Monday, April 28, 2014

Looking for the next Gone Girl?

Book Cover

If you liked Gone Girl, you'll have to check out Peter Swanson's first novel The Girl with a Clock for a Heart. Judging by the reserve list, many of us loved Gone Girl and then told all of our friends that they had to read it too. The Girl with a Clock for a Heart has the same sort of edgy suspense, with lots of plot twists that will keep you compulsively turning the pages late into the night.

George Foss is a forty-year old man living an orderly, if rather uneventful, life. His one true love, Liana Decter, was his first girlfriend in college. After only one semester, she disappears under a cloud of suspicion and with a warrant out for her arrest. Twenty years later, Liana turns up in George's local bar and says she needs a favor. Instead of calling the police, George is drawn into Liana's complicated circumstances. Swanson skillfully steers the reader back and forth in time between their college days and the current action, keeping the reader speculating until the very last page.



Monday, April 21, 2014

How To Live Well Without Owning A Car

In case you weren't aware, April is Bike Fest month and there have been all kinds of fun bike oriented events happening around town - including a Stevie Nicks ride where folks dressed up and danced to her music at various locations. This week is Pedal The Pueblo with even more opportunities to bike around, win prizes and generally enjoy Tucson on two wheels. Which is a roundabout way of bringing me to this book I recently found on the shelf: How To Live Well Without Owning A Car by Chris Balish.
I will give the caveat that some of the information is a bit dated, as this book was published in 2006.  But the sentiment still holds true. There are some huge financial reasons to go car-free or car-lite, let alone the environmental and health benefits. I really enjoyed all the little snippets from folks across the country talking about how much they have saved -many folks bought houses instead of cars with their savings, and will be mortgage free at very young ages, or will be able to retire in their 50's, or are able to live quite well only working part-time. There are also a wide range of folks who are car free - it's not just young students, but middle-aged IT folks and management consultants and scientific copy editors. And I like the idea of going on group shopping trips with friends who do have a car - you get the opportunity to buy items in bulk, or larger objects, while visiting with your friend - win-win! After reading this book I'm not sure I'm fully ready to go car-free, but it definitely gave some ideas to ponder.  Check out to find fun bike events for the next few weeks!
~More Books

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Community Book Picks

As I thought, the Community Picks display at the Main Library is constantly needing to be restocked. It seems that everyone loves to see what other Tucsonans are reading. It's time to share a few more titles with you from the Community Picks Bookshelf and to remind you to please send your picks in - it's exciting to see the book you suggested on display! Respond to this post or send an e-mail to with your first name, your favorite title, author and a few words or a sentence explaining why you love this book (or books, send a bunch). As long as the book is available in the library we'll add it to the ever-evolving display. And if you're a pencil and paper person, we do have forms available to fill out as well.
Let's start with Patrick's suggestion of Peter Heller's The Dog Stars. A post-apocalpytic story with loss and reconnection, a pilot and his dog - how can you resist? Next, Margaret suggests The Heist by Janet Evanovich. Think James Bond in heels and if that floats your boat you are set to enjoy a new series. And we'll end with an anonymous pick that has been remarkably popular, Ian Mortimer's The Time Traveler's Guide to Medieval England - I can't keep this one on the shelf.  It immediately gets checked out whenever I get a copy of it out there.  
Let us know what you enjoy reading and grab a few minutes of fame!
~More Books


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Book Review: All Joy and No Fun

Before venturing into librarianship, I worked with young kids in a Montessori school and studied child development. I'm still fascinated with research and insight into the workings of these demanding yet lovable little creatures. While you wait for the highly recommended All joy and no fun: the paradox of modern parenthood by Jennifer Senior (which explains how children influence their parents), you might consider a few other eye-opening books. 

Nurtureshock by Po Bronson & Ashley Merryman challenges conventional wisdom by revealing the results of studies showing why siblings bicker, why too much praise can backfire, and why sleepy kids simply can’t learn very well.

Bringing up bébé by Pamela Druckerman exposes the wisdom of French parenting. Their newborns sleep through the night! Their kids sit patiently in restaurants! And they somehow avoid all the guilt inducing reflexes that American parents seem to stew on. A former Wall Street Journal reporter who ends up raising her kids in Paris, Druckerman shares the keys to relaxed parenting that still yields boisterous, curious and creative kids (who don’t interrupt your conversations!)

My husband enjoyed Homegame: an accidental guide to fatherhood by Michael Lewis (author of The Big Short, Moneyball and The Blind Side). This guy can tackle any subject. The book is riddled with humorous anecdotes about the disparities between real life experiences and the social expectations dads face today. You will laugh. Out loud. Uncontrollably.

~ Betsy