Friday, June 14, 2019

Natalie recommends "Return of the Wolf: Conflict and Coexistence"


Return of the Wolf: Conflict and Coexistence is a nonfiction adult book looking into the lives of wolves. Their history, their unfortunate reputation for being bad/evil,  what they symbolize in some cultures, misconceptions and their future.  It talks about diets, breeding habits, and the coexistent relationship that wolves and ravens have when it comes to hunting and eating.  It even has a section talking about coywolves (wolf and coyote hybrids) and wolf-dogs (the half wolf, half domesticated dog breed).  The author shares what they've learned and it's really interesting.

It's a fascinating read and helps give an understanding to one of the most misunderstood Apex predators.​  And if you're looking for something kind of different, or a good nonfiction book, I would recommend this.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Sarah recommends “Where the Crawdads Sing”

The Books on Tap Book Club's June pick was "Where the Crawdads Sing" by Delia Owens.

Summary from the publisher:
For years, rumors of the "Marsh Girl" have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. She's barefoot and wild; unfit for polite society. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark. But Kya is not what they say. Abandoned at age ten, she has survived on her own in the marsh that she calls home. A born naturalist with just one day of school, she takes life lessons from the land, learning the real ways of the world from the false signals of fireflies. But while she could have lived in solitude forever, the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. Drawn to two young men from town, who are each intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new and startling world—until the unthinkable happens.

Part mystery, part coming-of-age story, "Where the Crawdads Sing" is a beautifully written debut novel from an acclaimed nature writer. All 10 members of the book club really liked this book, particularly the lyrical descriptions of the natural world, and we all were moved by the heartbreaking story of the sensitive yet resilient Kya.

If you're interested in joining a casual book club for adults that discusses new and popular fiction, please join us at our next Books on Tap meeting on July 8, 2019, 6pm, at Bar Louie Partridge Creek. We'll be discussing "My Sister the Serial Killer" by Oyinkan Braithwaite.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Kathy recommends "Nickel and Dimed: on (not) getting by in America

First published in 2001, Nickel and Dimed describes the author’s attempt to subsist on a variety of minimum wage jobs over the course of two years in three different cities. She worked as a waitress, hotel maid, house cleaner, nursing-home aide and Wal-Mart associate. The author vividly describes each work experience and what she endured in humorous and thoughtful prose. Most of the time her earnings barely covered her expenses unless she worked two jobs seven days a week. Ehrenreich says that the experience changed her forever. She writes that the hardest thing to accept is the “invisibility of the poor.” We see them every day but don’t recognize them as poor because after all, they work. This is a quick, entertaining and thought provoking read. My eyes were opened many times, especially at her description of working for a franchise cleaning company. Comparisons to today’s wage earners are eerily similar and inevitable.

As it so happens, this title is our selection for the next “Let’s Get Real” nonfiction book discussion on June 24th at 6:30. Pick up your copy at any one of our branches and please join us for some lively conversation at the Main library.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Margaret recommends "The Gown"

This historical fiction novel takes place during then Princess Elizabeth’s (now Queen Elizabeth) wedding preparations. It highlights the often overlooked seamstresses and embroiderers that worked diligently and passionately to complete the beautiful gown designed by Norman Hartnell and the secrets behind it. It is also a story of friendship of two women who survived WWII and the hope and healing from their work together to complete a historical gown. Jennifer Robson gives us a glimpse of the past and wonderfully weaves us into this story of friendships, the gown, and the royal family.  Recommended for Adults.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Janet recommends "The Revenge of Magic"

This exciting story is the first book in a new series from James Riley, the bestselling author of Story Thieves. Fort Fitzgerald and his father are visiting the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., when giant magical creatures erupt from the earth. The creatures destroy the Memorial and the Washington monument. Fort’s father is lost when he is grabbed by one of the creatures and pulled underground. Six months later Fort is invited to attend the Oppenheimer School, a secret government school formed to teach magic spells. Students at the Oppenheimer school were born on the date several books of magic spells were discovered. Humans born before “Discovery Day” do not have the power to learn the magic. Fort discovers that the school has many dark secrets and that the students may be the only ones who can save Earth from the monsters. Fort is angry and wants revenge against the creature who took his father. He works hard at learning magic spells. Strange things start happening at the school and many there think Fort is to blame. Fans of Rick Riordan and magical fantasy will enjoy the adventure, humor and magical mayhem of the story and will eagerly look forward to the next installment in the series. Ages 8-12.

