Thursday, December 29, 2011

Hard Truths

So Much Pretty by Cara Hoffman

Where is Wendy White? The sweet girl's disappearance is being accepted as one of those unfortunate events that will never be solved. Obviously, an agent from the outside has infiltrated rural Haeden. Wendy was the target. These things happen. These things happen all of the time.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Sugar Queen or Back of Beyond?

The New Year is almost here. The holidays are almost over. Doesn't it seem like we should have time to read now? This is the perfect time to read in front of the fireplace with a favorite beverage close at hand. I will recommend something light and upbeat to start the New Year. If light and upbeat is not your style, I will also recommend something fast paced and full of action.

The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen is full of hope and a little magic.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Penderwicks

We're right in the middle of the holiday season and I'm brimming with merriment and good cheer, so all I want to read these days are fun, cheerful books. If you're feeling that way too, then you should scoop up a copy of The Penderwicks and prepare to be charmed! The four sisters parading through the pages of this book may very well be some of the most lovable children you'll ever meet. There's four-year old Batty, who never goes anywhere without wearing her favorite butterfly wings; ten-year old Jane, a dreamy, aspiring author whose heroine is nearly as spunky as she is; eleven-year old Skye, a blunt and spirited tomboy who says exactly what she thinks; and twelve-year old Rosalind, the practical oldest sister who (almost always) cares for her siblings with kindness and grace. The Penderwick sisters, along with their new friend Jeffrey, spend the summer getting into and out of scrapes--including a close encounter with a bull, a midnight tumble into the lake, and an accidental romp through what was supposed to be a prize-winning garden. If you're looking for a quick, sweet, light-hearted read to get you through the holidays, look no further!

~Queen of Books

Monday, December 19, 2011

Brush Up Your Shakespeare

Eleanor Brown’s debut novel, The Weird Sisters, is nothing less than a gift to lovers of witty, domestic literary fiction.

The Andreas sisters are not weird in the conventional sense: think Shakespeare, rather than "strange." Rosalind, Bianca and Cordelia--see what I mean?--are the offspring of a renowned Shakespeare expert and his loveable, distracted wife. The sisters grew up in a small, Midwestern University town, generally getting on each others' nerves (in the way of sisters) and flinging Shakespeare quotes at each other (not a normal sisterly activity, but Brown makes it work).

As adults the Andreas girls have gone their separate ways but as the novel opens they are about to be reunited, without warning. Bianca and Cordelia are returning home, individually and unannounced, on the pretext of helping the way-too-responsible Rosalind care for their ailing mother. In reality they harbor their own secrets and are seeking refuge while they figure out what to do next. They are not overjoyed to see one another.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Staff picks

These are the titles our staff enjoyed reading last month.

Patti enjoyed The Little Women Letters by Gabrielle Donnelly.  Lulu stumbles across a collection of letters written by her great great grandmother Jo March.  She finds comfort and guidance from those letters as she deals with her own sisters.

Betsey recommends Into the Wild Nerd Yonder by Julie Halpren.  This is is a hilarious tour through high school clique-dom, as Jessie tries to find new friends.

Karen liked Falling Together by Marisa de los Santos.  Six years after their friendship ended, Pen receives a letter from her old friend, Cat. She will end up revisiting her complicated feelings about her former friend. 


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Never Enough Nordic Noir

I'm always on the lookout for another Nordic Noir that catches my eye - so special thanks to my Goodreads friend for giving The Keeper of Lost Causes a 5-star review. I had seen this one come through the library, but it took a friend's rating to inspire me to read it. Jussi Adler-Olsen, winner of The Glass Key award, is promoted as Denmark's #1 crime writer. This is his first book published in the United States. The Keeper of Lost Causes is part thriller, part police procedural and entirely worth reading.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Forgotten Waltz

Anne Enright explores adultery - Irish style - in her latest novel The Forgotten Waltz as Gina Moynihan recalls her attraction to Sean, the resulting affair and the casualties resulting from the dissolution of two families. What starts as a story about a self-absorbed love affair becomes an unsentimental cautionary tale told through sharp observations and unflinching prose.  As with all of us, Gina's recollections are not linear and the most compelling are the dynamics between Gina and her beautiful excessive parents, and Sean with his brittle wife and fragile daughter.

The Library Journal summarizes this complicated tale best when describing it as, "A breathtaking work that will surprise you." Be surprised by this and other fine works by Anne Engright including her Man Booker Prize winning novel, The Gathering at your Library.

Vicki Ann

Thursday, December 1, 2011

On The Nightstand

For a reading addict, it's a bit dangerous working in the library.  I read book review magazines to find out the latest and greatest, I talk with coworkers about books and then folks coming in to the library gush about the wonderful book they just read and I "must" read it too, and let's not forget about the serendipity of walking in the shelves when a book cover catches your eye.  Which is why I have over 1500  books on my to-read bookshelf on Goodreads.  Of course, many of those books I actually check out with plans to read and then they are on my nightstand just waiting for the right moment.  Below is a random sampling from the nightstand:

The Voodoo Wave by Mark Kreidler and Crazy for the Storm by Norman Ollestad - it's impossible for me to pass by a new surfing book.  I'll never surf myself, but I love to watch and read about it whenever I can.