home, then tries to help him recover and rediscover his life.
      There is also a young newlywed, Lily, in a suburb of London that has reported her husband missing. Her husband has disappeared somewhere between leaving work and getting home, but she does not feel the police are not working quickly enough to help her find him. She is alone, new to the country and anxious to find her devoted husband.

      And then, we get to go back to 1993 where a family of four is vacationing in Alice’s town when they meet an eager young man, that is not quite trusted by everyone in the family.

It is clear that something terrible happened in 1993, but it’s interesting to try to figure out how the memory-less man and Lily’s husband are connected, both to each other and the story in 1993. If you enjoyed Paula Hawkins Girl on the Train, give this one a try.

Recommended for Adults.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Emily recommends "Black Rabbit Hall"

This gothic-style tale combines an old, rambling English manor house, an eccentric family, and dark secrets into one intriguingly twisted tale…

Lorna is determined to be married within the grand, ivy-covered walls of Pencraw Hall, known as Black Rabbit Hall among the locals. But as she’s drawn deeper into the overgrown grounds, half-buried memories of her mother begin to surface and Lorna soon finds herself ensnared within the manor’s labyrinthine history, overcome with an insatiable need for answers about her own past and that of the once-happy family whose memory still haunts the estate.

An atmospheric and intriguing tale, this would be a good read for fans of Susanna Kearsley, Daphne du Maurier, or Kate Morton.  

Recommended for older teens and adults.

Jamie recommends "Annie's Ghosts"

Annie's ghosts : a journey into a family secret

Annie's Ghosts takes place in Detroit as the author attempts to track down the long-lost aunt he never knew he had. I found this an interesting nonfiction story, not only for the familiarity of the areas discussed in the book, but also the topic of physically or mentally challenged people and how they were handled in early 20th century. In addition, the book also dealt with information about World War II and the exodus of Jewish citizens from Eastern Europe.

If you liked this book and want to discuss it, it will be the subject of the Wine and Proses book discussion on August 1 at Filipo Marc Winery. Register to attend to discuss the book with us!

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Kira Recommends "The Red Rising Trilogy"

Red Rising
Okay, I'll be the first to admit it- we're all growing tired of the 'chosen teenager takes down an oppressive, dysfunctional social hierarchy in a dystopian future', so I began reading 'Red Rising' with more than a few grains of salt. However, this trilogy is less like 'The Hunger Games'  or 'Divergent', and reads more like 'Ender's Game' or a Sci-Fi version of Game of Thrones (if it only focused on Jon Snow). There's a reason this book is in the Science Fiction part of our library and not the Young Adult section, and that's because this series is very, very heavy. I'm glad I gave it a chance, because through the first half of 'Red Rising' I scoffed at how predictable it was. The main character, Darrow, is a red, the lowest in a color-based society, where he works as a miner on Mars. Through a series of events, he's turned into a gold, the rulers of the color caste system, where an underground organization uses him for their own purposes (to have all colors treated as equals) using Darrow as their golden proxy. This is where I rolled my eyes and shook my head, dreading another Hunger Games. Luckily, the rest of 'Red Rising' played out much differently than anticipated, and by the time 'Golden Son' rolls around, Darrow isn't even a teenager anymore. By the time I finished 'Golden Son​' I could hardly wait to read 'Morningstar', and I finished it in 2 days. All in all, if you like the Ender series, and you can get past the first half of 'Red Rising', chances are you will love this trilogy.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Jeannie recommends "The Chemist"

The Chemist, by Stephanie Meyer

A suspense novel with an excellent plot, exciting characters…a terrific read. I haven’t read a 500+ page book in less than four days in years - this was a fast-paced page turner!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Lisa recommends books about play for parents with young children

  50 fantastic things to do with babies·     


It's summer! Now that the weather is getting warmer, here are some great ideas of things to do with your baby, toddler, or preschooler!

      50 Fantastic Things to Do with Babies by Sally Featherstone  
·         Let Them Play: An Early Learning (un)Curriculum by Jeff Johnson  
·         Wiggle, Giggle and Shake: 200 Ways to Move andLearn by Rae Pica  
·         Preschoolers & Kindergarteners Moving andLearning by Rae Pica  
·         303 Preschooler-Approved Exercises and ActiveGames by Kimberly Wechsler  
·         Baby Smarts: Games for Playing and Learning by Jackie Silberg  

Friday, March 31, 2017

Kira recommends "Lights Out"

Lights out

My best friend and I are horror movie addicts, and we've watched everything from The Blair Witch Project to The Collector to REPO: The Genetic Opera to The Greenskeeper. Anyone who watches a lot of horror movie​s knows that they can range from cheesy to okay to amazing, and anywhere in between. This movie was at the latter end of the spectrum. There's not a whole lot of ideas that haven't been seen before in horror movies- evil creature comes through a ouija board, mentally ill child kills everybody, a demonic cult lies beneath an innocent-looking town- or, of course, a monster can only exist in the shadows, so you're safe until the lights go out. What makes this movie good is that instead of going down the same path that other horror films have already gone, Lights Out takes a new spin, and is genuinely scary. I won't ruin anything for you, but if you like scary movies, or even if you just want your blood to rush without blood and gore flying everywhere, this is a good, terrifying horror movie for you.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Gretchen recommends "Law of Attraction"