Kate recommends "Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love"

Inheritance : a memoir of genealogy, paternity, and love

Inheritance: A Memoir of Genealogy, Paternity, and Love is Dani Shapiro's story of discovering that her father was not her biological relative. It starts with a casual DNA test on and leads to a long journey through her family's past and the secrets they carried. As readers we come along for every new discovery, and ride the waves of grief with her as she accepts what she doesn't want to be true. Her parents have long since passed on, so she must do some detective work to get to the bottom of the story.  She also struggles with holding onto her upbringing while learning as much as she can about her biological father.   This is a memoir about her sense of identity being upended, and how she moves forward with a new sense of herself.

Recommended for Adults

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Popular Materials Book of the Month

We in the Popular Materials Department would like to recommend our new book of the month pick – How Not to Die Alone by Richard Roper.

A darkly funny and life-affirming debut novel for readers of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine the story of one man who is offered a second chance at life and love when he develops an unexpected friendship--if he can expose the white lie he told years ago that grew into so much more.

Andrew's day-to-day is a little grim, searching for next of kin for those who die alone. Thankfully, he has a loving family waiting for him when he gets home, to help wash the day's cares away. At least, that's what his coworkers believe.

Andrew didn't mean for the misunderstanding to happen, yet he's become trapped in his own white lie. The fantasy of his wife and two kids has become a pleasant escape from his lonely one bedroom with only his Ella Fitzgerald records for company. But when new employee Peggy breezes into his life like a breath of fresh air, Andrew is shaken out of his routine. She doesn't notice the wall he's been safely hiding behind and their friendship promises to break it down.

Andrew must choose: Does he tell the truth and start really living his life, but risk losing his friendship with Peggy? Or will he stay safe and alone, behind the fa├žade? How Not to Die Alone is about the importance of taking a chance in those moments when we have the most to lose. Sharp and funny, warm and real, it's the kind of big-hearted story we all need.

“Roper’s delightful debut is as funny as it is touching. . . . This story of a neurotic, tenderhearted man struggling to learn how not to be alone is irresistible.”
Publishers Weekly

“Quirky and heartfelt . . . . Andrew's past traumas are revealed gradually, and the reasons behind his isolation are heartbreaking and poignant. A moving and funny look at grief, hope, and the power of human connections.”
Kirkus Reviews

"Richard Roper uplifts the human spirit and shows us how to embrace life and hope in his wickedly witty debut.”
—Phaedra Patrick, author of The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper

“A lively blend of humor and earnest emotion. . . . As Andrew slowly comes to grips with being his true self, without pretense, readers will root for him to find liberation and love. A wry, humorous story.” 
Shelf Awareness

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Natalie recommends Batman: the Court of Owls


This is based off of the first arc of the New 52's Batman run, of the same name.  However, that's where the similarities end, since this has it's own story that takes place after the events of the comics.  The villains are already established.

What you will need to know about the kind of villains that Batman is facing off against (in the event you are not familiar with this particular arc) is that they are an age old organization called the Court of Owls.  They are an organization made up of aristocrats, known as the parliament, who's plan is to have control and power from the shadows.  They were once considered to be a myth.  A grim nursery rhyme in fact.  That was until they made themselves know to Bruce Wayne and by extent Batman and the Robins (current and former), Batgirl, and some associates/friends of them.  The Court of Owls has a group of assassins under their control, known as Talons, who are essentially immortal (with s and are the ones that do the Parliament's bidding.  which includes "silencing" people who they no longer have use for or wish to dispose of.  It's also worth noting that one of these Talons is the great-grandfather of Dick Grayson ,the original Robin and the original (and current) Nightwing, and it was intended that he would be come one as well.  Had his parents not been murdered and Dick being placed in Bruce's care that is.

