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Posts by Molly W

Gloomies, like Goonies, but not exactly

Cover of Misfit City Vol. 1
A review of Misfit City Vol. 1 by Kirsten Smith

This graphic novel series is set in Cannon Cove, where a popular adventure movie called The Gloomies was filmed in the 1980s. Decades later, fans of the movie continue to visit and annoy the residents who cater to the tourism with mild resentment. Then a cool group of teen "misfits" who begrudgingly live in the sleepy coastal town discover something unexpected, mysterious and adventurous: a pirate map belonging to the legendary Black Mary!

April 23, 2018

The art of dostadning

Cover of The Gentle Art of Swedish
A review of The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter by Margareta Magnusson

The title of this book might put you off, but the topic is real and it is important. There is a kind of decluttering in Sweden called dostadning. Do means "death" and stadning means "cleaning." The author, Margareta Magnusson, suggests ways in which we can prepare our homes and possessions to make the most of them while we are still living and to ease the burden on others after we have died. She promotes minimalist living and choosing clothing, furniture and artifacts with care, especially as we age.

April 12, 2018

Varied leaves on the family tree

Cover of The Immortalists
A review of The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin

Author Chloe Benjamin read from her new book The Immortalists to a packed house at the first Wisconsin Book Festival event of 2018. It was a cold night but spirits were high at Cooper's Tavern as the author shared the news that her book was about to debut on The New York Times bestsellers list. Now Benjamin has been named the featured author at this year’s Book Club Café. Stay tuned for more details about that big event!

April 2, 2018

Mixing meds and merlot

Cover of The Woman in the Window: A
A review of The Woman in the Window: A Novel by A.J. Finn

This book gave my 2018 reading log a jolt! The Woman in the Window is a psychological thriller of extreme paranoia, psychosis, medication and wine. These elements combined are dangerous for the characters in the novel and, as I was describing the book to a colleague, I felt drunken and off-balance while reading it.  

March 22, 2018

I miss you, Joan, but I'm trying hard NOT to keep everything. I'm glad you did, though.

Cover of Joan Rivers Confidential:
A review of Joan Rivers Confidential: The Unseen Scrapbooks, Joke Cards, Personal Files, and Photos of a Very Funny Woman Who Kept Everything by Melissa Rivers and Scott Currie

Melissa Rivers and Scott Currie compiled this phenomenal tribute book to Joan Rivers. It's a massive tome, coffee-table-sized, 336 pages, and approximately five pounds full of the queen of comedy's memorabilia organized by decade. Scrapbook style, with photographs of joke cards, letters, scripts, and even a report card from first grade, this book is a wonder to me as a fan and librarian.  

March 14, 2018

The magic of the stage

Cover of The Backstagers
A review of The Backstagers by James Tynion IV, Rian Sygh, Walter Baiamonte, Jim Campbell, and Veronica Fish

Have you felt enchanted when experiencing live theater? I have! This new graphic novel series explores the weird and wild magic that happens behind the scenes of high school theater productions. Jory is a new student at St. Genesius looking for an after-school activity. He stumbles into the backstage crew on accident and immediately finds a place in their ranks. They are a welcoming and motley bunch working the lights, sound, sets and costumes and they have a secret.

March 5, 2018

Just a dad with a really big job

Cover of Lincoln in the Bardo: A No
A review of Lincoln in the Bardo: A Novel by George Saunders

This prize-winning first novel from George Saunders bends the mind and history in a way that still has me reeling. Lincoln in the Bardo is set in the days following eleven-year-old Willie Lincoln's death in February of 1862, at a borrowed crypt in a Washington, DC cemetery filled with ghosts of all sizes and stripes, many of whom don't know they are dead, and all of whom are surprised when a very tall, very alive President Lincoln comes to visit. 

February 19, 2018

Go, gummy, go!

Cover of The Not-So-Secret Society:
A review of The Not-So-Secret Society: Tale of the Gummy by Matthew Daley

Books that involve gangs of problem solving kids, hijinks and hilarity are perennially popular at my house. I checked this new book out because it looked like it fit that bill, and boy did it ever. Wherever this series goes I will follow. Madison, Dylan, Emma, Aidan and Ava are twelve years old, classmates, and members of the Not-So-Secret Society.  

February 6, 2018

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