Law of Attraction is a combination legal thriller and romance with compelling characters.  Author and former federal prosecutor Allison Leotta, originally from Michigan, uses her legal background to craft the first of her Anna Curtis novels.  Anna’s first case brings back disturbing memories of her childhood, also bringing to light the complex cycle of domestic violence.  What follows is a fast-faced whodunit with surprising twists and turns, leaving room for new legal battles and relationships for Anna in the series.  This title was well-received by the North Branch mystery book discussion group.  Recommended for adults.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Margaret recommends "The Greater Journey: Americans in Paris"

Master historian, David McCullough, tells the story of the generations of American artists, writers, and doctors who traveled to Paris between 1830 and 1900. What they learned in Paris helped to shape America from art to inventions to written works to medicine. Learn about people such as Samuel F.B. Morse, the inventor of the telegraph and Morse code. What you learn may surprise you. McCullough brings each of the many men and women artists, inventors, writers, and doctors to life and demonstrates truly how amazing they were. Our very own Detroit Institute of Arts own some of the works of Mary Cassatt, James McNeill Whistler, John Singer Sargent, Alexander Healy and more mentioned in the book. It is well worth the visit to explore. Enjoyed by our South Branch book club, an informative read.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Jeannie recommends "Deepwater Horizon"

Deepwater horizon

Book: Fire on the Horizon by John Konrad

Both the book and the movie share subject matter of the disaster aboard the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig. I highly recommend reading the book first, and then check out the movie (both of which are available at CMPL). I forgot how the book moved me until I saw the movie, and bonus if you like Mark Wahlburg!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Lisa recommends "Baby Shower Gift Books"

Have you been invited to a baby shower? Do you need to bring a book? We've got some great options for you to buy for your family's newest addition!

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Juliane recommends "Sing Street"

If 80s nostalgia is calling to you, you will love this movie!  One of the best independent films to come out of 2016, “Sing Street” is a coming of age movie that blends Irish scrappiness with rock music in a joyous melody of angst, passion, unrequited love, and escapism.  We watch as one young man – intent on impressing a young woman – invents a band and spins up a hype cycle complete with costumes and music videos.  You can’t help tapping your feet to the original song, “Drive it Like You Stole It” and rooting for the band to make it big.  Watch out for the ending, the irrepressible hope sneaks up on you (with a tear or two) but more like a wind in your sail and less of a knock-you-off-your-feet!

Monday, January 23, 2017

Emily recommends Hot Reads for Cold Nights

Looking for a hot read on a cold night? We've got you covered! Here are some great books to pick up in print and even audio and eBook this winter. We've even included with the call number:

Bear and the nightingale by Katherine Arden SF ARDEN

Behind closed doors by B.A. Paris FIC PARIS

Chemist by Stephenie Meyer FIC MEYER

Commonwealth by Ann Patchett FIC PATCHETT

Couple next door by Shari Lapena FIC LAPENA

Dear Mr. M by Herman Koch FIC KOCH

Fall guy by James Lasdun FIC LASDUN

Fractured by Catherine McKenzie FIC MCKENZIE

Girl before by J.P. Delaney  FIC DELANEY

Guineveres by Sarah Domet FIC DOMET

Her every fear by Peter Swanson FIC SWANSON

History of wolves
by Emily Fridlund FIC FRIDLUND

Hopefuls by Jennifer Close FIC CLOSE

Jerusalem by Alan Moore FIC MOORE

Man called Ove by Fredrik Backman FIC BACKMAN

Moonglow by Michael Chabon MYS CHABON

Motion of puppets by Keith Donohue FIC DONOHUE

Mothers by Brit Bennett FIC BENNETT

News of the world by Paulette Jiles FIC JILES

Perfect girl by Gilly MacMillan FIC MACMILLAN

Stranded by Bracken MacLeod FIC MCLEOD

Today will be different by Maria Semple FIC SEMPLE

Underground railroad by Colson Whitehead FIC WHITEHEAD

We are unprepared by Meg Little Reilly FIC REILLY

Book of joy: lasting happiness in a changing world by the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu 
294.3444 B

Thank you for being late by Thomas Friedman 303.483 F

Shoe dog by Phil Knight 338.76887 K

Perfect horse: the daring U.S. mission to rescue the priceless stallions kidnapped by the Nazis by Elizabeth Letts 940.5421 L

Lost city of the monkey god by Douglas Preston 972.85 P

American dreamer by Tommy Hilfiger BIO HILFIGER

Born to run by Bruce Springsteen BIO SPRINGSTEEN

Good vibrations: my life as a Beach Boy  by Mike Love BIO LOVE

Hillbilly Elegy by J.D. Vance BIO VANCE

Love warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton BIO MELTON

Magnolia story by Chip Gaines BIO GAINES

Princess diarist by Carrie Fisher BIO FISHER

Scrappy little nobody by Anna Kendrick BIO KENDRICK

Settle for more by Megyn Kelly BIO KELLY

Talking as fast as I can by Lauren Graham BIO GRAHAM

They’re playing our song: a memoir by Carole Bayer Sager BIO SAGER