This book starts off with the brutal murder of a college professor and the theft of some files on his students.  As Batman begins to investigate, he finds that one student, Joanna Lee, has apparently gone missing.  Bruce knew her since he was a sponsor her for college after saving her one night that ended in the death of her parents.  And on top of that, the same Talon behind the murder of the professor attempted to abduct her roommate Claire Nesko in order to get some information.  As Batman continues to investigate Joanna's disappearance, and why the Court of Owls is so interested in her, as well as what caused the victim's to spontaneously combust, he does decided to do some investigating on Percy Wright (who Joanna was doing her project on) and how he ties into it.  We also get a few chapters that give a glimpse into the Percy's past and how his work relates to the present day (in the book).

The Court of Owls arc was one of my favorite arcs set during DC's New 52 run, mostly for the characters, the history of this organization, and how it affected the Caped Crusader and his extended family. But even if it wasn't, I would still think this is a good book.  It had a well written story and the mystery mixed with the included history/flashbacks I found really interesting.  It also had good action in it and the characters were well written.  

This is a book meant for a more Adult audiences given it's content, but could also be read by older teens. 

Monday, May 13, 2019

Ellen Recommends "A Mind Unraveled"

Husband, father, journalist, author, epileptic.  Kurt Eichenwald’s epileptic seizures started freshman year in college and he fought unbelievable obstacles to find the proper treatment and complete his education.  Some of the things that happened to him were of the ‘truth is stranger than fiction’ type, too bizarre to be believed.  Throughout his career he fought to overcome the stigma and handicaps associated with epilepsy and persevered to have as normal of a life as possible.  Because he knew his memory was not reliable, he kept diaries and tape recordings.  This gives validity to his recall of events in the distant past and helped him in his fights for justice.  If it hasn’t affected you personally, it makes you realize how important health insurance (with pre-existing conditions) and the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) are.  Everyone deserves an equal chance.  This should be recommended reading for all adults & teens.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Meghan Recommends Hallmark Audiobooks

If you love a feel-good story, you’ll love Hallmark Audiobooks!

These new audiobooks are adapted from Hallmark movie storylines, capturing  “the timelessness and emotion of a Hallmark story in audiobook form,” according to the publisher. Three titles have already arrived at the library: “The Secret Ingredient,” by Nancy Naigle, “A Dash of Love” by Liz Issacson, and “Moonlight in Vermont” by Kacy Cross. Additional titles will arrive throughout the summer. See the list of all these stories, and check out a happily-ever-after!

Miss Lynn recommends "A Story About Cancer With a Happy Ending"

As the mom of a teenager with cancer, this YA graphic novel really hit home for me.  It is a short but very realistic read that made me cry but left me with hope.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Michelle recommends "The Overdue Life of Amy Byler"

From the publisher: Overworked and underappreciated, single mom Amy Byler needs a break. So when the guilt-ridden husband who abandoned her shows up and offers to take care of their kids for the summer, she accepts his offer and escapes rural Pennsylvania for New York City. Usually grounded and mild mannered, Amy finally lets her hair down in the city that never sleeps. She discovers a life filled with culture, sophistication, and—with a little encouragement from her friends—a few blind dates. When one man in particular makes quick work of Amy’s heart, she risks losing herself completely in the unexpected escape, and as the summer comes to an end, Amy realizes too late that she must make an impossible decision: stay in this exciting new chapter of her life, or return to the life she left behind. But before she can choose, a crisis forces the two worlds together, and Amy must stare down a future where she could lose both sides of herself, and every dream she’s ever nurtured, in the beat of a heart.

