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Book reviews by library staff and guest contributors

List from the lists

Cover of Recommended Summer Reading
Recommended Summer Reading
Are you looking for some good vacation reading? Having a hard time catching up on all the "best summer books lists"? Then check out The Ultimate Summer Books Preview of 2019 from Literary Hub. They've done the work for you. Their staff writer, Emily Temple, read a bunch of summer book preview lists and tallied the results. Below is a the list of titles that have been recommended 4 or more times. 
Happy reading!
 
July 3, 2019

Living the life of endless McDonald's

Cover of Born a Crime: Stories from
A review of Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood by Trevor Noah

This is one of those books that I'm going to proclaim as universally beneficial. I can't imagine a person living on planet Earth who wouldn't be able to take away something from this book, starting with the shocking reality of the title Born a Crime. Trevor Noah, comedian, actor, and Jon Stewart's successor as host of The Daily Show was born in 1984 in South Africa to a black mother and a white father. His parent's interracial relationship was illegal under apartheid law, so therefore his birth was a crime.

July 1, 2019

A gorgeous debut

Cover of On Earth We're Briefly Gor
A review of On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong

The last few years have been a real heyday for Asian American literature. There have been blockbuster film adaptations of Kevin Kwan’s Crazy Rich Asians and Jenny Han’s To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, Celeste Ng’s unstoppable suburban drama Little Fires Everywhere, Viet Thanh Nguyen’s Pulitzer win for The Sympathizer, and critically lauded novels from Susan Choi (Trust Exercise) and Ling Ma (Severance), just to name a few.

June 28, 2019

Sweet Anticipation for July 2019

Sweet Anticipation graphic July
New Titles

July and August always feels a bit like a lull in the publishing calendar, as if the big book pushes of late May and June have exhausted publishers to the extent that they all pull up stakes and head out of town with bags bulging with books. But the upside of all those big May and June releases means midsummer is a great time for the so-called ‘midlist’ author to shine—those books that might not get the fanfare of a bestseller but are gems for the readers willing to seek them out. This July sees some particularly notable authors releasing titles that have strong appeal, but potentially with

June 24, 2019

OverDrive Big Library Read Title for Summer 2019

Dangerous Act of Kindness cover image
Cover of Dangerous Act of Kindness
Dangerous Act of Kindness by L. P. Ferguson

It’s nearly (official) summer and with the warmer temps comes OverDrive’s Big Library Read. This year’s selection is L. P. Fergusson’s World War II-set drama A Dangerous Act of Kindness. When Widow Millie Sanger finds downed German pilot Lukas Schiller on her property, she tends to his injuries and shelters him to ensure he isn’t discovered by the authorities. It could be a disastrous decision: England is at war with Germany, and the discovery of an enemy combatant on her farm could mean death for both of them.

June 19, 2019

Sewn with hate

Cover of The Poison Thread
A review of The Poison Thread by Laura Purcell

When describing this book to my husband, I summarized as the story of two women in Victorian England: Ruth, a seamstress who believes she can hurt and kill others through her sewing, and Dorothea, a member of the gentry who visits Ruth in prison, believing that phrenology (the study of the contours of the human skull to describe a person's personality) holds the clues to Ruth's innocence or guilt. It sounds a bit wacky, I'll admit, but the story is so much more complex than that.

June 17, 2019

I'm just so curious

Cover of The Rook
A review of The Rook by David O'Malley

A week or so ago I saw a trailer for a new tv show and as it flashed across the screen in quick shots (as trailers do) it seemed so familiar and I thought, is it? Could it be? Yes it was. Starz has a new show starting at the end of June about one of my favorite fantasy novels, The Rook. I read the book a while ago but I'm re-upping my review to tie it in in with the show to come.

June 13, 2019

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