Saturday, September 9, 2017

Congratulations to...


...the Grand Prize Winners of the 2017 Adult Summer Reading Club:
  • Headquarters Library: Ann Mc
  • North County Branch Library: ExLibris
  • South County Branch Library: Cindy
  • Member Libraries & Bookmobile: Dorman
Thank you to the Friends of the Library for generously supporting the club, and thank you to all of you club members for your enthusiastic participation!  See you next summer!

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Midnight at the Bright IDEAS bookstore

Author: Matthew Sullivan
Stars: 5
Review by: Judy E

A first novel for Matt Sullivan...a real hit for me. I read this book in 2 days over Labor Day...the vibrant characters, descriptions of the bookstore and its Bookfrogs, and the happenings really caught my attention. Lydia and the Hammerman will draw you into this mystery big time.

The Prince of Tides

Author: Pat Conroy
Stars: 4
Review by: BeachBarb

So, I haven't quite finished this book, but it was a goal of mine to read it this summer after visiting Beaufort in the spring and buying the only Pat Conroy book in the book store, A Lowcountry Heart, Reflections on a Writing Life. I enjoyed reading that, and it whet my appetite to re-read some of his more well known books. Even though I am only 42% finished with this book, I am determined to finish before I declare summer over. I am enjoying it better than I did when I read it years ago. We have also watched the movie early this summer.

The Burry Man's Day

Author: Catriona McPherson
Stars: 2
Review by: Lizzytish 

Set in the 1920's in a small town in Scotland. The Burryman is a tradition that's carried out every year. I don't know why, but it was not a smooth read. The writing seemed choppy and the plot was confusing at time. I could not relate with any of the characters or feel for them. Just an odd read for me. Near the end it became more enjoyable.

Clutter Free

Author: Kathi Lipp
Stars: 3
Review by: LZ99

Common sense, but good reminders. Have read it before, but a refresher wasn't a bad idea!

The Husband's Secret

Author: Liane Moriarty
Stars: 5
Review by: Miss Lucy

Liane Moriarty's books are amazing. She surprises me every time.

I'd Rather Be Reading: A Library of Art for Book Lovers

Author: Guinevere De La Mare
Stars: 3
Review by: Miss Lucy

Good essays, cool art, and kindred spirits.

Cocoa Beach

Author: Beatriz Williams
Stars: 2
Review by: Just Ada

Very confusing plot and a really strange ending.

Between the World and Me

Author: Te-Nahisi Coates
Stars: 5
Review by: Brooke S

 Wow - did not expect this short (~150 pages) book to grip me so hard and fast. Written from the perspective of a one-sided conversation with his son, Mr. Coates discussed and explores life as a black man in America. Poignant and gut-wrenching realities, but written with such moving and clear language and history, Toni Morrison is correct, this should be 'required reading.'

The Best of Roald Dahl

Author: Roald Dahl
Stars: 5
Review by: Brooke S

Collection of (adult) short stories [some of which were mentioned in Gabrielle Zevin's The Storied Life of AJ Fikry]. I had not read his short before and they were dark and funny.

The Storied Life of AJ Fikry

Author: Gabrielle Zevin
Stars: 5
Review by: Brooke S

Read in under 24 hours - a quick, delightful read. We are reading for our book club, and this prompted me to read up on some of the many literature references in the book - another welcome digression.

Danny the Champion of the World

Author: Roald Dahl
Stars: 5
Review by: Brooke S

I re-read this book with my 9 year old (read one book together each summer) - and this is my favorite Dahl book. The close and dear relationship between father and son is heart warming, and the adventures of the big secret methods of poaching tickled my daughter. Fun read!

A Dragons Heart

Author: Terry Bolryder
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This is a story with vague references to other stories of Bolryder. This is about a couple of dragons looking to find their mates and refuse to look at what's right in front of them.

Heatsridge Shifters Series

Author: Olivia Arran
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This series is about a town of registered shifters and focuses on the bears that patrol South 1 side of town and a group of purists that want to destroy them. The bears are Nate, Jake, Brent, Cade and Austin. There is a lot going on in this series and has a few spin off series to read.

Hierax

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This a continuation of the previous stories and picks up where our main characters are stranded in another universe when the gate they travel through does not allow them to go back. The series makes jokes about the links with the Star Gate TV/Movie series.

Farewell Dorothy Parker

Author: Ellen Meister
Stars: 3
Review by: argee17

"To hear her relatives tell it, you would think she was the love child of Oscar Wilde and Fran Lebowitz..." Since I'm a fan of both, this was a fun read.

Ghosts

Author: Raina Telgemeier
Stars: 4
Review by: Miss Lucy

What would the Summer Reading Club be without a graphic novel?!! Ghosts is a beautifully illustrated book about Dia de Los Muertos. It explains this annual Mexican tradition in a tender, non-threatening way, via a loving story about sisters, friends, and family... and dearly departed ancestors, of course!

Jack: Straight from the Gut

Author: Jack Welch
Stars: 3
Review by: Summer Breeze

He could have dug a lot deeper, instead it was filled with a lot of corporate clich├ęs. Although he is venerated in the business community, his company has not recovered in the 16 years since he left, so it was difficult to believe anything I read.

The Art of Discarding: How to Get Rid of Clutter and Find Joy

Author: Nagisa Tatsumi
Stars: 3
Review by: 
Miss Lucy
When this book was first published in 2000 in Japan, it became an instant bestseller, and it inspired Marie Kondo, who would go on to write her own bestseller on life-changing magic.

I had hoped for more, though. Although Ms. Tatsumi did have some words of advice that will help me de-clutter, they were too few and far between. One of the best for me was: "The difference between disposing as trash and disposing for reuse is little more than emotion."

Pride and Prejudice (audio)

Author: Jane Austen
Stars: 5
Review by: BookDancer

It was so delightful to listen to this great classic!

The Family Gene

Author: Joselin Linder
Stars: 4
Review by:
bandit
VERY INFORMATIVE--EVEN WITHOUT A SCIENCE BACKGROUND

Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

Author: Arthur Conan Doyle
Stars: 3
Review by:
Lizzytish
A series of short stories that make a perfect bedtime snack. Some are absurd, some good. I enjoy learning more about Sherlock himself as I do reading the mysteries. This is where Sherlock fights to the death with Moriarty at Reichnbach Falls. Now I can't wait to read how Sherlock revives.

Appointment With Death

Author: Agatha Christie
Stars: 4
Review by: 
Lizzytish
Not only do I get to visit with the delightful Poirot, but I get to visit Petra also!
I actually half figured this one out! Come see the ruins and stony wall of Petra as well as seeing the stony heart of man and what ruin they can bring upon themselves.

A Fall of Marigolds

Author: Susan Meissner
Stars: 5
Review by: bandit

BEST BOOK I READ ALL SUMMER! A UNIQUE STORY WEAVING 2 LIVES 100 HUNDRED YEARS APART.

Fishbowl

Author: Bradley Somer
Stars: 4
Review by: 
BeachBarb
Quirky, but once I got past the first chapter I enjoyed the book.

Dressed for Death

Author: Donna Leon
Stars: 4
Review by: 
jambob
This Author writes a series of mysteries with her version of an Italian Sherlock Holmes. Born in NJ, but lived in Venice she picks up the flavor and culture of Venetians with clever murder mysteries. Guido Brunetti is understated, thought provoking but always seeking justice after a nice dinner of pasta!

The Forgotten Garden

Author: Kate Morton
Stars: 4
Review by: 
Karyn G
A look at Victorian England as a modern day Australian searches for her roots.