It felt like I started my summer reading a bit early this year. Light weekend read, women’s fiction with just the right combination of humor and thought-provoking situations.  I found Amy Byler to be completely relatable. I know it is completely unrealistic to walk out of my real world for a summer in the city, but this story gave me pause to imagine. Kids schedules, encouraging their passions or just trying to be everything for them takes a ton of energy and this mom had an opportunity to take a break; so it was fun to read along on the adventure. Also, she is a librarian so I might have related to her professional field, too.

Recommended for Adults

Monday, April 22, 2019

Sarah recommends “Nine Perfect Strangers”

The Books on Tap book club's April pick was "Nine Perfect Strangers" by Liane Moriarty.

When nine perfect strangers arrive at a health resort looking to reinvigorate and overhaul their lives, they have no idea just how much hard work they are in for. Frances Welty, a formerly best-selling romantic novelist, happens to be one of those nine. Frances thinks she is at Tranquillum House to recuperate from a bad back and a broken heart, but as she grows more and more intrigued by her fellow guests and the mysterious and charismatic resort owner, she begins to realize that maybe the solutions she was seeking are not actually the answers she needs.

Liane Moriarty, best-known for "Big Little Lies," writes page-turning thrillers with complex and relatable characters. This, her latest novel, was no exception. I listened to the audiobook, read by Australian narrator Caroline Lee, and she did an amazing job giving each character a distinct voice.

I really enjoyed "Nine Perfect Strangers," and most of the book group did too.

If you're interested in joining a casual book club for adults that discusses new and popular fiction, please join us at our next Books on Tap meeting on May 13, 2019, at Bar Louie Partridge Creek. We'll be discussing "The Island of Sea Women" by Lisa See (which was the Popular Materials Book of the Month for March).

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Popular Materials April Book of the Month

Our April Book of the Month pick is Miracle Creek by Angie Kim!

In the small town of Miracle Creek, Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine—a pressurized oxygen chamber that patients enter for therapeutic “dives” with the hopes of curing issues like autism or infertility. But when the Miracle Submarine mysteriously explodes, killing two people, a dramatic murder trial upends the Yoos’ small community.

Who or what caused the explosion? Was it the mother of one of the patients, who claimed to be sick that day but was smoking down by the creek? Or was it Young and Pak themselves, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? The ensuing trial uncovers unimaginable secrets from that night—trysts in the woods, mysterious notes, child-abuse charges—as well as tense rivalries and alliances among a group of people driven to extraordinary degrees of desperation and sacrifice.

Angie Kim’s Miracle Creek is a thoroughly contemporary take on the courtroom drama, drawing on the author’s own life as a Korean immigrant, former trial lawyer, and mother of a real-life “submarine” patient. An addictive debut novel for fans of Liane Moriarty and Celeste Ng, Miracle Creek is both a twisty page-turner and a deeply moving story about the way inconsequential lies and secrets can add up—with tragic consequences.

“With so many complications and loose ends, one of the miracles of the novel is that the author ties it all together and arrives at a deeply satisfying―though not easy or sentimental―ending. Intricate plotting and courtroom theatrics, combined with moving insight into parenting special needs children and the psychology of immigrants, make this book both a learning experience and a page-turner. Should be huge.” ―Kirkus (starred review)

“This stunning debut by Angie Kim is both an utterly engrossing, nail-biter of a courtroom drama and a sensitive, incisive look into the experiences of immigrant families in America.” ―Nylon

“A stand-out, twisty debut . . . Kim, a former lawyer, clearly knows her stuff . . . a masterfully plotted novel about the joys and pains of motherhood, the trick mirror nature of truth, and the unforgiving nature of justice.” ―Publishers Weekly

“[A] masterpiece of grief, hope, and recrimination . . . A complex novel of parenting, prejudice, and putting blame where blame’s due, this one is not to be missed.” ―Crime Reads

Monday, April 15, 2019

Miss Lynn recommends "Piecing Me Together"

Piecing Me Together” is a young adult novel by Renee Watson.  It’s a moving story that deals with race and privilege, and how attempts at “helping” without thought or reflection can have the opposite effect. Throughout the story, the main character, Jade, finds her voice and becomes the advocate she needs.

