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Book reviews by library staff and guest contributors

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

I take this hot dog to be my..

Cover of Food: A Love Story
A review of Food: A Love Story by Jim Gaffigan

Oh, this is Humor. With a capital "H." Jim Gaffigan is clearly not getting married to a hot dog, as he already has a wife and five small children, and he's not that kind of weirdo, but he really does love the cured meats. Like, loves loves loves the cured meats. Hot dogs. Bologna. Bacon. All sausages, especially bratwurst. I did not think I could laugh more than I did while reading Dad is Fat, Gaffigan's take on parenting all those small children in New York City with a two bedroom, fifth floor walk-up, and here I am, laughing away as I think about Food: A Love Story.

June 10, 2019

Power plays

Cover of The Right Swipe
A review of The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai

Rai's latest series tackles the intersection of technology and modern love, where an app developer and a rival company's spokesman end up filming a series of promotional videos and fall in love in the process. Rhiannon, Gabe's sister from Rai's Forbidden Hearts series, returns as the creator of Crush, an app that works similarly to Bumble. She had a brief fling with Samson, a spokesman for Matchmaker that ended with Samson ghosting Rhiannon. When Rhiannon attempts to buy Matchmaker, she ends up reuniting with Samson, to Samson's delight and Rhiannon's reluctance.

June 7, 2019

Stories we tell

Cover of The Rest of the Story
A review of The Rest of the Story by Sarah Dessen

There was a time when I discovered Sarah Dessen and did a deep dive into her young adult novels. And once I'd caught up on her backlist I'd read each new one when it came out. But then I stopped doing an auto-read of her books. Can't really tell you why, though I'm guessing there were just too many other things on my TBR radar (a constant challenge in my life), but there it is. What's funny is I can't tell you why I decided to try her newest and why, when I decided to do so, I was kind of nervous. Would it be as enjoyable as the earlier ones were? Had I grown out of my love for her books?

June 6, 2019

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