I Need a Lifeguard Everywhere But in the Pool

Author: Lisa Scottoline
Stars: 5
Review by: 
Patti K
This mother-daughter duo is always fun.

Gorge

Author: Kara Richardson Whitely
Stars: 5
Review by: Patti K

I've long been a fan of Kara and, after hearing her speak at the Library recently, couldn't wait to read Gorge. It's a brilliant and incredibly honest memoir.

This Was A Man

Author: Jeffrey Archer
Stars: 5
Review by: Pam D

Great conclusion to the 7 book series.

Notwithstanding

Author: Louis De Bernieres
Stars: 4
Review by: 
BKF
Crazy nostalgic stories about English village life. A very entertaining read!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Congratulations to...

... our Week #14 Prize Winners:

  • a 'Retired Cat' - who likes to read!
  • fran housten

Progress So Far

Click on image to enlarge.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Promise Me

Author: Harlan Coben
Stars: 4
Review by: Nancy w

This book captured my interest from the beginning and I read it in 1 day. Mystery without too much violence, although there was some. Good interesting characters with lots of action. It was written in 2006 and reminded me how much things change in 11 years. It takes place in NJ and mentions Donald Trump in passing and acknowledged Chris Christie for his help when he was a US attorney.



The Union Quilters

Author: Jennifer Chiaverini
Stars: 1
Review by: 
Nancy w
Could not get into this book. I usually like Chiaverini's books but this one had too much quilt talk and not enough character story.

The Great American Crazies

Author: James Haskins
Stars: 3
Review by: argee17

 Interesting & entertaining, especially regarding celebrities' eccentricities. Arranged by topics; chronological format would have been better.

Everyman

Author: Phillip Roth
Stars: 2
Review by: 
argee17
A selfish man in his old age facing the inevitable.

Paul McCartney: A Life

Author: Peter Ames Carlin
Stars: 4
Review by: 
Shapoppa
Very interesting read about Paul McCartney's contributions to the Fab Four.

Sputnick's Guide To Life On Earth

Author: Frank Cottrell Boyce
Stars: 5
Review by: KM

I've read this writer of juvenile fiction several times before...every book is extremely well written, with highly creative storylines and excellent character development. This one in particular is insightful and inspiring, with plenty of substance for adult readers.

The Couple Next Door

Author: Shari Lapena
Stars: 4
Review by: BeachBarb

This suspenseful page turner kept me reading and finishing the book in two days. Lots of evil deceptive characters creating many twists and turns. A good read.

One Perfect Lie

Author: Lisa Scottoline
Stars: 3
Review by: 
mysterylover
Different than I'm used to.

The Book That Matters Most

Author: Ann Hood
Stars: 4
Review by: Just Ada

A little confusing in spots, but really kept my interest.

Speaking American*: *How Y'all, Youse, and You Guys Talk: A Visual Guide

Author: Josh Katz
Stars: 5
Review by: 
Miss Lucy
I want to show this book to everyone I meet! It is so amazing. I always knew that some people call soda 'pop' and that people have different words for those delicious sandwiches that I call 'subs.' But there is a whole wealth of these kinds of words and speech patterns through the U.S. How do you say 'data'? 'coupon'? 'often'? And what do you call things, like, say, sneakers? I was shocked to learn that in at least 80% of the U.S. they're called 'tennis shoes'! Did you know that cougars, mountain lions, and panthers are all different names for the SAME animal? If this review intrigues you, you MUST read this book!



I Am the Messenger

Author: Markus Zusak
Stars: 3
Review by: Miss Lucy

This was a re-read for me (on audio the 2nd time around). Parts of the book seemed familiar when I heard them again, but for the most part, I had totally forgotten this book. I enjoyed it a lot, until the end - that's when it fell apart for me, and I didn't understand it. And when I had this thought, that's when I recalled that I felt the same way the first time around. No wonder I could hardly remember it! So, it lost a couple of stars, in my opinion.

Sail

Author: James Patterson
Stars: 4
Review by: 
BeachBarb
This was a good summertime listen to book. I enjoyed it.

Lilac Girls

Author: Martha Hall Kelly
Stars: 4
Review by: 
BeachBarb
This is a good story of three women living in different countries during World War II and how their lives eventually coincide. The three woman are very different and each one's story is interesting and compelling. It is a bit hard to read the atrocities that occurred during this time period in Europe. But, we should not forget them in the hope of never repeating such things again.

A Perfect Gentleman

Author: Candace Camp
Stars: 2
Review by: 
Saraswati
I usually like Camp's work but this story was OK. It just felt like it took forever to get to where I would like to be.

Two Beasts- a Dark Fairytale

Author: Dark Angel
Stars: 2
Review by:
Saraswati
This story is co-written by 2 authors. It is about a princess that is made to marry two princes to secure peace. It turns out that it's not that simple. The book had other stories provided with it but I could not get into them so I moved on.

Unauthorized Series-the complete collection #1-4

Author: Lisa Ladew
Stars: 3
Review by:
Saraswati
This is a spin off series of the Fireman's series and focuses on the sister of the male paramedic, Jerry. It brings some old and new characters together but ties up nicely. Once again - a little intrigue, some love and a few surprises. This is an easy series summer read.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Congratulations to...

... our Week # 13 Prize Winners:
  • libraryaimee
  • Pixie Tirade

Progress So Far

Click on image to enlarge.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

The Loss of a Pet

Author: Wallace Sife, Ph.D.
Stars: 4
Review by: PattiK

Extremely helpful for anyone who has loved and lost a pet

Death by Tiara

Author: Laura Levine
Stars: 4
Review by: Regina

I found it very entertaining and light and actually giggled out loud sometimes.

The Big Question

Author: Alister McGrath
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

Yet another book that thinks that, if people seriously just read the Bible and other works, they'll magically realize that there shouldn't be such a division between faith and science and we can all magically get along in a land filled with cupcakes and unicorns. The real question should be why some authors keep writing this things - and why there are people so stubborn as to think that others will so suddenly surrender their beliefs when another simply tells them they're wrong.

Lenin on the Train

Author: Catherine Merridale
Stars: 1
Review by: MApgar

Once again, I have no idea what I just read. This took me about 20 odd minutes - granted I'm fast, but still - large print is usually an indication that the author really has little to say folks. Generally, it was about the trip Lenin took from Zurich to Russia to lead the revolution, but she loaded it with too much of what didn't work. Things that she probably thought would be funny, conjecture, and over the top characterization - it just took away from what was going on.

4th Rock from the Sun

Author: Nicky Jenner
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

The story of Mars' as the subtitle goes. An examination of the red planet in history and folklore with a look into how it is proposed that we explore it - but I did pick up a few mistakes here and there so I wonder how many there actually are sum total.

Roman London

Author: Peter Marsden
Stars: 3
Review by: MApgar

A time based examination of London from its Roman origins to the early recovery of them, what little we know of it. So much was gone over willy nilly and early boards meant to protect and preserve artifacts hated their job so very little was actually done - but a remarkable amount is known granted all of that.

Combat Ready Kitchen

Author: Anastacia Marx de Salcedo
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

Showing how military technology impacted the food industry - from packaging, preservation, and even legislation. A lot of modern laws came out of WWII and as such we're only just 'tweaking' a few bits, but of course there are other principles much more recent. She is a big proponent on processed foods however - so if one is not too keen on how they impact a person's health or the like be aware of that as they're pushed here quite a lot.