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Phil recommends "The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick"

Frankenstein’s Monster, Dracula, The Wolf Man, The Mummy, The Invisible Man, and the Creature from the Black Lagoon were all famous Universal Classic Monsters in the Golden Age of Hollywood.  However, there was something unique about the Gill Man, The Creature from the Black Lagoon, a secret that had been kept for decades – he was created by a woman.  In an industry dominated by men and rife with sexism (in the 1950s and even today) Milicent Patrick quietly made her statement by creating one of the most beloved creatures in horror film history - while her male boss stole all of the credit. 

Author, screenwriter, and film producer Mallory O’Meara embarks on a quest to set the record straight and to find out all she can about this little known animator and pioneer of special effects design.  O’Meara’s quest takes her from Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California to the hallowed halls of the Walt Disney Archives as she pieces together the life of an unsung Hollywood hero. 

I still remember seeing “The Creature from the Black Lagoon” in 3D with my parents at the Detroit Institute of Arts and again on the Svengoolie show while I lived in Chicago.  It is a nearly flawless classic horror movie and I enjoyed learning about this little known piece of movie history.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Celia recommends "The Island of Sea Women"

Have you checked out our March Book of the Month, The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See?

Mi-ja and Young-sook, two girls living on the Korean island of Jeju, are best friends that come from very different backgrounds. When they are old enough, they begin working in the sea with their village's all-female diving collective, led by Young-sook's mother. As the girls take up their positions as baby divers, they know they are beginning a life of excitement and responsibility but also danger.

Despite their love for each other, Mi-ja and Young-sook's differences are impossible to ignore. The Island of Sea Women is an epoch set over many decades, beginning during a period of Japanese colonialism in the 1930's and 1940's, followed by World War II, the Korean War and its aftermath, through the era of cell phones and wet suits for the women divers. Throughout this time, the residents of Jeju find themselves caught between warring empires. Mi-ja is the daughter of a Japanese collaborator, and she will forever be marked by this association. Young-sook was born into a long line of haenyeo and will inherit her mother's position leading the divers in their village. Little do the two friends know that after surviving hundreds of dives and developing the closest of bonds, forces outside their control will push their friendship to the breaking point.

This beautiful, thoughtful novel illuminates a world turned upside down, one where the women are in charge, engaging in dangerous physical work, and the men take care of the children. A classic Lisa See story--one of women's friendships and the larger forces that shape them--The Island of Sea Women introduces readers to the fierce and unforgettable female divers of Jeju Island and the dramatic history that shaped their lives.

“Superbly written, this fast-paced read not only encourages readers to reflect on the notion of friendship and family, it also educates on the complex history of the region.” – Library Journal

“ Exposing the depths of human cruelty and resilience, See’s lush tale is a wonderful ode to a truly singular group of women.” – Publisher’s Weekly

“A stupendous multigenerational family saga, See’s latest also provides an enthralling cultural anthropology highlighting the soon-to-be-lost, matriarchal haenyeo phenomenon and an engrossing history of violently tumultuous twentieth-century Korea. A mesmerizing achievement. See’s accomplishment, acclaim, and readership continue to rise with each book, and interest in this stellar novel will be well stoked.” – Booklist

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Sarah recommends "The Music Shop"

The Books on Tap book club’s March pick was “The Music Shop” by Rachel Joyce. All of our members enjoyed this novel about music, love, loss, and second chances.

