A review of Awkward Family Pet Photos by Mike Bender and Doug Chernack

Sometimes I have specific "research" needs that are best met for free with a library card.  This research usually involves a novelty book.  These books are not something that I want to buy or receive as a gift to cherish and keep forever, but rather something that I will enjoy immensely for a short amount of time, perhaps for an hour or so.  I love being able to check out books like this with my library card, relish them, and then return them for others to get a kick out of. So, more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
November 16, 2011 | 1 comment
A review of The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson

I have a theory that one can judge how entertaining a book is by how bleary-eyed I am in the morning: the more sleep lost to reading or to frightfulness, the better. Using that scale, Maureen Johnson’s latest novel, The Name of the Star, would be an off the charts bestseller. I stayed up far later than my bedtime to devour Johnson’s thriller set in a dangerous, haunted London. Rory more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
November 15, 2011 | 0 comments
A review of Mourning the Little Dead by Jane Adams

Jane Adams is one of those British mystery writers who've been writing for a while and yet are barely on the radar for American readers. I certainly can't tell you what brought her to my attention, but whatever it was, I'm glad for it. In Mourning the Little Dead Adams introduces Naomi Blake. Naomi is a former police officer who had to leave the job when she was blinded in a car accident. It's more

Reviewed by Jane J on
November 14, 2011 | 0 comments
A review of Biblioburro by Jeanette Winter

Introducing the burro bookmobile! In Biblioburro: A True Story from Columbia, read about a Columbian schoolteacher who uses burros to bring books to children in faraway villages. Luis Soriano loved reading and wanted to share his love of books with others. So, he sets off with two burros, one for himself and one for the books. Luis wends his way through the mountain terrain and fends off bandits to reach villages with no access to libraries. The colorful illustrations reflect the more

Reviewed by Tracy on
November 11, 2011 | 0 comments
Memoirs of Loss Do you have a favorite memoir? To coincide with the release of Joan Didion's Blue Nights, the site Flavorwire has compiled a list - Magical Thinking: Our 10 Favorite Memoirs of Loss. Do you agree with their choices? Are there any titles that you more

Reviewed by Kathy K. - Central on
November 10, 2011 | 0 comments
A review of Is Everyone Hanging Out without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling

I learned this in Mindy Kaling's new comedy memoir. She includes a 'pliest' or list-y piece of all the ways that Mindy Kaling is not like Kelly Kapoor, the character that she plays on The Office. The number one difference (not included in the pliest) is that Mindy Kaling has been a head writer, editor and producer on The Office since it was picked up as a mid-season replacement in 2005, when she was only 24 years old.  Prior to that, more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
November 9, 2011 | 3 comments
A review of The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin

There are some particular times and places that are especially fruitful for literary exploration, and for me, the glittering world of the late nineteenth century New York is an era ripe for perusal.  The emphasis on social rigidity and excessive display, with its undercurrents of envy and intrigue, so perfectly encapsulated in the works of Edith Wharton, continues to fascinate readers today.  First time author Daisy Goodwin joins the list of authors who have portrayed this era with more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
November 8, 2011 | 0 comments
Armchair Traveling Like reading about other people? How about checking out some African memoirs? Today I ran across an article about Alexandra Fuller's top 10 African memoirs. Fuller is a good choice to create such a list since she's written some award-winning books of her own experiences in Africa. Her books include more

Reviewed by Kathy K. - Central on
November 7, 2011 | 0 comments
A review of When She Woke by Hillary Jordan

"When she woke she was red. Not flushed, not sunburned, but the solid, declaritive red of a stop sign." So opens Hillary Jordan's sophomore novel (after Mudbound). Up until recently Hannah Payne has lived a pretty blameless life. Raised in a fundamentalist christian family she has always followed more

Reviewed by Jane J on
November 5, 2011 | 0 comments
A review of Like Pickle Juice on a Cookie by Julie Sternberg

When Eleanor's parents sit her down for a serious talk, she's afraid someone has died. No one has, but to Eleanor, the news that her beloved babysitter, Bibi, is moving to Florida, is just as terrible. Perfectly capturing the voice of an almost third-grader, Julie Sternberg's story of how a little girl learns to grieve the loss of an important adult in her life and accept new situations and people is a tale that any child can relate to. And, with short sentences and chapters, it's a great book more

Reviewed by Krissy on
November 4, 2011 | 0 comments
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