The Book that Changed America

Author: Randall Fuller
Stars: 1
Review by: MApgar

Note to the author - when you want to write something about how Darwin impacted American culture and history by showing how he influenced 5 other writers do not make the whole bloody thing about Thoreau. It is really irritating. That one was clearly preference and he was mentioned above basically everyone else.

Finding Gobi

Author: Dion Leonard
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

The story of a marathon runner that encounters a dog while in the Gobi desert and brings her home to Scotland, encountering all sorts of issues along the way. It was alright - problems were slight things like his near immediate negotiation for a book deal (which came off as really arrogant), the trusting of certain persons who seemed really inept with caring for the dog, and his going on about his supposedly tough life. Yes, he had it rough, but a lot had it worse, and the author rather over hyped himself I think.

Waters Edge

Author: Sara Gruen
Stars: 4
Review by: Karyn G

Nice period piece with likable characters.

The Bookshop on the Corner

Author: Jennie Colgan
Stars: 1
Review by: Lizzytish

How did a book about books and Scotland turn into a simpering Harlequin , just about a bodice ripper, Romance!?! I enjoyed the first half about books and the culture and places in Scotland, but somewhere it became a train wreck. ( ha, ha, inside joke for those who have read it)

Nina starts out as a shy, self conscious girl who leaves everything she knows, to drive a van around Scotland. The van is her bookstore on wheels. Great idea. Then she becomes an annoying, whiny brat who can't find love. From there on it goes downhill.

The Child

Author: Fiona Barton
Stars: 3
Review by: Just Ada

Interesting concept. Kept you guessing till the end.

A Confederacy of Dunces

Author: John Kennedy Toole
Stars: 4
Review by: bandit

SURPRISINGLY FUNNY BOOK!

House It Up

Author: Vicki Width
Stars: 5
Review by: August Mom

Local Psychologist tells a well researched and anecdotal story about black youth in the Juvenile justice system as youth. She shares her counseling work with the "criminalized traumatized," youth in the system.

Full-Court Pressure

Author: Rick Pitino
Stars: 3
Review by: Summer Breeze

Easy breezy summertime read, but published in 1992 and a lot has happened in the history of U of Kentucky basketball and Rick Pitino since then so somewhat dated. Refreshed my memory of several people I knew personally including Jim Valvano and ML Carr. Opinionated, passionate, somewhat irrational...the real Rick Pitino.

Until You Loved Me

Author: Brenda Novak
Stars: 5
Review by:a 'Retired Cat'-who likes to read!

I have not read one of hers that I did not give it 5 stars.

The Beekeeper's Son

Author: Kelly Irvin
Stars: 5
Review by:a 'Retired Cat'-who likes to read!

Great Amish series.

Congratulations to...

... our Week #12 Prize Winners:
  • DeckReader
  • BeachBarb

Everything All At Once: how to unleash your inner nerd, tap into radical curiosity, and solve any problem

Author: Bill Nye
Stars: 4
Review by: BookWorm2

Good book with the audio read by the author. A bit long (10+ hrs), but still very good.

Progress So Far

Click on image to enlarge.

The Bedlam Stacks

Author: Natasha Pulley
Stars: 4
Review by: Lizzytish

An enchanting read that takes one to the deep heart of Peru in the 1800's. People are dying of malaria and there is a shortage of quinine. The only hope is to retrieve some cuttings from quinine trees hidden in a forbidden forest.
The pollen was the highlight! I wasn't as much in awe of this book as I was with the previous novel: The Watchmaker of Filigree Strret. There is a cameo of Mori, but this book can stand alone.
I did get a little bogged down in the middle and I must admit I was not sure where this was going.

The magic of the pollen and moving statues, the salt border, glass beaches and all was mesmerizing. I was not crazy about the protagonist, but I did enjoy Raphael.

It's a dreamlike read and I did not want to wake from it.

Iliad

Author: Homer
Stars: 3
Review by: Shapoppa

No, I didn't read the entire book, but I did read a few books from it just because I read it in high school and wanted to see if reading it now would make it much more understandable to me than it did back then. It turned out it was an easier read to me now, but only because I read a summary of it first. Would I read it again? Nope, too little time, too many books to get to first! I'm putting Iliad to rest for good.

Olive Kitteridge

Author: Elizabeth Strout
Stars: 3
Review by: Shapoppa

It started out great, but about mid-way, there were way too many characters to keep track of (I didn't understand why there had to be so many in the first place). Also, the ending fell flat. Even though I don't understand how this author was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for this book I'm happy for her success.

Life in a Goldfish Bowl

Author: Len Vlahos
Stars: 3
Review by: BeachBarb

I downloaded this in error and didn't realize until I had read the first chapter. By then, I was caught up in the somewhat bizarre story and finished it. A family deals with a Father's brain tumor (which has narrative in the story) and the television producer who puts the family on a reality tv show. Some poignant parts in the lives of the grieving family, as well as some funny parts, but mostly sad.

Stiff: the Curious Life of Human Cadavers

Author: Mary Roach
Stars: 3
Review by: Spring J

Not your 'normal' reading, but interesting. I donate blood as often as I can, I am a donor on my drivers license. What happens to the donations.

City Mouse

Author: Stacey Lender
Stars: 2
Review by: LZ99

Ehh...sometimes seems interesting and thought provoking, sometimes just cheesy or crass. A super and easy read, but not highly recommended.

The Good Byline

Author: Jill Orr
Stars: 4
Review by: Lizzytish

A delightful debut! Full of fun, quirky characters, and hair raising adventures! I don't know how I can wait for the next book. Riley is a library assistant who is into obituaries. She has broken up with her boyfriend and decided to try an online dating service. The communication with click.com is hysterical. She was asked to write the obituary of a long time friend of whom she hasn't seen in awhile. And all this somehow segues into a crazy romp. Oh, and I love Holman. .

The New Paradigm for Financial Markets : The Credit Crisis of 2008 and What it Means

Author: George Soros
Stars: 3
Review by: Summer Breeze

Anyone as successful as him is worth reading about, but his economic theory was not sufficiently fleshed out and was difficult to understand. Still in all, it was worth reading. He used this information which he developed through 40 years of investing to accumulate over 25B in assets, primarily by not following the precepts of traditional economics, realizing the principal of reflexivity, that similar to quantum mechanics, the presence of investors impacts economic equilibrium. The book was published in mid 2008 and made very accurate predictions of what was about to occur in September 2008.

Jacky Ha Ha

Author: James Patterson
Stars: 5
Review by: LZ99

Great one to read with your kids (upper elementary/middle school)...funny, and plenty of talking points...

One True Mate Series (#1-6)

Author: Lisa Ladew
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This series is about a group of wolf shifters that protect humans and other shifters. A plague wiped out all the female shifters and all hope was lost....until????This was a fun summer read even with some of the sad - it made the good even better.

The Billionaire's Secret Kink Box Set (#1-4)

Author: Lisa Ladew
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This is a minor spin off from the fire fighters series but focuses on one couple. This series has "Shades of Grey" vibes with a more mature group of characters. They still have issues but.... Getting a box set makes binge reading fun!

Edge of the Heat Firefighters Romance Box Set (#1-7)

Author: Lisa Ladew
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This is a 7 book box set that is mainly about a set of triplets that find each other and discover who they really are. There is a lot of romance & suspense to make all the books read smoothly. There are enough twists with the triplets that makes the stories interesting.

Date-a-Dragon Series 1-4, (Gold,Silver,Platinum & Citrine)

Author: Terry Bolryder
Stars: 3
Review by:Saraswati

This is the second part of the dragon series with a new set of dragons and a very strange twist in the last book.