Set in 1988 in Great Britain, “The Music Shop” is the story of a man named Frank, who runs a small music shop that sells only vinyl, and who has an uncanny ability to connect his customers to the exact song they need but didn’t know they wanted. One day, a beautiful young woman, Ilse, arrives at Frank’s store, and asks him to teach her about music. Even as he is drawn to her, Frank is terrified of real intimacy; Ilse is hiding a mysterious agenda, and Frank has unhealed wounds from his past. How can a man so in tune with other people's needs be so incapable of connecting with the one person who might save him?

This book is ultimately about the power of music: to heal, to comfort, to bring joy. The reading experience is especially enhanced if you can simultaneously listen to the songs Frank recommends, and discover them along with the characters. The publisher has created a playlist on Spotify (the free music steaming service); just search for “The Music Shop” and choose the playlist created by “penguinbooks”.

If you’re interested in joining a casual book club for adults that discusses new and popular fiction, please join us at our next Books on Tap meeting on April 8, 2019, at Bar Louie Partridge Creek. We’ll be discussing “Nine Perfect Strangers” by Liane Moriarty.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Meghan Recommends "The Life Changing Manga of Tidying Up"

“The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo was published in Japan way back in 2011, and was published in the U.S. in 2014. While it certainly moment back then, the recently released Netflix series “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo” has brought KonMari tidying back into pop culture.

Like everyone, I had heard “spark joy” but I figured there had to be more. Enter “The Life Changing MANGA of Tidying Up” – a 187-page illustrated story about Chiaki, and how her life is transformed through tidying! Chiaki is in pretty bad shape when we meet her, with an apartment full of stuff and garbage piled up on her balcony – a couple weeks’ worth. It’s so stinky that her cute neighbor comes over to ask her to take care of it. That’s the wake-up call Chiaki needs to take care of her messy apartment. She calls KonMari! Over the ensuing chapters, Chiaki tackles the daunting task of tidying her apartment, and by extension, her life.

At this point I feel like I should reiterate that this is a comic-book style story, and Chiaki is a made up character. Nevertheless, as Chiaki tackles her lessons each week, readers learn about different aspects of the KonMari method, and yes, there is more than just “Spark joy.” The book can easily be read in an afternoon, but it gave me a much better sense of the complete underlying philosophy of Kondo’s methods. I learned about tidying by category (not room) and that you should “wake up” your things when you pull them out of closets where they’ve been stored for years. 

So if you want to know a little more about tidying, but you don’t want to commit to 213 pages of nonfiction, this is a good start!

As an aside, “The Life Changing Manga of Tidying Up” was one of the Graphic Adaptations up for consideration in our CMPL Madness Graphic Novel Tournament! It didn't make it out of Round 1, but you can vote for your favorites in Round 2 now!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Natalie recommends "Game of Thrones"

While I may not be the first to recommend this series (be it the books and/or television series), I have finally managed to start it and can now safely recommend it.  I have been wanting to read this series for a while now, but time and motivation slipped.  But now that I have, I can say that I really enjoy the series.  As someone who enjoys Fantasy series like the Chronicles of Narnia and the Lord of the Rings (and all of Tolkien's Middle Earth related works for that matter), this was a series that I knew could peak my interests.

As a fantasy series, I really enjoyed it.  I enjoyed the detail that went into each character and their story, but still manages to tie back to them in one way or another.  Each chapter shuffled between a handful of characters which include Jon Snow, Arya Stark, Tyrion Lannister, and even Daenerys Targaryen and will focus on them and their surroundings.  It also has characters that you'd probably recognize if you've seen the show but haven't read the books (i.e. the Stark Family, Daenerys' brother, and Joffrey).

This is a book series for adults given some of the language used, violence, and some of the themes/topics brought up.  We have all five main series books and two spin off/prequel books.  If you have seen the series but haven't read the books, or are looking for a good read, I would recommend it.  And while I personally still have to read through the other books, I think it's really good so far.

