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A review of Color Me Purple by Ellie Schatz

This book came to our library at just the right time. Local author Ellie Schatz and local artist Donna J. Parker collaborated to produce this beautiful book for children and adults, with 52 pages packed full of wisdom and practical lessons about diversity. Extraordinarily well-researched, this book is clearly the brain-child of educators, artists, and activists. Intended to be read with children, the book introduces us to eight children of different colors and ethnicities, who demonstrate eight more

Reviewed by Carra on
December 2, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay by Rowling, J. K. J. K. Rowling

Note: This is a spoiler-free review. If you love the Harry Potter world as much as I do, you will perhaps understand how I spent most of one cold, windy Saturday in November. See, first I went to see the new Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie and I'll say, in short and spoiler-free, it was amazing -- and for more reasons than the fact that the lead female character's name was Tina! The movie was so amazing that as soon as I got home, I listened to the soundtrack while pre- more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
December 1, 2016 | 2 comments
A review of Fields Where They Lay by Timothy Hallinan

If you’re the sort of person who is not inclined to the holiday season, there can be no greater hell on earth than a shopping mall a few days before Christmas. In Fields Where They Lay, Junior Bender—LA-based thief and detective to the criminally inclined--is decidedly not a fan of Christmas. Yet when a Russian crime boss turned retail entrepreneur hires him to find out why shoplifting has skyrocketed at his struggling mall, Junior is stuck practically taking up residence at Edgerton more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
November 30, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Good Night Owl by Greg Pizzoli

A silly story about an owl who hears a “squeak” somewhere in his house – but, where is it coming from?! In Good Night Owl (Disney/Hyperion, 2016) readers get the inside scoop through the humorous illustrations, while the owl tries to figure things out. He empties out the cupboards, takes up the floorboards, and – even – tears down the roof! Finally he is ready to go to sleep under the wide open sky . . . Greg Pizzoli’s text and illustrations are a perfect match - and the humor is sure to tickle more

Reviewed by Tracy on
November 28, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Fairy tales for Mr. Barker by Jessica Ahlberg

I grew up loving the work of Janet and Allan Ahlberg, so I was thrilled when I discovered Fairy Tales for Mr. Barker – a picture book written and illustrated by their daughter, Jessica Ahlberg.  This cumulative story follows Lucy and her dog, Mr. Barker, through a series of fairy tales.  As they go from one story to another, they rescue Goldilocks, the Three Little Pigs, Jack, and Sleeping Beauty from their fairy tale fates with the more

Reviewed by Madeleine on
November 25, 2016 | 0 comments
National Book Awards The National Book Foundation bestowed its annual awards November 16, recognizing outstanding contributions to American literature in several categories. The winner of the Young People’s Literature Award went to March. Book Three by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin & Nate Powell.  The graphic adaptation is the final installment in a more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
November 21, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of The Most Important Thing: stories about sons, fathers and grandfathers by Avi For whatever reason, short story anthologies don’t seem to be fast movers from library shelves.  This is a missed opportunity for readers.  Author extraordinaire, Avi has crafted a series of short stories posing the question “What is the most important thing a father can do for his son?”  The seven stories in the anthology range from absurd to comic to profoundly sad.  Avi renders each story with his deftly poetic style.  While answers to the initial question are not more

Reviewed by Ruth on
November 18, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer

I love, love, love books by female comedians. I gobble them up like it's Thanksgiving Day. I could not wait to get this book and it did not disappoint. Some highlights for me include a chapter on Amy Schumer, introvert. Yes! I *totally* get how someone who is an introvert finds themself in a conspicuous position or needs to be on super octane for certain stretches. My career as a quiet librarian has required me to lead groups of 300 school children in summer reading cheers, teach classes at more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
November 16, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Baron by Joanna Shupe

Joanna Shupe is moving from English historicals to American historicals with her Knickerbocker Club romances. These are set in the Gilded Age in New York City and her powerful, industrialist heros and scrappy American heroines make for a nice change from all those Dukes and governesses to be found in romances set across the pond. Here the industrialist is William Sloane, heir to a fortune more

Reviewed by Jane J on
November 15, 2016 | 0 comments
A review of Sing For Your Life: A Story of Race, Music, and Family by Daniel Bergner

New York’s Lincoln Center glows with the white travertine marble that covers the concert halls and much of the plaza, disciplined lines centered on the Metropolitan Opera. The largest and most prestigious classical music institution in the nation, the Met is the unlikely finish line to a journey that started for Ryan Speedo Green in a setting about as far removed from the stately elegance of the arts center as possible: the confines of a solitary cell in Virginia’s adolescent mental facility. more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
November 14, 2016 | 0 comments
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