Date-a-Dragon Series books 1-3

Author: Terry Bolryder
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This box set had three stories related to the metal dragons. The premise is that dragon shifters were frozen in time and have been awaken in our time. They need to find their mates and then help defend humanity from the more evil shifters.

Merely a Marriage

Author: Jo Beverley
Stars: 2
Review by: Saraswati

Very slow read. I was bogged down by so much back story that it took a few days to get through. When the story was finally done it was OK.

The Address

Author: Fiona Davis
Stars: 5
Review by: Maryellen

Another great book by the author of The Dollhouse.

The Given Day

Author: Dennis Lehane
Stars: 4
Review by: Summer Breeze

Longer than what I typically read. A good story. I enjoyed getting a personalized experience of what it was like living in Boston in the early 20th century and weaving in places that I am familiar with 100 years later such as .Fanueil Hall and Parker House. Lehane is a great writer.

The Identicals

Author: Elin Hilderbrand
Stars: 5
Review by: BeachBarb

Just a fun summer read. Finished it on the beach.

Death Descends on Saturn Villa

Author: M. R. C. Kasasian
Stars: 5
Review by: Lizzytish

I cannot get enough of this series! Poor March ends up in prison due to the fact she seems to be murdering people. There are secrets and back stories, murder and mayhem. Oh, and there is Molly. How will Marsh be found innocent after being committed to an insane asylum? Grice becomes ill, as does Pound. Will the true murderer even be found, or has Grice actually failed for the first time? Told through the voice of March, and her diaries, and also Grice picks up the story later on which makes for an interesting and humorous read.

Magpie Murders

Author: Anthony Horowitz
Stars: 5
Review by:Lizzytish

What a luscious read! A mystery within a mystery. Real life editor is editing the latest mystery in the Atticus Pund series when she discovers the last chapter is missing! The hunt is on. Meanwhile her search seems to be mimicking the novel!
Reminiscent of Christie and other mystery writers of that period. A lot of fun!

“You must know that feeling when it's raining outside and the heating's on and you lose yourself, utterly, in a book. You read and you read and you feel the pages slipping through your fingers until suddenly there are fewer in your right hand than there are in your left and you want to slow down but you still hurtle on towards a conclusion you can hardly bear to discover.”

Perfect quote for this novel.

A Sister's Wish

Author: Shelley Shepard Gray
Stars: 5
Review by: Eileensummerreads

One of Gray's best amish books!

How The Light Gets In

Author: Louise Penny
Stars: 4
Review by:BKF

Another Chief Inspector Gamache novel. I love the relationships between the characters in these novels and the outstanding personality of the Chief Inspector. A complicated plot... a very good read!

Blood Washes Blood

Author: Frank Viviani
Stars: 4
Review by: argee17

A journalist's search for the murderer of an ancestor in Sicily. Painstaking research among often crumbling relics. A pleasant & informative journey.

Deployment

Author: Phil Klay
Stars: 3
Review by: mysterylover

Short stories about serving in the Marines.

Undaunted

Author: Diana Palmer
Stars: 2
Review by: Saraswati

Not as "daddy issues" as usual but it's still there. This is more focused on missing what you had after you almost lose it.

Woman of God

Author: James Patterson
Stars: 4
Review by: Just Ada

Very interesting take on women in the Catholic church---fiction of course.

Amazon Web Services for Dummies

Author: Bernard Gold
Stars: 4
Review by: Pixie Tirade

Great reference book that I bought for work.

Little Earthquakes

Author: Jennifer Weiner
Stars: 2
Review by: Pixie Tirade

The characters were good, but the book didn't keep my interest.

Home Before Dark

Author: Susan Wiggs
Stars: 2
Review by: Pixie Tirade

Hard to get into and remember the characters.

The Murder House

Author: James Patterson
Stars: 5
Review by: BeachBarb

I really enjoyed listening to this intriguing and suspenseful book. James Patterson is good. A bit long, but worth the time.

Everything I Never Told You

Author: Celeste Ng
Stars: 4
Review by: BeachBarb

A good book on family dynamics and how we hurt one another without even realizing.

Thirteen Ghosts

Author: Freya Littledale, editor
Stars: 4
Review by:MApgar

A brief tome of thirteen short stories on semi paranormal themes.  None are 'real' stories, all are works of fiction by various authors with one being a solid archetype in the field and the 13th the best work - where a young man inherits his home estate, haunted to the rafters by residents of a local churchyard.

Ready Player One

Author: Ernest Cline
Stars: 5
Review by: dorcaf

This was the writer's first book and it certainly was a good one. Anyone who grew up in the 80s will love all the flashbacks in this book. It's a story about an apocalyptic future and the boy (with a little help from his friends!) who saves it. A good fast fun summer read...plus, it's being made into a movie!

Origins

Author: Richard E Leakey and Roger Lewin
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

A fairly wide reaching analysis of human origins. For its time - some of the conclusions and such reached now are either out of date or passe, which is kind of a shame, as granted it is done by Leakey it should 'age' better. But in terms of its composition it is put together and written rather well and is neither too simplistic nor too complicated.

The Sunshine Sisters

Author: Jane Green
Stars: 4
Review by: PKB

I have never read a Jane Green novel. Now I know she has written many and is very successful. I picked this book because the cover made me think "beach read" in a big way, and the title was the perfect complement. I loved it. As an only child, I never felt the need to have a sister because my mother used to play with me. The mother in this book never had time for her three daughters and they never really had time for each other-very sad. But as their mother was dying each girl went through a lot of soul searching. Left me thinking about a lot of things.

Fake Food

Author: Larry Olmstead
Stars: 5
Review by: MApgar

This was both intriguing and disgusting, an examination of various foods - how several cheeses, olive oil, various wines, fish, even the beef in '100% beef hotdogs' is often altered (in the case of the latter, foods labeled as 'organic' do not have to really be organic, and only the beef in the hotdog needs to be beef, 99% can be sawdust). Many, if not most, restaurants exhibit fraud with Kobe beef and high end seafood, products are often cut with ingredients such as various fillers, sawdust, and even peanut dust, and to extend the shelf life of produce they are picked way before ripe and then hit with a gas that merely opens the color - you still get an unripe, flavorless tomato, but it looks ripe so people buy it.

Galileo, Science, and the Church

Author: Jerome J Langford
Stars: 1
Review by: MApgar

A rather plodding examination of not only the whole mess surrounding Galileo but also the background to his research and those it impacted such as Copernicus. For those that know the subject the dryness does not help, and if you're a student it would probably make your reading a lot worse, and much better and more concise works are out there. For being such a short book I expected it to get to the point quicker instead of meandering so much, but sadly no.

Einstein's Dreams

Author: Alan Lightman
Stars: 1
Review by: MApgar

There was no bloody point to this at all. Meant to be various dreams of Einstein as he is conjuring the theory of relativity, they make completely no sense at all to the man (whom is not even mentioned until page 39 in a teeny tiny book) or his personality. Not making any sense at all as to Einstein himself or how he actually did his work, it was pretty useless outside of being pure vague guesswork - random imaginings of things not having anything to do with each other at all.

The War on Drugs is a War on Freedom

Author: Laurence Vance
Stars: 4
Review by: Summer Breeze

Well written and grounded collection of 19 essays written from a conservative Christian libertarian point of view, arguing that drug restrictions are unconstitutional and that criminalization leads to the highest rate of incarceration of any country. Whatever your position going in, this book will make you think.

Any Dream Will Do

Author: Debbie Macomber
Stars: 5
Review by: Goetz

Her new book is very good.