Monday, February 25, 2019

Celia recommends "The Last of Sheila"

A year after Sheila is killed in a hit-and-run, her multi-millionaire husband invites a group of friends to spend a week on his yacht playing a scavenger hunt-style mystery game. The game turns out to be all too real and all too deadly.

A twisted, psychological thriller/who-done-it that, for the most part, holds up over time. Originally released in 1973, The Last of Sheila is well acted, well written, and uses it’s sets to full advantage. For fans of today’s horror/thriller movies, this one will probably seem too slow paced and dialogue heavy. For those who like to solve puzzles, though, the film will keep you on your toes right to the end. It reminded me of movies by Alfred Hitchcock, which isn’t surprising since Anthony Perkins of Psycho fame co-wrote it. It also reminded me of a creepier, less campy version of the movie Clue. Highly entertaining and enjoyable to watch.

Recommended for Adult.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Lisa recommends "The Animal Pokey"

This is a brand new board book that just came through and we immediately thought it would be a story time hit!  If you have a young child that loves either singing or animals, you will have a great time reading (or singing!) this book aloud as the animals take part in the Hokey Pokey.  The staff here have loved it so much that babies and toddlers who attend story time will soon see it in the regular rotation.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Connie recommends "Where the Crawdads Sing" by Delia Owens

Great story with a surprise twist.  I especially enjoyed listening to the audio version of this book as the narrator, Cassandra Campbell, does an excellent job representing the characters as Delia Owens portrays them.


For years, rumors of the “Marsh Girl” have haunted Barkley Cove, a quiet town on the North Carolina coast. So in late 1969, when handsome Chase Andrews is found dead, the locals immediately suspect Kya Clark, the so-called Marsh Girl. But Kya is not what they say. Sensitive and intelligent, she has survived for years alone in the marsh that she calls home, finding friends in the gulls and lessons in the sand. Then the time comes when she yearns to be touched and loved. When two young men from town become intrigued by her wild beauty, Kya opens herself to a new life–until the unthinkable happens.

Perfect for fans of Barbara Kingsolver and Karen Russell, Where the Crawdads Sing is at once an exquisite ode to the natural world, a heartbreaking coming-of-age story, and a surprising tale of possible murder. Owens reminds us that we are forever shaped by the children we once were, and that we are all subject to the beautiful and violent secrets that nature keeps.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Staff recommends President's Day Reads

Celebrate President’s Day by finding out about the people who have held the Office of the President of the United States. From beginning readers to adult books, we have something for everyone! Check out our biography sections for books on your favorite president or treat yourself to some fun facts and anecdotes by checking out one of these titles:


Friday, February 1, 2019

Natalie recommends "The Guardians: Jack Frost The End Becomes the Beginning"

As you may notice by the cover, the image of Jack Frost is similar to his appearance in the DeamWorks animated movie Rise of the Guardians.  Which would make sinjce since he was one of the people who worked this movie (as well as several short films and cartoons), as well as being the one that wrote the children books predeceasing it.  This is the fifth book in a series about the guardians of childhood, the first four centering around Nicholas St. North (Santa Claus), E. Aster Bunnymund (the Easter Bunny), Queen Toothiana (the Tooth Fairy), and Sandman (also known as Sanderson Mansnoozie) in that order.  Along with their friend Kathrine and a few other familiar characters.

This book centers around, as you probably guessed, Jack Frost.  It picks up years after the Guardians battle against Pitch, the king of nightmares, and looks into how Jack Frost became Jack Frost and the life he's been living.  Without giving too much away from the previous four books, he was  a being called Nightlight, who helped the Guardians and was a good friend of Kathrine.  This book highlights his life, memories as Jack Frost, and the plan to stop Pitch for good.

As I previously stated, this is the fifth and final book, so you will want to read those first.  We have books one through three as well as this book.  However, we do not have a copy of book four, Sandman and the War of Dreams, but can be found on MeL.