What Was Mine

Author: Helen Klein Ross
Stars: 5
Review by: PMW

This book is a quick read and a real "page turner".

Small Great Things

Author: Jodi Picoult
Stars: 5
Review by: PMW

The topic of racism is very current.

The Lying Game

Author: Ruth Ware
Stars: 4
Review by: Just Ada

Suspenseful. Kept you going to the end.

Laughter Salad

Author: Kimberly Borin
Stars: 5
Review by: Pageturner

Need a lift? Read this collection of memoirs.

Deadly Fate

Author: Heather Graham
Stars: 3
Review by: jambob

Paranormal division of FBI. The stories are always formulaic. This one is based in Alaska, but I find myself reading every one. With some help from a ghost, they get a serial killer ,,,shivers.....

Silent Child

Author: Sarah A. Denzel
Stars: 5
Review by: Saraswati

This should be my 21st book.

The life of Mickey: A Memoir

Author: Michael K Willis
Stars: 3
Review by: Nancy w

This book came to me recommended for continuing Ed credit for my volunteer program. It was simple and easy to read, intertwining stories of the author's childhoods with current events at the time. He is 4 years older than I am so I could relate to and remember some of the things he wrote about. Good book for us baby boomers.

Everybody's Best Friend

Author: Ken Englade
Stars:
Review by: argee17

Not great true crime, but it occurred nearby in Philadelphia.

American Housewife: Stories

Author: Helen Ellis
Stars:
Review by:argee17

I only liked the story about the shared hallway in NYC.

Prevent, Halt, & Reverse Heart Disease

Author: Joseph C. Piscatella & Barry A. Franklin.
Stars: 3
Review by: PMW

Useful, interesting information re: heart disease.

The Things We Keep

Author: Sally Hepworth
Stars: 5
Review by: Goetz

Love her books.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Congratulations to...

... our Week #11 Prize Winners:
  • MApgar
  • Ann Mc

Progress So Far

Click on image to enlarge.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Just Jennifer

The Child Finder by Rene Denfeld

Naomi Cottle is known as “the Child Finder”; she helps families track down their missing children, never shirking from what she finds.  Once a lost child herself, Naomi was able to escape her fate and became a foster child and has mostly cut herself off from her past, though her foster brother Jerome often reaches out to her and hoping to have a relationship with her.  Naomi is hired to find Madison Culver, now eight, who disappeared three years ago when her parents took her to Oregon’s Skookum National Forest to find a Christmas tree.  As Naomi takes on this snowy expanse to find the child who literally vanished into thin air she searches for the baby of an autistic woman, she begins to think more about her past and what she lost and what she could gain if she could recover it.  In order to survive, Madison has created a “snow girl” personality and this story is intermixed into Naomi’s investigation.  With lyrical prose, inviting and interesting characters, and none of the usual tropes of psychological thrillers, this sophomore offering by Rene Denfeld will keep readers mesmerized and enthralled.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

I Need a Lifeguard Everywhere but the Pool

Author: Lisa Scottoline & Francesca Serritella
Stars: 4
Review by: 
BookWorm2
Another great collection of stories and thoughts from Lisa Scottoline & Francesca Serritella. One caveat - if you read their weekly "Chick Wit" column in the paper, you may be disappointed as there are quite a few column repeats included here.

The Fireman

Author: Joe Hill
Stars: 3
Review by: Karyn G

By Stephen King's son. It read like a King novel.

The Day the Voices Stopped

Author: Ken Steele
Stars: 4
Review by: Karyn G

A powerful first hand account of living with schizophrenia before appropriate care and medication.

Who Thought this Was a Good Idea?

Author: Alyssa Mastromonaco
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

Indeed. I wonder if her 'with' writer ever said 'you probably shouldn't keep going on and on about your IBS and tampons.' I get it. You have something that affects your life, I'm a freaking epileptic that was rear ended - but do you really think that, when you are the White House Chief of Staff, endless mentions about you crapping yourself or nearly so belong in your book?  This would have been a lot more informative and entertaining if not for that, her fixation on tampons, and also - in the beginning she decries memoirs where people clearly fixate on one party yet she clearly does so herself. I'm not saying those in that party are bad, just that that is hypocritical.

The Identicals

Author: Elin Hilderbrand
Stars: 3
Review by: DeckReader

Beach read.

The Award

Author: Danielle Steel
Stars: 3
Review by: DeckReader

Summer read.

The Guest Cottage

Author: Nancy Thayer
Stars: 3
Review by: DeckReader

A beach read.

Gwendy's Button Box

Author: Stephen King & Richard Chizmar
Stars: 4
Review by: Spring J

Listened to the book on CD.

Rise & Shine, Benedict Stone

Author: Phaedra Patrick
Stars: 5
Review by: Just Ada

Excellent quick read.

The Little Paris Bookshop

Author: Nina George
Stars: 3
Review by: BeachBarb

I loved phrases and insights in this book, but wasn't too good at following the story. Give it a try.

Once & For All

Author: Sarah Dessen
Stars: 5
Review by: Keeread

This was a young adult book. Very good.

How to Read the Bible

Author: Harvey Cox
Stars: 1
Review by: MApgar

It examines differing manuscripts and translations, archaeology in context, an examination of how certain things were mistranslated, and so forth - in an attempt to show people how they are supposed to interpret things. Supposed to. It is a very grand and noble concept, but sadly there are far too many people that don't care about it. 'Reconciled to the enrichment of all' is cute to print, but there will always remain people posting memes with Jesus hugging dinosaurs and telling others how they know God's word.

A Million Little Things

Author: Susan Mallery
Stars: 4
Review by: Just Ada

Friendship and family. What could be bad?

The Bible

Author:
Stars: 5
Review by: 
MApgar
No one book in human history has affected so many people. Alternatively inspiring some and granting incredulity in others, it all depends on really how one has paid attention to things. And sadly so few really pay attention.

The Royal Jewels

Author: Suzy Menkes
Stars: 5
Review by: MApgar

An examination of the various jewels and pieces held by the British royal family, in addition to a sort of structural history of some of them - what kinds of stones are they, where were they found in what mine, how do the attributes affect the settings, things like that. So at a few times it isn't all just pretty, shiny things. And of course there is a good portion of the history along with it, as it is organized into Victoria, Alexandra, Mary, Wallis Simpson, The Queen Mother, Elizabeth II, and Diana.

The case for impeachment

Author: Allan J Lichtman
Stars: 5
Review by:
MApgar
I doubt it'll happen. This details, very methodically for those whom may doubt it, each individual major cause for impeachment. It is oriented towards the title cause.

Ingredienti

Author: Marcella Hazan and Victor Hazan
Stars: 3
Review by:
MApgar
An examination of ingredients and how to treat, find, and handle them from the pair that produced the first Italian cookbook for Americans. Marcella has now passed, and so it is also a salute to her and her personality - how she chose things, how certain dishes and ingredients reflected her personality.

Prince Charles

Author: Sally Bedell Smith
Stars: 5
Review by: MApgar

One of the more balanced portraits out there, if not the most. Charles is certainly a flawed person but he has many positive traits and has been maligned often, sadly a lot by his late ex wife Diana once their marriage went sour. A good woman, she also had her problems, and the book details finely how her husband and in laws tried to help during their rough times. Statements by his sons in that aspect are here, and can be found in several other sources. Many details are given of his relationship with his wife Camilla, their affair during his first marriage and the circumstances, as well as his relationship with his family - Charles has been so hurt by allegations that he had unloving parents that that he appeared showing positive, home movies in a recent documentary 'Elizabeth at 90.'

Making Pottery You Can Use

Author: Jacqui Atkin
Stars: 5
Review by: MApgar

A professional potter goes over how to make various projects - plates, cups, saucers, bowls, slab forms, ornamental things, teapots, and independent projects. Using different techniques and clays, methods, glazes, etc. she goes into things pretty well in terms of basic summations. At least I thought so, but I do have experience so perhaps someone without might have an opinion. But there are many step by step sections and pages to trace for slab forms so there is lots to do to get things started.

National Parks of Europe

Author: Lonely Planet
Stars: 2
Review by: MApgar

It was nice, well put together and all, but it just seemed dull and unfocused. There wasn't much organization other than alphabetical order of 60 parks with brief blurbs and what appeared to be colored pencil drawings of wildlife, which did hurt it at times when it would reference things elsewhere back and forth.

Backyard Building

Author: Jeanie & David Stiles
Stars: 1
Review by: 
MApgar
Nice project ideas in concept - basic things; arch, gates, etc. In concept. At least some are, a few are totally nonsensical. The problem is that I don't care if they built a freaking treehouse in three hours, this ain't Tarzan and not only do they gloss over or skip steps that should be included in things but they often include completely unnecessary steps as well. Being a building inspector for 10 years one picks crap up and when they have a multipage section on a pirate treehouse yet it is mostly glossy photos and no instructions, well, you'd need a masters in Engineering to build the thing.

Watch Me Disappear

Author: Janelle Brown
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Had a hard time getting into it and almost abandoned it but it got better.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Food and Love

Author: JackCanfield
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Inspirational.

Chicken Soup for the Soul

Author: Jack Canfield
Stars: 5
Review by:
NO1WOMAN ON THE GO
Stories of faith.

Daisy, Morning, Noon, and Night

Author: Daisy Martinez
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Her recipes are easy and good.

Flavors of Sicily

Author: Ursula Ferrigno
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

If you like Italian food.

The Best of Gourmet 10th Anniversary Edition

Author: Gourmet Magazine Editors
Stars: 2
Review by:
NO1WOMAN ON THE GO
A little disappointing.

Hearty Soups

Author: Georgeann Brennen
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Loved the book. I am a soup lover.

Weeknight Suppers

Author: Melanie Barnard
Stars: 4
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

New ideas.

Fresh Salads

Author: Bridget Binns
Stars: 3
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Unusual finds.

Joy of Pastry

Author: David Munn
Stars: 4
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Good recipes.

Maine Ingredients

Author: Junior League of Portland, Maine
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Fun to read.

Urban Gardens

Author: Sue Philips
Stars: 3
Review by:NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Interesting.

Propagation

Author: Peter Bruce Maze
Stars: 4
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Informing.

It's Your Time

Author: Joel Osteen
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Informative.

I Declare

Author: Joel Osteen
Stars: 5
Review by:NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Good advice.

Become a Better You

Author: Joel Osteen
Stars: 5
Review by:NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Uplifting.

Jesus Calling

Author: Sarah Young
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Inspiring.

The Very Rich: A History of Wealth

Author: Joseph J. Thorndike, Jr.
Stars: 3
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

I read this out of curiosity.

World's Great Train Journeys

Author: National Geographic
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Worth reading.

Devotion for Easter

Author: Stacy Edwards
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Lovely book.

Devotions from the Kitchen Table

Author: Stacy Edwards
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

My kind of book.

Devotions for the Beach

Author: Miriam Drennan
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

Inspirational.

Devotions from the Front Porch

Author: Stacy Edwards
Stars: 5
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

 VERY GRATIFYING.

Cruise Ship Phenomenon

Author: Brian Cudahy
Stars: 2
Review by: NO1WOMAN ON THE GO

A RATHER DRY READ FOR ME.

First Ladies

Author: Susan Swain
Stars: 4
Review by: Linda

From Martha to Michelle , their role while in the White House.

The Final Detail

Author: Harlan Coben
Stars: 4
Review by: BKF

Absolutely one of the best of the Myron Bolitar series! And now, finishing this book, I have finished reading the entire series (although not in order). Truly enjoyed them all.

The Mother's Promise

Author: Sally Hepworth
Stars: 5
Review by: Goetz

First book of hers I read: excellent.

Motherless Mothers

Author: Hope Edelman
Stars: 4
Review by: August Mom

A great read for women who have lost a mother during their childhood. Wonderful wisdom and insights imparted from the author and the women she interviewed for the book that was published in 2006. The author's first book Motherless Daughters in on my reading list.

The Widow

Author: Fiona Barton
Stars: 3
Review by:PKB

I know this was in the realm of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, and it was okay, but very similar and when you are third in the queue you need to have a special hook to set your book apart. Liked it, not loved it.

Song of the Lion

Author: Anne Hillerman
Stars: 4
Review by: Anne P.

This book is much better than her earlier ones. It is in the style of her father, Tony
Hillerman's books of Joe Leaphorn.

Stella Bain

Author: Anita Shreve
Stars: 3
Review by:PKB

I actually listened to this book on CD in my car. A good choice because its only 6 disks and you can finish it in the two weeks as compared to some longer books. I have read other books by Ms. Shreve which I enjoyed more, but this one was okay.

The Child

Author: Fiona Barton
Stars: 4
Review by: PKB

A new author for me, and a good one. The chapters are super short, James Patterson length, so you can read a couple before bed, maybe-unless you get hooked and want to see how the story unfolds. I did figure it out, but not for a while and kept reading until I was sure. Typical me, I read the 2nd book by Ms. Barton and will now have to get the first. This is a stand alone story I think. Other than some references to English words I haven't heard before, this British author's book traveled well over the water.

The Panama Hat Trail

Author: Tom Miller
Stars: 3
Review by: KM

Not a novel though it reads like one at times. This is a nonfiction title about the origin of the Panama hat---a more serious work that interweaves the socio-economic and political situations of Ecuador into the rest of the hat information. Very well-reviewed by critics and though it was interesting, I found it to be rather dry.

House of Spies

Author: Daniel Silva
Stars: 5
Review by:
Judy E
This eagerly awaited continuation of Gabriel Allen spy stories was not disappointing. From page one I was reconnected with the intrigue so central in all the other titles in this series. Saladin was a formidable dealer of drugs and arms and the twists and turns of his downfall at the hands of Gabriel Allen kept me up several nights! I confess Black Widow is still my favorite though. Did leave me thinking of similarities with today's political scenes!! Scary!

The Beautiful Mystery

Author: Louise Penny
Stars: 4
Review by: BKF

Another of the Chief Inspector Gamache novels. And another very good murder mystery set a monastery, deep in the Canadian woods, housing 24 cloistered monks.

The Fast Metabolism Diet

Author: Haylie Pomroy
Stars: 4
Review by: jambob

This is no easy diet and you need to dedicate 28 days to it. The author explains why certain foods are not good for us which is helpful. I did lose weight but more importantly I felt better without: bread, gluten, sugar, dairy, fats etc....

The Confessor

Author: Daniel Silva
Stars: 4
Review by: jambob

Thriller based on WWII Nazi involvement in Italy and the Vatican.

Congratulations to...

... our Week #10 Prize Winners:
  • Cindy
  • Karen

Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine

Author: Gail Honeyman
Stars: 5
Review by:libraryaimee

This book starts out weird and distasteful, but quickly becomes irresistible and delightful! Just like Eleanor herself.

Progress So Far

Click on image to enlarge.

Dragon's Heat

Author: Lisa Ladew
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Graeme & Heather's story. This one is about the dragons which are a special group in this story line.