This is a book that is directed towards kids, but all ages can enjoy this series about these fairy/folktale figures.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

CMPL recommends Best Books of 2018: Reader Favorites



At the Main Library for the month of January, we put up a display of books that made various “Best of 2018” lists. Here are some of the titles that appeared on those lists:


Bad Blood by John Carreyrou - 338.76817 C

I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara – 364.1532 M

Educated by Tara Westover – BIO WESTOVER

Asymmetry by Lisa Halliday – FIC HALLIDAY

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones – FIC JONES

Circe by Madeline Miller – FIC MILLER

My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh – FIC MOSHFEGH

There There by Tommy Orange – FIC ORANGE

The Witch Elm by Tana French – MYS FRENCH

Friday Black by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah – SS FIC KWAME


Then, we decided to ask YOU what YOUR favorite book of 2018 was. (This could be books published in 2018, or anything you read in 2018!) Here are the responses we received:


Educated by Tara Westover – BIO WESTOVER

Island of Sweet Pies and Soldiers by Sara Ackerman – FIC ACKERMAN

This Scorched Earth: a novel of the Civil War by William Gear – FIC GEAR

The Other Woman by Sandie Jones – FIC JONES

Perfume: the story of a murderer by Patrick Suskind – FIC SUSKIND

Dietland by Sarai Walker – FIC WALKER

The Adventure Zone: Here There Be Gerblins by Clint McElroy – GN MCELROY

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik – SF NOVIK

Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli – YA ALBERTALLI

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer – YA MEYER

Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss – ER 3 SEUSS

Gravity Falls: Journal 3 by Alex Hirsch – JFIC GRAVITY

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling – JFIC ROWLING

Dog Man by Dav Pilkey – JGN PILKEY


Thanks to everyone who shared their favorites with us!

Natalie recommends "Cry Wolf"

I recently gave this book series a try earlier in 2018.  We had recently gotten the newest book in the series, known as the Alpha and Omega ser, Burn Bright.  I had to use the MeL system since we didn't have the copy of this particular title up until recently and I read it alongside Patricia Briggs' other series, the Mercy Thompson series, which ties into and coincides with this series.  Both series are really good, but I do like this one a little more.

It has to do with the main character, Anna, who up until recently didn't know that werewolves, vampires, and the like existed.  That is, until she is bitten by a werewolf and becomes one herself.  She was in a pack that wasn't all too kind until she meets Charles Cornick, the enforcer and son to the alpha of the Native American pack.  She joins this pack and is the mate of Charles.  Anna also discovers that she is considered a rare and valuable Omega.  This first installment sees her coming into her own in her new surroundings and aids in finding a rouge werewolf that could really shake things up for this pack if not dealt with.

This is an urban fantasy and is an Adult Fiction.  It's also worth mentioning that there is a short story that sets up this series titled "Alpha and Omega" which can be found in Shifting Shadows, a collection of Patrica Briggs' short stories in this universe, and is at South and can be held.

I recommend this since it is a unique series and I found it while looking for a book based around werewolf.  I am also current reading through the Alpha and Omega series for a second time.   And if you'd like, feel free to give the Mercy Thompson series a try.  They both can be read separately and as their own story, but they do reference each other just a little bit, especially since the love interest in the Mercy Thompson series is a member of Charles pack.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Erica recommends "Moon of the Crusted Snow"

When satellite TV and cell service go down in a small Anishinaabe community in northern Ontario, no one is too concerned. The First Nations reserve has only been on the grid for a few years anyway, and this has happened before. Then all power goes out, and there is no word from the utilities and government in the South. As winter comes on, with some members of the tribe better prepared than others, anxiety and conflict creep up. Soon, an unexpected visitor arrives from the South...
Be sure to have plenty of warm blankets as you read! Rice's new take on an Ojibwa legend is a slow, atmospheric descent. Recommended for adults and older teens.