Shifter's Sacrifice

Author: Lisa Ladew
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

This is a paranormal romance centered around "Shiften" (like shape shifters but more) and their need to find their true mates to fulfill a prophecy before a demon wipes out their race for good. This is Trevor and Ella's story.

Six Impossible Things

Author: Elizabeth Boyle
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

A fun easy, summer read period romance.

The Pirate Captain's Daughter

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Marat's story.

The Tracker's Dilemma

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Heath (Tick) and Lauren's story.

Mercenary Courage

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: 
Saraswati
A continuation of Vicktor and Ankari's story.

The Ruins of Karzelek

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Kalish and Stedgwick's story.

The Assassin's Salvation

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Jamie & Sergei's story.

Trial and Temptation

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

Val & Gregor's story.

Mercenary Instinct

Author: Ruby Lionsdrake
Stars: 3
Review by: Saraswati

While on vacation I binged read the 7 books currently part of this series. This is the first book about a group of Mercenaries that "rescue" three women then realize there is a bounty on their heads. This book is about Captain Mandrake and Ankari, leader of the women, and their love story.The rest go through key members of the Mandrake crew and how they find the loves of their lives.

Every Body on Deck

Author: G. A. McKevett
Stars: 3
Review by:
Saraswati
This is another post marriage mystery for Savannah and her crew. She gets a security job for the team and they all get to go to Alaska via a cruise. As always, things are never as easy as they should be. You kind of know what is going to happen - but maybe not...Easy summer read.

Lost and Found Sisters

Author: Jill Shalvis
Stars: 4
Review by: Saraswati

What if you are an adult and by accident you found out that not only were you adopted but you have a sister that you are now responsible for? This is that story. It has a lot of emotional up and downs but is a really nice book to read. There is also a book club extra included to spur discussions.

Some Kind of Hero

Author: Suzanne Brockmann
Stars: 4
Review by: Saraswati

I like reading Brockmann but some of her stories were feeling the same with different names. This one has a different focus but still related to the SEAL teams and their love lives. This is a nice summer read.

Air Fry Everything

Author: Meredith Laurence
Stars: 4
Review by: 
Rainbow
Great cookbook for air frying.

See What I Have Done

Author: Sarah Schmidt
Stars: 5
Review by: libraryaimee

I haven't finished this yet, but it is so, so amazing that I couldn't wait to post a review!  This is a novel about Lizzie Borden and the murders that made her famous.  It is told from different perspectives of suspects in the household.  The language is slightly unusual and really gives you a creepy feeling about Lizzie and her family.  I know what happens with the trial from history, but there is something so compelling about this book that I can't wait to see what happens next!  I highly recommend this...no matter how it ends!

Hell's Corner

Author: David Baldacci
Stars: 2
Review by: LZ99

Usually love this author, but despite the fact that I've picked this book up several times this summer, I just can't get into it or make my way past the 200 page mark...

Yellowstone Standoff

Author: Scott Graham
Stars: 4
Review by: 
bandit
VERY GOOD MYSTERY AND YOU ALSO LEARN ABOUT YELLOWSTONE. I NOW NEED TO READ BOOKS 1,2,& 4.

Six Ways to Keep the Little in Your Girl

Author: Dannah Gresh
Stars: 5
Review by: LZ99

Loved it--a great read for any parent, as is the boys' counterpart.

The Matchmaker

Author: Elin Hilderbrand
Stars: 5
Review by: BeachBarb
 
I loved listening to this uplifting (until she gets sick with cancer) story of Dabney Kimball Beech and her loves. Dabney can see a pink aura around those in love and matches up people, herself included. The love of her life is Clendenin Hughes, ever since she was a school girl. However, when Clen moves to Thailand to take a job, and Dabney won’t leave Nantucket Island, they go their separate ways. What will happen to them?

The Sunshine Sisters

Author: Jane Green
Stars: 3
Review by: BeachBarb

Not as good as I was hoping and expecting. Lots of drama.

Orange is the New Black

Author: BeachBarb
Stars: 4
Review by:
 
The book was very well written and informative. Even though about prison life, it was not depressing. I liked the way Piper got along with the other women, the respect they developed for each other, and the way she seemed to raise them up to be better people. Of course, she did something very wrong, and I shouldn’t be applauding her, nor feeling too sorry for her, even though she calls for empathy for those returning to normal life. In fact, her help in the drug trade is what got many of these women imprisoned.
 

The Arrangement

Author: Sarah Dunn
Stars: 1
Review by: 
Just Ada
Subject of this book was experimenting with marriage. It did not do anything for me.

The Baker's Secret

Author: Stephen P. Kiernan
Stars: 3
Review by:
Lizzytish
D-Day as seen through the eyes of the French. Emma is the main protagonist who keeps the occupied village together by supplying them with small things which are forbidden. The items signify hope for the villagers while Emma herself has no hope. I appreciated the viewpoint from the French villagers. I did not always care for Emma. It breaks my heart to know that people lived through such terrifying times.

After You

Author: Jojo Moyes
Stars: 5
Review by: August Mom

Great follow-up story to her previous book Me Before You. Happy, sad, and some suspense.

Death on the Nile

Author: Agatha Christie
Stars: 4
Review by: Lizzytish

What can I say? It's Poirot ! Hercule is actually on a vacation traveling down the Nile. A great cast of characters are involved in a complex and satisfying mystery. I did figure it out for once! Beware, not all are who they appear to be!

The Couple Next Door

Author: Shari Lapena
Stars: 4
Review by: Julia W.

The Couple Next Door was quite the thriller. There were many unexpected twists and turns, and the story stayed fresh all the way to the end. The character insight was interesting, although tedious at points.

A Walk to Remember

Author: Nicholas Sparks
Stars: 4
Review by: Julia W.

A Walk to Remember was a cute romance, but also a tearjerker towards the end. This book wasn't Nicholas Sparks' best book, but it was very good. Some parts were predictable, but overall the book had strong quality character development.

The Innocent

Author: Magdaeen Naab
Stars: 5
Review by: Ann Marie

The Innocent by Magdaleen Naab is a mystery series featuring Marshal Salvatore Guarnaccia. The books are well-written and provide an interesting perspective on Florence, Italy, where the series is set.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Coming in September

Summer may be over, but there are still plenty of new books coming out for you to cozy up with as the evenings grow chilly...and don't miss author Marta McDowell at the Headquarters Library on Saturday November 4th at 2 pm.  

The World of Laura Ingalls Wilder: The Frontier Landscapes that Inspired the Little House Books by Marta McDowell
Several generations have grown up with Laura Ingalls Wilder’s fictionalized accounts of her life as a 19th century pioneer girl moving from Wisconsin to Kansas and finally to South Dakota, settling in Missouri as a married woman, with yet a short time in Florida.  As an adult, Wilder kept journals and wrote many pieces for local papers and newsletters along with her much beloved books, always spending a great deal of time detailing the plants that were so vital for their existence and the often harsh environments that made life, at times, a struggle, and were often time play things…who can forget Mary and Laura blowing bubbles in the creek with reeds?  In this book, McDowell, whose interest is authors and their gardens gathers illustrations from Wilder’s series by both the original illustrator Helen Sewell and the later illustrated, Garth Williams, and pairs them with photographs, modern and old, etchings and sketches to bring to life the woods, prairies and Ozarks of the Ingalls and Wilder families.  The chapters are arranged in chronological order and follows the series, including Farmer Boy, the story of Wilder’s husband’s boyhood in New York State.  A compendium enumerates the myriad of plants, their botanical names, where among Wilder’s writings they are referenced and whether they were grown at Wilder’s final home, Rocky Ridge Farm.  An extensive bibliography has a detailed list of Wilder’s writings, writings about her and her journalist daughter Rose, as well as books on American gardening and landscaping, the history of plants, pollinators and the people who brought plants with them as they migrated west.  A must for any Laura Ingalls Wilder fan and anyone with an interest in the botanical history of the United States, especially the Mid-West. 

Caroline: Little House Revisited by Sarah Miller
Caroline Ingalls is one of the most beloved mothers in American fiction.  This novel, authorized by the Little House on the Prairie estate retells the Ingalls family travels from their Wisconsin home to the unsettled prairie, originally chronicled in Little House on the Prairie, from Ma’s point of view.  Pregnant with two young daughters, Ma must pack all her family’s possessions into a covered wagon in such a way that the wagon can be used to sustain her family until a permanent home is established.   Caroline, portrayed by her second daughter Laura in the Little House series is remembered as being kind, resourceful, and gentle; here she is also a woman in love, sometimes impatient with her daughters, and a daughter who desperately misses her family.  Above all, Caroline is strong and a hard, resourceful worker, fiercely devoted to her husband, daughters, and unborn child.  This new novel adds depth to the revered Caroline, sheds some light on the politics around their new home in the untamed land, and will have readers wishing that each of the succeeding Little House books be retold from Ma’s point of view.  A pure delight for fans.

George and Lizzie by Nancy Pearl

Lizzie is the only daughter from a decidedly untraditional family.  Both her parents are lauded psychology professors and researchers in Ann Arbor and have been at a loss with what to do with Lizzie from the day she was born other than observe her and use her experiences for their research.  Growing up in an environment lacking parental guidance and love, Lizzie makes her way through her school years the best she can, learning from her babysitter Sheila, and several friends, most as misfit as she.  In high school, she and her best friend devise the “Great Game” in which the two plan to sleep through the varsity football team; when her best friend backs out of the challenge, Lizzie perseveres on her own, sleeping with twenty-two starters in as many weeks.  The Great Game haunts Lizzie during her college years, and she blames it on her inability to maintain a relationship, especially with Jack, who she thought was “the one”.  Meeting George in the unlikely setting of a bowling alley starts Lizzie on a road to a relationship that has a semblance of “normalcy” yet one to which she cannot fully commit with the Great Game and Jack weighing heavily on her mind.  George is everything Lizzie is not: easy-going, certain of himself, and from a loving, doting family.  Lizzie agrees to marry George, even with her misgivings, fitting awkwardly into his family, but finding love with them nonetheless.  Lizzie and George’s relationship is not as solid as George perceives it to be, yet overtime, the two come to a place of agreement in this novel about self and relationships written by America’s Librarian.

Lies She Told by Cate Holahan
Best-selling novelist Liza Cole has exactly thirty days to deliver her new novel to her agent Trevor.  Distracted by her inability to conceive a child with her husband David, as well as the recent disappearance of her husband’s law partner and best friend Nick.  As Liza begins to write her novel, unfolding in parallel chapters to her own life, she realizes there are certain similarities in her novel to her own life: her protagonist Beth witnesses her husband, a prosecutor, with another woman; Beth has a six-month old baby, and is seeing a psychologist with whom she has an affair.  The deeper Liza delves into Beth’s narrative, the more she sees her own life reflected, and realizes she may have more answers than anyone, herself included, realizes.  The persistent nature of the plot propels the story along, though most readers will guess the outcome early on.

Best Day Ever by Kaira Rouda
Paul and Mia Strom appear to have the perfect life: Paul is a high-powered ad exec; Mia is a beautiful stay-at-home mom, taking care of their two young sons in a gorgeous house in a desirable suburb of Columbus, Ohio.  Paul has planned a romantic getaway for the couple at their lake house and promises Mia her Best Day Ever.  Mia has been ill for some time and on the ride to Lake Erie things slowly begin to surface, dispelling the notion that everything is perfect in the Strom’s lives.  As the day wears on, it becomes apparent that Paul has been hiding more than a few things from Mia.  Though many usual tropes are used in this novel, there is an urgency to the writing and an unsettling ending that will hold readers’ interest long after the last page is turned.

Good Me Bad Me by Ali Land
Fifteen-year-old Annie Thompson has just turned her mother in for the serial killing of nine young boys. While waiting to testify at Ruth’s trial, Annie is placed in foster care in the home of psychologist Mike Dawson.  Annie is now known as Milly, and only Mike and his wife Saskia know her identity.  Mike and Saskia’s teen-aged daughter Phoebe sees Milly as another needy foster child taking up her parents’ time and attention, especially Mike’s, and begins a bullying campaign at school.  Milly tries her best to ignore Phoebe and her friends, but there is a side to Milly that she doesn’t even admit to herself is there, especially when she hears Ruth’s taunting voice inside her head.  As Ruth’s trial draws closer, Milly’s psyche becomes more fragile, putting Milly more on edge and wondering if she really is like her mother...unless she is really in control of everything.  This tightly written, character driven, psychological thriller is one readers will not easily put down as they delve into Milly’s mind to try and decide if she is Good Me or Bad Me and does she know the difference.

The Best Kind of People by Zoe Whittall
George Woodbury is a beloved science teacher at an elite private school in Avalon Hills, Connecticut, who once stopped a school shooter; his wife Joan is a popular ER nurse, his son Andrews is an attorney in Manhattan, his daughter Sadie, a senior at the school where he teaches.  The community is shocked when George is arrest, accused of sexual misconduct with several of his students while on a school ski trip.  Overnight, Joan and Sadie’s idyllic worlds are overturned and each finds herself questioning what she has always thought to be the truth about George.  Andrew returns to Avalon Hills to stand by his family, memories of being bullied while in school and having a gay relationship with a coach when he was seventeen dredged back up.  Once George is arrested, much of the plot turns to how each of his family members deals with the perceived betrayal.  The narrative shifts from Joan to Sadie to Andrew, exploring the feelings each deals with, their reaction to George, and their reaction to the way each other is dealing with these events.  An unexpected conclusion to George’s trial is in one way unsatisfying, but in another feels exactly the way the story should end, for it will never really be over for any of the Woodburys. 

Dead in the Water by Denise Swanson
School psychologist Skye Denison is nesting in her Southern, Illinois home with her new husband, police Chief Wally Boyd awaiting the birth of their first child.  When a tornado sweeps through their small town of Scumble River their lives are thrown into chaos, especially with the complete destruction of their home.  In try Skye and Wally fashion, they put the needs of their friends and family ahead of their own.   Wally, who unbeknownst to the residents of his town, is the son of a multimillionaire who is very excited about the birth of his first grandchild and send a motor home for Skye and Wally.  Wally does not get to spend too much time in it, however, as he tries to get the town back into some sort of order; the only fatality of the tornado appears to be that of town council member Zeke Lyons, but upon closer inspection, Wally determines Zeke was murdered, not killed during the tornado.  Skye is settled, the baby is okay and then Wally disappears during his investigation.  With the help of her former students now friends Frannie and Justin, and her mother, Skye throws herself into finding her husband, alive and well, so they can begin to rebuild their life before the baby arrives.  Longtime fans of the Scumble River series will be delighted to be back among Skye and her friends; Scumble River is a warm and welcoming place and Skye and her family are among the best people to have on your side.  A thoughtful mystery is engaging and a cliff-hanger will leave readers eager for the next installment of the “Welcome Back to Scumble River” series.